Top Gear describe the new SLC as a shrunken SL – and that’s very good comparison. Driving around the countryside on a cold November morning, I feel warmly cocooned in a luxurious cabin that’s more comfortably than a Boxster but less agile and engaging too.
Sadly, by dumping the old V8 engine for a twin-turbo three-litre Mercedes has rather sucked the pleasure out of a potentially fun car. The folding hard-top makes it very usable as an all-year round two-seater but as a cruiser, not an out-and-out sports car.
Of course, that will make the Merc fit into many people’s lives perfectly well. They can choose from a range of frugal engines – including a diesel – costing considerably less than the AMG43 too.
But it does feel like Mercedes has missed a trick here with the new SLC. This revised model was a chance to leapfrog the Boxster and Audi TT with something ‘of the now’ rather than the past.
And that’s a shame because there should be an affordable Mercedes that makes the hairs on the back of your next stand up every time you drive it…