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Mercedes-Benz SLK55 AMG: Buying guide and review (2005-2010)

Mercedes-Benz SLK55 AMG: Buying guide and review (2005-2010) Classic and Performance Car
Mercedes-Benz SLK55 AMG Mercedes-Benz SLK55 AMG Mercedes-Benz SLK55 AMG Mercedes-Benz SLK55 AMG Mercedes-Benz SLK55 AMG Mercedes-Benz SLK55 AMG
The best AMG Mercs are ever so slightly bonkers. For the first SLK55 they squeezed a 5.4-litre V8 into the R171-gen SLK bodyshell and created something wild and really rather wonderful. Naturally aspirated, the engine developed 355bhp and a walloping 376lb ft of torque – enough to rocket the diminutive SLK from 0 to 60mph in well under five seconds, all accompanied by a thunderous muscle-car soundtrack. 
 
OK, so the stability program – which couldn’t be fully disabled – could be a little frustrating, but such was the 55’s appetite for rear tyres most owners would forgive it that. And with the folding metal hard-top providing GT-like refinement when you weren’t in the mood, here was a car with a broad range of talents. It was also the official safety car for the 2004 F1 season. Credibility was assured.
 

Which one to buy? 

 
AMG’s hot-rod went on sale in the UK in 2005 and the last ones left showrooms in 2010. There was a facelift in 2008 that sharpened the F1-inspired snout and brought a number of worthwhile improvements – including a 10 per cent quicker gearshift for the 7G-tronic auto (there was no manual option on the 55). There was also a Black Series version with slightly more power, slightly less weight and lashings of carbonfibre, but these are incredibly rare and hence expensive.
 
The great thing about the ‘regular’ SLK55 AMG is that it offers fine value, with prices from as low as £15k. But a word of caution. These may be affordable, but that doesn’t mean they’re going to be cheap to run. The AMG components are often fearsomely expensive to replace – particularly the brakes. (And while you’re thinking costs, note the jump in road tax for post-April 2006 cars, from £280 to £490.) Be on your guard and check the history fastidiously to avoid big bills lurking round the corner. If in doubt, get it inspected: a couple of hundred spent now could save thousands.
 

Performance and specs

 
Mercedes-Benz SLK55 AMG
Engine V8, 5439cc
Power 355bhp @ 5750rpm
Torque 376lb ft @ 4000rpm
Transmission Seven-speed automatic, rear-wheel drive
Weight 1575kg
0-60mph 4.9sec
Max speed 155mph (limited)
 

Dimensions and weight

 
Wheelbase 2430mm
Length 4087mm
Width 1794mm
Height 1271mm
Kerb weight 1540kg
 

Common problems

 
• The 113-series V8 is ‘bulletproof’, and generally regarded as trouble-free. You hardly ever hear of any problems with them, but it’s always good to remove the airbox and check for gasket oil leaks
 
• A recent set of spark plugs gets a big tick. There are 16 of them (specialists charge £5 a plug, Merc dealerships £10) and it’s a two-hour job to change them, so even an independent will charge the best part of £200 for full replacement.
• Make sure the gearbox has had its fluid changed at 40,000 miles – essential to prolong its life and avoid a major bill. If the shifts are smooth it’s probably OK – their speed and trigger-points depend on how the car has been driven. 
 
• The gearshift in the earliest cars was rather dull-witted, but there were a number of software upgrades to improve its responsiveness, so try to confirm these were done.
 
• The earliest cars had a particularly impressive brake set-up with six-piston calipers. After 18 months these became a (rarely taken) option and a four-pot set-up became standard. Either is more than up to the job, but the discs are formidably expensive – budget around £1000 just for a pair of fronts, even from an independent. 
 
• If the handling feels out of sorts, the front suspension arms may need replacing – fortunately not an expensive job. Potentially very costly, though, is any damage to the alloys, so check for anything more than light kerbing, including the inside of the rims for pothole damage.
 
• Standard interiors are a little plasticky but build quality is good. Check the roof mechanism works just as it should – they’re generally reliable but any repairs will be pricey.
 
• The most common fault is with the heated seats; if the elements in the base and backrest need replacing it’s a £1700 job.
 

