Car news

02 December 2013

Mercedes-Benz launches SLK55 AMG

The hotted-up SLK finds its way into India

Amaan Ahmed
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If the standard SLK just doesn't excite you enough, Mercedes-Benz is now offering a version that's been worked on by the magicians at AMG. Yes, the SLK55 AMG is now on sale in India.

With the possible exception of the SLS (which is now dead), and the outgoing C63 AMG, the SLK55 is the last AMG to be running a naturally-aspirated V8. It uses the same 5.5-litre unit seen on most other AMGs of today, but no turbochargers means that it produces 420bhp and 540Nm of torque in the SLK55. All this power is sent to the rear wheels via a seven-speed G-Tronic auto 'box. 0-100kph is done away with in 4.6 seconds, and the 55 will run into the limiter at 250kph.

Supremely quick as it may be, the 55 uses clever tech to save fuel, too - it features an engine start-stop system as standard, and also gets AMG's new cylinder shut-off management. What this does is when you're just tootling about in 'Controlled Efficiency' mode, the system shuts down cylinders two, three, five and eight. It effectively turns the car into a four-cylinder AMG to help save every last litre of petrol. Not like there's not enough power in four-cylinder mode - you still get 230Nm at all times. Want more grunt? Floor it, and you will wake up the slumbering cylinders in 30 milliseconds.

AMG's fitted the 55 with its very own suspension, steering, three-stage ESP (with 'ESP On', 'Sport Handling' and 'ESP Off straight-into-the-hedge' modes) torque vectoring brakes, rear diff lock, 18-inch alloys, and a special exhaust with flaps that open or close to let a little, or a lot of the V8's throaty growl through.

Inside, the car is covered in leather and bits of carbon fibre and alcantara, and is equipped with a six-DVD changer, a Harman Kardon music system, Attention Assist to keep drowsiness in check, and many more safety features that Merc likes to write with Caps Lock enabled. Then there's the Magic Sky Control gimmick: at the touch of a button, the 55's glass roof goes from dark to transparent, in case you want some sunlight to filter through to the cabin, but do not want to lower the roof.

The soon-to-be-the-only-naturally-aspirated-V8-engined-AMG has been priced at Rs 1.26 crore, ex-showroom, Delhi.

Tags: amg, slk, slk55, mercedes, mercedes benz

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