Mercedes Confirms Entry-Level Twin-Turbo V-6 SL400 Headed to U.S.

Mercedes Confirms Entry-Level Twin-Turbo V-6 SL400 Headed to U.S.

The long history of the Mercedes-Benz SL began with a six-cylinder car—the iconic 300SL—but subsequent generations were fitted with ever-larger engines. The U.S.-market lineup currently encompasses the SL550 and SL63 AMG with their twin-turbocharged V-8 engines, as well as the V-12–powered SL65 AMG. These awesome powerplants provide plenty of torque and power, but they somewhat contradict not only the SL heritage, but also the lightweight approach used in designing the latest model generation. Mercedes will correct course a bit this fall, when it launches an entry-level SL400 in the U.S.

The car, whose arrival here was first confirmed by Autoblog, is powered by a twin-turbocharged, 329-horsepower V-6; this engine is also found in the new 2015 C-class, the E400 sedan, and the E400 cabriolet. Torque output of 354 lb-ft should ensure plenty of off-the-line grunt from Merc’s flagship convertible. The European version of the SL400, which replaces that market’s naturally aspirated SL350 there, reaches 60 mph from a standstill in a claimed 5.2 seconds on the way to a governed 155-mph top speed. It is fitted exclusively with a seven-speed torque-converter automatic gearbox.

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The SL400 reflects an industry-wide trend of downsizing engines even in luxury vehicles. In Europe, the S-class sedan and the Audi A8 are even available with hybridized four-cylinders; in China, Jaguar offers a four-cylinder XJ. So as remarkable as a six-cylinder SL sounds, it may not be as low as this thing goes—remember the 190SL? There’s no word yet on the price of the new, entry-level SL400, but we expect it to come in a good chunk below the SL550’s $106,700 base sticker.

Mercedes Confirms Twin-Turbo V-6–Powered SL400 Coming to America

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