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2002 Blue SLK320 known as 'Silkie"
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
As the title says, I test drove my first SLK this morning. A 2005 model SLK280 in a very nice dark blue. The VIN is WDB1714542F104682. I only managed a few miles in it and nothing officially above 50mph but nevertheless impressed with the ride and comfort - and brakes :surprise: !!
The ride was much better than I expected over pot-holed roads and the car didn't feel small or cramped inside. Seats were firm but comfortable. Lacquer was starting to peel off the car stereo - but if I get it that would get changed out for a proper one real soon.

Gearchange was disappointingly sluggish. It was a 7G-Tronic but I felt like the car needed a kick from behind to do anything. Can this be rectified with a software change at all? Once it had decided to go, it went well - and, as I said, when someone pulled out in front of me the brakes brought me to a safe stop very well, so the ABS and traction control both work!

Condition of the car? The two front wheels would need a refurb - there is blistering on both alloys near the hub and the two rear tyres would need replacing soon. Paintwork is fair for age (chips on the door edges and the bonnet had been opened against the wipers.....) No rust patches that I could see though. And 9300 till a Service B, so that's a year's motoring :smile: . There were squeaks from inside the car - would this be the roof mechanism or the seats? I couldn't get the roof down as it was pouring with rain but nevertheless it was good to actually try one out.

This afternoon I'm off to try a silver SLK320.
 

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Founding Member 2006
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108,819 Posts

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Founding Member 2006
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108,819 Posts

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*Premium Member
2002 Blue SLK320 known as 'Silkie"
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4,278 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
squeaks? probably was not lubed in ages

http://www.slkworld.com/226839-post1.html
Thanks Jeff.

Reading up on this I did think this may be the case. I might use a similar approach on my daughter's Renault Megane - her roof could do with an overhaul as it's her daily drive.

Right - got to go. Time tide and SLK320 test drives wait for no man....

Martin
 

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*Premium Member
2007 SLK55 AMG
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3,633 Posts
The roof will always have a squeek or two.
the gears are slow to change in manual but seamless in auto.
don't be fooled by the distance until the next service, it also counts down in time. 2 years between services.
 

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2010 SLK55 AMG
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205 Posts
Hi Savcom. I have a 2007 280. It's a fantastic car. The roof squeaks are definitely the rubber seals which need lubing with gummi pfledge or similar. The gearbox will respond more quickly in sport mode and you'll think the afterburners are on. Had mine 18 months and wouldn't change it. Good luck in your choice.
 

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Registered 2006 SLK280
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1,274 Posts
Find one with the One True Transmission, a six-speed manual, if you can. The manual box simply makes for a more engaging drive. The brakes, as you noted, are good, but should you opt to firm up the suspension like I did with the Bilstein B12 kit you will find that you must be aware of the speed you are carrying, especially if the car has the standard 16" rims as mine does. The chassis will corner so well that you can over-drive the brakes in some situations. Bigger brakes will cure that, of course, but that means bigger rims and significantly more unsprung weight at each corner...harder for the engine to overcome.
 

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2002 Blue SLK320 known as 'Silkie"
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Find one with the One True Transmission, a six-speed manual, if you can. The manual box simply makes for a more engaging drive. The brakes, as you noted, are good, but should you opt to firm up the suspension like I did with the Bilstein B12 kit you will find that you must be aware of the speed you are carrying, especially if the car has the standard 16" rims as mine does. The chassis will corner so well that you can over-drive the brakes in some situations. Bigger brakes will cure that, of course, but that means bigger rims and significantly more unsprung weight at each corner...harder for the engine to overcome.
Which means I *should* be looking at '350s as these came with uprated brakes, IIRC?

Regretfully, there's only one available in my budget. And I don't like the colour....
 

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Founding Member 2006
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he probably means the 55 had bigger brakes.
 

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*Premium Member
2002 Blue SLK320 known as 'Silkie"
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
did you try putting the auto box into sport, does liven things up a lot?
No - it was a tad wet out. I did drive both cars in non-Sport mode.
 

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Founding Member 2006
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you need sport mode 100% of the time
comfort mode starts in 2nd gear
 

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**Premium Member 2018 SLC43
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This will probably be considered sacrilege.
And did have an impreza in the past quickest car I have had (leg ached from the clutch peddle in traffic).

However, did test drive a manual 350 1st gear was like a switch and to short before you had to change up - may of been the one I tried of course.

Love the 7 speed auto using kick-down or pushing over to hold the lowest gear is more than enough for me throw in the luxury of town and motorway (call it traffic jam) driving a much more practical solution - could be just old age of course.
 

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**Premium Member 2004 SLK350
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5,655 Posts
My 350 has the ventilated drilled bigger callipers, (& 18" wheels)
But I always thought these where part of the "Sports Kit" option that My car came with..??


All slk 350 have drill disk and bigger callipers. Some 350 have sport pack some not. Sport pack is to do with suspension. I have the spot pack 486 but that applies only to shocks in my case.
 

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I have a 2009 300 which is basically a 280 with a different badge on the back. They arent really quick and in comfort mode you will find it particularly sluggish. Even having reset the adaptive settings mine still has that feeling that when you press the throttle it takes a while to make up its mind that you want to accelerate, there can be a long delay between input and action.

Its a bit better in sport mode, but I have the sports pack with paddle change and with the 280/300 being a bit underpowered I always use the paddles when I want to make progress , its the only way to wring a decent level of performance out of it. Using the paddles to keep it in the optimum rev range its a much better car to drive.

Aside from the lack of power the handling is fabulous, what you lose on the straights you can make up in the corners.

If you can find a 350 you should consider it, that little bit of extra power makes all the difference. And obviously the AMG is faster still although running costs might put you off.
 

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Registered 2006 SLK280
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1,274 Posts
The 350 has more power and does have bigger brakes and 17" rims standard. The brakes and rims of the 350 were also on the Sport package for the 280, but both of those add unsprung weight to the car which the smaller engine has difficulty coping with. The standard 16" rims on the 280 make for a better balanced package from a handling standpoint compared to the larger brakes and wheels on that same model. The 350 has more grunt to overcome the mass penalty. Tweaking the suspension as I have done with the Bilstein kit further improves the handling, so that brakes can become a limiting factor. I'm fine with that, as I don't want to make the car sluggish by increasing mass with larger brakes and larger wheels. Perhaps I'm different from most, but I'd rather drive an inherently slower car closer to it's limits than a faster car which can't approach it's limits safely on public roads. Up until the Facelifted 350 in 2009, the horsepower difference was only 40 and the higher-compression 280 revved higher and delivered better fuel economy. The Facelift 350 increased the horsepower gap to about 70, but lost the stick-shift option...a no-go in my book.
 
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