If you already own a Mercedes-Benz SL and you’re not too impressed by the 2013 SL-Class, which was unveiled last week at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show, we have a solution for you that will make your neighbors envy you. Veilside, a well-known Japanese tuning company, revealed last weekend at the 2012 Tokyo Auto Salon its vision of the Mercedes-Benz SL.
Honestly, we are surprised by the results as the vehicle looks like a SL65 AMG Black Series, featuring a new custom body kit consisting of a new front bumper, a new hood, enlarged front and rear fenders, side skirts, a rear trunk spoiler but also a new rear bumper with new air inlets and a custom carbon fiber air diffuser and exhaust system.
The new tuning programme for the Mercedes-Benz SL is called Black Fortune, don’t know why, because we’d say that Yellow Fortune was a better name.
The good news is that this custom SL retains its folding roof mechanism, which means you can transform it into a convertible at the push of a button. This is an advantage comparing it with the SL65 AMG Black Series, as that model was offered only as a coupe. Regarding the price of the Veilside Black Fortune, you will find a $30,000 sticker but also a limited edition of just 300 units.
Mercedes-Benz revealed that it will be releasing a new SL-Class which will be the sixth generation for this model range. First unveiled as a racing car in 1952, the new model continues the SL’s proud tradition as it enters a new era having refined and athletic aesthetics while being a pioneering trendsetter and offering a package with a high utility value.
In addition, this new offering is expected to reinvigorate the “SL” lettering which stands for super light. The company made this possible by utilizing a systematic reduction in the weight. For the first time ever on a series production vehicle, the brand built a bodyshell made entirely of aluminum.
Thus when compared to a bodyshell made purely of sheet metal, the new bodyshell is lighter by 110 kilograms. Despite weighing less, the new SL-Class, when compared to the previous generation, is both more rigid and even safer.
Even if by ensuring comfort and putting in a number of safety devices meant that some of the weight that was saved would be used, the overall figures continue to be impressive. The new SL500 for example weighs 1,785 kilograms, which makes it lighter by as much 125 kilograms. The SL350, fitted with a number of details aimed at lowering the weight in addition to having the bodyshell in aluminum, is lighter by 140 kilograms at 1,685 kilograms.
Indeed, the overall weight was reduced by also using an intelligent mix of materials composed of aluminum and aluminum alloy parts. All of these were made in order to meet their respective needs and as a plus factor, some have been combined with magnesium and high-strength steel.
However these figures not only look good on paper but in practical application as well. Since the lateral and longitudinal dynamics were increased, it resulted in excellent performance especially when cornering. In terms of engine, the SL350 will be fitted with the BlueDIRECT V6 engine with output at 306 hp (225 kW). Meanwhile the SL500 will have the BlueDIRECT V8 engine having an output of 435 hp (320 kW). Both figures reveal an increase of 12% when compared to the models before it.