Owners clubs, forums and websites

 
• www.slkworld.com – SLK community
• www.mbclub.co.uk – forums, advice, events
• www.benzworld.org – forums, advice, classifieds
• www.mercedes-amg.com – official AMG community
 

Summary and prices

 
You should expect to pay £10k-plus for an average-miles 2005 car with a full service history. £15-20k buys you a really nice 2005/2006 example with desirable extras. The Airscarf neck-heating warm-air system is highly prized, and the Comand infotainment system too (though its satnav isn’t great). The Harman Kardon hi-fi is nice to have, as is the upgraded Designo interior. Post 2008 facelift cars start at around £20k, rising to around £27k for an end-of-the-line 2010 car.
Mercedes-Benz SLK55 AMG Mercedes-Benz SLK55 AMG Mercedes-Benz SLK55 AMG Mercedes-Benz SLK55 AMG Mercedes-Benz SLK55 AMG Mercedes-Benz SLK55 AMG
Last updated: 27th Sep 2016
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Mercedes-Benz SLK
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  • MERCEDES-BENZ SLK SLK 250 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY AMG Sport 2dr Tip Auto

    £14,950 £14,950

    Type: Used Year: 2012 Make: MERCEDES-BENZ Model: SLK Trim: SLK 250 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY AMG Sport 2dr Tip Auto Body: Convertible Trans: Automatic Mileage: 35429 Engine Size: 2143 Ext Color: WHITE

    • Mileage: 35429 mi
    • Engine size: 2143
    For sale
    £14,950 £14,950
    Charles Hurst Usedirect Newtownabbey
    02890098282 View contact number
  • 1999 Mercedes SLK 230 Kompressor Great Condition 12 Months MOT Just Serviced

    £1,250 £1,250

    1999 Mrecedes SLK 230 Kompressor   Being offered is this lovely Mercedes SLK 230 Kompressor, it really is a stunning car and for its age it’s in great condition. The car has just had a service and 12 months MOT so it’s ready to go.   Exterior   These SLK’s can be the subject to rust but good news the car is in great order all the arches and front scuttle area is in great condition with no issues. The paint work is in great order with very few marks and no dents. All the alloys are in great order it really is in good condition. The roof works well when it’s cold the tailgate sometimes stops when closing but re-pushing the button carries on the motion the other item to mention there is a small rust patch on the roof on the right side of the rear window.   Interior   The interior is good condition it has suffered from some of the rubber coting has come away, but this is very common for the car. All the knobs and switches work as they should and the A/C blows cold as it should. The standard radio had poor reception, so I have replaced it with a good quality Kenwood CD player with iPod and Android controls.   Engine and Running Gear   The engine has covered just over 103K miles and for a Mercedes it’s a drop in the ocean, the engine is very smooth and quite with no issues at all. The automatic gearbox is very smooth with no strange noises it just drives the way it should. All the brakes and suspension are in good order. The front tyres have been advised on the MOT as the shoulders are wearing they have plenty of tread and the rear tyres are in very good order.   Paper Work   I have the manual pack with the service book along with the MOT. The V5C is present the car has one remote key. The car has part service history and plenty of invoices for past works.

    • Mileage: 103222 mi
    • Engine size: 2295
    For sale
    £1,250 £1,250
  • MERCEDES-BENZ SLK 1.8 SLK200 KOMPRESSOR 2d 161 BHP

    £5,995 £5,995

    Full Service History. 10 Stamps In The Service Book. Services At 9680. 17,166. 25,235. 37,824. 47,234. 56,679. 66,622. 74,973. 80,462. 86,961. 17" Alloys, Black Leather, Heated Front Seats, Multifunction Steering Wheel, Auto Lights, Folding Hardtop, Climate Control. The SLK Comes With 3 Months Gold Cover Warranty Which Can Be Extended From £299. Low Rate Finance And Part Exchange Available. Adjustable Steering Column/Wheel - Rake/Reach, Air Bag Driver, Air Bag Passenger, Air Bag Side - Driver/Passenger, Alarm - Unspecified, Alloy Wheels - 16in, Anti-Lock Brakes, Central Door Locking - Remote, Climate Control, Computer - Unspecified, Electric Windows - Front, Electronic Stability Programme, Front Fog Lights, Head Air Bags - Front, Immobiliser, In Car Entertainment - Radio/CD, Mirrors External - Electric/Heated, Power-Assisted Steering, Seat Height Adjustment - Driver/Passenger, Seating Capacity - Two Seats, Spare Wheel - Space Saver, Speakers - Nine, Steering Wheel Mounted Controls - Unspecified, Upholstery Cloth

    • Year: 2005
    • Mileage: 87594 mi
    For sale
    £5,995 £5,995
  • MERCEDES SLK SLK200 KOMPRESSOR ROADSTER 2005

