With it’s unique butterfly doors and carbon-fiber body, the rear-wheel drive, 2008 Mercedes Benz SLR McLaren Roadster is the result of a partnership between Mercedes Benz and McLaren cars. Modeled after its sister the SLR coupe, the two-seater Roadster comes in with a MSRP at almost a half a million dollars ($495,00 for base model), and can go from 0 to 60 in 3.8 seconds, with a top speed of 206 miles per hour.The 2008 Mercedes Benz SLR McLaren Roadster’s body is made exclusively of carbon-fiber over reinforced plastic. A powerful 5.5 liter supercharged, 24 valve, V-8 engine delivers 617 horsepower and 575 lb-ft of torque. Its transmission features an AMG Speed shift-R, which is a five-speed automatic transmission. Fuel efficiency is rated at 12 mpg in city driving conditions and 16 mpg in highway driving conditions.
Safety-wise, the 2008 Mercedes Benz SLR McLaren Roadster features front, side, and knee airbags, a tire pressure monitoring system, seat belt tensioners, steel A-pillars, and dual roll-bars. Braking is achieved with the use of carbon-ceramic disc brakes. While carbon was the primary choice selected because of its lighter weight properties and strength, two aluminum engine frames are used to house and support the AMG V-8 compressor engine.
On the exterior, the convertible, fabric roof opens and closes in ten seconds and is available in three colors. With the implementation of the convertible roof, one of the design goals was to allow passengers to converse with the top down at speeds of up to 120 miles per hour, thanks to the Roadster’s streamlined merging of aerodynamics and aeroacoustics. The front end comes to an arrow-shaped tip, which is attributed to the vehicle’s design characteristics modeled after the Formula 1 Silver Arrow. Interior features include leather bucket seats, air conditioning, a Bose sound system, steering wheel with gear-changing paddles, and a navigation system. The seats are customizable to the driver by the use of different size seating pads.
Upgradeable options include: black carbon-fiber interior trim, gold or red colored brake calipers, Sirius Satellite Radio, and upgraded 18 or 19 inch Alloy wheels. Upgrades are also sold as packages, where the most expensive package, the Silver Leather Nappa Interior, comes in with a price tag of $10,000. The 2008 Mercedes Benz SLR McLaren Roadster is manufactured at the McLaren Formula 1 Factory in England in conjunction with the Roadster’s partner, Mercedes Benz.