Seat Could Be Better - 2012 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Roadster Long-Term Road Test

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

2012 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG: Seat Could Be Better

January 24, 2013

2012 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG

At first I thought the driver seat in our long-term 2013 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Roadster was pretty decent. It has good adjustable side bolstering, heat, nice leather. After a half hour, I needed out.

It's the lower back support. Rather, the lack of lower back support. The problem seems to be related to the inflatable lumbar. Not only is the lumbar balloon in the middle of your back when inflated (the sitting-in-a-pregnant-lady's-lap sensation) when it needs to be much lower, it provides no discernible support when deflated, instead turning into flaccid mush.

When the seats in a sub-$25,000 car are better than those in a car nearly ten times the price, somebody's done something wrong.

Jason Kavanagh, Engineering Editor


  • fordson1 fordson1 Posts:

    If the lumbar support is in the wrong place, that's not good, but not providing any discernible support when deflated...? What's it supposed to do? I mean, it varies the support by inflating and deflating, and you deflated it. Traction control allows you to spin the tires when you turn it off, too - is that a design flaw?

  • firstshad0w firstshad0w Posts:

    Does the SLS have the seat bolster/lumbar adjustments on the side of the seat like the C63? I find the 2 lumbar adjustments in the C63 are rather too high up my back so I keep them deflated or slightly inflated... then again I'm only 5'7". I've had no trouble making long trips in these seats (longest trip was 11 hours straight, t'was comfortable).

  • mercedesfan mercedesfan Posts:

    Sufficient lower back support has long been a Mercedes weakness. They finally got it right on this generation S/CL and eventually on the C and E, but its adjustment is still too limited on most model lines to accommodate a wide variety of people. Still, compare the modern seats with the flat, hard seats of the '80's and '90's and you can see significant progress has been made.

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