In 1954 Mercedes-Benz introduced a timeless icon in automotive history, the 300 SL Gullwing. Born from motorsport and designed using aircraft engineering principals, the 300 SL became a symbol for Mercedes-Benz. Fifty-nine years later at the International Motor Show (IAA) in Frankfurt/Main, Mercedes-Benz introduced their reinterpretation of the 300 SL, the SLS AMG Gullwing.
The new Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG takes on many similar characteristics as the legendary 300 SL such as the sexy gullwing doors, wide grill, wing-like fin, and the large 3 pointed Mercedes star which bears resemblance to a jet engine. Elements of aircraft design can be seen inside the cockpit of the SLS. Air vents are shaped to resemble jet engines, while the dashboard appears wide with its wing-like profile. The gullwing doors open at a 70-degree angle, allowing them to be fully opened in a normal garage and use less space than traditional coupe doors.
The Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG boasts an advanced and muscular powertrain featuring a mighty 6.3-liter V8 engine. The AMG-built V8 uses dry sump lubrication, which allows for a lower mounting point of the engine, achieving a lower center of gravity. Using a new intake manifold system, valve gear and camshaft restructuring, and changes to the exhaust, the 6.3-liter V8 produces a potent 563 hp at 6,800 rpm. A lightweight carbon driveshaft is used to transfer power to the rear wheels. Mounted on the rear axle is the new AMG Speedshift DCT transmission. The dual clutch transmission allows for shifts as quick as 100 milliseconds throughout each of the seven gears, and features a Race Start function as well as four different driving programs.
Mercedes-Benz and AMG have created an all aluminum body and chassis for the first time, giving the SLS AMG Gullwing a curb weight of only 3,571 lbs. The light weight of the aluminum space frame coupled with the low center of gravity gives the SLS AMG excellent handling characteristics and an astonishing 5.5 lb/hp power to weight ratio.
AMG light alloy wheels have been designed using the “flow forming” principal to shed more weight from the SLS. Standard are 19-inch front and 20-inch rear wheels featuring a seven-spoke design, with optional five double-spoke or forged ten-spoke wheels. For those seeking to shed even more weight from the SLS, optional ceramic brakes are available and are 40% lighter and offer greater stopping power than the standard composite brakes.
The new SLS AMG Gullwing will hit US markets in Spring of 2010. Rumors are Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Price will be $183,000 for the US
Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Specs
No. of cylinders/arrangement: 8/V, 4 valves per cylinder
Displacement cc: 6208
Bore x stroke mm: 102.2 x 94.6
Rated power output: 563 hp at 6800 rpm
Rated torque: 465 lb-ft at 4750 rpm
Compression ratio: 1.3 : 1
Mixture preparation: Microprocessor-controlled fuel injection, HFM
Drive: Standard drive
Transmissions: AMG SPEEDSHIFT DCT seven-speed sports transmission
Final drive – 3.67
1st gear – 3.40
2nd gear – 2.19
3rd gear – 1.63
4th gear – 1.29
5th gear – 1.03
6th gear – 0.84
7th gear – 0.72
Reverse – 2.79
Chassis and Suspension
Front axle: Aluminum double wishbone suspension, anti-dive, coil springs, gas-filled shock absorbers, stabilizer.
Rear axle: Aluminum double wishbone suspension, anti-squat and anti-dive systems, coil springs, gas-filled shock absorbers, stabilizer.
Braking system: Composite disc brakes, internally ventilated and perforated at the front; disc brakes, internally ventilated and perforated at the rear; electric rear parking brake; ABS; Brake Assist; 3-stage ESP®
Steering: Rack-and-pinion power steering with parameter function, steering damper
Wheels Front: 19×9.5 Rear: 20×11
Tires Front: 265/35 R 19 Rear: 295/30 R 20
Dimensions and weights*
Wheelbase: 105.5 in.
Overall length: 183 in.
Overall width: 76 in.
Curb weight acc. to DIN: 3,571 lbs.
Acceleration 0-62 mph: 3.8 sec.
Top speed: 197mph**
Fuel Economy: 18 mpg (combined Euro cycle)
*Provisional figures; ** Electronically limited