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Super Moderator CA 2012 SLK55 AMG w/P30
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Discussion Starter #1
On our way home from S.I.L. Thanksgiving dinner, motoring along on the 401 (primary highway across Canada---4-6 lanes express and 3-4 collectors) and keeping up with traffic :wink: ), as is the case, the "safety" distance between cars tends to get shorter than what it should be.

People like to squeeze into your "stopping distance" to get past the guy the're tailgating so everyone is closer than they should be.

Well, as is often the case people slow down for no apparent reason. Such was the case last night.

Brake lights come on on the car in front of me and so I let off the gas expecting speeds to pick up again quite quickly. Driving in S, we 55 owners (not sure about other SLK's) know she tends to slow down quite quickly on her own with those rapid down shifts.

All of a sudden I see smoke (and smell it as we're topless (8oC with the heat full on--gotta love it :grin") and because the top is down I hear the (in front of me) car's tires just wailing.

I put the brakes on wayyyy harder than I usually do (because of these suddenly shortened safety zones). Well, Schwarzie comes to a stop (without locking up) in such a short distance I pull onto the shoulder while still braking because I firmly believed the guy behind me could NOT stop in time before whacking me in the rear.

I was right as he pulled up about a foot into my trunk :wink: .

With 14" rotors on my 18" wheels, this car stops on a dime and gives you 9c change. If I had been in the Magnum, with it's 13.5" rotors on 18's, it would have been iffy if I could have stopped in time (it being a much heavier car).

Driving this 55 has (re)sharpened my reaction times, being such a responsive vehicle.

Thanks Schwarzie. Saved our bacon last night.
 

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Administrator 2009 SLK 55 AMG/Founding Member 2006
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96,615 Posts
'I was right as he pulled up about a foot into my trunk'

you made it sound like he hit you. did u mean 'from' instead of 'into'?

I was going to say 'glad you are ok' :D
 

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Super Moderator CA 2012 SLK55 AMG w/P30
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13,319 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Sorry. "A foot beside my trunk" doesn't sound right but yeah, he was beside me. His front end was almost up to my rear wheels (on the side, like in a parking lot).

It's funny but for as long as I've been driving, I know I can stop in time but whenever this situation arises I always look in the rear view mirror in case there's a guy behind me who can't.

I try (if possible, like last night) to give him a bit more braking distance in case I was right and he can't stop in time.

Worked well for us last night.
 

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Founding Member #2 2008 SLK55 AMG
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19,400 Posts
..... comes to a stop (without locking up) in such a short distance I pull onto the shoulder while still braking because I firmly believed the guy behind me could NOT stop in time before whacking me in the rear.
This happened to me once on the 101 freeway in NorCal. I noted/heard the tires of the car behind me starting to squeal, brief glance at cockpit rear view mirror, and quickly turned to the shoulder even though I know the 55 will brake well and not rear-end the car in front.
 

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Registered 2013 SLK 55 AMG
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44 Posts
Gotta love Emergency Brake Assist. It looks at a number of parameters, such as the speed you transition from throttle to brake, how quickly you increase brake pressure and then how hard you push. If the planets align and the car thinks this could be a serious situation it assists with the increase in brake pressure and you stop VERY quickly indeed. All the while it also looks at ABS and ESP and will flash the brake lights if conditions suggest that either of those systems are getting involved. And if you come to an emergency braking halt having been travelling at more than 70kmh then your hazards should come on too. All part of Pre-Safe and clearly it works well!
 

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Super Moderator CA 2012 SLK55 AMG w/P30
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13,319 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
All this is another advantage of driving topless whenever possible. Things might have been different if I couldn't smell or hear his tires cooking off.
 

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Registered 2013 SLK55 AMG
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714 Posts
One of the first things I did when I purchased the '55' was to 'test the brakes'... and, oh boy, they are good. Lightweight combined with big brakes hauls the SLK up in no time (tested on an open road, nothing behind me)...
Thinking about it, it is worrying that we may pull up shorter than the guy behind so good sense about keeping a peripheral eye out for whats going on about you...

Good to know the SLK isn't a foot shorter this morning :)
 

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Registered 2003 SLK32 AMG
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109 Posts
I had about the same happen to me in my new C43 AMG in 2000. Two cars in front of me a person stopped dead, never did find out why. I got stopped then moved up close to the car in front to give the person behind me room to stop. I then looked in the mirror and saw the lady that was following her in a very large Buick closing hard. She took out all 5 of us. It destroyed my 5,000 mile C43, as well as 3 other cars. I was not hurt, but the lady behind me was. I was in the center lane of 3 high speed lanes, moving to the side was not an option. Ohio has no Diminished value law. It was sold after fixing for an $19K loss due to F&R frame damage. I think they only brought 1320 of them into the country.
 
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