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Mercedes-Benz SLK 55 2012 Review

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Buy with confidence; all Mercedes-Benz Certified Pre-Owned vehicles come with a factory backed warranty, 100 point safety check, comprehensive service history and 24hr roadside assistance.

You'd think more power would mean higher fuel consumption. But amazingly the Mercedes-Benz SLK 55 AMG uses 30 per cent less fuel than its predecessor.

The clever engineers in the Benz go-fast department (the equivalent of Holden's HSV) have called on a bag of tricks to bring down the 5.5-litre V8's fuel consumption including start/stop which turns the engine off at traffic lights and cylinder shutdown that as its name suggests shuts down up to four of the eight cylinders to save fuel when they are not needed.


The same 5.5-litre capacity as the previous model. Based on the force-fed V8 that powers the E63 and other models. It's been totally re-engineered, with a new cylinder heads and induction. Produces 310kW of power and 540Nm of torque, compared with 265kW and 510 before.


0-100km/h takes a rapid 4.6 seconds and the top speed is electronically limited to 250km/h. The cheaper C63 with the performance pack fitted does it in 4.4 secs and the fabulous SLS Gullwing is good for a blistering 3.8 seconds.


A claimed 8.5 litres/100km, down almost 30 per cent. Benz claims it's the most economical V8 available anywhere int the world. We didn't see anything like this on the launch but we tend to go a bit harder than the average punter. Our lowest figure for the day was 11.2 litres/100km.


$155,000 plus on-roads ($24K less than the previous model). But there are some options you may wish to consider including the aforementioned handling pack for $8825. The magic sky roof adds another $4500.


The sectioned metal roof takes 20 seconds to raise or lower transforming the car from a coupe to a cabrio for that unequalled wind in your hair experience. The roof panel can in fact be replaced with a polycarbonate section that can be changed from opaque to transparent at the push of a button  just like magic.


The catalytic convertor, one of them at least, is coated with palladium which is one of the most expensive precious metals in the world. Just another reason not to leave it parked anywhere.


It's a sports car and as expected accelerates quickly and has very high levels of grip, but the short wheelbase means it tends to move around a lot on bumpy country roads. The smoother the road the better it is and the more relaxed the driving experience.

With such a big engine in such a small car straight line performance is impressive and overtaking is always an option. Punch the throttle and it simply a matter of pulling it back before things becomes illegal. 

The seven-speed auto is slick, never caught short and even blips the throttle on downchanges, with three modes included controlled efficiency. The four-piston front brakes bite hard but can be upgraded to ceramic ones for additional sum.


Lovely when you can hear it. Employs a variable baffle system that progressively raises the volume the harder you push. Too bad you can't turn it off because the best time to appreciate the blat of the V8 is when you're taking it easy cruising down the boulevarde with the top down.


Price: from $155,000
Engine: 5.5litre, V8
Outputs: 310kw/540Nm
Transmission: 7-speed automatic

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Range and Specs

SLK55 AMG 5.5L, PULP, 7 SP AUTO $42,500 – 54,340 2012 Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class 2012 SLK55 AMG Pricing and Specs
SLK200 BE 1.8L, PULP, 6 SP MAN $26,900 – 35,640 2012 Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class 2012 SLK200 BE Pricing and Specs
Pricing Guide


Lowest price, based on 4 car listings in the last 6 months

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Disclaimer: The pricing information shown in the editorial content (Review Prices) is to be used as a guide only and is based on information provided to Carsguide Autotrader Media Solutions Pty Ltd (Carsguide) both by third party sources and the car manufacturer at the time of publication. The Review Prices were correct at the time of publication.  Carsguide does not warrant or represent that the information is accurate, reliable, complete, current or suitable for any particular purpose. You should not use or rely upon this information without conducting an independent assessment and valuation of the vehicle.