The Gullwing is back.
We've seen sketches and camouflaged prototypes and we've even driven a development car around the Nurburgring... but this is our first proper look at the SLS, Mercedes' all-new supercar and the spiritual successor to the 1954 300SL.
It is going to be fast. Seriously fast. Underneath that long, long bonnet - two metres long, in fact - is a hotted-up version of the 6.3-litre V8 from the Merc C63 AMG, hoofing out a massive 571bhp and 479lb ft of torque through a seven-speed dual-clutch box.
That means it'll hit 62mph in just 3.8 seconds and top out at a whopping 197mph, making the SLS very nearly as quick as the outgoing McLaren-Mercedes SLR 722. And hugely fast in its own right.
Despite that giant nose, the SLS is technically mid-engined: the V8 sits in front of the cabin but so far behind the front axle that the SLS has slightly rear-biased weight distribution.
As for the looks - well, we'd appreciate your opinion on this one. It's certainly not as cohesive a design as the Ferrari 458 Italia or the understated McLaren 12C, borrowing heavily from the SLR with a host of retro styling cues - but hey, it has gullwings! Everyone loves gullwings. Don't they?
Prices will start at around £140,000 - right on the money with both the new McLaren and the 458 Italia. The SLS will reach our shores early next year, likely followed by a roadster, a hardcore Black Series edition - and an all-electric version in 2012.
So - McLaren 12C, Ferrari 458 Italia or Merc SLS? Where's your £140,000 going?
10 September 2009
Return of the Gullwing
Mercedes reveals the retrotastic, 571bhp SLS supercar in all its long-nosed glory
The Gullwing is back.
More from Top Gear
Best of TopGear
- Meet SVO's £149,000 Range Rover
- Thought picnicking on a Rangey's tailgate couldn’t get any posher? Enter JLR Special Ops
- Meet the 2015 Le Mans contenders
- Porsche, Audi, Toyota and Nissan reveal their very different LMP1 racers. Here’s your tech crib-sheet
- McLaren 570S: it’s here at last
- The teasing is over. Official details of McLaren's new 562bhp, 204mph, £145,000 Sports Series are here
- A message from TopGear.com
- The investigation's done. The BBC has delivered its Clarkson verdict. Here’s where we’re at
- Mercedes to build pickup truck
- Slinky concept sketch reveals upcoming Benz rival to the mighty Toyota Hilux. Truck yeah!