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2013 Mercedes-Benz SL-Class AMG Sport

The SL-Class is one of the most beautiful cars in Mercedes ’ lineup this side of the SLS AMG , and the SL 63 AMG and SL 65 AMG models are even more impressive yet. Unfortunately, their respective price tags of £110,785 ($172,292) and £168,285 ($261,716) in the UK make them pretty much out of reach for the average SL-Class buyer.

Well, if you can handle having most of the AMG show but only a tiny bit of its go on the 2013 SL-Class , then you will be thrilled with Mercedes’ latest announcement. Mercedes-Benz is releasing an AMG Sport variant of the 2013 SL-Class that buyers can base on either the SL 350 or SL 500 at a fraction of the “real” AMG ’s price.

Much like the M Sport packages from Bimmer , the AMG Sport package is almost solely aesthetic, but there are a few small mechanical and handling updates to help out some.

Read more about the SL-Class AMG Sport after the jump

Exterior

Mercedes-Benz SL-Class AMG Sport

From the outside, you may very well think that you are looking at a real AMG model, but you’d be mistaken. This SL-Class AMG Sport features the full exterior AMG Sports package, which includes: stylized side skirts; AMG-style front and rear aprons; and a trunk-mounted lip spoiler.

Buyers can choose from six standard colors – one non-metallic and five metallic – and two optional colors, one of which is Hyacinth Red and it carries a £690 ($1,073) premium. At the corners, the SL is also given a set of 19-inch AMG five-spoke wheels make the kit even more convincing.

Interior

Inside the cabin, the AMG Sports package adds in a slew of new features, including: new perforated leather seats with vertical fluting; Platinum White Pearl piping on the door-mounted armrests, center console, seat bolsters; and headrests; a sport steering wheel with silver paddle shifters; perforated leather-wrapped shifter and other “grip areas;” checkered-flag-design instrument panel; AMG floor mats; and a black fabric headliner to cap it all off.

As for interior colors, the SL-Class AMG Sport comes standard in black, but buyers can opt for Bengal Red or Porcelain nappa leather for an additional £710 ($1,104). For trimming, the SL-Class AMG Sport comes standard with Light Brushed Aluminum trimming, but for an extra £345 ($536), buyers can opt for Black Ash Wood trimming.

The other standard features are based on whether buyers choose to base this package on the SL 350 or SL 500 model.

Unfortunately, Mercedes has yet to release any images showing the interior.

Drivetrain

Because this package is based on the SL 350 and SL 500 models and there are no real mechanical updates, buyers get the SL 350’s 306-horsepower 3.5-liter V-6 or the SL 500’s 435-horsepower 4.7-liter V-8. Hooking the engine to the rear wheels is the standard 7G-Tronic Plus transmission, but it features modified shift points for better response and performance.

Suspension and Brakes

A new sport suspension system comes with the SL-Class AMG Sport. This system features revised damper settings and a 10 mm (0.39-inch) lower ride height. If the base model is the SL 350, buyers also get an upgraded brake system that includes perforated rear rotors and grey brake calipers.

Pricing and Availability

The SL 350 AMG Sport comes in at a reasonable £69,960 ($108,801) OTR and the SL 500 AMG Sport comes in at £79,970 ($124,369) OTR. Both packages will be available to order starting in June 2013.

Competition

2013 BMW Z4 sDrive35i M Sport

BMW Z4

Sure, the Z4 sDrive35i M Sport is not quite a direct competitor to the SL-Class, but it is not too far off of the SL 350. It comes in at a significantly cheaper £44,740 ($69,579) and features a 3.0-liter six-cylinder engine with 306 horsepower, putting it right in line with the SL 350 AMG Sport’s power.

Though the power is equal, the Z4’s 5.2-second sprint to 100 km/h (62 mph) kills the SL 350 by nearly 0.7 seconds. Cheaper and faster is a good deal, but buyers need to realize that the SL-Class is more luxurious and slightly larger than the Z4.

