Friday June 3rd, 2011 14:51 Mercedes Unveils Soft-top SLS AMG Roadster

 

Mercedes-Benz has unveiled its new SLS AMG Roadster – the soft-top version of the SLS AMG supercar. To compensate for the introduction of the soft-top roof, Mercedes has given the Roadster conventionally hinged doors instead of the upward-opening gullwing doors of the supercar.

Removing the roof meant that Mercedes engineers had to stiffen the aluminium chassis and body, and they did this by fitting extra bracing on the sills and a-pillars, as well as behind the dashboard and seats. Despite all this reinforcement, the SLS AMG Roadster weighs only 40 more kilos than the coupé.

You may think that this additional weight would have an adverse effect on the performance of the SLS, but this does not appear to be the case. Powered by the same 6.2-litre V8 engine as the coupé, the Roadster winds out 563bhp at 6800rpm, and is capable of going from 0-62mph in just 3.8 seconds and reaching a top speed of 197mph. Both these statistics match those of the coupé.

The new three-layered fabric roof is made of aluminium, lightweight magnesium and steel, and has a flush-mounted glass rear window. It can be operated at speeds of up to 30mph and takes 11 seconds to either open or close. Impressively, the roof only takes up 3 litre’s of the 176-litre boot space.

The interior of the new SLS has been given an Espresso Brown finish, while buyers will have the option of Mercedes’ Airscarf system. This system blows hot air on to the necks of occupants.

Although there is no official UK price tag for the SLS AMG Roadster as of yet, it is expected to cost buyers in the region of £170,000 when it goes on sale here in November. Those looking for a closer look at the new Mercedes soft-top will need to wait until the Frankfurt Motor Show in September, where the Roadster will make its official debut.

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Bilder: SLS AMG Roadster © SLS AMG Roadster (R 197) 2011