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Mercedes-Benz SL-Class Review

The 2015 Mercedes-Benz SL-Class ranks 7 out of 16 Luxury Sports Cars. This ranking is based on our analysis of published reviews and test drives of the Mercedes-Benz SL-Class, as well as reliability and safety data.

The 2015 Mercedes-Benz SL-Class is ranked:

The 2015 Mercedes-Benz SL-Class is fast, comfortable and luxurious, but rival sports cars offer more potent driving experiences, reviewers say.

With its new base twin-turbocharged V6 engine, reviewers say the 2015 SL-Class has plenty of power. With any of its optional engines, which include two twin-turbo V8s and a twin-turbo V12, test drivers agree that acceleration is very robust. A seven-speed automatic transmission is standard and it shifts quickly, according to auto journalists. Fuel economy for the 2015 base SL-Class is an EPA-estimated 20/27 mpg city/highway, which is typical among six-cylinder cars in the class. Test drivers agree that the SL-Class has a comfortable ride, especially with the available active suspension, and that it excels as a sporty touring car. They note that it has poised handling and controlled body motions. Still, many remark that its steering is numb and that a number of rivals offer a more engaging driving experience.

The two-seat 2015 Mercedes SL-Class has exemplary cabin materials, according to test drivers. They say the seats are spacious and appreciate the available Airscarf system, which blows warm air onto your neck, enabling top-down driving when the weather is cool. The SL-Class has a spacious trunk for a convertible. Standard features include Mercedes' COMAND infotainment system, navigation, a nine-speaker Harman Kardon audio system, Bluetooth and a USB port. Major options include a 12-speaker Bang & Olufsen audio system, adaptive cruise control, a rearview camera and Magic Sky Control, with which you can adjust the amount of light that comes through the SL's glass roof panel. For the most part, reviewers think that COMAND is easy to use, but they dislike that you must go through several steps to perform some audio and navigation functions.

  • "If you want something with sportier handling, the 2015 Audi R8, 2015 Jaguar F-Type and 2015 Porsche 911 would all be better choices. … But overall we think it's a very good thing to be an SL driver, and Mercedes' iconic luxury roadster has arguably never been more appealing." -- Edmunds
  • "One of the premier grand tourers on the market, the Mercedes-Benz SL-Class hardtop convertible balances impressive levels of power and performance with world-class luxury and technology. Though its styling may not suit all tastes, in nearly all other respects the SL is hard to fault." -- Left Lane News
  • "Other cars like the Jaguar XK, Porsche 911 and BMW 6 Series all offer performance, panache and luxury for similar prices, yet none can match the prestige of this classic Mercedes-Benz." -- Kelley Blue Book

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Other Cars to Consider

The Jaguar F-Type earns reviewer praise for its engaging driving dynamics and range of powerful engines. They say its infotainment controls are straightforward and appreciate its sporty, luxurious cockpit.

The Porsche 911 is incredibly fun to drive, according to test drivers, with athletic handling and sharp steering. The 911 also has a comfortable ride and first-rate cabin materials, reviewers note.

Compare the SL-Class, F-Type and 911 »

Details: 2015 Mercedes-Benz SL-Class

The 2015 Mercedes-Benz SL-Class is a two-seat hardtop convertible that has rear-wheel drive and is available in four trims. The SL400 has a twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V6, the SL550 has a twin-turbo 4.7-liter V8, the SL63 AMG has a twin-turbo 5.5-liter V8 and the SL65 AMG has a twin-turbo 6.0-liter V12. SL400 and SL550 models have a seven-speed automatic transmission and the AMG models have a seven-speed dual-clutch (automatic) transmission. The SL-Class was redesigned for the 2013 model year, and aside from the introduction of the SL400, there are no major changes for 2015. As a result, this overview uses applicable research and reviews from the 2013 through 2015 model years.

See 2015 Mercedes-Benz SL-Class specs »

Review Last Updated: 4/29/15

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