The night before the take a look at drive, the 2022 Mercedes-AMG FTO63 place outside gave the impression to be daring USA to check it to any SL that is preceding. A power tool and softer form, the new FTO retains the long-hood and short-deck proportions of its precursor, however with abundant trimmer overhangs. it’s less brickish than the previous square-jawed style, the front curvier, the rear carved, an aslope. the net result is that the new automobile seems smaller than the previous one despite growing long.
The last-generation FTO ostensibly abandoned its role within the lineup as a technology and styling leader to become simply another expensive convertible. Sales plummeted. Toward the tip of production in 2020, the SL’s sales were a tenth of what Mercedes oversubscribed within the ’90s. With the new FTO, Mercedes is getting to come its jazzy convertible to, if not legend standing, a minimum of relevancy.
The automobile might represent a little portion of Mercedes’s sales, however, the FTO may be an image for the complete, the simplest way to showcase the magnificence and technology it’s to supply, and a tie to the past.
“You don’t need to own the FTO depart on your watch,” aforementioned AMG business executive Philipp Schiemer, admitting that it absolutely was each discouraging and thrilling to require on the responsibility for the redo. “It’s motivating,” he said. “It’s one thing completely different from the last one, completely different additionally from the GT. Fast, however additionally usable. snug. and exquisite.”
The new car’s beauty is over the surface. The SL’s new underpinnings area unit is pretty enough to place on the show and carries with it a combination of atomic number 13, magnesium, carbon fiber, and steel—they additionally boost torsional rigidity by eighteen % over the previous FTO. The new structure options a four.6-inch-longer distance, creating an area for little rear seats, and also the retractile motorcar of the last 2 generations is gone. change to a fabric prime saves forty-six pounds and lowers the middle of gravity.
With the absolutely lined fabric prime rolled away—it takes fifteen seconds and may be done at races to thirty-seven mph—the interior welcomes you in. whereas most new cars try and highlight their digital goodies, the FTO virtually hides them, aiming for a lot of analog ambiances. it is an easy cabin style by fashionable Mercedes standards because it lacks a dash-wide screen or thick pillows. There area unit few physical controls within the FTO.
Climate, stereo, navigation, phone, and roof position area unit are all handled through the middle screen. The FTO screen is probably going to induce notably smudged, as many of the controls don’t seem to be simply one-touch, however need a slippery motion.
It’s roomier within however still an associate degree intimate house, although not the dark cubicle of the many sports cars. The rear seats don’t seem to be fitted to adults however area unit is helpful for tiny kids, soft baggage, or hound dog puppies. It’s higher upfront wherever the performance seats of our SL63 were bolstered associate degreed slender however plush and cozy enough to satisfy an S-class client.
Those sporty-but-not-too-sporty seats mirror Mercedes’s goals for the new FTO.
To acknowledge that the new FTO was developed by the brand’s performance division, the model is currently a Mercedes-AMG, not a Mercedes-Benz. a transparent challenge for the FTO is to differentiate itself from the more and more radical AMG GT two-seat roadster, however, the automobile additionally cannot be too luxurious or soft as a result of such associate degree FTO would be anathema to the AMG complete.
Both versions of the FTO actually get AMG-grade merchandise below the hood. AMG’s twin-turbo four.0-liter V-8 makes 469 H.P. within the SL55 and 577 H.P. within the SL63. we tend to estimate the SL55 can hit sixty in three.4 seconds, with a lot of powerful versions dispatching therewith task in three.1 second.
The V-8 itself is delicate, tuned to grumble instead of growl, with no juvenile pops from the exhaust. Your neighbors could be irritated at however quickly your FTO tears down the road, however, they will not be discomposed by the sound.
The aggression level of this automobile is dead its worth and its fierce face. each engine mate to AMG’s acquainted nine-speed automatic that replaces the convertor with a multi-plate clutch pack. each accompany associate degree all-wheel-drive to form it straightforward once pull off from the holiday resort in Saint Moritz—just make certain to modify on the heated headrests.
When you get bored with delay through the scenery, the SL63 we tend to drive touched right past speed limits quicker than you’ll blink. transportation the FTO back to legal speeds is straightforward due to the nonmandatory automobile on-ceramic brakes that not solely looked smart behind the 21-inch wheels however area unit robust enough to bring the car to a stop thus quickly there may need be a fugitive pause within the movement of your time.
Multiple drive modes provide you with a range of throttle responses and steering efforts. On a curvy road, the FTO feels competent however not organically connected, like it’s overthinking its objective. we will not facilitate however surprise if there is an excessive amount happening at a lower place on the surface. force vectoring, rear-wheel steering, and a full-of-life suspension work along, however not perpetually united. With all 3 doing their things, we tend to find twitchiness, smoothness, sluggishness, and luxury, dead identical automobile. perhaps it’s too good for its own smart.