2004 Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class

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$39,600

starting MSRP

2004 Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class

Key specs

Base trim shown

View all 2004 Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class specs

Overview

The good:

  • Handling and maneuverability
  • Performance of the AMG model
  • Retractable-top operation
  • Passenger space

The bad:

  • Ride comfort on rough surfaces
  • Minimal cargo space
  • Final year in this form

3 trims

Starting msrp listed lowest to highest price

Wondering which trim is right for you?

Our 2004 Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class trim comparison will help you decide.

Notable features

  • Four-cylinder and V-6 engines
  • Manual or automatic
  • Retractable metal roof
  • High-performance AMG model

2004 Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class review: Our expert's take

Vehicle Overview
A Special Edition of Mercedes-Benz’s lower-priced retractable-hardtop convertible has joined the lineup for 2004. Equipped with polished 17-inch wheels, the Special Edition SLK-Class roadster features a painted grille, a rear spoiler, special sport seats and Nappa leather-covered roll bars.

A high-performance SLK32 AMG version contains a 349-horsepower supercharged V-6 engine, racing-derived brakes and AMG’s SpeedShift five-speed-automatic transmission. A Sport Package inspired by the SLK32 AMG is available for regular SLK-Class models. Redesigned SLK-Class models arrive in the 2005 model year.

Exterior
Mercedes-Benz’s smallest sports car features sculpted rocker panels and sits on a 94.5-inch wheelbase — that’s 5 inches longer than the Mazda Miata’s. Push a button and the articulating metal roof rises or retracts automatically in about 25 seconds. The trunk opens at the front to accept the roof or at the rear to reveal a small luggage compartment. The door mirrors feature integrated turn-signal flashers.

The SLK32 AMG gets a recalibrated, reinforced suspension with unique spring rates and shock-absorber valving. Twin-five-spoke, 17-inch alloy wheels on the SLK32 AMG hold P225/45ZR17 tires up front and P245/40ZR17 tires in the rear. A front air dam incorporates AMG fog lights.

Interior
Two occupants get leather bucket seats. Standard equipment includes dual-zone air conditioning, an interior air filter, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and a Bose cassette stereo. In addition to wood trim, the SLK320 has eight-way power seats and a telescoping steering wheel. Maximum cargo space is 9.5 cubic feet, but that space shrinks to 3.9 cubic feet when the top is down.

Sport seats in the SLK32 AMG are upholstered in Nappa leather and feature integrated headrests and what Mercedes-Benz calls “substantial” side bolsters. Leather trim and dark bird’s-eye maple are used.

Under the Hood
The hottest engine in the SLK-Class lineup is the supercharged 3.2-liter V-6 in the SLK32 AMG, which whips up 349 hp and 332 pounds-feet of torque. Mercedes-Benz claims the AMG SpeedShift five-speed-automatic transmission produces shifts that are up to 35 percent faster than those of a conventional automatic. Mercedes-Benz claims a 0-to-60-mph acceleration time of 4.8 seconds.

The supercharged 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine in the SLK230 Kompressor roadster is rated at 192 hp. Moving up to the SLK320 brings a 215-hp, 3.2-liter V-6. Both engines can team with a six-speed-manual gearbox or an optional five-speed automatic that incorporates TouchShift manual gear selection.

Safety
Side-impact airbags, all-disc antilock brakes, traction control and an Electronic Stability Program are standard. A BabySmart child seat-recognition system prevents the front-passenger airbag from deploying when a known child-safety seat is installed.

Driving Impressions
The SLK is agile and nimble and maneuvers like a traditional small sports car. With the 2.3-liter engine and an automatic transmission, acceleration is rather energetic, though well short of the big Benzes, and there’s little evidence of the supercharger’s operation. The SLK is a little less solid and a bit bouncier on the road than its larger cousins — but not by much. Space is quite plentiful for two people.

Consumer reviews

Rating breakdown (out of 5):
  • Comfort 4.3
  • Interior design 4.4
  • Performance 4.5
  • Value for the money 4.6
  • Exterior styling 4.8
  • Reliability 4.5

Most recent consumer reviews

3.7

2004 SLK 230 Mercedes-Benz..Best have deep pockets

Bought this car 4 weeks ago, and have spent over $1400 on parts...almost all of them used parts on eBay, to repair some relatively small problems. NOT a good car for people over 6 feet tall. VERY limited legroom. Even with the seat all the way back, I am 6 ft. 1 inch, and unless I sit straight up in the seat, my knees rub the bottom of the lower dash panel. The other thing is, even if you know how to work on cars, be prepared for VERY expensive parts, even used ones. Forget about buying parts from the dealer...example...rear view mirror is over $500. A complete brake job is $1200 - $1500 dollars...$200 if you do it yourself. You will also need a few special tools to do a LOT of work...even changing the spark plugs. If a major repair is needed (example...the power convertible hard top mechanism...which has 12 micro switches, 6 hydraulic cylinders, plus the main hydraulic pump/motor) is a $2000-$3000 repair unless you do it yourself, which is NOT an easy job...and its not IF it will eventually fail, it WILL eventually fail. Need a new engine or transmission? Try $6000-$8000 EACH. May as well throw the car the car away...mine has a book value of $3000-$4000. Love the car though, but it loves my credit card. Great styling, typical German handling and performance, the best. Good luck if you buy one. Get an extended warranty. They are kind of expensive, but worth it for a major repair job that you cant do yourself.

4.9

Bought a 2004 MB SLK AMG SE off a used car lot-

My daily driver is a Mustang convertible, but when I saw the MB for sale at a local used car dealer last fall, I couldn’t resist.I drove it on nice days, and it was fast and fun. I stuck it in my garage for the winter, but stuff happens. My daughters Camaro came off lease in January, and she couldn’t decide on a replacement. She begged to “borrow the MB, just for a week”, while she pondered which new car to get. The week stretched to over three months as she was having too much fun with the car. Finally, she returned it, as she bought a car. Did she get a new Camaro, no. A new Mustang, like her first car, no. She bought a 2015 SLK. I guess she liked the Benz.

4.9

Great car great ride

This ca drove like a true sports car. Hugged the road around curves, great execration, easy to maneuver in small places and most of all, it is fun to drive with the top down.

See all 13 consumer reviews

Warranty

New car and certified pre-owned programs by Mercedes-Benz
Certified pre-owned program benefits
Maximum age/mileage
6 years old or less/less than 75,000 miles
Basic warranty terms
1 year/unlimited miles
Powertrain
1 year/unlimited miles
Dealer certification required
164-point inspection
Roadside assistance
Yes
View all cpo program details

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