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  #1  
Old 01-29-2008, 08:36 AM
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 4
Default SL600 Performance vs SL500

I currently have a 95 SL500, and am in the middle of changing it for a 96 SL600. However, given the reasonably largeHP & Torque differences (even per ton)I find it hard to believe the offical MB performance figuresshowing only a 0.2 sec 0-60 difference. I know MB have a habit of underquoting performance numbers when it suits them & theSL600 feltsignificantly faster thanboth my SL500 & a 97 SL500 I had tested as well.

Despite search the net I have only ever managed to find MB performancenumbers rather than actual data from aroadtest. Does anyone have real world experience of the performance difference between these cars or actual numbers from a magazine roadtest?

Before I get 'flamed' on the risk I am taking moving to a 600, I do know, but I just loved the power of the V12!

Thanks,
Bill Flannigan
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  #2  
Old 01-29-2008, 02:15 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 41
Default RE: SL600 Performance vs SL500

I've owed both, and currently have an SL600- the performance is much better on the 600. I switched out the chips to a Rennetech set and it gave hugh hp from idle up, rather than the slower response from the factory chipset. You should realise that the increased performance has it's price in much higher maint costs. I have owned SLs since 1974, and currently have ML and SLs so I am used to dealer's inflated ideas about maint costs, but the SL600 is in a whole new ballpark- about 10k per year. My V8 models were never this costly, and consistently high year after year. Speed costs money- how fast do you want to spend?
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  #3  
Old 01-29-2008, 03:43 PM
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 4
Default RE: SL600 Performance vs SL500

Thanks for the input. I was planning to switch the chipset as well. I wasthinking about the Australian Powerchips set, but I will also have a look at the Rennetech ones.

As far as the costs are concerned - the 500 was pretty good to me, which encouraged me to take a chance on the 600. I'll just have to see how bad it gets!
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  #4  
Old 01-29-2008, 06:17 PM
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 6
Default RE: SL600 Performance vs SL500

What exactly is so much more costly about owning a 600 vs. a 500? I see comments like that and don't really understand it myself.

Except for the $150 or so in increased service charges at the dealer for the A,B,C,etc. services, which only reflect the cost of having more spark plugs, wires, oil, etc. to replace periodically, and except for the cost of maintaining the hydraulic suspension system, the cars are virtually identical in maintenance costs.

When you get into any *real* parts on the engine, a V12 head gasket might cost $40 instead of $20 for the V8, valve cover gaskets might be a couple bucks more, etc., but the labor costs are going to be similar, so the end result is going to wind up being almost exactly the same. What's more, most of the ancillary parts that normally fail, like the starter, water pump, fuel pump, radiator, hydraulic top system, etc. are either identical between the models or are similar in cost, and as before the labor is going to be virtually identical. Ditto for the electronics.

In my experience, the V12 doesn't break any more often than the V8s, and given the small nature of the difference between the cost of parts, I personally can't see how maintaining a V12 R129 could cost any more than maintaining a V8 version in the same condition and with the same amount of mileage, and certainly not $10k a year.

What exactly have you done that cost $10k in one year? Also, what year is your car and how many miles does it have? I would virtually guarantee that the problems you have addressed with that $10k have been issues that are common to all 129 models and not just the V12.




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  #5  
Old 01-29-2008, 06:47 PM
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 6
Default RE: SL600 Performance vs SL500

And to answer the OP, the performance difference between the 500 and the 600 is definitely noticeable. Once the 600 gets moving it REALLY gets moving. From a roll, you will keep up with M3s, a good number of corvettes, and some other real performance cars. Don't try anything off the line, though, thanks to the bloated 4500lb curb weight. You will either sit and spin the tires, or just outright lose out to the lighter car. The car can be lethal when it wants to be, but only once it's already moving. The really noticeable difference is between the 600 and the post-'99 500. That feels like a big one to me. The difference between the '95-'98 500 and the 600 is not nearly as big as you would think it would be. The 500 engines (especially the pre-99) are works of art in their own right, and are no slouches at all. I would probably be happy with either one, and know for a fact that I would be happier with a 500 when I'm at the gas pump. At that point, I actually yearn for a 320.

As to the statistics, I personally don't believe the 0-60 numbers put out by mercedes either, for the 500s or the 600s. I have personally got my dad's '98 500 to 60 quicker than 6.2 seconds...all it takes is traction switched off, decent tires, and power braking to right around 2200rpm or so before release, and you'll be there in the mid 5's on a GPS datalogger. I haven't really experimented on my '01 600 yet, because I have to pay for those $300 apiece Pilot-Sports myself, which only last 10k miles anyway. Replacing those even once really puts the kybosh on your desire to try and launch the car, at least for me anyway. Actually, off-topic, but what do you guys recommend for tires? The michelins are ok, but I would LOVE something that lasts a bit (ok, a lot) longer...

I also don't believe the factory power-rating on the 2001/2002 V12s, which have an updated camshaft setup and more valves compared to the original '93-'00. Those changes would absolutely have to yield more power, but Mercedes never updated the 389bhp rating, which has remained unchanged since 1993. In addition, the car just feels like more than 389hp to me, and I have had a lot of cars of varying types and hp. I haven't dyno'd, but when I do get around to it I would expect the real power at the crank to be somewhere around 420-440.

