$450,000 – $450,000 MSRP
13 / 17 MPG City/Hwy
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The Mercedes SLR McLaren is unchanged for the 2006 model year.
The Mercedes SLR McLaren is not for everyone. Instead, this $452,750 supercar is a limited-production, two-seater that combines the technical expertise of Mercedes-Benz, the world's oldest automaker, and McLaren Cars, a division of the British-based McLaren Formula One racing team that competes in Grand Prix competition with Mercedes engines. (McLaren previously joined forces with BMW in 1991 to create another supercar, the McLaren F1, which set performance benchmarks that remained unchallenged for many years.)
Other than an internal combustion engine and four tires, this supercar has little in common with other vehicles that travel on public roads. For example, the SLR is built not from cast iron and sheetmetal, but from carbon fiber composite. The same material used to build race cars and in the aerospace industry, carbon fiber is very expensive, very stiff and strong, but also very light. This material forms the front crash structure of the SLR that Mercedes says absorbs four to five times more energy than a conventional steel structure. The car also features ceramic composite brake discs that are similar to those used in professional auto racing. To enhance the SLR's stopping ability, the car features a rear spoiler that doubles as an active airbrake. That's a good thing because braking ability is important in a car capable of achieving top speeds slightly in excess of 200 mph.
Powering the SLR is a supercharged 5.5L V-8 engine that pumps out 617 hp and 575 lb.-ft. of torque, which can propel the SLR to 60 mph in a mere 3.8 seconds. The SLR is rated at 13 mpg city and 18 mpg highway.
The SLR competes in the Large Premium Sporty segment that includes some of the most exotic vehicles sold in the United States, such as the 200-plus mph Ford GT and Porsche Carrera GT.
According to the J.D. Power and Associates Sales Report,SM the Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class leads in sales with 14,835 sales in calendar year 2006. Next came the BMW 6 Series (9,934), followed by the Jaguar XK (2,282), Mercedes-Benz CL-Class (1,320), Ford GT (1,302), Porsche Carrera GT (340), and our subject vehicle, the Mercedes-Benz SLR (200).