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2012 Mercedes SL Class

The 2012 Mercedes SL-Class is a sinuous, sensuous roadster with dramatic styling and a major-league price tag. Slide into the cockpit, belt up, press the button on the console and, 16 seconds later, its retractable power steel roof changes it from the open-air fun of a convertible to the quiet comfort of a luxury coupe. It is packed with every bit of automotive technology that Mercedes has perfected over the past dozen years, and that's a lot of technology. It does everything well, with the single exception of hauling cargo. All come loaded with everything a driver and one passenger need for grand touring, from the Bose stereo to the beautiful new Interior decor. The V8 engine develops 302 horsepower. The two higher-performance versions will retain the 5-speed automatic for a while yet. It comes with racing-derived braking power. Its immense 14-inch vented brake discs and calipers are engineered with the industry's first electronic braking system, stopping the SL55 AMG with racecar-like ability.

Similarly, the 2012 Mercedes SL-Class uses a further evolution of the ABC active suspension to imbue the car with cat-like reflexes while simultaneously offering ride comfort that rivals any of its competition. It is the latest addition to the lineup, carrying a silky smooth 6.0-liter V12 twin-turbocharged engine. It carries a supercharger and makes 493 horsepower and 516 foot-pounds of torque, the 5.9-liter V12 packs the same 493 horsepower but generates a staggering 590 foot-pounds of torque, more than any other Mercedes engine of this size. The engine is a bit heavier than the supercharged V8, but it more than makes up for it with prodigious torque and electric-motor smoothness throughout the rpm range. It comes with this body kit as standard, and the V12 version has its own exterior decor, including V12 Kompressor badging on the front fenders.

The 2012 Mercedes SL-Class is surely one of the most beautiful cars in the world. From the jutting chin of its front bumper to the four-eyed headlamps to the traditional front fender air intakes to the shoulders over the rear tires to the five-spoke alloy wheels is not only the new style leader for Mercedes-Benz, but the new style leader for the entire segment. The air inlets in the front fenders were inspired by the original 300SL. The narrow, wing-like chrome gills are reminiscent of the first SL Roadsters and are echoed in the hood. The four-eye headlamp pattern has the two lamps on each side melding into one another. They represent the latest in lighting technology with a circular Fresnel lens that concentrates the light emitted by the standard xenon headlamps. From the side, the rising beltline contributes to the car's rake. At the rear, the triangular taillights use 27 LED bulbs designed to illuminate more quickly. 

 


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