    £5,995 £5,995

    2005 55 Mercedes Slk 200 Kompressor Roadster Rare manual gearbox ; ;(Number plate is not included in sale) ;;A stunning and rare manual example just 68000 miles with full service history.;;Finished in Mercedes obsidian Black met with black fluted leather, sport seats, Cruise control, Mercedes anodised alloys, lip spoiler on boot lid , blue tooth , With iPod connections, roll hoops , fitted wind deflector. Fully electric vario roof .;; Recent new Pirelli tyres and major service including plugs and brake fluid ;;The car is in immaculate condition inside and out and drives perfectly.;;A genuine well built modern classic sports car ;;hpi clear with full book pack/fully stamped service book, tool kit, both keys . ;;GBP 5995 ( px and down trades on request) ;;Delivery available to your door nationwide.;Viewing 7 days a week by appointment only please;Similar cars always wanted for stock please go to web site for more details on selling your car

    • Mileage: 68000 mi
    • Engine size: 1.796
    For sale
    £5,995 £5,995
  • MERCEDES SLK SLK200 KOMPRESSOR 2005

    £6,695 £6,695

    VERY LOW MILEAGE,SUPERB CONDITION,Electric convertible roof,full black leather seats,heated front seats,drivers electric seat with memory function,front and rear park sensors,17" alloy wheels,6 cd changer,dual zone climate control,air conditioning,cruise control,electric retractable wing mirrors, Next MOT due 13/09/2018, Service history, 2 seats, Metallic Silver, AIR SCARF,6 SPEED MANUAL,electric windows,remote central locking,power steering,abs,front airbags,runs and drives superb,must be seen, MANY MORE CARS ON OUR WEBSITE www.ttscarsales.co.uk PART EXCHANGE AND FINANCE OPTIONS AVAILABLE, GBP 6,695

    • Mileage: 36478 mi
    • Engine size: 1.796
    For sale
    £6,695 £6,695
  • Mercedes-Benz SLK

    £8,495 £8,495

    FINANCE AVAILABLE + PART EXCHANGE WELCOME. We offer this Mercedes Slk 200 in Fantastic Condition Throughout and with Full Service History. The Best Colour Scheme! At Auto-Sportiva we are an AA Approved Garage so Buy with Confidence and Extendable AA Warranties available. Spec Includes - Full Black Leather Interior, Reverse Camera, 16'' Alloys, Bluetooth Telephone Connectivity, Cruise Control, Multifunction Steering Wheel, Dual A/C, 2 Keys, Metallic Paint, Next MOT due 18/07/2018, Last serviced on 05/09/2017 at 72,397 miles, Full service history, Standard Features - Computer, Electric Windows (Front), Alarm, Tinted Glass, Airbags, Anti-Lock Brakes, Central locking, Power-Assisted Steering, Traction control. 2 seats, Metallic Obsidian Black, WE ALWAYS RECOMMEND CALLING OUR SALES TEAM PRIOR TO VIEWING ONE OF OUR VEHICLES TO AVOID ANY DISAPPOINTMENT IF SOLD - FOR MORE INFORMATION VISIT - www.auto-sportiva.com. Vehicles Supplied fully inspected, Valeted and with a Comprehensive Warranty and HPI report so Buy with Confidence. Extendable AA Warranties are available including AA Break Down cover. Please ask our Sales Team for more info. Various Finance Packages available. To view this vehicle just put TN13 1BH into your Sat Nav. At Auto-Sportiva we pride ourselves on supplying only the best quality used vehicles and providing the very best service to all of our customers so please give us a call on 01732 450731 to discuss any of our vehicles further or just for some honest advice.

    • Mileage: 73091 mi
    • Engine size: 1796
    For sale
    £8,495 £8,495
  • Mercedes-Benz SLK

    £28,989 £28,989

    Panoramic Glass Roof, Command APS, Sat Nav, Traffic Sign Recognition, Electric Heated Memory Seats with Lumbar, AirScarf Neck Heating, DAB Radio, Universal Communications Interface, Xenon Headlamps with Intelligent Light System, Park Distance Control, LED Daytime Lights, Power Hood, Folding Mirrors, AMG Performance S/Wheel, Full AMG Styling and 18" AMG Multi Spoke Alloys. Full Mercedes Service History. www.imperials.co.uk ------ Please call us to Confirm which of our 3 Essex Showrooms your desired vehicle is located at before travelling to see us, Everyone of Our Cars Goes Through Our In House Work Shop Prior to Sale by Our Fully Qualified and Experienced Technicians - Buy with Confidence, Mileage Subject to Change as Stock Rotates Between Showrooms Confirm Mileage at Time of Purchase. For up to 20 images of this vehicle and an Instant Finance Quote please view www.imperials.co.uk, For Out of Office Hours Enquiries please call Tony 07956 564440 and he will be happy to help, We are also good buyers of all prestige, Sports and 4x4 vehicles so why not give us a call for a price on yours, Please Like us on Facebook and Follow us on Twitter, Thank You, www.imperials.co.uk

    • Year: 2012
    • Mileage: 19000 mi
    For sale
    £28,989 £28,989