New compact roadster features improved handling over the previous generation and a less-noisy open cabin.

Mercedes-Benz has rolled out the 2012 SLK roadster onto the floor at the Geneva auto salon this week.

This third-generation of the SLK features many of the cues from Mercedes-Benz's current design language, including the more bullish, upright grill and bonnet lines that reference the SLS.

The SLK is a convertible featuring a vario-roof with Magic Sky Control which can vary the tint of the panoramic folding hard-top roof between brighter and darker.

Engine options include a 3.5 liter V6 for the SLK350 with an output of 306 PS (225 kW / 302 bhp) and a 1.8 liter turbocharged unit producing 201 PS (148 kW).

Ride is improved over the previous generation by means of firmer springs and dampers and torque-vectoring brakes. Comfort for the driver and passenger is aided by the Airguide windstop system which elminates noise and controls air flow in the cabin when the top is down.

The Mercedes-Benz SLK roadster is already available for order in Germany and will make it to dealer showrooms in the United States this summer.

Prices in Germany begin at, VAT included, as follows:

SLK 200 BlueEFFICIENCY: €38,675
SLK 250 BlueEFFICIENCY: €44,256.10
SLK 350 BlueEFFICIENCY: €52,300.50.


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