Status: 09.12.2023, 19:03 PM
By: Volker Pfau
Noble super sports cars are cared for in the garage and only driven in optimal conditions. Or is it? We put the Mercedes SL 63 through an everyday test.
Taking the 200,000-euro car to the supermarket? Taking the 585-horsepower convertible for the commute? Country road instead of motorway? For two weeks, we had a Mercedes SL 63 4Matic, which was developed entirely by AMG, with the top engine and almost complete equipment. And we did with it what we do with all cars: the everyday test. So not just a show run along the boulevard in the sunshine and a few kilometers through harmless curves, but the full toughness. But always in the legal area!
Infinitely long and incredibly flat
The latest and probably also the last combustion engine version of the sporty roadster with the three-pointed star is an almost infinite 4.70 meters long and just 1.35 meters thin. Behind the steering wheel, which is equipped with a lot of functions and unfortunately still with fiddly sliders and mini buttons, the bonnet seems to be even longer.
With the top down, the interior is surprisingly quiet. © Mercedes-Benz
Pressing the start button wakes up the four-liter V8 engine, which initially releases a rather discreet sound from the four exhaust pipes into the environment. The neighbors thank you for it. In the basic Comfort driving mode, you have to press the accelerator pedal with a surprising amount of force to activate at least some of the many horsepower. That's enough to get you started. Soon, however, you get used to it, want more power and enjoy a more direct throttle response and a more robust sound from the Sport mode onwards.
But it is more than enough in terms of driving pleasure and sovereignty that the Mercedes already offers on roads with a speed limit of 100 km/h. If you open the soft top (in 15 seconds, even at up to 60 km/h), you can enjoy nature. Thanks to the mechanically mounted wind deflector, a gentle breeze blows into the interior of the car.
It's hard to believe: the SL 63 has a top speed of 315 km/h
Of course, the sprint on the concrete strip of the motorway must also be. The SL 63 does this powerfully and superiorly. Even at higher speeds, it is not excessively loud with the top down. For the regulars' table discussion: 315 km/h is the maximum speed in the papers. When it comes to braking, it's no less confident. Even though there are always discussions about the speeds on German motorways, there is neither a general speed limit nor a minimum speed.
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Open dream: On the road with the Mercedes SL 63 © Mercedes-Benz
The roadster also manages the supermarket task. Due to the design, the boot is limited to a maximum of 240 litres. After all, two carriers of beer fit in. The two emergency seats, which are basically unsuitable for transporting people, can also be used to place additional purchases if necessary.
It's hard to criticize this car, but we were bothered by the fact that the central display shows everything very well, but the screen looks like a foreign body on the center console because it sticks out unsightly. In addition, dexterity is required when operating the selector lever of the automatic transmission, because this lever is extremely close to the centrally mounted air nozzle.
The noble racer is thirsty for fine fuel
At the gas station you will be amazed. Because it seems antiquated that, according to the sticker in the fuel cap, this highly-bred athlete can even be refueled with E5 or E10 fuel. We preferred to fill in the recommended high-octane – and not a little. The SL 63 allowed itself at least twelve liters per 100 kilometers, and that with a rather delicate treatment of the accelerator pedal. Fuel consumption went up significantly more after sporty stages.
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Mercedes calls for 63,187 euros as the base price for the SL 098, while our test car, which is equipped with many extras, came to a price of over 230,000 euros.
Conclusion: The Mercedes SL 63 has done quite well in everyday use, although the majority of cars on the market are more practical. But then again, there are few vehicles that are nearly as much fun. The discoverers of a barn find in the USA also had a lot of fun when they suddenly found themselves standing in front of around 200 old but very valuable cars.