IME, the 600 is a better performer. Also, IME the maintenance costs are similar...as with anything, it will all boil down to the condition, age, service/ownership history, and mileage of the particular vehicle you buy. Don't cheap out on the sticker, since you're just going to pay for it at the repair shop later. Also, with the 600, you really do notice the V12 at the gas pump.


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  #6  
Old 01-30-2008, 12:35 AM
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 4
Default RE: SL600 Performance vs SL500

I checked with my local tame indie merc garage & they quoted my a small premium over the 500 for a service (about 20%), which didn't scare me. My main concerns were potential issues, as highlighted in the forum,with the self levelling & the transmissionhandling the extra power. But then if I had paid too much attention to the scare stories hereI probably would have skipped on the SL500 as well. The car has around 50K miles and a full MB service history so hopefully I won't have too much unplanned work on it.

As far as tyres are concerned, I used to run my 911 Turbo (88 model) on top of the range Toyo's (can't remember the model) and was very happy with them, both on the road and on Porsche club track days. Here in South Africa they are about half the price of other high performance brands, so I thought I would try them first change. It's coming with a new set of Pilot's anyway!

The specialist dealer I'm buying from has recommended 'fixing' the exhaust. He had one done a couple of years ago & said it sounded unbelievable and was a must do! Any thoughts. I always felt that the V8 in the 500 would sound great if the exhaust was opened up a little. Nothing extreme, just a bit louder under full throttle.
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  #7  
Old 02-02-2008, 03:06 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 41
Default RE: SL600 Performance vs SL500

I have always had all my MBs serviced at the local dealer. Over the last four years I have spent between 10 and 12K a year for repairs. These have included the usual stuff I have had to pay for my sl500 and ML 320, which amounts to about 3-4k per year. The sl600 has needed a new wiring harness for the fuel injection system that they said showed a short, 5k, new ECU boxes for $6k, head job when they said the heads were warped, new radiator when it exploded in the first 5 miles when I purchased it, numerours sensors replaced about 1500-2000, transmission repairs when it started slipping 3500,, then repeated the next year for 4k, replaced air volume boxes 3k, new Michleins after a year 1800, and about 4 attempts to find a problem in the auto ride control system, most recedntly it just won't start or turn over and error lights for the seat belt tensioner, radio, and some other system. Oh also the top control computer and window motors, and a new rear view after somebody at the dealership must have tried to adjust it by hand and broke the gears in the motor ( that mirror alone was 1k) since the seat and mirror were moved back when I picked it up from repairs.
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  #8  
Old 02-02-2008, 03:14 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 41
Default RE: SL600 Performance vs SL500

Oh, also the car only has 55k miles on it and most year I only put about 5k miles on it as I have a number of MBs to pick from. Right now it's in the garage till I decide what to do about it. I am always startled when someone doubts cost quoted when I'm the one laying out the cash, not them. I have no reason to exagerate costs, it just hurt my chances when trying to sell it. I love the car and can't think of another I want to replace it with, which is why I keep fixing it instead of cutting losses and getting something else.
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  #9  
Old 02-02-2008, 06:23 AM
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 4
Default RE: SL600 Performance vs SL500

I think if I have half the bad luck you've had I'll give up and move back to 911's!

Anyway I'm still hoping the experience isn't as painful as yours. Managed to find some performance graphs for the SL600 vs the SL60, showing the 60 faster initially, but the 600 catches up and is fasterabove 100 (not that much in it either way). For interests sake they were showing a mid 5sec time to 60 for the SL600 & low 5's for the SL60.

For anybody that's interested here a pic of the car on the dealers floor.


[IMG]local://upfiles/22632/EE95339E8D684FC8ADC74D453EA160E3.jpg[/IMG]
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  #10  
Old 01-09-2013, 02:43 PM
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 2
Default They saw you coming

Quote:
Originally Posted by flyfishingbear View Post
I have always had all my MBs serviced at the local dealer. Over the last four years I have spent between 10 and 12K a year for repairs. These have included the usual stuff I have had to pay for my sl500 and ML 320, which amounts to about 3-4k per year. The sl600 has needed a new wiring harness for the fuel injection system that they said showed a short, 5k, new ECU boxes for $6k, head job when they said the heads were warped, new radiator when it exploded in the first 5 miles when I purchased it, numerours sensors replaced about 1500-2000, transmission repairs when it started slipping 3500,, then repeated the next year for 4k, replaced air volume boxes 3k, new Michleins after a year 1800, and about 4 attempts to find a problem in the auto ride control system, most recedntly it just won't start or turn over and error lights for the seat belt tensioner, radio, and some other system. Oh also the top control computer and window motors, and a new rear view after somebody at the dealership must have tried to adjust it by hand and broke the gears in the motor ( that mirror alone was 1k) since the seat and mirror were moved back when I picked it up from repairs.


You need to find another dealer.
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Old 01-09-2013, 02:43 PM
 
 
 
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060, 2000, 2007, 600, change, difference, forum, jump, mercedes, model, performance, plugs, sl, sl500, sl600, spark, start, v12, year


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