The word “icon” gets thrown around a lot in the automotive world, but the Mercedes-Benz SL-Class fits the bill better than most. In steady production since 1954, the SL-Class — which is also called the SL Roadster — pioneered the use of gull-wing doors in a production vehicle with the 1954 300 SL, and the vehicle has a storied history in racing as well.
At the 2015 LA Auto Show, the facelifted SL will make its world debut. Ahead of that unveiling, though, Mercedes has released a shadowy teaser image of the upcoming sports car. We can only see the front end of the SL peeking out from the darkness, but the vehicle is clearly much rounder than its sharply dressed predecessor (shown below), and the new diamond grill is quite similar to the one fitted to the stunning AMG GT. Even the cutouts below the headlights are AMG GT-influenced, departing noticeably from the ultra-modern flair of the current car.
Technical specifications are still under wraps until the LA Auto Show kicks off for the press on November 17, but the mechanical bits aren’t expected to change much outside of a modified COMAND infotainment system.
The current SL-Class is offered in four variants: the SL400 Roadster, the SL550 Roadster, the AMG SL63 Roadster, and the range-topping AMG SL65 Roadster. The SL400 on sale today starts at $85,050 and equips a 329-horsepower, 3.0-liter biturbo V6 and can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 5.1 seconds. Power, displacement, speed, and price predictably increase as you venture up the model range, culminating with the $217,550 AMG SL65, which boasts a 6.0-liter biturbo V12 with 621 hp and a 0 to 60 mph time of just 3.9 seconds.
What changes are in store for the SL-Class come LA? Stay tuned to DT Cars to find out.