Summer Of The Roadster: Mercedes SLK by Kleemann
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Kleemann 55K S8 - The Danish Roadster Rocket

When it comes to uncompromising 'open-air' driving machines, this one can be left out though it's actually a fashionable cabrio-coupe. But as Kleeman has it comprehensively modified, that SLK meets all standards of purebred roadsters in spite of a few avoidable kilos caused by some luxury features. Nonetheless, the engine manages accelerating aircon, power windows, retractable hardtop, satnav - as well as the necessary parts of the car - in under 4seconds to 100kmh. Claimed power of 438Kw makes it comprehensible. And it gets even clearer when mentioning that multiplying this with 1.36 makes 596. Experts know: that's the horsepower rate.

Another point is whether the Danish monster Benz is really capable to live up to what the tuner states!? The Scandinavians are considerably convinced of it and, we also were invited to check it out. Since our budget had already been planed to be used on test drives in Germany - after last year's trip to the tuner - we had to reject the invitation - to our deepest regret. But the editors of the German magazine 'Powercar' did so and came back without the faintest doubt about the Kleemann Mercedes' talents, reporting on 'breathtaking propulsion under full throttle' that truly has 'nothing to do with harmony' although the car is well-rounded and 'working problem-free in everyday use'.

That was put down to extensive technical measures: 'as through-going as offered by no-one else so far', as it was remarked in the article. Not only the Danes fall back on their own Lysholm supercharger including intercooler and adaptations of the motor and its control programme, also a complete high-performance exhaust system is used to make 'the ESP warning light flashing up nervously' on country roads - which eventually is no wonder in view of the immense performance. An issue that's coming up when it comes to Kleemann cars is durability.

Considering the extreme level of tuning, questions may be said appropriate. But everybody is invited to enter the words 'Kleemann', 'engine' and 'problems' in search engines to observe the concern. And, limits seem to be known, which is why the Danish SLK is governed - to 300kmh. In addition, the tuner uses its own differential lock to enhance grip in corners. Doubtlessly a further hint to how much attention is paid to making the car as perfect as possible. Despite of all weight-adding gadgets that still could be thrown out to make it a 'less perfect' car but a 'more perfect' roadster. Right, 'perfect' indicates the ideal state. Correspondingly, there's no comparative of it in semantic, but in reality, even perfection is relative. More info at:

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Soon To Come:
We [ sadly have to ]
say goodbye to two
purebred roadsters

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