The 2007 Mercedes-Benz SL roadster sports a more aggressively styled front air dam and a new front grille as well as clear-lens tail lights and chrome-trimmed fog lights. Inside, all SL models reveal re-designed door sills and richer interior materials throughout, including a different leather grain and new upholstery colours.
New Engine Architecture Powers SL550
A new-generation four-valve-per-cylinder V8 powers the SL550 model, which replaces the SL500. First seen in the next-generation S-Class sedan, the new 5.5-litre engine produces 382 horsepower and 391 lb.-ft. of torque, a power increase of more than 26 percent.
More Power for High-Performance Models, Too
The supercharged V8 that powers the high-performance SL55 AMG now has 510 horsepower and 531 lb.-ft. of torque, a very noticeable three percent increase. The 2007-model SL55 AMG also comes with new carbon-fibre interior trim and redesigned 19-inch five-spoke AMG wheels shod with high-performance tires. While the Bi-turbo V12 powering the exclusive SL600 gets a similar horsepower bump – to 510 – it now also has a monstrous 612 lb.-ft. of torque.
A Wealth of Features for All Four SL Models
Excellent stopping power for all four SL models is provided by large, four-wheel disc brakes enhanced with four-channel ABS anti-lock control. The SL550 is equipped with vented 350 mm (13.8-inch) front and solid 320 mm (12.6-inch) rear discs, while the SL600 has 360 mm (14.2-inch) vented rotors with eight-piston front calipers and 330 mm (13.0-inch) vented rotors with four-piston rear calipers. The SL55 AMG has 360 mm (14.2-inch) vented rotors with six-piston front calipers and 330 mm (13.0-inch) vented rotors with four-piston rear calipers. The SL65 AMG boasts vented discs that are another 30 mm (1.2 inches) in diameter with six-piston front calipers.
As on all other Mercedes-Benz models, Brake Assist can potentially reduce braking distances in emergency or “panic” stops. In addition, the standard Electronic Stability Program (ESP) helps to keep the car on its intended path, preventing oversteer or understeer in turns, and providing straight-line traction control.
Active Body Control (ABC) Gives Cat-Like Agility
The SL chassis uses a fully independent, double-control-arm front suspension and the patented Mercedes-Benz five-link rear suspension. All 2007 SL models come with second-generation Active Body Control (ABC), the Mercedes-Benz active-suspension technology that virtually eliminates body roll in cornering, squat under acceleration and dive during braking. On AMG models, the ABC system has been calibrated to account for the added performance potential of the car. Special AMG suspension struts with firmer damping and fully reworked systems such as ABS anti-lock brakes, Brake Assist, ASR traction control and Electronic Stability Program (ESP) stability control complement the enhanced AMG chassis. Each SL model uses software programming specific to the model, akin to tuning the spring rates, shock damping and roll stiffness of a conventional suspension.
Mercedes-Benz engineers use ABC's interplay of hydraulic, electronic and mechanical parts to reduce body roll by 68 percent (compared to the same vehicle with a conventional suspension), providing the driver with needed feedback through the vehicle chassis.
A "Sport" switch on the centre console can make it 95 percent reduced roll, along with tighter shock damping. ABC is designed to solve the usual tradeoff between ride comfort and handling precision: the SL roadsters exhibit excellent comfort while offering league-leading handling.
Seven-Speed Automatic for the SL550
While the AMG and V12-powered models use a modified five-speed automatic transmission, the SL550 is one of several Mercedes models to feature the industry's first seven-speed automatic 7G-TRONIC for passenger cars. The transmission improves acceleration and enhances fuel efficiency, while gear changes are barely noticeable, especially in the higher gears. The seven-speed shortens 0-to-10 km/h time and allows significantly quicker acceleration for highway passing. Using seven gears allows individual gears to be spaced closer together while providing a larger overall spread between the lowest and highest gear. The seven-speed can skip a gear if necessary, switching from seventh gear straight down to fifth, for example, and even from sixth to second, skipping three gears at once.
From Coupe to Roadster in 16 Seconds
At the push of a button, the SL's retractable hardtop can be fully opened or closed in just 16 seconds. A clever folding design allows for a surprisingly large cargo area of 204 litres when the top is down. With the top up, the trunk holds 235 litres. A hydraulic pump and 11 computer-controlled hydraulic cylinders power the system, and roof operation is controlled by a switch on the centre console.
About Mercedes-Benz Canada
Mercedes-Benz Canada is responsible for the sales, marketing and service of the three brands within the Mercedes Car Group in Canada; Mercedes-Benz, smart, and Maybach. Headquartered in Toronto, Ontario, Mercedes-Benz Canada employs approximately 900 people in 18 locations across Canada. Through a nationwide network of 17 Mercedes-Benz owned retail operations and 39 authorized dealerships, Mercedes-Benz Canada sold 17,567 vehicles in 2006, the best year ever reported for Mercedes-Benz Canada Inc.
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