It May Be a 4-Pot, But Mercedes-AMG’s SL 43 has 280 kW and 470 Nm

If anyone ever even suggested a four cylinder Mercedes-Benz SL just five years ago, they’d likely have got the firing squad. Even better, the electric chair. But this is 2022 and Mercedes has not just launched a four-pot SL, but it’s an AMG at that. Meet the 280 kW 470 Nm Mercedes-AMG SL 43. A car that Stuttgart conveniently squarely blames Formula 1 for moving once hallowed SL goalposts!

SL 43 Turbo Tech Straight Out of Formula 1

Mercedes promises that this all-new entry-level 45 version of the iconic SL derives its turbo tech directly from Lewis Hamilton’s Formula 1 car. It also packs a 12 HP electric boost from a 48 volt belt-driven starter-generator. But it’s that electric exhaust gas turbocharger that demands the most attention. Benz reckons it’s a world first for a series-production vehicle.

The Mercedes-AMG F1 derived contraption adds a 3 cm fat electric motor to the turbo shaft to directly propel the charger. Stuttgart days this ‘significantly improves immediate response from idle speed and across the entire engine speed range’. Which basically means that the turbo maintains boost pressure when the driver lifts off the accelerator. To ensure that it’s all spooled up and ready to boost hard immediately you plant the throttle again.

‘It Increases Agility and Thus Driving Fun’

“The electric exhaust gas turbocharger is a fascinating example of the extensive transfer between Formula 1 technology and the development of production vehicles,” Mercedes chief technical officer Jochen Hermann points out. “Our powerful M139 four-cylinder draws on the enormous wealth of experience of our colleagues at Mercedes-AMG High Performance Powertrains. “It increases agility and thus driving fun, while at the same time improving the efficiency of the drive system.”

They promise all this causes the SL 43 to deliver a far more dynamic driving experience, while also optimising acceleration and accelerator input. SL 43 gets a nine-speed AMG Speedshift multi-clutch transmission. All of which conspires to propel SL 45 to 100 km/h in a claimed 4.9 seconds. And on to a top speed of 280 km/h

Tell It Apart by a More Rounded Look

Tell the new SL 43 apart by a slightly adapted exterior design, with rounded front and rear aprons. 19-inch alloys are part of the deal but you can inch up to 20 or 21″ options. The four-pot SL also gets MBUX infotainment, and all Benz’ various driver assistance systems. There are power pseudo leather pews and black gloss interior trim with aluminium and carbon highlights. Mercedes is yet to reveal pricing.

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