2012 Mercedes SLK spied at Nurburgring
The German luxury automaker, Mercedes Benz, has recently been spotted running laps around the Nurburgring in what appears to be the next generation SLK roadster heavily clad in automotive camouflage. With BMW coming out with the new Z4 roadster, it is very likely that the tri star company is ready to defend their position in the fun to drive small car segment with a new drop top SLK. The Mercedes Benz test engineers do an excellent job of disguising the SLK’s lines with the large panel over the hood amongst other tricks. The front end is much more squared off than the production model will be, as you can see by the driving lights hidden behind the holes in the faux front bumper.
Under the hood Mercedes will use their naturally aspirated gas burning V6 engine along with a range of smaller displacement turbocharged units. There are also rumors about a diesel engine to be used for the first time in the small runabout. Gone is the oversized hand built V8 and instead the AMG version will be powered by a 3.5 Liter twin turbo V6 that will put out somewhere around 470 HP.
This compact sports car ushered in the era of the hard top convertible, so what does Mercedes Benz have planned for the next generation of the SLK roadster? While we are still just speculating about the future equipment, it is not hard to dream about a fuel efficient green sports car derived from the lightweight open air two seat roadster. If diesel is becoming a possibility as an alternative fuel, it can’t be long before the German automaker begins playing around with electric propulsion.