1998 Mercedes-Benz SLK 230 Kompressor
A great roadster, very well balanced, fun to drive
The paint peels off the interior surfaces.
Tail light recall, no problem since.
Headliner sagged, and had to be replaced.
The valve cover has some kind of corrosion that my mechanic says is harmless, but it looks bad, and he said there's no easy way to fix it.
This is a very well balanced car.
It is solidly built -- I have had no maintenance issues to speak of.
When it is thoroughly warmed up, it feels as smooth as an electric car. Very refined feel.
Not a speed demon, but faster than it seems. If you shift the automatic down to 3 or even 2 in slow urban traffic and keep the revs up, the supercharger is always on tap, and the car is very darty and responsive.
Going from 60 to 110 seems to take no time at all.
The car likes high speeds. Very stable and balanced at well over 100 mph.
The seats lack lumbar support, and are uncomfortable for any trip over an hour.
Gas mileage (premium only) varies. If you drive it hard through the mountains, downshifting and really laying into it, 17 MPG. Normal city driving, about 23 MPG. Gentle highway driving in fifth gear with cruise control, maybe over 30.
It feels remarkably massive for such a small car, but it handles well and predictably in fast mountain driving.
It is a classic, unadorned, fuselage-like design that will age well.
The retractable hardtop alone makes the car worth owning.
When the top is down, there is very little trunk space.
There are some things that can go wrong with the car that are very expensive to fix.
Having a good Mercedes mechanic you trust makes life much easier (and cheaper).
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 20th October, 2012