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1996 Mercedes-Benz SL-Class

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Consumer Reviews & Ratings

Overall Rating
9.0
Out of 10

Based on 163 Ratings for the 1994 - 2002 models.

Review this car
more rating details
  • Value
    9.1/10
    Quality
    9.3/10
  • Reliability
    9.2/10
    Performance
    9.4/10
  • Comfort
    9.1/10
    Styling
    9.5/10
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The most beautiful car I ever owned

By on Thursday, March 22, 2012

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 32,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Styling, Drivetrain, Exceptional Stereo, Finish"

Cons: "None I can find"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"WOW! It handles like a dream, moves like a cheetah and is timeless in it's style. The car is solid and the paint is the best I've seen on an automobile to date. I believe it has 7 coats. The Bose Stereo is magical. What a sound, even with roof down. Fantastic engineering. With all that sports car in it, it still rides like a big car. Not a lot of miles on it for a 2000 but no issues. It's a ball to drive. I hope it lasts forever."

9 people out of 9 found this review helpful

Power/Styling/Convertable Comfort in one Package

By on Saturday, September 8, 2007

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

"I've owned my '94 SL500 for 5 years, with relatively minor repairs, most due to some neglect by prior owner. MB Dealer's service & repairs are pricey, but that's one of the MB owner's conditions of ownership. Car is a rocket when you put pedal to metal at any speed.... corner's & hugs road at high speeds with remarkbly flat "lean" (regardless of it's weight). It doesn't drive like a BMW, but is smoother and more sedate... low road noise, smoother over the bumps. Plenty of luggage space, boot space (behind front seats) for 2 on a trip. Creature comforts galore, plenty of head and leg room for both driver and passenger (I'm 6'1"). Get's ~24 - 25 mpg on highway, 17 mpg in-town driving without being lead-footed accelerating from stops. Turning circle is one of MB's best features... tighter than a Civic's for example, so easy maneuverability in tight spaces. Sound system is terrific... Hard or softtop. With hardtop on you can't tell it's a convertable (noise-wise). With top down, using the optional windscreen attached and up, & window's up there's nearly no wind disturbance - wife's hair doesn't get mussed) ."

9 people out of 9 found this review helpful

Great fun in droptop style

By on Wednesday, September 29, 2010

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

"The more you drive, the more you love. Not as sporty as some but a blast to drive as a pure touring car. Corners flat, runs fast, sounds great. A thrill everytime you touch the accelerator."

6 people out of 6 found this review helpful

Easy to maintain...solid vehicle

By on Saturday, February 23, 2008

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

"Formerly owned a 95 SL500 (actually wife's). I agree with everything posted previously. I felt bad for the guy quoted $2300-$7000 to get the top hydroelectric repairs performed. The leaky top cyclinders can be purchased for $150 apiece and replaced in the comfort of your own garage in about an hour!!! A phillips screwdriver and an allen wrench set is all you need! I'm not a Mercedes mechanic, but I performed most all of the necessary work myself. Probably the cheapest-to-repair MB I've ever owned! Looking at a 96 SL500 for my kid...just test driving it brings back memories!"

6 people out of 6 found this review helpful

99 SL500

By on Tuesday, November 27, 2007

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

"The only reason I scored the value category with a 3 is because it is a shame that a car like the SL500 (MSRP: $96K new in 1999) is only worth about $25K now in 2007. The car in my opinion delivers everything it promises; great handling, performance, and classic sports car appeal. There is nothing like driving a high performance Mercedes Benz."

6 people out of 6 found this review helpful

600 Sl best sports car I ever owned

By on Saturday, August 18, 2012

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 55,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "fun to drive wth close to 400 hp. very reliable"

Cons: "not that I know"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I own a 99 600 sl sport triple black. It's an underrated car and I think it's already a classic. For an car what actually was close to $ 130.000 in 99 and it's quality and fun it's obviousely undervalued. Instead getting cheaper every year the value should go up because of it's limited quantity."

5 people out of 5 found this review helpful

Reliable & Fun!

By on Thursday, December 30, 2010

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

"i bought this car 7 years ago and other than regular maint items it has been a charm. it's paid for now and i go years without repairs, just maint. take it easy on reverse because i am told that the car is actually too heavy for the transmission. i did replace that. but other than that it's great. i was turned on to two different performance mechanics that care for it with factory parts for very reasonable prices. no surprises except that they always come in under the estimate. this car is reliable and fun! Zoom, Zoom !"

5 people out of 5 found this review helpful

Fine German Precision Sports car

By on Thursday, August 12, 2010

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

"The last of the German made sports cars before they turned a little wimpy. This tried and proven engine gives the car a real sporty feeling and feels more like an eight cylinder than a six. If you want it, it's got it. In copious quantities. This is the last link to the days of true sports cars. Sell yours and you will be deservedly sentenced to a staple diet of mediocrity and seller's remorse!"

5 people out of 5 found this review helpful

Rock-solid and deceptively fast

By on Sunday, March 28, 2010

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

"This is the fourth convertible I've owned, and it's by far the stiffest, with no cowl shake whatsoever with the soft top up or down. My 1988 SL was good also, but it definitely had a bit of body flex. The low-end torque is unbelievable, and the car keeps pulling to illegal speeds without drama or effort. The brakes are also fantastic, and the car corners well, especially considering its weight and its comfortable ride. The interior is richly-appointed, with first-rate materials, wood everywhere, and supple, perforated heated leather seats. The car feels expensive. My only real complaint is the lack of a traditional glovebox in my 1998 model. Note that the 1990-1998 SL500s are 32-valve 322HP motors and the 1999-2002 models are the cheaper 24-valve 302 HP motors. No problem fitting two golf bags in the trunk--very unusual in 2-seat convertibles! (Two bags don't fit in the 2003+ model SLs due to the folding hardtop.) Make sure to get the xenon lights. It's a rare option but worth it."

5 people out of 5 found this review helpful

Awesome Car!

By on Monday, November 26, 2007

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

"I have owned 2 1998 SL 500's and LOVED them both. My current one has over 148,000 miles and still runs and drives great! I can't reccomend this car enough"

5 people out of 5 found this review helpful

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