Pros: "Opulent Comfort, Fine Art, and Performance"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"Never a Mercedes fan, having read years of Mercedes reviews that kept noting the boredom of the Mercedes driving experience, I bought the 2013 SL550 certified used with 21,000 miles. Looking for more comfort than my previous first generation BMW Z4 Sport, I was inclined to exclude a newer Z4 even though the first one was a total joy to drive for many years. I believe that lighter is always better so a new Boxster seemed to be the best option. However, at 6' 4" I find the Boxster a bit cramped. The used SL550 was priced about the same as the new Boxster and the seats positively seduced both myself and my wife. The Porsche 14-way seats are not in the same league for comfort or range of thigh support, and the SL has that wonderful active bolstering. The active-bolstered seats are an upgrade I think but if you buy an SL I think you "gotta have 'em".
The only real competitor for the SL550 is the Porsche 911, which may deliver higher performance on a track but who over takes one of these cars racing? To me the Mercedes has an elegant sophisticated styling, more modern art and less boy racer than the Porsche and to me rounded styling as with the Porsche 911 or the Jaguar XK has lost its luster.
The opulent sculpturing of the SL's interior dash is the highest form of automotive art, accented by circular vent openings above spreading wings of rich dark wood. Again, Porsche 911 is not in the same class.
Porsche wins easily on resale value. However, this generation SL, with much improved fuel efficieny and driving feel, will likely fare better than the prior generation.
Info system? Why doesn't every manufacturer just get with Apple and provide a system that links to the Apple phone? For starters I would like to use map search functions on my iPhone and then send the address to the "Command" info system.
The driving feel is definitely heavy, not my normal preference, and seems relatively understated for a performance car. Noise, including exhaust note, and road feel are dialed down. However, the sport setting on the suspension transmits nicely cushioned road feel that inspires a bit of spirited driving. Alternatively, the comfort setting is nice on particularly rough roads. This is a very quiet car inside that allows enjoying conversation or the excellent sound system when desired. Add top down and top up versatility and this car can provide a great driving experience in many, many ways."
"Would NOT a change a thing. Excellent performance sports car. Drives like the wind. Is only happy at 70 plus so ensure you have your radar on. Interior to exterior every detail is covered. LOVE IT!! Also holds its value better than anything even the 911."
"Even with Pirelli summer tires I could get my 2003 SL55 up the slight incline into my garage with a running start especially if I turned off the ESP when there was some snow and ice in the driveway. With the replacement 13 SL550 and Bridgestone run flats summer tires, be prepared with two strong pushers and a bunch of cinders to get it back in the garage if you are dumb enough to try driving it in the winter. Also without the easy entry feature that my old SL55 had, its not too easy for the driver to get into when the top is on.
Otherwise it is superior in every way to my 2003 SL55 which I owned since fall of 2003. All the electronics are up to date and look like they will be trouble free. The car is a beast as far as handling and acceleration just like my 03 SL55 but also gets 18 mpg in city driving, not 12mpg. Be sure to get the bigger AMG wheels which also come with bigger brakes. Wish it had a heated steering wheel option, but on the other hand its undrivable in the winter. All in all a great car, but not if you live in snowy climes and don't have a winter car. It will have to be stored for the winter."
"The 2013 SL550 is even better than I expected, and I've been looking forward to purchasing this car for many years... and finally did it. It is a gentle beast. While incredibly powerful, it is also very sensitive. It is very touchy-feely, I feel like the car is almost alive. The electronics add to the fun. I do not think I will ever own a better, more fun to drive car. I checked out the Porsche 911, but it was too tight for me. I want to drive the most comfortable hard top convertible on the road and the SL550 is it. All my ratings are "10" except for value. That should really be "10" too, but I still can't believe it cost so much even though it IS worth it!!"
"The SL has always been a Mercedes icon. Owned for 3 1/2 years, European delivery, 100 on autobahn, rock steady, corners absolutely level, room for 2 for three weeks on road, assembly perfect, upholstery and fittings first-rate, fast (0-60 5.4 seconds) and braking top-notch. Quiet with top down, even at highway speed. No shakes, squeaks, rattles after 3 1/2 years. Mechanics and electronics totally reliable. Feels like carved from granite, but agile. Reasonable gas mileage (18 city, 27 highway)"