Images and details of the upcoming 2012 SLS AMG Roadster got revealed today. The convertible SLS AMG Roadster is the second car to be developed independently by AMG. The Coupe and Roadster concepts were created in parallel. During this 3-year development period for the 2012 SLS AMG Roadster, the engineers devoted particular attention to bodyshell rigidity, driving dynamics, the soft top and NVH.
Currently undergoing testing in Stuttgart, the 2012 SLS AMG Roadsters are minimally disguised as they cover their test routes. Easily identified by enthusiasts, these two-seaters with a fabric soft top have no Mercedes stars or model designations to be seen, just black adhesive foil at the front, rear and along the sides. The proportions speak for themselves with a long hood, large wheels and a short rear unified by breathtaking design.
Without a fixed roof and gullwing doors, the convertible SLS AMG has a reinforcing cross-member behind the seats which supports the fixed rollover protection system. The 250-watt subwoofer of the Bang&Olufsen BeoSound AMG high-end sound system is located in the cross-member rather than the parcel shelf of the Coupe. One particular challenge was acoustic insulation of the cross-member, which acts as a subwoofer housing for the two 6.5-inch speakers connected in series. Numerous improvements became necessary before the required listening pleasure was met. It was only with the help of a special bulkhead within the aluminum cross-member that the system was deemed ready.
The three-layer fabric soft top of the SLS AMG Roadster, which is stored behind the seats in a Z-formation to save space, is also relevant to handling dynamics. This weight-optimized magnesium/steel/ aluminum construction provides a low center of gravity and is designed for speeds up to the maximum of 197 mph (electronically limited). Engineers stressed that whether open or closed, even at top speed there must be no intrusive flapping, booming, hissing, clattering, whistling or howling. Likewise the plexi-glass windstop and the paneling in the interior, on the soft top and along the beltline must be vibration-free. These precisely defined tests were conducted on the high-speed tracks in Papenburg, Nardo (Italy) and Idiada (Spain).
The superior acoustics, which AMG engineers verified with sophisticated measuring technology, also benefit from another special feature - the seamless, bonded-in rear window made of single-layer safety glass. A special production process not only provides a smooth transition between the outer skin of the soft top and the glass but also leads to low wind noise when the roof is closed – at any speed.
There are still six months to go before the world premiere at the International Automobile Show in Frankfurt in September 2011.