Its just insane how fast eleven years have passed!
The production of the Legendary Mercedes AMG SLS commenced 11 years ago, roughly around this part of January.
The Mercedes Benz McLaren SLR was one of the fastest cars in the 2000’s. It was just as quick as cars like the Porsche Carrera GT and the Ferrari Enzo, although it was a completely different recipe altogether; it was a heavier, a comfier, and less engaging a car than something like a Carrera GT. It was a very fast, easy to drive continent cruising GT car. It was loved by many people for what it stood for. In 2009, two years after the SLR stopped production, Mercedes Benz showcased its new halo car, the Mercedes Benz SLS AMG. In fact, 11 years ago, around this part of January, the production of the SLS commenced in AMG's factory in Affalterbach. By mid-2010, customer deliveries of the SLS began.
The SLS is the successor to the SLR, in the sense that it took over the throne from its older brother to be the ultimate AMG. But often, the SLS has also been referred to as the spiritual successor to the legendary 300 SL Gullwing. The most notable reason for this must be their doors. Both of them have these incredibly cool Gullwing Doors. And both were surprisingly similar in appearance, apart from the doors. Its long bonnet, its silhouette and the overall design elements resembled the 300 SL Gullwing very much.
Main rivals of the SLS AMG included the Porsche 911, the Ferrari 458, the Lamborghini Gallardo, Audi R8 and even the McLaren MP4-12C. It was the character of the SLS that set it apart from its rivals. It was extremely powerful, and being an AMG, it had this ability to shred its rear tyres like a lunatic. Despite being a V8, its displacement was considerably greater than that of Lamborghini’s V10. People who drove it were really happy for what it was to offer, and its hooligan-like character brought a very wide grin on their faces.
Its drift-friendly behaviour won the hearts of many people all around the world.
What made the driving experience so special? It has got to be the engine. It was powered by a 6,208 cc AMG V8 (Codenamed M159) that put out 571 Horsepower (563 bhp) and 650 Nm of torque. The power was sent to the rear wheels only, via a 7-speed dual clutch automatic gearbox. With a kerb weight of 1619 kg (For the coupé), it could do the 0-100 km/h sprint in just 3.8 seconds, and could cover the standing quarter mile in 11.7 seconds at about 200 km/h (124 mph). It could achieve a top speed of 317 km/h (196 mph). Being a high-capacity V8, expecting Toyota Prius rivalling fuel economy is nothing short of stupidity, because it was one of the thirstiest engines in the world. But I don’t think any of the owners would actually care much about that.
Mercedes did not just stick to a single variant of the car. They introduced the SLS Roadster in Frankfurt, in the year 2011. It was largely unchanged from the coupé; the only real difference being the folding fabric roof. In 2012, Mercedes launched both the coupé and the convertible version of a more powerful SLS AMG GT. At 591 PS (583 bhp), it was a touch more powerful than the older version. Come 2012, and you’ll have witnessed Mercedes AMG unveiling two new variants of the SLS. The first, was an all-electric version, called the SLS AMG Electric Drive. It still is the most powerful SLS, 751 PS (740 bhp) on tap. Naturally, it also remained the fastest accelerating SLS from 0-100 km/h. Then there was the track focused Black Series. It had a power gain and a weight loss of 40 PS and roughly 100kg respectively.
The final variant/special edition of the SLS was the “SLS AMG GT Final Edition”. It was largely similar to the SLS AMG GT, but had a few cosmetic changes and the production was limited to just 350 cars. It was unveiled in 2014, which was the same year when Mercedes also officially took the wraps of the Mercedes AMG GT, the successor to the “Modern Day Gullwing”. The AMG GT bettered the SLS in almost all fronts, and there was no doubt that it was a worthy successor to the legendary SLS. But still, the SLS will never be forgotten by anyone; its timeless design, its Gullwing Doors, its crazy Naturally Aspirated V8 and its character will never be erased from a true enthusiast’s heart. Despite being 11 years old, even today, it doesn’t fell dated at all.