Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class Review
The 2014 Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class ranks 10 out of 12 Luxury Sports Cars. This ranking is based on our analysis of published reviews and test drives of the Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class, as well as reliability and safety data.
Auto writers say the 2014 Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class has a luxurious interior and a good blend of ride comfort and nimble handling, but lacks the athleticism of some other luxury sports cars.
The SLK250 has a turbocharged four-cylinder engine that reviewers say delivers adequate, but unimpressive, acceleration. Most say the V6-powered SLK350 feels faster and that the high-performance V8-powered SLK55 AMG is very quick and exciting to drive. Reviewers say the Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class' seven-speed automatic transmission (a six-speed manual is standard on the SLK250) is responsive but doesn't shift as quickly as the dual clutch transmissions found in some rivals. The SLK250 earns an EPA fuel economy rating of 22/32 mpg city/highway, which is on par for the class. Test drivers agree that although the SLK-Class isn't the most athletic roadster available, it offers a great balance of sporty handling and ride comfort that few rivals are able to duplicate.
Test drivers report that the two-seat 2014 SLK-Class has a first-rate interior, with a pleasing design and luxurious materials. They say the seats should be spacious enough for most, though taller drivers might find legroom a bit tight. Reviewers especially like the optional Airscarf system, which makes driving with the top down on cooler days more enjoyable. The standard COMAND infotainment system is intuitive once it is learned, they report. Standard features include Bluetooth, COMAND and an eight-speaker stereo system. Major options include an 11-speaker Harman Kardon stereo system, dual-zone automatic climate control and navigation with a larger central display screen. Mercedes-Benz also offers an optional Magic Sky Control roof panel, which allows the driver to adjust the transparency of the roof panel to let in more or less sunlight.
- "In other respects, the SLK is the consummate luxury hardtop convertible, as long as you don't mind driving a pint-sized car instead of something like the relatively imposing SL. Indeed, that's the only real compromise the SLK demands. If you're looking for a small roadster with a grand-touring pedigree, the SLK is hard to beat." -- AutoTrader
- "But with its noble lineage and well-rounded nature, the 2014 Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class will always be a strong draw in this small segment. And for those who prefer not to pay SL money for a luxury convertible, the comparatively affordable Mercedes SLK just might be the next best thing." -- Edmunds
- "Now in its third generation, the latest SLK provides a much better balance between handling and comfort while continuing to offer the versatile hardtop convertible configuration that made the original a hit." -- Left Lane News
- "The latest generation of Mercedes' 2-seater is larger and roomier than past models, and its exterior design has matured into something truly elegant yet aggressive. A variety of engines - from a small and efficient 4-cylinder to a mighty AMG V8 - enable the 2014 SLK's performance to range from competent to blistering. Dynamically it still feels softer than the corner-carving Porsche Boxster, but the SLK's emphasis on comfort and prestige should come as no surprise for any car wearing the vaunted 3-Pointed Star, and those traits only add to this roadster's overall appeal." -- Kelley Blue Book
Other Cars to Consider
The Porsche Boxster is billed by reviewers as one of the most nimble, fun-to-drive roadsters in the segment. It comes standard with a six-cylinder engine that test drivers say produces ample power, and it earns praise for its upscale interior.
The Chevrolet Corvette Stingray convertible is similarly priced to the SLK350 but its standard V8 engine and strong acceleration put it in SLK55 AMG performance territory. According to reviewers, the Corvette has agile handling, a composed ride and incredible engine power, and is one of the best-value sports cars available.
Details: 2014 Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class
The 2014 Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class is a two-seat, retractable hardtop convertible with rear-wheel drive. The SLK250 has a turbocharged 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine, the SLK350 has a 3.5-liter V6 and the SLK55 AMG has a 5.5-liter V8. The SLK250 has a standard six-speed manual transmission and optional seven-speed automatic transmission, while the other two trims only come with a seven-speed automatic. The SLK-Class was last redesigned for the 2012 model year and sees no major changes for 2014. As a result, this overview uses applicable research and reviews from the 2012 through 2014 model years.