Mercedes SLA Roadster may still see the light of day
It’s been 11 long years since Mercedes unveiled the Mercedes Vision SLA and people are still talking about whether or not this little roadster will ever be produced. Each time a new rumor surfaces, another Mercedes model debuts and the rumor gets washed away (this is what happened a few years ago when the SLS roadster was unveiled). Now all of the chatter about Mercedes’ upcoming A-Class has drudged up the SLA rumors once again, stating that the German brand could be producing the small roadster as early as 2013.
Mercedes’ latest generation small car platform, known as the MFA (Mercedes Frontwheel Architecture), has been said to underpin four different Merc models: the B-Class, the A-Class, the BLS four-door coupe, and the BLK compact crossover. Australian magazine, Go Auto, is suggesting that this platform may also be used for the SLA Roadster - a small car ready to take on models like the BMW 1-Series Convertible and the Audi TT Roadster.
If produced, the SLA Roadster will be based on the new B-class architecture, meaning front-wheel drive for the first time in a Mercedes roadster. The two-seater soft-top convertible will share as many characteristics as possible with the concept unveiled in 2000, but will adopt the compact proportions of the SLK, SL, and SLS convertibles. Under the hood, Mercedes will place an all-new 1.6-liter turbo-charged direct-injection four-cylinder petrol engine mated to Mercedes’ upcoming seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox, as well as a six-speed manual transmission. The company may also be considering 1.8-liter four-cylinder turbo-diesel models, but that’s an even bigger rumor than the SLA itself.
If produced, the Mercedes SLA Roadster should be seen in 2013, priced at around $65,000. Would we take a more expensive SLA Roadster over an Audi TT (currently $40,800)? Probably not, but it would be interesting to see what Mercedes could come up with.
Source: Go Auto