2012 Mercedes-Benz SLK gets a diesel heart for the first time
Mercedes-Benz, for the first time in history, is offering its 2012 SLK roadster with a diesel engine. This could start off a trend among auto makers as fuel efficiency becomes the most important factor when choosing a car even for the wealthy class. This is one segment where no really thought of introducing a diesel before. Both BMW and Porsche have cars that rival the Mercedes-Benz SLK but none has got a diesel engine option in its line-up.
We have seen a trend in recent times in the premium segment where diesel sales of slowly picked up. Diesel engine technology has come a long way since the old days. Slowly, the engines became cleaner and efficient. These days, performance of high-end diesel engines matches that of petrol engines. Now, Mercedes-Benz is offering a four-cylinder diesel engine in the SLK roadster. The oil burner puts out 204 bhp and 367 pounds-ft of torque.
The only drawback of a diesel engine is the fact that the power comes in lumps at a certain rpm. The engines are basically low revving with not much happening in upper rev band. Until now, nobody thought a diesel sports car would be a good idea. Now, though with Mercedes-Benz offering an oil burner in the SLK , this could be the beginning of a trend. We might see BMW responding with a BMW Z4 sDrive30d, perhaps?
The Mercedes-Benz SLK 250CDI does the 0-100 kph sprint in 6.7 seconds and can accelerate up to 243 kph. The power goes to the rear wheels in classic roadster style via Mercedes’ 7G-Tronic Plus automatic transmission. So, the performance isn’t that bad, eh? The fuel economy isn’t bad either. The SLK 250 CDI does 20.4 kpl which could even rival the most fuel efficient hatchbacks. Also, a few months down the line, Mercedes-Benz will introduce a six-speed manual gearbox on the SLK 250CDI which will definitely make the drive more involving and sporty.