Review – Mercedes SLK 200 Kompressor

29 Nov 2014 | Author: | Comments Off on Review – Mercedes SLK 200 Kompressor

Vauxhall Corsa VXR Nürburgring

3 May 2008

Mercedes SLK 200 Kompressor – If the government get their way, cars emitting more than 220g/km will be charged a daily rate of £25 to enter London. Those cars under the threshold will remain at the current £8.00 per day.

Now those of you living outside the area may not think this will affect you. However, I have a sneaky feeling that very soon most major cities will take the same stance as London has.

Unless us Brits be more like our French neighbours and take to the streets in protest, we have to accept that congestion charge is here to stay.

Cars emitting more than 220g/km are inevitably the 4X4 duped the ’Chelsea tractors’ and high performance cars. One may argue they can afford the charges but that is really not the point. We live in democratic society – apparently.

If we want to drive to London in our own choice of car, why can’t we? Except for the fact that by doing so, five days a week, forty eight weeks per year will now cost such a driver a whopping £6,000 annual congestion charge bill.

So does this mean the end of expensive cars and the beginning of the electric car boom? One would have thought a resounding ‘yes’, but I have found a range of sport cars that fall under the magic 220g/km.

The new generation Mercedes Benz SLK- Class roadster.

The SLK range comprises of the SLK 200 Kompressor, SLK 280 and flagship SLK 350. All three have undergone major surgery with around 650 newly developed components designed to emphasise further the car’s sporty character.

Mercedes, the SLK 200 Kompressor is already heavily laden with on board equipment. These include air conditioning, cruise control, electrically adjustable and heated door mirrors

This is apparent from the onset with new re-styled front and rear, plus larger exterior mirrors with integrated indicators. The alloy wheels have been revised while the area around the Mercedes star is more prominent.

Inside the SLK is a new sporty three-spoke steering wheel with multifunction buttons, plus a stunning instrument cluster with 3-D shaped bezels.

On top of this, the SLK 200 Kompressor and SLK 350 benefits from increased power plus torque. Amazingly all but one variant, the 6-speed manual SLK 350 produce CO2 emissions of 220g/km or under.

Prices range from around 30K to 51K for the AMG super duper version. I am going to keep my sensible hat on and focus on the SLK 200 Kompressor that is the entry level and possibly more affordable than the others.

The uptake is impressive from this 1.8 litre petrol engine that took only 7.6 seconds to reach 62 mph. The automatic was just 0.3 seconds slower. Top speed is a reputed 147 mph (144 mph with the automatic) to which I will take Mercedes word not wishing to blot my clean licence.

The fuel economy has been improved from 32.5 to 36.2 mpg on a combined cycle with the automatic slightly more from 32.1 to 34.9 mpg. This is good news but it is the CO2 figures we are really interested in. These have fallen by 25 g/km to 184g/km on the manual and a 19 g/km reduction on the automatic to 192g/km.

This means that both manual and automatic versions will not be penalised from the new congestion charges.

With the money saved, I could splash out on some optional extras. Top on my list would be AIRSCARF that is a very clever neck level heating system, which blows out hot air via the headrests. With the SLK 200 taking just 22 seconds to convert from a hardtop to roadster, no ray of sunshine will be missed.

Second on my list would be Direct Steer giving exquisite response on the twisting country lanes.

Last but by no means least would be the Linguatronic voice control system with either the Audio 50 APS or COMAND packages. Simply speak your destination and the sat nav will obey saving valuable time trying to fathom out how to enter addresses. It will also recognise voice commands for radio stations or names from your phonebook.

Of course, being a Mercedes, the SLK 200 Kompressor is already heavily laden with on board equipment. These include air conditioning, cruise control, electrically adjustable and heated door mirrors plus electric windows. To accommodate all sizes the seats and steering wheel aware manually adjustable.

For the first time Bluetooth hands free technology is integrated into every radio while an extra £140 will buy you a Media Interface that lives in the glove compartment for portable devises such as iPods to be plugged into. This is worth the extra as the latest Harman Kardon Logic7 system means any music will sound beautiful.

The safety features are endless ensuring you reach your destination in one piece. Airbags are found on the driver, passenger side as well as head and thorax sidebags. Both seatbelts have pretensioners but in case it really does go wrong, the roll over protection will continue to protect you and your passenger.

Not that this should happen as the SLK 200 Kompressor is fitted with ABS, Brake Assist, ESP and Acceleration Skid control.

Securing the roadster is an alarm with Immobiliser and remote central locking.

I am a great fan of the SLK range and was pretty content with the outgoing models. However with these new 2008 updates, the SLK 200 Kompressor has just got better. The ride and handling is fantastic thanks to loads of technology under the bonnet.

The steering is utterly precise, a real point and go job but the looks. The SLK is one of the rare roadsters that are simply stunning as either a hardtop or a convertible.

My neighbours will be speechless and tuning green with envy if I owned one which one day I will. Prices may start at £29,710.00 but I have to have some of the optional extras. So I best go and buy a lottery ticket today.

FemaleFirst Jackie Violet.

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