For 1999, the SL500 is powered by a new 5.0-liter version of the new-generation 4.3-liter V8.
Underneath the classic Mercedes Diamond Silver Metallic bonnet is a single overhead-cam engine that uses the Mercedes-Benz twin-spark, 3-valve-per-cylinder technology that reduces start-up emissions with no loss of horsepower. As a result, the V-8 produces a peak output of 302 horsepower at 5600 rpm and a torque plateau of 339 foot-pounds from 2700 rpm to 4250 rpm. It makes the SL500 more responsive across the board and, per manufacturer's tests, significantly reduces the 0-60 mph acceleration to 6.1 seconds. It's cleaner too, certified as a California Low Emissions Vehicle and, according to Mercedes, is 'performing at Ultra Low Emissions Vehicle levels.' One can indulge him or herself without plundering the environment. The Mercedes-Benz SL500 has presence. No matter the neighborhood, an SL is a sign of good taste. It is an expression of conspicuous consumption.