2013 Mercedes-Benz SLK Class vs. Its Competition

The 2013 Mercedes-Benz SLK250
Bengt Halvorson Bengt Halvorson Senior Editor

You might think of luxury roadsters as one-trick ponies, but these are remarkably versatile vehicles, most with just enough cargo space for weekend trips, enough comfort for everyday commuting, the features of luxury coupes, and enough seat-of-the-pants thrills to satisfy all but the most die-hard track hounds.

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.

The 2013 Mercedes-Benz SLK2502013 Mercedes-Benz SLK Class
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2013 BMW Z42013 BMW Z4
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2013 Jaguar XKR Coupe2013 Jaguar XK
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2013 Porsche Boxster2013 Porsche Boxster
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2014 Porsche Cayman2013 Porsche Cayman
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Quick Specs
8.4
The 2013 Mercedes-Benz SLK is the least polarizing of the roadsters, but there's enough urgency to go with its elegant, mini-SL charm.
7.8
The 2013 BMW Z4 is spirited and purposeful, and balances fun and comfort quite well, but it's pricier than other roadsters.
9.2
Raising pulses and generating sheer envy: it's all in a day's work for the gorgeous, sublime Jaguar XK.
9.0
The 2013 Porsche Boxster is one of the most fun, stylish, and luxurious roadsters available.
9.0
MSRP From    
$42,900$47,350$79,000$49,500N/A
Gas Mileage    
19 MPG City / 32 MPG Hwy17 MPG City / 34 MPG Hwy15 MPG City / 24 MPG Hwy20 MPG City / 30 MPG Hwy
Engine    
Gas I4Turbocharged Gas I4Gas V8Gas Flat-6N/A
EPA Class    
2 SeaterTwo SeatersMini-CompactTwo-SeaterN/A
Style Name    
2-Door Roadster SLK 2502-Door Roadster sDrive28i2-Door Coupe Touring2-Door RoadsterN/A
Drivetrain    
Rear Wheel DriveRear Wheel DriveRear Wheel DriveRear-Wheel DriveN/A
Passenger Capacity    
2242N/A
Passenger Doors    
N/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Body Style    
2 Door RoadsterConvertibleCoupeConvertibleN/A
Transmission    
ManualManualAutomaticManualN/A
Detailed Spec Comparison
 2013 Mercedes-Benz SLK Class vs. 2013 BMW Z42013 Mercedes-Benz SLK Class vs. 2013 Jaguar XK2013 Mercedes-Benz SLK Class vs. 2013 Porsche Boxster2013 Mercedes-Benz SLK Class vs. 2013 Porsche Cayman