PKW4343 129 series SL-Class Roadsters, 1998 - 2001

129 series SL-Class Roadsters, 1998 - 2001

In April 1998 at the Turin Motor Show, an updated SL range was presented featuring newly developed engines and a subtly revised design. The most significant refinements included the introduction of a new generation of V-type engines with six and eight cylinders to replace the six-cylinder in-line engine featured in the M 104 series and the M 119 series V8-unit. Thanks to the advent of 3-valve technology and dual ignition, the new engines consume up to ten percent less fuel than their predecessor models and are particularly remarkable for their very low exhaust emissions. Output levels range from 150 kW (204 hp) in the SL 280 and165 kW (224 hp) in the SL 320 to 225 kW (306 hp) in the SL 500. The top-of-the-range SL 600 continues to be powered by the M 120 twelve-cylinder engine producing 290 kW (394 hp). The SL 60 AMG was discontinued as part of the model improvement program and has not been available since June 1998.

The design of the SL has not been radically modified. The aim of the subtle touching-up was to give the sports car an even more dynamic appearance. This was achieved by slightly altering the rear end, a smooth-lined, now three-rib unit covering the new monochromatic tail lamp lenses. New oval tail pipe trim for the exhaust unit and color-coded bumpers emphasize the sporty image of the car. Smooth curves govern the new exterior mirrors which have been designed along the lines of the SLK and which represent the most distinctive external feature of the refined models. Color-coded door handles and bodywork attachments of the new SL models are given a rich finish to match the bodywork. The size and design of the wheels have also been modified. Indeed, the refined SL models are fitted with new-style 245/45 ZR 17 5-hole light-alloy wheels as standard.

In spring 1999, two especially powerful AMG versions added to the model line-up of the 129 series: The SL 55 AMG was fitted with a 260 kW (354 hp) V8 engine, the V12 engine in the SL 73 AMG even delivered 386 kW (525 hp) with a maximum torque of 750 Nm. The max speed of the two top versions was electronically limited to 250 km/h like in the other models, however, this limitation could be omitted, if the customer desired so. 

 

In August 1999, the Electronic Stability Program ESP became standard equipment in the two six-cylinder models SL 280 and SL 320. Two years later, in July 2001, the SL 500 celebrated its world premiere as the first model of the new R 230 SL series. In the same month, the last of overall 204,940 units of the R 129 was produced in the Bremen factory. With that, the first SL to be built in Bremen was not as successful regarding its overall number of units produced as its predecessor, which is still record holder with 237,287 cars built; but regarding the average annual output, the R 129 was at the top significantly with 16,500 units. The most successful version of the R 129 series was the five-liter-version with the four-valve V8 engine M 119, of which overall 79,827 units were produced from 1988 to 1998. The rarest version was the SL 280 with the V6 engine, which was the entry model of the series from 1998, and was inly produced 1704 times.

 

