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.
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|2012 Mercedes-Benz SLK ClassBrowse Used Listings||2012 BMW Z4Browse Used Listings||2012 INFINITI G37 ConvertibleBrowse Used Listings||2012 Jaguar XKBrowse Used Listings||2012 Porsche BoxsterBrowse Used Listings||2012 Porsche CaymanBrowse Used Listings|
|19 MPG City / 32 MPG Hwy||17 MPG City / 34 MPG Hwy||16 MPG City / 25 MPG Hwy||15 MPG City / 24 MPG Hwy||19 MPG City / 27 MPG Hwy||19 MPG City / 27 MPG Hwy|
|Gas I4||Turbocharged Gas I4||Gas V6||Gas V8||Gas Flat-6||Gas Flat 6-Cyl|
|2 Seater||Two Seaters||Subcompact||Mini-Compact||Two-Seater||Two-Seater|
|2-Door Roadster SLK 250||2-Door Roadster sDrive28i||2-Door Base||2-Door Coupe||2-Door Roadster||2-Door Coupe|
|Rear Wheel Drive||Rear Wheel Drive||Rear Wheel Drive||Rear Wheel Drive||Rear-Wheel Drive||Rear-Wheel Drive|
|2 Door Roadster||Convertible||Convertible||Coupe||Convertible||2 Door Coupe|
|Detailed Spec Comparison|
|2012 Mercedes-Benz SLK Class vs. 2012 BMW Z4||2012 Mercedes-Benz SLK Class vs. 2012 INFINITI G37 Convertible||2012 Mercedes-Benz SLK Class vs. 2012 Jaguar XK||2012 Mercedes-Benz SLK Class vs. 2012 Porsche Boxster||2012 Mercedes-Benz SLK Class vs. 2012 Porsche Cayman|