2013 Mercedes SL550 Grows Some, Goes on a Diet [Video]: 2012 Detroit Auto Show

2013 Mercedes SL550 Grows Some, Goes on a Diet [Video]: 2012 Detroit Auto Show

We have seen pictures of the 2013 Mercedes-Benz SL-class before, first when pictures from its brochure got leaked, followed by the official release of images and specs about a month ago.

However, its unveil at the 2012 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, MI., is the first time it has been shown in the flesh. Like its predecessor, it has a folding metal roof, and the air scarf system, which blows hot air on your neck, perfect for driving with the top down even on cold days.

What is new about this new SL is its nearly all-aluminum construction. Due to this light-weight material, this new SL is 175 lbs lighter than the out-going model. Couple its lighter weight with the new 4.7-liter, turbo-charged, V8 which produces 429 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque, and you’ll end up with a very quick rear-wheel drive car. 0-60 mph in the SL550 model now takes just 4.5 seconds. Top speed is electronically-limited to 155 mph. You can bet, faster AMG-models are also going to be offered shortly after this model goes on sale.

If you like gadgets more than performance, not to worry, the new SL has plenty of toys to keep you happy. There is the MAGIC SKY Control, which makes the panoramic glass in your retracting hard-top go from clear to dark. So it is truly a convertible for all seasons and all types of weather.

There is also the MAGIC VISION Control, which is an advanced wiper system, which features wash nozzles that send washer fluid directly onto the wiper blade, and also would heat the water on colder days, so give a nicer, cleaner wipe from the start.

The audiophiles will no doubt love the new Frontbass system. This audio system utilizes the space in the footwell, which now features extra speakers. With sound coming from all corners, the idea is to give a full orchestral experience to the cars occupants.

The 2013 SL550 will go on sale in spring.

GALLERY: 2013 Mercedes SL550


See AutoGuide’s First Look Video of the new SL below:

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  • Andy

    The car is really starting to look like a mini SLS 65AMG

    The car is very very very big… now all it needs are gull wing doors and a roof! but the car does look stunning!

    Also Mercedes and bmw red leather is gorgeous!

  • Jeff

    I’ve never been so unimpressed about anything in my life. I love my 2006 SL500 even more. Ugly, boxy, old looking – circa 2002 and prior. If you want to waste your money on an ugly aged ‘new’ car, go ahead.

  • jack

    All very nice but where are the DIESELS??

    MB has been promising the GLK 220 diesel for two years. Still nothing!

    And when, oh when will we ever see a C 220?

    Come on MB USA, get with the program. Hybrids are an environmental nightmare with their rare-earth metals, conflict minerals, watershed destruction, and horrible life-cycle related battery plant issues.

    We want clean burning diesels. And if you can’t do that then give us Natural Gas or Hydrogen.

  • Winglow

    Who is the intended audience for this car – I have owned every SL there was since my 1957 190SL – but really! Why MB? Was this car designed by cost accountants? I would not buy a car this unattractive even if it has 429HP and sounds like an orchestra pit.

  • Simon

    While their is an SL for most people, I still like the drop head version from the 90’s, especially the 320SL with straight six 1995 version.
    This new version is going to be a bit pricey, but to me has lost the appeal of the original SL car. On the other hand the 65AMG is the ultimate version.

  • Garry

    Great car and great engine! I have owned a 2003 and now have a 2009.
    The 2013 is beautiful. Why is it that people who older ones always bad
    mouth the new ones? The 2003 is great for trophy wives.

  • Frank

    OMG, what were they thinking?? Way too big for an SL. I’ve owned the R129 series as well as my current 2005. The R230 series will, IMO, go down as the best and most beautiful modern SL design. The 2011 SL is gorgeous compared to this design; MB missed the boat.

  • Don

    Hey, my “ugly, boxy, old looking…” 1999 SL500 still turns heads and still performs excellent. To each his own. I’d love to have 500+ pounds of torque and 400+ horses in my old car. Maybe someday with this one. Can you get two full bags of golf clubs in the trunk with the top down? At least I can in my SL. No need to fight progress, time marches on with or without you. MBZ always live up to “Unlike any other” and they have again with the new SL.