Saturday, April 25, 2009

Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG

Mercedes-Benz has released sketches of the SLS AMG showing its 'swing-wing' door layout, an echo of the 300SL Gullwing's, and its two-seat interior, said to be aircraft-inspired. Cockpit features include jet-style air vents, a gear-lever like a thrust control, a center console like a plane's operating console, and a wide wing-shaped dashboard. This previews the Mercedes cabins of the future, apparently.

Mercedes will offer a choice of black, red, sand, porcelain or light brown leather upholstery, with light anthracite headlining; carbon fiber trim is optional. Switchgear is finished with metal-look soft-touch paint, instrument dials are backlit in white with red needles, and the small steering wheel is flat-bottomed, racing car-style. Occupants sit just 369mm above the road - but suitably cosseted in well-bolstered seats with lightweight magnesium backrests.

The exterior outline retains the usual SL-family long-hood, taut tail format, with low roofline and greenhouse slung rearward; it's a clear progression from the Mercedes-McLaren SLR. An extendable aerofoil preserves the sleek outline when stationary and at low speeds. The roof-mounted doors open by up to 70 degrees, supported by gas-pressure struts.