Tested: 2005 Mercedes-Benz SL65 AMG

From the January 2005 problem of Vehicle and Driver.

Some might argue that the 604 horsepower and 738 pound-ft of torque packed into the SL65 AMG are as well a lot electric power and thrust for a street car or truck. They’re improper.

No, the SL65 isn’t going to have too considerably electricity. Its difficulty is it was not given a commensurate supporting of traction. Just after you push the SL65, every single motor vehicle will come to feel underpowered. And earning other vehicles sense anemic is particularly the objective of a world wide horsepower race. So with the SL65, Mercedes has eliminated a glove and slapped the deal with of the total industry and issued a very massive obstacle.

Admittedly, there are cars with a lot more horsepower, and there are cars with greater electrical power-to-pounds ratios. Two of them are the Ferrari Enzo and the Porsche Carrera GT, but individuals sexual intercourse kittens are not able to contact the torque offering of the SL65, and more vital, they are not vehicles that can be employed day-to-day as easily as can the SL65, which is no extra difficult to generate each day as the 50 percent-as-costly, 50 %-as-powerful SL500. There are a number of factors that make the SL65 really worth the additional $90,800 over an SL500, a single of which is the twin-turbocharged 6.-liter V-12, a 467cc-larger version of the motor in the SL600. A further is the defeated look on the faces of SL500 entrepreneurs when they read the SL65 badge. Their working day is shot. They’ll possibly just go home and kick the pet, for the reason that up right until that instant they believed they ended up Hugh Hefner.

AARON KILEYCar or truck and Driver

What you do not get with the SL65, oddly plenty of, is a time that is faster to 60 mph than the SL600’s, a auto that prices a mere $130,820. The SL600 does the deed in 3.6 seconds, the $182,720 SL65’s most effective time was 3.8 seconds. Please never call urging that we consider competence assessments. The “difficulty,” as we’ve claimed, with the SL65 is that it will not have enough traction to manage the horsepower hysteria. The rear tires have the identical width as the SL600’s, inspite of the AMG car’s more 111 horses and 148 pound-feet.

All that oomph helps make it just about unachievable to start the SL65 hard with out abnormal wheelspin. Cling on for 11.9 seconds (the similar elapsed time it will take the SL600 to operate a quarter-mile), and you may be likely 123 mph, 3 mph more quickly than the SL600. Finding the difference concerning the two V-12 SLs is like attempting to distinguish whether a youthful Muhammad Ali or Mike Tyson punched you—either way, your head is going to ring. So are those 3 mph worth the difference in selling price involving the SL600 and SL65—$51,900, which is, even though we’re counting, the worth of a nicely-outfitted SLK350? Possibly not, but even though they set out very similar quantities, the character of the SL65 is as distinct from the equally quick SL600 as Ali is from Tyson—class as opposed to a little bit crass.

AARON KILEYAutomobile and Driver

Because the SL65 has the entire AMG treatment—the SL600 doesn’t—it receives a much more aggressive physique package that incorporates a front bumper with a broader mouth that accommodates bigger intercoolers. There is also a rich, deep-throated free of charge-flowing exhaust that essentially sounds like a turbocharged V-12. Further more tweaks ditch the SL600’s 18-inch wheels and add bigger two-piece 19-inch wheels crammed by 15.4-inch rotors clamped by great 8-piston calipers up entrance and 14.2-inch rotors with 4-piston calipers undertaking the squeezing in back again.

The SL65’s brakes have deep reserves that cease the 4494-pound roadster from 70 mph in 160 feet. All SLs come geared up with Mercedes’ Sensotronic brake-by-wire method that is a bit grabby and complicated to modulate as one will come to a halt. Other than that caveat, the brakes give no hint of fade and inspire self confidence when you kick the pedal at 145 mph.

This Benz needs a great deal of home to workout. Punch the throttle on the street, and you can fly by the autos upcoming to you and arrive at the autos in advance of you promptly. The passing electrical power under no circumstances gets old, but to avoid a substantial ticket, we took the SL65 to the monitor to correctly pile-generate the speedo needle. In the corners, the SL65 displayed protected dealing with that erred on the side of understeer, and entire body roll was kept in test by the Active System Management that degrees the suspension to preserve the auto flat. There is a good deal of grip as exhibited by the .93 g accomplished on the skidpad, but this is just one significant roadster that is a lot more cozy reeling in autos on the straight than in the corners.

And reel them in it did. Porsche 911s and Corvettes were handed so rapidly we barely had time to question, “Who’s your daddy?” Right after a several laps a crowd commenced to gather on the pit wall to view the SL65 demonstrate its straight-line supremacy. All those spectators would most likely concur that the SL65 wasn’t overpowered but, instead, just right.



2005 Mercedes-Benz SL65 AMG

Car Kind 
entrance-motor, rear-wheel-generate, 2-passenger, 2-door roadster

Cost AS Analyzed 
$186,870 (base cost: $182,720)

Engine Variety 
twin-turbocharged and intercooled SOHC 36-valve V-12, aluminum block and heads, port gas injection
365 in3, 5980 cm3
Ability (SAE web)
604 bhp @ 5500 rpm
Torque (SAE web)
738 lb-ft @ 2000 rpm

5-speed computerized with manumatic shifting

Wheelbase: 100.8 in
Duration: 178.5 in
Width: 71.5 in
Height: 51. in
Suppress bodyweight: 4494 lb

C/D Examination Benefits
Zero to 60 mph: 3.8 sec
Zero to 100 mph: 8.2 sec
Zero to 130 mph: 13.4 sec
Avenue begin, 5-60 mph: 4.3 sec
Standing ¼-mile: 11.9 sec @ 123 mph
Top rated pace (governor minimal): 156 mph
Braking, 70- mph: 160 ft
Roadholding, 300-ft-dia skidpad: .93 g

Fuel Economic system
EPA gasoline economic system, metropolis driving: 12 mpg
C/D observed fuel financial state: 13 mpg

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