Mercedes-Benz has released the first interior images of its new uber-sportscar, the SLS AMG, which will replace the current SLR McLaren.
The new car is being developed with Mercedes in-house tuning subsidiary AMG and the company says that for the SLS it has developed a puristic sports car interior that combines lightweight construction with dynamism and high emotional appeal.
Mercedes-Benz says that opening the unique swing-wing doors reveals an interior of a decidedly sporty nature – and immediately brings an aircraft cockpit to mind.
The central design theme of “aviation engineering” is reflected in the wing-shaped dashboard, the centre console in the style of a jet’s operating console and the four striking air vents reminiscent of aircraft engines.
The interior of this new swing-wing sports car offers authentic motor sports practicality, the safety typical of a Mercedes and outstanding ergonomics.
Fine materials such as nappa leather, solid metal and (optionally) genuine carbon-fibre facings underline the pronounced “custom-built” nature of the SLS interior, and show enormous attention to detail.
“The interior of the new Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG is not only very special because of the exclusive swing-wing doors,” says Gordon Wagener, Head of Design at Mercedes-Benz.
“The visible influence of aviation engineering, the high-grade materials and the practicality typical of a sports car will make the hearts of sports car enthusiasts beat faster.
“At the same time the new interior styling indicates the design philosophy for coming generations of Mercedes sports cars.”
Sport, purism, reduction and authenticity are the design emphases for the interior of the new Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG.
Mercedes-Benz says that above all the design is influenced by the world of aviation, which is clearly demonstrated by the new swing-wing.
The characteristic styling feature is the dashboard, whose powerful and dramatic wing-shape makes for an impression of width. The four air vents with their adjustable, cruciform nozzles are reminiscent of a jet’s engines.
An aircraft cockpit is also the visual and practical design inspiration for the long “Silver Shadow” centre console in solid metal, in which all the central controls including the AMGDRIVE unit, which is inclined towards the driver, are consolidated.
On request the centre console and other features are also available in carbon fibre.
As a new feature, the E-SELECT shift lever controls the AMGSPEEDSHIFT DCT 7-speed sports transmission on the drive-by-wire principle. Its shape immediately calls the thrust control of a jet aircraft to mind, and the same applies to the concave inner panels of the swing-wing doors.
The high waistline reinforces the cockpit-like impression, while imparting a feeling of safety and security at the same time.
All the controls are ergonomically grouped around the driver, easy to reach and intuitive to operate. In this respect too, the interior of the SLS is reminiscent of an aircraft cockpit.
The logically conceived control and display concept follows well-proven Mercedes principles, easy identification of the major functions and rapid access to frequently used functions being the major attributes.
Electrically adjustable sports seats with integrated head restraints ensure excellent lateral support and a high level of comfort on long journeys.
The AMG Performance leather steering wheel in a three-spoke design has a 365-millimetre rim with a flattened lower section, shift paddles and a metal insert, underlining the authentic custom-built look in the same way as the attractive instrument cluster.
As standard equipment the SLS features hand-stitched ‘designo’ leather with a contrasting seam on the dashboard, sports seats, interior door panels and armrests.
Comfort and convenience features include Thermotronic, cruise control with Speedtronic, Parktronic, a rain sensor, Headlamp Assist and Keyless-Go.
Even more onboard comfort is ensured by optional extras such as the newly developed Bang & Olufsen sound system, ‘designo’ exclusive leather, a DVD changer, the media interface and the Interior Carbon package.
The best possible passive safety for the occupants is ensured by three-point seat belts, belt tensioners, belt force limiters and eight airbags: two adaptive airbags and a kneebag each for the driver and passenger, plus two sidebags integrated into the seats for maximum occupant protection and two separate windowbags that deploy from the door waistline.
The new Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG will be launched onto the international market in the second quarter of 2010.