BMW 650i M Sport Convertible

BMW 650i Convertible

To find another competitor, we’ll keep things in the Bimmer family with the 650i M Sport Convertible. Unlike the Z4, this model more directly competes with the SL 500 AMG Sport with the exception that it offers up a set of rear seats.

With its 4.4-liter V-8 engine that pumps out 450 horsepower and its 4.6-second 0-to-100 km/h (62 mph) time matches the SL 500 AMG Sport’s 0-to-100 km/h time perfectly. The 650i M Sport comes in a little cheaper than the SL 500 AMG Sport at £78,570.

2013 Porsche 911 Cabriolet

Porsche 911 Cabriolet

The Porsche Cabriolet is likely the closest overall competitor to the SL-Class in terms of combining a sports car with luxury. The 911 Cabriolet starts out with 350 horsepower and a 5-second 0-to-100 km/h time, the S model hits 400 horsepower with a 4.7-second sprint, the 4 model carries 350 horsepower with a 5.1-second sprint, and the 4S model has 400 horsepower with a 4.7-second sprint. Prices for the models run £82,072 ($127,638), £92,108 ($143,246), £86,928 ($135,190) and £96,964 ($150,798), respectively.

Conclusion

While all-show and no-go is a death sentence when it comes to tuner kits, when it comes straight from the factory on a performance-oriented car, like the SL-Class, we’ll let it pass. In fact, we’ll go as far as saying that this new AMG Sport package is one of the coolest additions to the SL-Class that we have seen in some time. You get the look and some of the feel of the SL 63 AMG and SL 65 AMG, without the overbearing power and massive price tag; we definitely approve.

Press Release

Mercedes-Benz SL-Class AMG Sport
  • Significant changes to the SL-Class from June 2013 production
  • SL 350 and SL 500 now available as AMG Sport models
  • Additional standard equipment added to SL 63 AMG
  • SL 350 AMG Sport from £69,960 OTR and SL 500 AMG Sport from £79,970 OTR

The SL-Class is now even more luxurious, thanks to enhanced standard equipment and key exterior appointments, mixing style with comfort and advanced engineering.

Both the SL 350 and SL 500 now gain AMG Sport status, which includes additional standard equipment with a combined value of £6,625, including the AMG Sports Package for both the interior and exterior, an electric glass sunroof, and Parkronic with Active Park Assist.

The exterior AMG Sports Package comprises elegant 19” AMG five-spoke alloy wheels; sports suspension lowered by 10mm, with revised damper settings; AMG bodystyling for side skirts and front and rear aprons; a body-coloured boot lip; upgraded braking system (SL 350 only) with perforated rear brake disks; and grey brake calipers with ‘Mercedes-Benz’ lettering.

Joining the upgraded suspension and braking systems, the 7G-Tronic Plus transmission with ‘S’ mode now features modified shift points. Inside, the SLS now benefits from sports seats with perforated leather, verticle fluting and designo Platinum White Pearl piping on door armrests, centre console, seat side bolsters and head restraints; sports steering wheel with silver gear shift paddles and perforated leather in grip areas; chequered flag-design instrument cluster; AMG floor mats; and black fabric roof lining.

The paint and interior choice have also been updated to now include one non-metallic paint and five metallic paints, including new Polar White as standard, with the cost option of two addition colours, including new Hyacinth Red (£690). Black leather is now standard in the range, with a cost option of Bengal Red or Porcelain nappa leather (£710), and standard trim is now in Light Brushed Aluminium, with Black Ash Wood available as a £345 option.

The SL 63 AMG, also benefits of an electric panoramic glass sunroof and Parktronic with Active Park Assist as additions to the standard equipment specifications, with a value of £1,500. There are no changes to the SL 65 AMG.

The SL 350 AMG Sport, from £69,960 OTR, SL 500 AMG Sport, from £79,970 OTR, and SL 63 AMG from £110,785 OTR, are available from June 2013 production.




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