Go
2011 Mercedes-Benz SL Class Photo
9.0
/ 10
On Performance
BASE INVOICE
$95,418
BASE MSRP
$102,600
On Performance
The 2011 Mercedes-Benz SL-Class pushes near-exotic performance with well-tuned driving dynamics.
9.0 out of 10
Browse Mercedes-Benz SL Class inventory in your area.

SEE LOCAL CLASSIFIEDS

PERFORMANCE | 9 out of 10

Expert Quotes:

loses none of its appeal when subjected to the stresses of the track
Motor Trend

as much authority as most of its high-powered executive owners
Car and Driver

It's a rush, sitting in the driver's seat
Road & Track

impressively quick to awesomely fast
Kelley Blue Book


    Minus its former SL600 model, the 2011 Mercedes-Benz SL range still spans a big part of a very narrow performance niche. There's a V-8 in the least-expensive SL550, and true to its badge, it's a 5.5-liter engine that pumps out 382 horsepower through a paddle-shifted seven-speed automatic. The drivetrain's found across most of the Mercedes lineup, and it's a tart performer, with a promised 0-60 mph time of under six seconds and a top speed of 155 mph. Only in the rarified world of pro athletes and the very well-heeled, would the SL550's performance be found wanting.

    In the two AMG versions of the hardtop convertible, you'll find two very different powertrains. The SL63 AMG thunders along courtesy a 6.2-liter V-8--the AMG division's first home-brewed engine--and it howls with 518 hp, teamed to an automated-manual seven-speed transmission. AMG says this one's up for a 0-60 mph rocket ride of less than 4.8 seconds.

    At the very pinnacle of the SL universe is the MVP bauble, the Timberlake ride: the 604-hp, twin-turbo, 6.0-liter V-12 SL65 AMG. This hoary piece shovels that power and 738 pound-feet of torque out through a five-speed automatic; two fewer beefier gears means it can handle the monster acceleration and can help the SL65 AMG post 4.2-second runs to 60 mph.

    There's a distinct difference between the SL550 and the AMG SLs, though all now have the Direct Steer system that quickens the car's response as the steering wheel moves farther off-center. The AMG SLs have much tauter tuning and faster steering, and even they have an absorbent, comfortable ride. Credit for that achievement goes to Active Body Control (ABC), a suspension setup that lets drivers choose comfort, normal, and sport driving modes. It's not needlessly complex with separate selections for steering and throttle, as are some other driver-configurable systems like Audi's Drive Select.


      Conclusion

      The 2011 Mercedes-Benz SL-Class pushes near-exotic performance with well-tuned driving dynamics.

      « Prev: Interior / Exterior Next: Comfort and Quality »
      Other Choices Read More
      9.2
      / 10
      TCC Rating
      9.4
      / 10
      TCC Rating
      9.2
      / 10
      TCC Rating
      Used Cars
      Go!
      Related Used Listings
      Browse used listings in your area

      How does the
      TCC Rating work?
      The TCC Rating is a clear numeric rating value based on a 10-point scale that reflects the overall opinion of our automotive experts on any vehicle and rolls up ratings we give each vehicle across sub-categories you care about like performance, safety, styling and more.

      Our rating also has simple color-coded “Stop” (red), “Caution” (orange),
      or “Go” (green) messages along with the numerical score so you can easily understand where we stand at a glance.

      Our automotive experts then also collect and show you what other websites say about these different aspects of any vehicle. We do this leg work for you to simplify your research process.

      Learn more about how we rate and review cars here.

       
      © 2015 The Car Connection. All Rights Reserved. The Car Connection is published by High Gear Media. Stock photography by izmo, Inc. Send us feedback.