The All New Mercedes SLK

Mercedes have just released the first official details of the new SLK. Its the 3rd generation SLK and brings a lot of new technology and features to the model.

The previous generation SLK (buzzScore 7.8) is a brilliant little sports car that has been very popular in the UK. This new generation model may not look hugely different, but its had more than just a few styling tweaks.

Exterior

The styling of the new SLK is extremely reminiscent of its older brother, the Mercedes SL. The headlights are part of the brands new look, as is the large front grille. The smaller rectangular lights are much like those found on the new CLS and the SLS AMG.

From the back its quite similar to the old one, and again looks a lot like a smaller version of the SL.

New SLK panoramic

Interior

New SLK interior

To us, the interior is one of the best elements of the new SLK. It looks very similar to the that of the SLS AMG, a supercar Mercedes launched in 2009. An optional extra is one of the most innovative features of the 2nd generation SLK, the Airscarf, which blows hot air around your neck and head to keep you warm when the roof is down.

Another cool option is the panoramic roof with Magic Sky Control. This is a glass roof which at the press of a button can turn from light (see through) to dark.

There are a number of new safety options too, including Pre-Safe Brake, which applies the brakes if a rear-end collision is about to happen. Another is Speed Limit Assist, which detects speed limit signs and displays the speed limit to the driver for the road they are on.

New 2011 SLK interior

Engines

new SLK red

There are a trio of new engines, all with start/stop technology as standard, and offering impressive fuel efficiency for this type of car.

SLK 200 BlueEFFICIENCY

1.8 litre Four-Cylinder, 184hp

0-60 in 7.0 seconds

46.3 mpg

SLK 250 BlueEFFICIENCY

1.8 litre Four-Cylinder, 204hp

0-60 in 6.6 seconds

45.5 mpg

SLK 350 BlueEFFICIENCY

3.5 litre V6, 306bhp

0-60 in 5.6 seconds

39.7 mpg

Three different suspension set-ups will be on offer. Standard, Sports and a Dynamic Handling Package, which has continuous adjustable damping.

The new SLK will go on sale in June this year, prices havent yet been announced.

Red SLK new

Verdict

Its clearly not a radical change from the last SLK, but it didnt really need to be. The new styling looks smart, though we cant help thinking it looks like a shrunken SL.

We cant wait to see what the AMG model will be like, the SLK 55 AMG is one of our all time favourite cars. There are also lots of reports of a diesel engine joining the line-up soon after it goes on sale.

The engines look like they will be particularly impressive, with great stats for both performance and fuel economy. Its bound to be a fun little roadster, and we look forward to reporting on what the press make of it when it launches.

Twitter Reactions

Reactions on the new SLK from some of the top automotive tweeters:

@Camerman_Phil: Its chunky. Like a KitKat

@ChasHallet: New SLK will have a diesel for the first time. Is it just me or is that massively appealing?

@LockingWheelNut: Recognisably an SLK, just with more sharp edges. I like. Best keep the kids away though.

@onthesidewalls: This Magic Sky Control on the new SLK. Nice idea. Obviously inspired by the bathroom doors of houses from Grand Designs.

@JoeSimpson: Diesel SLK is all well and good, but the new car is such a dog’s dinner of a design it matters little

@OwenReady: Trying to figure out which Merc is more hideous: CLS or this new SLK


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