McLaren Convertible Bows, From $700K


Almost three months ago first revealed how a roadster version of the Mercedes McLaren SLR would be unveiled this summer. And here are the first official pictures of one of the world’s fastest drop-tops.


Much of the newcomer is shared with its coupe sibling; it will be made from carbon-fiber reinforced plastic and under the long bonnet will be the same 626-hp V-8 from tuning arm AMG. Coupled to AMG’s Speedshift R five-speed automatic transmission, the Roadster will hit 62 mph from a standing start in 3.8 seconds. Top speed will be 207 mph.


The fully retractable roof has been designed to blend with the SLR’s smooth bodyshell. There’s no information yet on what the top is made from, and it’s described only as being made from “a newly developed material.” Whatever it is, it’s available in three different colors and opens and closes in under ten seconds. To open, the roof has to be unlocked from the windscreen frame, after which it folds away automatically. Conversation is said to be possible at up to well over 120 mph, but we’ll have to wait for the road test to find out if that’s true.


Mercedes says that extensive wind tunnel work has been undertaken to make sure high-speed handling and aerodynamics are rock-solid. As on the coupe, there’s an airbrake integrated into the rear and a diffuser in the back bumper to boost downforce over the rear axle.


Safety features include a carbon-fiber crash structure, steel-reinforced A-pillars, and two fixed roll-over bars. There’s also front, side, and knee airbags, as well as seatbelt tensioners and a tire-pressure monitoring system. Standard equipment includes leather-upholstered carbon-fiber bucket seats, dual-zone air conditioning, and a Bose premium sound system with integrated navigation system.


Like the coupe, the SLR Roadster will be built at McLaren’s Formula One factory in Woking, U.K. It’s available from September priced around $700,000.

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