Initial Thoughts About the New SLK 55 AMG - Mercedes Benz SLK Forum

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#1 Old 06-09-2013
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Initial Thoughts About the New SLK 55 AMG

I picked up our new SLK 55 AMG 4 days ago, and have driven it about 250 miles. I thought Id share some initial impressions of the new car with you.


Im impressed with the overall fit/finish of the new car. Little details like AMG imprinted on top of all 4 exhaust pipes. I was doubtful about paying more than $2,00 for the carbon fiber trim, but its beautiful against the black leather with white stitching and the aluminum trim.
While waiting on the clear bra installing I was reading the owners manual. I saw in the manual about how to operate the adaptive cruise control, and the outside rear view mirrors illuminating when a lane change was blocked by another vehicle. I was a bit disappointed to find these functions are not available on the AMG.
There appears to be room (and a fitted spot) in the trunk for a spare tire, but no spare. Ive got a lot to learn about the air pump provided, and I didnt see the can of flat tire fix that I think is supposed to be there.
There is a HUGE difference in the way the car operates when switched between C mode and S mode on the car. The C mode starts the car off in second gear (for example). Shifts are at low RPM, and exhaust is quite. Switch to S mode and the car instantly becomes more responsive, starts off in 1st gear, and exhaust is more pronounced.
The eco mode does two things, activates cylinder management, and activates the stop engine feature at stops. Unlike much Ive read, the vehicle does not return to the mode it was left it previously. The car switches back to eco mode at each new startup. Im probably old school, but I dont much care for the engine starting and stopping often. Ive always understood that engine wear occurs during startup because of the lack of oil flow on initial start. But Im sure engineers had that covered when they designed the car (hopefully).
When the car has been driven, shutdown, and then restarted after about an hour there is a tapping sound in the engine until the oil pressure comes up. Doesnt do that on immediate restarts, nor does cold engine starts make the tapping sound.
The wind screen that goes between the two roll bars was not in the trunk as it should have been. The dealer is checking into getting me a new one.


I really like this new car! Its absolutely beautiful, drives well and is very responsive!

Regards
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#2 Old 06-09-2013
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Originally Posted by thompstl1 View Post
I picked up our new SLK 55 AMG 4 days ago, and have driven it about 250 miles. I thought Id share some initial impressions of the new car with you.


Im impressed with the overall fit/finish of the new car. Little details like AMG imprinted on top of all 4 exhaust pipes. I was doubtful about paying more than $2,00 for the carbon fiber trim, but its beautiful against the black leather with white stitching and the aluminum trim.
While waiting on the clear bra installing I was reading the owners manual. I saw in the manual about how to operate the adaptive cruise control, and the outside rear view mirrors illuminating when a lane change was blocked by another vehicle. I was a bit disappointed to find these functions are not available on the AMG.
There appears to be room (and a fitted spot) in the trunk for a spare tire, but no spare. Ive got a lot to learn about the air pump provided, and I didnt see the can of flat tire fix that I think is supposed to be there.
There is a HUGE difference in the way the car operates when switched between C mode and S mode on the car. The C mode starts the car off in second gear (for example). Shifts are at low RPM, and exhaust is quite. Switch to S mode and the car instantly becomes more responsive, starts off in 1st gear, and exhaust is more pronounced.
The eco mode does two things, activates cylinder management, and activates the stop engine feature at stops. Unlike much Ive read, the vehicle does not return to the mode it was left it previously. The car switches back to eco mode at each new startup. Im probably old school, but I dont much care for the engine starting and stopping often. Ive always understood that engine wear occurs during startup because of the lack of oil flow on initial start. But Im sure engineers had that covered when they designed the car (hopefully).
When the car has been driven, shutdown, and then restarted after about an hour there is a tapping sound in the engine until the oil pressure comes up. Doesnt do that on immediate restarts, nor does cold engine starts make the tapping sound.
The wind screen that goes between the two roll bars was not in the trunk as it should have been. The dealer is checking into getting me a new one.


I really like this new car! Its absolutely beautiful, drives well and is very responsive!

Regards
The engine tapping sound may be related to the timing chain tensioner issue or other, as mentioned in earlier posts. You may want to check 2013 SLK55 Rattle On Start Up and listen to the audio clips to help identify. If its light tapping for a couple of seconds it may be normal.
Your SLK55 looks outstanding!
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Last edited by tlppsp; 06-09-2013 at 12:12 PM.
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#3 Old 06-09-2013
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The car looks great in white. I love the sharp contrast between the white & black elements. It brings out the car's styling details.

As for eco mode, sounds nice and cylinder deactivation has been around for decades so I'm certain it's been well implemented by Mercedes here. But I agree with you on the start/stop feature. On my commute to work the poor car would be starting & stopping maybe 100 times in traffic crawling along I95. That has got to put some wear on a starter and the battery. Hopefully Mercedes designed the starter to be both cheap and easily replaceable or very very robust.

