A good news or is it bad news is that Mercedes have decided to go the topless way for most of their products and this includes the likes of the earlier E class and now the SLS roadster. Yes, you read it right. The Mercedes SLS AMG roadster in India would now be topless. Imagine a topless SLS AMG beast moving around on the streets. The owner of this car would be needless to say a celebrity. Most of the times, anyways Mercedes owners generally get undue visibility from the onlookers brigade coz of the 3 pointed star aura. As early as 1954, the gullwings became an engineering necessity seeing that the SL 300’s spaceframe has been cut too high for normal door edges. However, this case doesn’t cut the mustard now. It is more of a design sense now. The modern day Roadster doesn’t have any serious body modifications and it shows that style still speaks a lot more than what words could ever describe. In its early days, the SLS commanded a 3 year waiting period while everything was being painstakingly put together by the Mercedes men, now it has become only the matter of a few months or rather 12 to be precise.
For this roadster, Mercedes has enlarged the wall thickness of the side sills. In order to prevent unnecessary vibrations around it, the instrument panel is constructed on additional supports on the windshield frame and on the central tunnel as well. Moreover, unlike the in coupe version, this convertible has got a massive cross member, including fixed roll-over protection, behind the seats. In addition to all this, strut braces under the bonnet and near the tank and near the rear axle reinforces the entire body. However, inspite of chopping the roof, the car still weighs in a good 40 kgs more than its coupe version. Though the entire car is built of aluminium just like the Audi cars, this one still manages to weigh in at close to 1.7 tonnes. For everyday usability and practicality, Mercedes have ensured that the roadster still remains the same like its coupe version. While the coupe has got a 176 liters boot space, the roadster version has got about 173 liters of space. Not much to sacrifice if one prefers going topless. The safety glass rear window has been neatly integrated into the fabric of the roof top. Moreover, Mercedes claims that road noise is on the lower side due to this arrangement and this would be highly appreciable at above average speeds.
The Mercedes SLS AMG roadster in India would come with the 6.5 liters V8 engine punching in a cool 571 Bhp of power that will allow this gull to stretch its wings till 317 kmph in under 25 seconds. The topless wonder hasn’t blunted its performance with 0-100 kmph coming up in only 3.8 seconds. But this isn’t just a case of a sportscar with quick acceleration. Everything in here happens with a quickness that can be typically associated with a Mercedes AMG product. So at about speeds of 50 kmph, the fabric lined roof can either open fully or close in just under 11 seconds. In today’s automotive world, this means that only the fabulous Audi A3 convertible has a faster closing rate for its roof at 9 seconds. One can never forget the SLK and its bigger brother, the SLS too is a beneficiary of the Mercedes Airscarf Passengers. Warm air is blown at the back of the neck of the passengers by this system. The Aircap design which was questionable in the Mercedes E-class convertible has however been thrown out of the window by Mercedes boffins. Some new bits also make their presence felt in this car and those are the AMG active ride control chassis, which is an altogether new experience for Mercedes owners. This particular system allows for electronic alteration of the damper settings between Comfort, Sport and Sport Plus, at the very touch of a small button in the dashboard. Then there is the optional AMG Performance Media that shows digitally simulated pointers and real time telemetry data such as longitudinal and lateral acceleration, throttle position, braking, power reserve, sector as also lap timings and finally the temperature. All this is shown on the color display available with the package. Systems from Nissan GTR as also some of the Japanese gaming consoles were studied closely by the AMG engineers so that they could actually develop this new device. Much like its predecessors, the SLS coupe and the Roadster variant would be available side by side in the Indian show rooms. However, the topless variant is priced more than the coupe and the price is a whopping Rs 50 lakhs more. Now, this brings the cost of the car anywhere close to the Rs 1.5 crore mark. The Mercedes SLS AMG roadster price in India would be approximately Rs 1.5 crores to Rs 1.75 crores. For the performance enthusiast, this wouldn’t mean much and as so, there would be many takers for this new baby from Mercedes. However, beware of the 1 year waiting period which may be a bit too hot for one’s liking.