Friday, 6 February 2009

Trio of Mercedes' spied around Europe

3 different Mercedes model ave been spied undergoing testing in Spain and Germany. For the first time, the 2011 Mercedes SLK mule has been spied and the 2010 SLC Gullwing supercar loses most of it's heavy disguise.

2011 Mercedes SLK:

The SLK only got a facelift last year to keep it fresh, but ever since Porsche went out testing the all-new Boxster in the wild, Mercedes is pushing ahead with the development of the new generation SLK. Despite the fake body panels and heavy disguise, the new SLK seems a little longer and wider than the current model. Design wise, the SLK will adopt Mercedes' new design language like the new E-Class sedan and the F1 nose will be ditched.

Although information is scarce, engine are likely to be borrowed from the current model and will be tweaked around to give lower emissions, better fuel economy and greater performance. The 2011 SLK will rival the forthcoming Porsche Cayman/Boxster, BMW Z4 and Audi R4.

2010 Mercedes SLC Gullwing:

Spied on the roads of Germany in thin disguise, the SLC Gullwing should debut in 2010 with a 550 - 600bhp, twin-turbo V8. The engine should pump out about 445 ft-lb of torque with a 7-tronic automatic transmission.

Since the separation with McLaren, Mercedes is going the Gullwing on their own. Although the car will be made exclusively by AMG, McLaren is going to work on their own version as well dubbed P11. Since the "P11" is likely to start from around €400,000, don't expect the SLC Gullwing to be cheap.

2011 Mercedes CLS:

Hidden under heavy black disguise, the CLS only shows itself through the headlights, rear lights, side mirrors, tyres and the roof. Bits of the tailpipes can be seen sticking out through two rectangular tips on either side -similar to the new E-Class sedan. In fact, most of the CLS' styling cues will be taken of the new E-Class.

The CLS was the pioneer of the 2+2-seater four-door coupe when it launched in 2004. More and more motor manufacturers are either presenting or working to finalise their own interpretations of this sporting sedan layout. Rivals include the Aston Martin Rapide, Porsche Panamera, BMW CS and the Audi A7 which was previewed in Detroit as the Audi Sportback Concept.

Engines are expected to come from a wide range of sources among which are petrol, turbo petrol and turbo diesel engines, as well as a BlueHybrid model that will use the same engine system as the S400 BlueHybrid. An AMG model should top the range and produce about 517bhp. Even a 4-cylinder engine could be offered. Mercedes 7 speed semi-automatic gearbox will be offered with these powerplants.

The new sports coupe will be available from 2011.

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