I'd be interested to hear your actual fuel economy with the eco feature. If the car can really achieve high 20's on the highway and near 20 in stop-n-go, that's pretty impressive. The SLK55 is rated better (19/28) than the LS engine in the Vette (16/26) which has always been my benchmark for fuel efficiency in a high powered sports car.

Enjoy!

Edit: I noticed the pivoting plexiglass covers for the rollbar hoops on your R172. Not a fan of the look. And with the R171 we got nothing unless you spring for the optional plexiglass wind restrictor. I don't know why Mercedes didn't just ship the cars with an insert like the R171 wind restrictor uses and then sell the plexiglass piece separately if they want to extract another $600 from us. The black inserts look better / less conspicuous to me. Don't know why the hoops are open in the first place.
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#4 Old 06-09-2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thompstl1 View Post
I picked up our new SLK 55 AMG 4 days ago, and have driven it about 250 miles. I thought Id share some initial impressions of the new car with you.


Im impressed with the overall fit/finish of the new car. Little details like AMG imprinted on top of all 4 exhaust pipes. I was doubtful about paying more than $2,00 for the carbon fiber trim, but its beautiful against the black leather with white stitching and the aluminum trim.
While waiting on the clear bra installing I was reading the owners manual. I saw in the manual about how to operate the adaptive cruise control, and the outside rear view mirrors illuminating when a lane change was blocked by another vehicle. I was a bit disappointed to find these functions are not available on the AMG.
There appears to be room (and a fitted spot) in the trunk for a spare tire, but no spare. Ive got a lot to learn about the air pump provided, and I didnt see the can of flat tire fix that I think is supposed to be there.
There is a HUGE difference in the way the car operates when switched between C mode and S mode on the car. The C mode starts the car off in second gear (for example). Shifts are at low RPM, and exhaust is quite. Switch to S mode and the car instantly becomes more responsive, starts off in 1st gear, and exhaust is more pronounced.
The eco mode does two things, activates cylinder management, and activates the stop engine feature at stops. Unlike much Ive read, the vehicle does not return to the mode it was left it previously. The car switches back to eco mode at each new startup. Im probably old school, but I dont much care for the engine starting and stopping often. Ive always understood that engine wear occurs during startup because of the lack of oil flow on initial start. But Im sure engineers had that covered when they designed the car (hopefully).
When the car has been driven, shutdown, and then restarted after about an hour there is a tapping sound in the engine until the oil pressure comes up. Doesnt do that on immediate restarts, nor does cold engine starts make the tapping sound.
The wind screen that goes between the two roll bars was not in the trunk as it should have been. The dealer is checking into getting me a new one.


I really like this new car! Its absolutely beautiful, drives well and is very responsive!

Regards

Smashing Car by the way And i agree on that stop start idea , jeeez it must hammer the battery specially like was just mentioned on a busy town scenario .
And like you said start ups is the worst time for engines , so thats a stupid idea just for that .

So it would be off if i had it for sure.
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#5 Old 06-09-2013
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Re the start and stop

Now I don't know about this or not, but IF MB included an oil pressure pump that kept the oil pressure at the correct level, then start ups won't harm anything. Don't have a clue about battery or starter usage though.

With the warranty they provide, I would suspect that the went the 'very, very robust' route or they will be replacing a lot of starters for the warranty period. Never a good thing from the expense point OR from a customer satisfaction point (ie you have to have your car 'serviced for free' but it's still IN the shop more than you would think it should be).

LOVE YOUR CAR. ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL. I'VE ALWAYS LOVED THEIR WHITE CARS.

Hope you enjoy several decades of pleasure from it.

I mean to say that isn't that HOW MB builds their products. To be used for hundreds of thousands of miles and several decades (caveat is YOU eventually have to pay for the service, but by then you should be close to owning it outright anyway...)

LOVE IT, LOVE IT, LOVE IT.
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#6 Old 06-09-2013
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eco start stop engine feature

It looks like to me that the starter does not start the engine when it shuts
off at street lights etc. I believe that with the SLK 55 AMG engine that when its time to fire back up the direct injection squirts a bit of fuel into the appropriate cylinder then the ignition fires the spark plug in that cylinder. Thus no extra wear on the starter. The starter is used as usual for cold starts etc.
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#7 Old 06-09-2013
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That really is a stunning looking car.

Very interesting to read your thoughts. I've been putting together a "first impressions" post for mine, but was waiting until it was run in - which I managed to complete today (yay!).

I don't think the exhaust itself is any louder in S mode - the sound seems to be entirely rpm related, but in S the car is above the magic 2,000 rpm mark a lot more of the time, and that's when the first step change in exhaust loudness really kicks in.

I've heard a very short rattle on mine when started from cold - literally only a second or or so though.

