It was named after initials of three German words, "Sportlich (sporty)", "Leicht (light)" and "Kompact (compact)", which tell what this car is all about. The folding metal roof, called "Vario Roof", is fully automatic in its operation, when the driver merely presses a button on the console. The entire opening and closing process of the roof takes only 25 seconds. With this hi-tech mechanics, the Mercedes made it possible for the owner to enjoy the privileges of both a roadster and a coupe in one car.
Three sorts on engines are offered for the SLK, and among them, a 4 cylinder DOHC engine with displacement of 2.3 liter is top-of-the-line. Having a super charger, the output measures 193 horsepower and it is transmitted to the rear wheels via a 5-speed automatic transmission. The front suspension uses double wishbones while the Mercedes 5-arm multilink suspension is equipped at the rear for excellent road holding.
The SLK combines the exciting looks and driving pleasure which are a typical feature of open-top sportscars, with the technical perfection of the modern Mercedes car engineering.