Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Cincinnati, OH USA
Vehicle: 2001 SLK 320
Other Toys: I've got about 20 Fieros, Camaros, MBs, Rams, Jeeps, Suzuki Bikes, Arctic cat Sleds
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Racing the SLK R170 in Autocross
So I bought the SLK 320 kind of as a summer beater/DD to just drive like a moron and enjoy some time with the roof down until I get around to eventually selling it. Anyway, I was bleeding my clutch on my autocross car the night before the race and sheered the threads in the slave cylinder. I called over to the 24 hour autozone and they didn't have one... (not a surprise) so I thought "oh no, what will I do???"
So since I wasn't going to be competitive that day anyway, I decided to drive the SLK. I show up and I'm not sure what to make of it.
I did alright, but I dont think the car did me many favors. beat out some of the porsches, but lost to a nice miata and a 370z, both on race tires. grrr. For being on kumho ecstas though, I can't complain.
Anyway, I guess the car handled exactly like I imagined it would. Not impressed, not disappointed. It was fun to drive fast, and it felt great- fully under control. The 320's power band and torque were evident as I was able to handle the course with ease. The rear end kicks out pretty easy for for my first run I was doing 360s, but after that I tamed it a little bit. May just be the complete lack of oversteer I'm used to racing F-Bodies.
In short, the car drove great, and handled the course like a champ. I learned the limits of the car so now I know how it can handle the twisty backroads, which has made driving much more fun. The negative however is its not quite as good as a lot of other cars specifically for racing (but pretty darn good for having fun).
I urge everyone to go autocross their SLKs one day and learn the limits- it pays of on the streets big time, but I really didn't feel like the SLK would ever give me a shot to be competitive.
Just thought I'd share!