Mercedes SLS AMG Carrera Panamericana drive
Whispers about a sub-SLS Mercedes-Benz sports coupe codenamed SLS have been growing louder recently. A few weeks ago, Autocar reported that the car would be aimed at the likes of the Porsche 911 and Aston Martin V8 Vantage and would use an AMG V-8 to get it right in line. A new Auto Bild report supports the concept of a 911 fighter, but suggests that the SLC may use a twin-turbo V-6 instead.
According to the report, the SLC would be offered in several tunes starting at 350 horsepower and working up to 500 horsepower. Pricing would start at EUR 100,000, which is in line with the prices being speculated last month. That price would also make it competitive with the 911, which currently bases at around 85,000 euros, a price that's certain to rise when Porsche introduces the all-new 2012 911 later this year.
Mercedes will attempt to keep both the weight and price low by cutting out the SLS' gullwing doors, a defining feature of Merc's supercar. Mercedes will also pump plenty of aluminum and possibly carbon fiber into the SLC to get it as trim as possible.
It's possible that Mercedes will offer two engine options. Last months reports seemed pretty certain that the coupe would have V-8 power, likely by way of AMG's 420-hp 5.5-liter V-8. The base 350-horsepower model could use the twin-turbo V-6, perhaps a turbocharged version of the SLK's 3.5-liter V-6, with the V-8 reserved for the top-end 500-horsepower version. The last car to sport the SLC name, which was retired 30 years ago, was primarily V-8-based, though there was an I-6 option in Europe.
Mercedes hasn't set a launch date yet, but it could be as soon as 2014.
Though the details are still fuzzy, it's clear that Mercedes has another hot sports car on the way.