Here's your first look at the next-generation Mercedes SL.
Having been on sale since 2013, the current Mercedes-Benz SL-Class is one of the oldest models in the German automaker's lineup. An all-new model is long overdue to improve the SL's slow sales. Thankfully, a replacement is coming, and it will share a lot in common with the Mercedes-AMG GT. And now we can reveal the first spy shots of the next-generation Mercedes SL in its production guise.
The new Mercedes SL is being developed by AMG alongside the new Mercedes-AMG GT, and the performance division's influence is clear to see. Compared to the current model, the new Mercedes SL features sportier styling and a lightweight fabric roof replacing the heavy folding hard-top roof, although the heavy camouflage prevents us from getting a good look at the design details. The camouflaged prototype appears to have production headlights, however.
AMG boss Tobias Moers has said the new SL-Class will be "far sportier" than the current car and have a "perfect compromise between driving dynamics and comfort because it's still kind of a cruiser, too." He also confirmed the next-generation SL will be available exclusively as a roadster.
To cut production costs down, the new Mercedes SL will ride on the same Modular Sports Architecture as the next-generation Mercedes-AMG GT, which will make the new SL significantly lighter. The cabin is also expected to be more spacious and incorporate rear seats for the first time.
As for engine options, the new Mercedes SL is expected to be offered with an inline six-cylinder producing 435 horsepower and a 522-hp twin-turbo V8, while the next-generation SL63 could have 612 hp if rumors are to be believed. The SL73 could also return as a plug-in hybrid with an SL63-based powertrain and a 204-hp electric motor producing a combined 800 hp and 738 lb-ft of torque.
Nothing is official yet, but the Mercedes SL could debut in 2021, followed by the new AMG GT in 2022.