Mercedes-Benz SL 320, 129 series, Paintwork in Magma Red
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SL 320, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL „Special Edition“, 129 series. In 1998, a second "Special Edition" appears in 500 units and available with all engines except the SL 60 AMG engine. Paintwork is done in Obsidian black metallic, upholstery in designo Red with black decorative stitching. The five-speed automatic transmission is standard on the SL 280
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SL "Special Edition", Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL „Special Edition“, 129 series. In 1998, a second "Special Edition" appears in 500 units and available with all engines except the SL 60 AMG engine. Paintwork is done in Obsidian black metallic, upholstery in designo Red with black decorative stitching. The five-speed automatic transmission is standard on the SL 280
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SL "Special Edition", Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL 320, 129 series, newly designed taillights
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SL 320, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL 280, SL 320, SL 500, 129 series, broad entry, safety seats with integrated belts, fire extinguisher below driver's seat
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SL, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL 500, 129 series, with panorama glass roof
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SL 500, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL 500, 129 series, with panorama glass roof
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SL 500, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL 500, 129 series, two-tone interior design, clearly structured interior
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SL 500, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL, 129 series, rounded exterior mirrors similar to the SLK models mark the new 1998 models
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SL, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL, 129 series, rounded exterior mirrors similar to the SLK models mark the new 1998 models
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SL, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL, 129 series, view into cockpit with airbag leather steering wheel and center console in walnut version with climate control and audio system
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SL, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL 320, 129 series, Paintwork in Magma Red
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SL 320, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL 320, 129 series, Paintwork in Magma Red
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SL 320, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL, 129 series, aerodynamic advantage by wedge-shaped silhouette
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SL, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL, 129 series, rounded exterior mirrors similar to the SLK models mark the new 1998 models
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SL, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL, 129 series, aerodynamic advantage by wedge-shaped silhouette
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SL, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL 320, 129 series, high back-end features the aerodynamically advantageous, elegant wedge shape of the body
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SL 320, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL, 129 series, rounded exterior mirrors similar to the SLK models mark the new 1998 models
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SL, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL 280, SL 320, SL 500, 129 series, front and back end parts in glossy color unity with body
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SL 280, SL 320, SL 500, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL 55 AMG
Roadster, 129 series, 8-cylinder V8 engine M 113, 5.439 ccm, 260 kW/354 hp
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SL 55 AMG, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL 73 AMG, 129 series. In 1999, AMG presents the most powerful of its road vehicles up to this time with 386 kW/525 hp performance and 7,3 liters total displacement to be the unrivalled leader in the exclusive segment of open super sports cars. The SL 73 AMG accelerates in 4.8 seconds to 100 km/h (62 mph) and to a maximum speed of 250 km/h, at special customer demand up to 300 km/h (155 or 186 mph)
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SL 73 AMG, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL 73 AMG, 129 series. In 1999, AMG presents the most powerful of its road vehicles up to this time with 386 kW/525 hp performance and 7,3 liters total displacement to be the unrivalled leader in the exclusive segment of open super sports cars. The SL 73 AMG accelerates in 4.8 seconds to 100 km/h (62 mph) and to a maximum speed of 250 km/h, at special customer demand up to 300 km/h (155 or 186 mph)
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SL 73 AMG, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL 73 AMG, 129 series. In 1999, AMG presents the most powerful of its road vehicles up to this time with 386 kW/525 hp performance and 7,3 liters total displacement to be the unrivalled leader in the exclusive segment of open super sports cars. The SL 73 AMG accelerates in 4.8 seconds to 100 km/h (62 mph) and to a maximum speed of 250 km/h, at special customer demand up to 300 km/h (155 or 186 mph)
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SL 73 AMG, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL 73 AMG, 129 series. In 1999, AMG presents the most powerful of its road vehicles up to this time with 386 kW/525 hp performance and 7,3 liters total displacement to be the unrivalled leader in the exclusive segment of open super sports cars. The SL 73 AMG accelerates in 4.8 seconds to 100 km/h (62 mph) and to a maximum speed of 250 km/h, at special customer demand up to 300 km/h (155 or 186 mph)
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SL 73 AMG, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL 73 AMG, 129 series. Still today, the 7.3 liter AMG V 12 engine impresses with the sheer power of 386 kW/525 hp. The AMG high power engine is a detailed basic modification of the 290 kW/394 hp engine M 120 out of the SL 600 as well as the transmission. A stroke of 80.2 millimeters, a cylinder bore of 92.4 millimeters delivers a considerable volume of 7,291 cubic centimeters. It develops an enormous torque of 750 Newtonmeters at 4000 revs/min. Throughout the entire speed range, more than 600 Newtonmeters are at avail.
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SL 73 AMG, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL 73 AMG, 129 series. In 1999, AMG presents the most powerful of its road vehicles up to this time with 386 kW/525 hp performance and 7,3 liters total displacement to be the unrivalled leader in the exclusive segment of open super sports cars. The SL 73 AMG accelerates in 4.8 seconds to 100 km/h (62 mph) and to a maximum speed of 250 km/h, at special customer demand up to 300 km/h (155 or 186 mph)
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SL 73 AMG, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL 73 AMG, 129 series. Still today, the 7.3 liter AMG V 12 engine impresses with the sheer power of 386 kW/525 hp. The AMG high power engine is a detailed basic modification of the 290 kW/394 hp engine M 120 out of the SL 600 as well as the transmission. A stroke of 80.2 millimeters, a cylinder bore of 92.4 millimeters delivers a considerable volume of 7,291 cubic centimeters. It develops an enormous torque of 750 Newtonmeters at 4000 revs/min. Throughout the entire speed range, more than 600 Newtonmeters are at avail.
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SL 73 AMG, Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL „Edition“, 129 series. In 2000, an "Edition" appears in 708 units, available as SL 320 and SL 500. Paintwork is done in designo Mystic Blue metallic, upholstery leather Nappa Black
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SL "Edition", Roadster - R 129
Mercedes-Benz SL „Edition“, 129 series. In 2000, an "Edition" appears in 708 units, available as SL 320 and SL 500. Paintwork is done in designo Mystic Blue metallic, upholstery leather Nappa Black
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SL "Edition", Roadster - R 129
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