So whats so special about the SLK that has made it an iconic car?
- World’s first sports car with vario-roof and AIRSCARF
- Forty international awards highlights immense popularity
- 459,000 SLK Roadsters produced since 1996
- Engine range from 120 kW to 265 kW
Ten years ago a now-iconic sports car made its international debut in showrooms: the Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class roadster.
The two-seater sports car was one of the highlights of the first Mercedes-Benz strategic product initiative and still stands as a symbol of the new, dynamic brand image of the Stuttgart-based car maker. Furthermore, the SLK-Class established a new market segment in 1996, a segment which has since enjoyed exceptionally rapid growth. Thanks to its steel vario-roof, which turns the two-seater into a weatherproof coupé in a matter of seconds, the roadster was and continues to be the inspiration for many other open-top cars.
“The SLK roadster was always destined to enjoy status as an icon. The first-generation SLK roadster set the standard for many other sports cars to follow. Some 4,500 Australian customers later, the new SLK roadster continues this.” said Horst von Sanden, Managing Director for Mercedes Car Group in Australia“It’s the ideal blend of classic sports car design with state-of-the-art technology. To say the SLK roadster has been a hit since its inception is something of an understatement. Spirited driving dynamics matched to Mercedes-Benz luxury helped cement the SLK’s authority as a leader in its sports car segment”,
More than 311,000 units of the first-generation SLK-Class were produced between autumn 1996 and March 2004, while more than 40 international prizes and awards underline the immense popularity of this compact roadster. The new SLK-Class has been continuing this successful trend since March 2004. Customers have a choice of four engine variants, including the six-cylinder SLK 280 and SLK 350 as well as the SLK 55 AMG which has an eight-cylinder power plant. The power output of the SLK models ranges from 120 kW to 265 kW.
To date, Mercedes-Benz has produced some 148,000 units of the current SLK-Class and leads the world market in this segment with an average market share of 34 per cent. In Germany and other West European countries, almost one out of two new registrations in this sports-car segment is an SLK model.
“It’s clearly a prized model in the sports roadster segment that epitomises athleticism and comfort under the one roof”, concluded von Sanden.
The Mercedes-Benz SLK roadster is priced from $88,400.