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Registered 2001 SLK200
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The R170 will celebrate its 20th birthday in April.

The production SLK was officially presented at the Turin car show (Salone dell'automobile di Torino) in April 1996 in two types: the SLK 200 136hp and the SLK 230 Kompressor 193hp.

SLK 200 1996 price was in France FRF199,000 (taking into account inflation it is equivalent in 2016 to Euro 40000)

In 1997 Car and Driver will put the SLK in its 1997 ten best cars list (and of course the car tested had to be yellow):
1997 10Best Cars - 10Best Cars - Car and Driver

Here is the Internet Archive of the MB website, SLK page, back in November 1996: Internet Archive SLK NOV 1996


Other cars introduced in 1996 were:

-BMW Z3: The first BMW to be produced outside Germany. The car was designed with the US market in mind.

-Porsche Boxster 986

-Ford Ka: Probably the most excessive "New Edge" design from the Ford range of the period. Still it is an interesting car as some years later the Ka design will be used as a base for the Fiat Nuova 500. The current Ka and 500 are now built at the same factory in Poland.

-Audi A3: The idea of selling a premium Golf prove successful.

-Peugeot 406 coupé: After 40 years it will be the last collaboration between Pininfarina and Peugeot.

-Skoda Octavia: The Octavia is interesting because it marks the beginning of the low cost car production in Eastern Europe after the fall of communism. The Octavia was an excellent car but VW will never manage to produce a true low cost car.
We will have to wait another ten years to see Renault succeed with Dacia. The Duster is now the most sold Renault in the world and the third best selling "SUV" in the world.

-GM EV1: The first mass-produced electric vehicle

Other facts from 1996:

DOW was at 6000 (1996->2016 is a +290%)
Interest Rates Year End Federal Reserve at an incredible 8.25%

Apple Macintosh was 20 years old. An Apple laptop Powerbook was $2500 ($3750 adjusted to inflation)

Nokia was introducing the 8110. The telephone later used in the movie Matrix.

Disney stormed shelves with Toy Story products.

In television it was the first year for ESPN and Fox News. X-Files TV series was in its third season.

The Oscar for best movie went to Braveheart
 
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