The 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC has a softer look front and rear, with reshaped headlights with LED running lights, and a new grille with a giant three-pointed star emblem at its center and a wide chrome horizontal bar. The grille now features a diamond-pattern inset as standard, and as standard is finished in black, while Sport Package models have chrome trim. Out back, Mercedes has slightly changed the curvature of the trunklid, reshaped the taillights, and endowed the car with a new chrome finisher strip connecting the exhaust tips. Wheel sizes range from 17 to 18 inches in diameter.
The car’s power-folding hardtop can now be opened or closed at speeds up to 25 mph. The separator that makes room for the hardtop to stow in the trunk now automatically moves into place or warns the driver if there is too much luggage to lower the roof. The roof can now be optioned with Magic Sky Control, Mercedes’ variable-tint sunroof system that allows for lightening or darkening the roof panel at the touch of a button.
Inside the cabin, the instrument cluster receives new black dials with red needles, more aluminum trim pieces, and carbon-fiber elements. There is also an updated Comand infotainment system with a 7-inch display (up from 5.8 inches in the old SLK) in the dashboard and a rotary controller on the center console. The leather seats have been restyled and the in-cabin ambient lighting also now illuminates the footwells.
Under the hood of the 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC300 is a 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-four engine rated for 241 hp and 273 lb-ft. With power sent to the rear wheels through a nine-speed automatic transmission, it should hit 60 mph in 5.7 seconds. That engine and transmission combination was already offered in the outgoing 2016 SLK-Class, but the V-6-powered SLK350 disappears.
Compared to the SLC300, the 2017 Mercedes-AMG SLC43 (pictured in black) also has more aggressive bodywork, AMG-specific 18-inch wheels, larger brakes, a flat-bottom leather-wrapped steering wheel, and new software that allows the nine-speed automatic to shift faster. The suspension has been redesigned for better feedback and reduced body roll, while new engine and differential mounts are said to improve the car’s “snappy and highly stable” driving demeanor.
Options for the SLC43 include a Handling package that includes a limited-slip differential, AMG Ride Control adaptive suspension, and a Night package that paints the splitter, diffuser, and exhaust black.
Pricing for the 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC will be announced closer to the roadster’s on-sale date in the spring.