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Reliability SLK

Ask the People Who Own One:

2001 - 2018 Mercedes-Benz SLK
HogeDoty

Hi, I love this little convertible and am interested in a used. Any year 2000-2017, manual transmission.

Does anyone find this a reliable car?

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Response from LectroFuel

1:52 am July 20, 2018

Hi, neither TrueDelta nor Consumer Reports has reliability data for the SLK. Since it is a Mercedes, it will have much higher repair costs than the average car. I suggest either getting a CPO newer SLK with a warranty from a dealer or get a Miata 2016 or newer.

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Response from AcuraT

2:43 pm July 22, 2018

Lectrofuel is correct, this car is sold in such a small volume it has no reliablity ratings you can trust anywhere. However, the SLK is related to the S class (S in SLK) so there is some linkage to that to the sedan. It can give you an idea on reliablity (powertrain, electronics, brakes in particular).

From 2012 to 2016 Consumer Reports does have something on relablity for the S class.

2012 - average overall. Minor engine problems (secondary systems like water pump, power steering ,etc.), engine cooling, drive system, brakes and exhast are all below average. The rest of the components are above average or much agove average.
2013 - average overall. Suspension, body integrity, and power equipment are all well below average (the worst catagory). In car electronics are average. Everything else above average or much above average.
2014 - Redesign year. Suspension well below average. Everything else above average or well above average. Average overall but this is the best model year on record.
2015 - Well below average and a bad year. Climate control and suspension are average. Brakes are well below average as is power equpment. Everything else is above average or much above average.
2016 - Much above average overall as many issues seem to be worked out. Only in car electronics is well below average - everything else is much above average for the most part, with a few catagories above average.

Again, this gives you vague reference. Being a two door, body integrity is going to suffer (and score lower) just by the design. The mechanical parts above probably will hold true for it as well. Best of luck.

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Response from LectroFuel

6:24 pm July 22, 2018

Actually, the SLK was more related to the C-Class, IIRC. The SL was more of an S-Class.

I would look at what engine comes with the SLK, and then look at how reliable that engine is in other cars. For example, they may use the same engine as the previous generation C-Class. The later you get into the model year, the more reliable it should be. I'd look at SLK/Mercedes forums.

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Response from AcuraT

9:19 pm July 23, 2018

Lectrofuel is correct, the nomeclature I used apparently was only adopted in 2017 when the SLK was changed to the SLC (SL means apparentlySportlich Leicht (German for "Sport Lightweight")). Sorry for the wrong information.

C class car 2001 to 2018

2002 - Average overall. Minor Engine problems, minor transmision problems, body integrity problems, body hardware problems, power equipment problems, in car electroinc problems.
2003 - Average overall. Major engine problems, minor transmisson problems, climate system issues, suspension issues, power equipment concerns
2004 - Average overall . Minor transmission problems, fuel system problems, paint and trim issues, in car electronic issues
2005 - Above average overall (rare in Mercedes). Minor transmission issues, Climate system problems, in car electronic issues - but that is it.
2006 and 2007 - average overall, but they have a higher number of engine and transmission issues and other problems as well. I would avoid.
2008 - redesign year and surprisingly a good year - above average overall. Minor engine problems, paint and trim, power equipment, and in car electronics are problem areas.
2009 and 2010 - average overall. Problems with major engine, body intergrity, and power systems.
2011 - way above average overall. Just a problem with in car electronics - that is it. Best year of the bunch.
2012 and 2013 - average overall. Engine problems return, Power equipment problems, and body integrity issues.
2014 - Great year, way above average. No problems to report in Consumer Reports.
2015 and on - redesign in 2015 brought on a bunch of changes and major issues ranging from major engine problems, minor transmission issues, body integrity, power equipment, and in car electronic issues.

So best years are 2011 and 2014, and 2005 is not bad either and just a little worse is 2008. After that you probably take your chances. Again, this is the C class which Lectrofuel wisely corrected me on.

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