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Mercedes SL review (R231, 2011-2020) – MPG and running costs

Surprisingly good fun, particularly in AMG trim, the SL is a roadster of broad talents

Evo rating
Price
from £73,810
  • Luxurious and relaxing but still fun to drive
  • Weight takes its toll on the brakes

No SL is particularly parsimonious as you’d expect, but the SL 400 sips the least fuel with a 36.7mpg combined figure and corresponding 175g/km of CO2. For a V8, the SL 500’s 31.4mpg combined is still fairly impressive (and better still, attainable - we managed similar figures cruising at typical UK motorway speeds) while you’ll drop to 28mpg and 23.7mpg combined for the SL 63 and SL 65 respectively.

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Make use of each car’s performance while simultaneously minimising the input of traction and stability systems, and you can expect to work through rear tyres at a decent pace - all models use 255/35 R19s up front and 285/30 R19s at the rear, though 20in wheels are available on the AMGs. If our initial drives are anything to go by, you may chew through brakes fairly quickly too.

The fuel consumption figures will dictate relatively high BIK and VED rates for certain users too, though at this point in the market that’s not as much of an issue as it might be lower down the Mercedes pecking order.

 

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