Did Mercedes hit a styling home run with this redesign?
Mercedes has unveiled the 2016 Mercedes SL in LA this week. The face-lifted roadster received a range of styling tweaks inside and out, as well as more tech and power. Curvier headlights replace the old model’s angular eyes and are pulled out to the corners, full LEDs come as standard, while the grille has been flipped upside down which works well with the restyled bumper. The aggressive new face combined with an all-new hood was clearly influenced by the AMG GT and brought more in line with the latest Mercedes models.
The SL400 has been upgraded to the SL450, with its 3.0-liter twin-turbo V6 boosted to 362 hp and 369 lb-ft of torque. 0-62 mph now comes in at 4.9 seconds. The SL550 remains unchanged with the V8 continuing to deliver 449 hp and 516 lb-ft. Both ditch their seven-speeds for the new 9G-Tronic automatic. At the top of the line, the SL63 AMG with its 577-hp 5.5-liter V8 and the S65 AMG utilizing a 621-hp 6.0-liter V12, benefit from a mechanical rear different lock, an updated seven-speed and quicker shifting via aluminum paddle-shifters.
The interior gets a new-look gauge cluster, there’s some new ambient lighting options, and the convertible hardtop can be opened at speeds of up to 25 mph, with the trunk separator now moving out of the way automatically when the top folds down. Curve titling with Active Body Control is a welcome performance addition to the SL, with Curve mod replacing Eco function from the Drive Select modes if optioned. Pricing for the 2017 Mercedes SL will be announced closer to launch in late spring. Photos by Alden Tatum.