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MERCEDES-BENZ: A vision of the future

Top-less beauty: The SLR Roadster joins the hard-top version as the star of the Mercedes-Benz stand.

Mercedes-Benz SLR supercar confirmed for production with McLaren

14 Sep 1999

THE main attraction at the Mercedes-Benz stand at the Frankfurt motor show is the awesome Vision SLR Roadster in virtual production form - at least three years before the first one rolls out of the new McLaren factory in England.

The Roadster has a retractable hardtop which folds away neatly behind the front seats to reveal twin protective roll hoops. With the roof up, it looks just like the SLR Coupe which was officially revealed only two months ago.

Both cars are powered by a twin supercharged, 5.4-litre aluminium V8 producing a whopping 410kW (557bhp) of power and an unbelievable 720Nm (531lb/ft) of torque - enough to catapult the lightweight machine from 0-100km/h in just 4.2 seconds.

Top speed is listed as 320km/h.

Carbon-fibre and aluminium are used in the construction of the chassis and bodywork while fibre-reinforced ceramic brake discs are used for the first time. Even the seats are made from carbon-fibre.

Among the high-tech systems incorporated into the Vision SLR Roadster is an electro-hydraulic Sensortronic Brake System (SBS) which uses the sensors of ABS (anti-lock brake system) and ESP (Electronic Stability Program) to apply different amounts of brake pressure to each wheel according to the road conditions.

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