The SLK nomenclature has reached the end of its road, for now. Mercedes-Benz has replaced it with the SLC which has come round again after 30 years. The name is not the only thing Mercedes-Benz has changed, the car has been completely updated.
What does it replace? The SLK. This car was a huge success for Mercedes-Benz. It was launched in 1996 and achieved sales of around 670,000 units. It had an extensive choice of engine options, from an economical 2.1-litre 4-cylinder turbodiesel engine to a 5.5 V8 power plant powering it to 420bhp. The SLC has big shoes to fill.
On the outside, the SLC has a steeply raked radiator grille and an arrow-shaped bonnet, which will give it a more muscular front section. It also features the diamond radiator grille as standard, redesigned bumpers and modernised headlight and taillight clusters. Besides that, it has a typical roadster design like the SLK.
On the inside, the trim parts get new light or dark aluminium with a carbon-fibre finish. The instrument cluster is redesigned and features black dials with red needles. A multifunction TFT display has been incorporated between the dials while it also gets a LINGUATRONIC voice-operated control system for audio, phone, navigation and music search. The online infotainment system COMAND will be seen here as well.
The entry-level models will be the SLC 180 and the SLC 200 which will be powered by two different 4-cylinder engines producing under 200bhp. The SLC 180 offers a 1.6-litre, inline 4-cylinder engine that makes 154bhp at 5,300rpm, and 250Nm of torque between 1,200 and 4,000rpm. 0-100kmph comes up in a claimed 7.9 seconds with a claimed top speed of 226kmph. The SLC 200 has a 2.0-litre, inline 4-cylinder engine that makes 180bhp at 5,500rpm, and 300Nm of torque between 1,200 and 4,000rpm. 0-100kmph comes up in a claimed 7 seconds following a claimed top speed of 240kmph. They have the 6-speed manual transmission as standard, the 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission is available as an option on these models.
The SLC 300 is powered by a 2.0-litre, inline 4-cylinder engine that makes 241bhp at 5,500rpm and 370Nm of torque between 1,300 and 4,000rpm. 0-100kmph comes up in a claimed 5.8 seconds and it has a top speed of 250kmph. The SLC 250 d features a 2.1-litre, inline 4-cylinder diesel engine that makes 201 bhp at 3,800 rpm and 500 Nm of torque between 1,600 and 1,800rpm. 0-100-kmph comes up in a claimed 6.6 seconds and this car has a top speed of 245kmph. The AMG SLC 43 is powered by a 3.0-litre, V6 bi-turbo engine that makes 362bhp between 5,500 and 6,000rpm and 520 Nm of torque between 2,000 and 4,200rpm. 0-100kmph comes up in a claimed 4.7 seconds with a claimed top speed of 250kmph.
The Mercedes-Benz SLC roadster will debut next month at the 2016 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.