Just as the Mercedes-Benz McLaren SLR inspired the current SLK's design lines, the SLS AMG will do the same for the next SLK. From these new spy pictures of a prototype it seems the upcoming SL follows suit. Although still hidden under thick black camouflage the front end looks similar to the previously-spied SLK.

Rough styling comparisons between the incumbent and this replacement show the next car sits lower and has a wider body. Mercedes-Benz will adopt lighter body construction materials such as aluminium to help keep weight down. The exterior will have LED lights at the front and rear while the xenon/ bi-xenon headlights will carry corner illumination technology.

The interior is said to closely resemble that of the SLS AMG and the next-generation CLS-Class. It will feature comfort creatures like Bluetooth connectivity, USB ports, an updated COMAND system, seats with electronically-adjustable lumbar support and a 7-speed dual-clutch gearbox.

Expected engines include the current 285kW (387hp) 5.5-litre V8 and the rumoured 4.0-litre twin turbo V8 with over 400kW (544hp).

The new SL will start selling in 2012 as a 2013 model and join other Mercedes-Benz sports cars like the SLK, the E-Class Coupe, the upcoming S-Class Coupe, the SLS AMG and the whispered C-Class Coupe.

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