I know you've probably checked this, but my wind-shield was strapped in on the underside of the reversible trunk floor.

I've not driven mine much in C+eco mode much at all - but even when I have I've yet to see the start/stop actually show active. I guess that's because I've driven very few miles in this car with the top up. Can't say I'm mad keen on the exhaust note in 4 cylinder mode at low rpm.

If you're sticking to the run-in procedure, you're in for an absolute treat when you do a full bore kickdown - the exhaust note is incredible.
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#8 Old 06-10-2013
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thompstl1,
Beautiful car! Thanks for the pics, too. On the lack of windscreen, I believe because yours came with option 283 - 'AIRGUIDE Windstop' (the plexiglass swivel screens attached to the roll bars), yours shouldn't be fitted with the Windscreen. In fact, if you check out your rollbar cages, you should note that they won't have the little cutouts where the Windscreen would normally install. Also, my AMG didn't come with the TireFit, either. I'm due for my first 'A' service in a month or so, and I think I'll ask the dealer about it. That leaves me to wonder if anyone with a 2013 AMG got the TireFit in their car? I hadn't really worried about it because I don't usually take long trips and if I do get a flat, I expect to call MB Service to handle it.
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#9 Old 06-10-2013
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Quote:
That leaves me to wonder if anyone with a 2013 AMG got the TireFit in their car?
I did with my UK car - it's the black bottle at the top of the pic.
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#10 Old 06-10-2013
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Originally Posted by randombloke View Post
I did with my UK car - it's the black bottle at the top of the pic.
Randombloke,
Hmmm, interesting that you have it and I've heard from a few folks here in the U.S. that it wasn't included. Also, the layout of our 'boots' is a bit different - here's mine. It seems to have the space for the Tirefit where yours is, but it's empty. I'll definitely talke to the dealer about it when I bring it in. Thanks.
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Looks like you've got the tools to change a wheel whereas I've not even got a wheel brace - have you got a space saver tire under there?

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#12 Old 06-10-2013
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Originally Posted by slk55_kt View Post
thompstl1,
That leaves me to wonder if anyone with a 2013 AMG got the TireFit in their car?
My US-spec 2013 SLK 55, delivered in early April, has the TireFit canister.
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#13 Old 06-10-2013
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Originally Posted by dlomshek View Post
It looks like to me that the starter does not start the engine when it shuts
off at street lights etc. I believe that with the SLK 55 AMG engine that when its time to fire back up the direct injection squirts a bit of fuel into the appropriate cylinder then the ignition fires the spark plug in that cylinder. Thus no extra wear on the starter. The starter is used as usual for cold starts etc.
I wish this were true, but I'm doubtful an engine can be fired from a stop this way. In reading about stop/start, there was one manufacturer, Mazda or Mitsubishi... can't remember, who announced technology that would fire one cylinder and create a tiny bit of reverse crank rotation, thereby creating enough compression to fire an adjacent cylinder to get the engine spinning. The technology never made it to the real world. Stop/start engines either use a beefed-up conventional starter, or a combination starter/generator to spin the engine. In either case, the battery and charging system must also be heavy duty. In the SLK 55 they do light off the optimum cylinder to get the engine running ASAP, but I think it's still getting spun initially by the starter.

Regarding loss of oil pressure while stopped, I also have some concerns, but from what I've read, a warm engine maintains adequate lubrication and the warm starts don't cause additional wear. I'm not convinced whether this is true, or if we're being falsely reassured in the name of reduced emissions and improved fuel economy.
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#14 Old 06-20-2013
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I love your car!!! Now I have to check my trunk
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#15 Old 06-24-2013
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I found this link that explains the start/stop system.
http://media.daimler.com/dcmedia/0-9...0-0-0-0-0.html
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#16 Old 06-24-2013
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that makes it clear then - assuming it works the same in the slk as the cls:

Quote:
This rapid action is attributable to two special features: a crankshaft Hall sensor which is able to identify the rotational direction of the crankshaft enables the engine control unit to identify the cylinder in which the piston is ideally positioned for starting. The fuel is injected into this cylinder first, thereby speeding up the starting process.
Quote:
The starter motor (starter) has also undergone thorough modification: it is now designed to cope with eight times as many starting procedures, ensuring that it will last a car's lifetime in continuous urban driving involving frequent auto-starting
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#17 Old 06-24-2013
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I thought it interesting the transmission had an electric oil pump that activates as well!
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#18 Old 06-25-2013
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Welcome

Matthias built my engine too. I just finished taking European delivery of my SLK 55. Visited and toured the AMG engine plant in Affalterbach. There I was told that Matthias is not there anymore but has been transferred to another division.

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#19 Old 06-25-2013
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dolemshek,
Thanks for the info! Sure hope he didn't get transferred for poor job performance!!!
I'll be the tour was a wonderful experience!
Regards
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