2012 Mercedes-Benz SLK Class vs. Its Competition

2012 Mercedes-Benz SLK Class
Marty Padgett Marty Padgett Editorial Director

Luxury convertibles are a mixed lot.

Some have hardtops, some are ragtops.

Some seat four (on paper, at least) and some are two-seaters.

The SLK's competition hits it from all these angles.

The BMW Z4 is right in its wheelhouse, and if anything, it's a little more evocative in its styling and its balanced performance.

The Porsche Boxster--and the hardtop Cayman version--are brilliant mid-engine performers with the steering and chassis dynamics of cars twice as expensive, and they're among our top choices in the segment.

For left-field alternatives, we'd look at the Infiniti G37 Convertible, a folding-hardtop affair with luxurious fittings and good, if not great, performance.

And reaching upward in price, there's always the suave Jaguar XK convertible, a pavement-rippling performer as a base coupe or convertible, or a throaty growler in supercharged XKR form.

2012 Mercedes-Benz SLK Class2012 Mercedes-Benz SLK ClassBrowse Used Listings2012 BMW Z4 sDrive28i2012 BMW Z4Browse Used Listings2012 Infiniti G37 Convertible2012 INFINITI G37 ConvertibleBrowse Used Listings2012 Jaguar XKR2012 Jaguar XKBrowse Used Listings2012 Porsche Boxster2012 Porsche BoxsterBrowse Used Listings2012 Porsche Cayman R2012 Porsche CaymanBrowse Used Listings
Quick Specs
8.4
It may be the most pragmatic roadster of its kind, but the SLK 350 dares you to doubt its partying skills.
7.8
The 2012 BMW Z4 is a great option for the driver seeking a balance of fun and comfort, making it a great light tourer, but it can quickly become expensive with added options.
7.8
The Infiniti G37 Convertible doesn't suffer the usual styling compromises, but it's a little less exciting to drive than its Coupe cousin.
9.4
How to tell if you're hopeless, when it comes to cars: take your pulse after looking at or driving the 2012 Jaguar XK.
9.0
Stylish, fun, and capable, the 2012 Porsche Boxster is one of the best roadsters around.
9.0
The 2012 Porsche Cayman is a potent mix of performance, comfort, and cargo space, and a leader in the sports car segment.
MSRP From     
$42,500$48,650$46,650$84,500$48,100$51,900
Gas Mileage     
19 MPG City / 32 MPG Hwy17 MPG City / 34 MPG Hwy16 MPG City / 25 MPG Hwy15 MPG City / 24 MPG Hwy19 MPG City / 27 MPG Hwy19 MPG City / 27 MPG Hwy
Engine     
Gas I4Turbocharged Gas I4Gas V6Gas V8Gas Flat-6Gas Flat 6-Cyl
EPA Class     
2 SeaterTwo SeatersSubcompactMini-CompactTwo-SeaterTwo-Seater
Style Name     
2-Door Roadster SLK2502-Door Roadster sDrive28i2-Door Base2-Door Coupe2-Door Roadster2-Door Coupe
Drivetrain     
Rear Wheel DriveRear Wheel DriveRear Wheel DriveRear Wheel DriveRear-Wheel DriveRear-Wheel Drive
Passenger Capacity     
224422
Passenger Doors     
N/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Body Style     
2 Door RoadsterConvertibleConvertibleCoupeConvertible2 Door Coupe
Transmission     
ManualManualAutomaticAutomaticManualManual