2012 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Roadster Long-Term Road Test


2012 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Roadster: Life-Saving Brakes

July 11, 2013

2012 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Roadster

In high school, I watched a video in Driver Ed class that I'm sure most of you have seen. All the clothes were at least 15 years out of date and I mostly remember making fun of bad acting with my classmates. This weekend while driving our 2012 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Roadster, I remembered a very specific scene from the video.

A ball bounces out into the street, and naturally, a child runs after it without looking. They were probably trying to teach us a lesson that involved staying alert and obeying speed limits in neighborhoods. Apparently, it worked.

I was cruising at about 33 mph in a business zone with a posted speed limit of 35 mph and a basketball bounced out in front of the car. I slammed on the brakes, screeched to a halt, hitting the ball with the nose of the SLS, sending it a few yards down the road. The frightened child chasing after the ball looked up from his pursuit when he heard the screeching tires.

After the initial shock wore off, I moved forward, rolled down the window, and asked the 6-or-7-year-old where his parents were.

"Inside," he responded shyly. I decided to keep my instructions to the pre-youth 'PG' Rated.

"Hey buddy, go ask one of them to watch you while you're playing outside, OK? And look both ways before you cross the street," I said.

I drove off slowly, confident that this would be a very different story without the optional $12,500 AMG Carbon Ceramic Braking system. Worth every penny.

Travis Langness, Associate Editor

Most Recommended Comments

By fordson1
on 07/11/13
8:14 AM PST

Those brakes are an upgrade mostly for heat-resistance purposes in a track-day setting. I doubt very much that their cold-brake panic stop from 33 mph performance is any better than the stock brakes. In fact, most road tests show that in this scenario (initial stop, cold brakes), most metal rotors do better than carbon-ceramic. Unnecessary drama.

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By tlangness
on 07/11/13
1:28 PM PST

@fordson While I understand your skepticism, the numbers just aren't on your side. A few months back we tested our SLS side-by-side with the New AMG GT. At 60mph, the carbon brakes (partially because they're lighter, therefore making the car lighter) stopped the SLS 7 feet shorter. At 30mph, it was a foot shorter. While that may not seem like much, I can tell you without hyperbole or exaggeration that I was within less than 3 feet of hitting that child. The link to our test: http://www.edmunds.com/car-reviews/track-tests/2013-mercedes-benz-sls-amg-gt-roadster-track-test.html

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By unionbuster
on 07/11/13
12:03 PM PST

Teach your children not to play in the street. If you don't, my only concern is the dent your kid's going to leave in my front bumper.

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