The 2013 SL isn’t a huge departure from the current SL that launched in 2003. The overall design of borrows many styling cues from the SLS and smaller SLK models. Compared to its predecessor, the new SL is almost two inches longer and just over two inches wider, which translates to more interior room. Although the new SL is bigger, its now 308 pounds lighter thanks to it being made almost entirely of aluminum.
The SL550 is powered by a new 4.6L V8 that puts out 429 horsepower and 516 lb-ft. of torque, which is a nice jump from the previous engine’s 384 hp and 391 lb-ft. The new engine is more fuel efficient thanks to an ECO stop/start function and is a revised 7-speed automatic transmission. The 2013 SL550 reaches 0 to 60 mph in 4.5 seconds, eight tenths less than the previous SL550.
The new SL is available with two different suspension systems – with the Agility Control Suspension as standard equipment. The ABC (Active Body Control) suspension system is available as an option.
The sixth-generation SL is available with two versions of the retractable hard top – glass or the unique panoramic roof with Magic Sky Control. The Magic Sky Control system switches between light and dark at the push of a button. In the light setting it is virtually transparent, offering an open-air experience even in cold weather. In its dark state the roof provides welcome shade and prevents the interior from heating up in bright sunlight.
Other new technology debuting on the SL is Front Bass and Magic Vision Control. The Front Bass system integrates subwoofers into the driver and passenger footwells to deliver clear, rich bass sounds. The Magic Vision Control system is a new efficient wipe/wash system that integrates the spray nozzles into the wiper blades.
The 2013 SL550 will be available in U.S. showrooms this spring.