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2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC-Class Review

The 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC ranks in the top half of its class, thanks in part to an above-average predicted reliability rating and low ownership costs for the class. The SLC also has  sharp handling and a well-built interior.

Pros & Cons

  • High predicted reliability rating
  • Modern, intuitive features
  • Low ownership costs for class
  • Base engine feels a little underpowered




Critics' Rating: 8.5
Performance: 8.2
Interior: 8.1
Total Cost of Ownership: 7.4
This model has never been fully tested for safety. Its overall score is being calculated without safety.
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC-Class Overview

Is the 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC a Good Used Car?

The Mercedes SLC holds its own as a sensible, well-rounded choice in the competitive luxury sports car segment. It can't match the world-class performance of many rivals, but its powerful available engine and dialed-in handling make this a great luxury cruiser. It also delivers good gas mileage and boasts an upscale cabin with plenty of user-friendly technology.

Why You Can Trust Us

We’ve researched 32 Mercedes-Benz SLC reviews, as well as hard data points like reliability scores and cost of ownership estimates, to help you make the best car-buying decision possible.

U.S. News & World Report has been ranking cars since 2007, and our team has more than 75 years of automotive industry experience combined. While we’re passionate about cars, we’re even more committed to providing helpful consumer advice. To ensure our reviews remain impartial, we refuse expensive gifts and trips from car companies, and an outside team handles the advertising on our site.

How Much Is the 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC?

Prices for the 2017 SLC range from about $35,000 to about $62,000. This data comes from listings for the 2017 SLC on our site. Actual prices fluctuate depending on the vehicle's features, mileage, condition, and location.

See the Best Used Car Deals »

How Much Does the 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC Cost to Own?

The 2017 SLC tends to be more affordable than many of its competitors when it comes to gas, insurance, repair, and maintenance costs. You can expect to pay around $35,600 over five years for these expenses. In comparison, a 2017 Jaguar F-Type’s five-year costs are typically around $2,400 higher than the SLC’s, while the 2017 Mercedes-Benz SL’s costs are about $13,000 higher.

Is It Better to Buy a Used or New SLC?

Mercedes-Benz made no major changes to the SLC for 2018. You may want to consider buying a used model instead of a new one, especially if you want to save some money. The 2018 Mercedes-Benz SLC starts at over $48,000, and prices of 2017 SLCs are thousands of dollars less than that.

Read about the new Mercedes-Benz SLC »

The least expensive new luxury sports car is the 2018 Audi TT, which starts at just under $44,000. Depending on the prices you find for a 2017 SLC, a new TT may be worth considering. It's available as a four-seat coupe or a two-seat roadster, and all models come with all-wheel drive. The TT's cabin is full of luxurious materials, and you can access most infotainment features through Audi's Virtual Cockpit high-tech digital instrument display.

If you're looking for a two-seat convertible that’s fun to drive, consider the 2018 Mazda MX-5 Miata. Although it's not a luxury vehicle like the SLC, you can spend a little over $30,000 and get a fully loaded model with leather upholstery, heated seats, a Bose stereo, navigation, and several driver assistance features. The Miata is available in a classic soft-top version or a hardtop targa RF model.

See the Best New Car Deals »

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Which Model Year of the Mercedes-Benz SLC Is Best?

The 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC is a renamed and heavily updated successor to the SLK, which was last offered for the 2016 model year. The new model brought widespread design changes both inside and out. The 2017 SLC added new features like Dynamic Select drive mode, standard Active Brake Assist, a larger infotainment screen, and available Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Both the outgoing SLK and the new SLC feature the same 241-horsepower base engine, but their available powertrains are different. The SLK can have either a 302-horsepower V6 or a 415-horsepower V8, while the SLC is available with a 362-horsepower twin-turbocharged V6.

If none of the major changes are important to you, you can likely save thousands of dollars and still get an excellent car by going with a 2016 (or older) SLK. Also note that the SLK was available with a manual transmission until the 2015 model year.

Compare the 2015 SLK, 2016 SLK, and 2017 SLC »

How Reliable Is the 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC?

The 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC has an above-average predicted reliability rating of four out of five from J.D. Power.

Read more about SLC reliability »

2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC Recalls

At the time of this writing, there is one open recall that applies to the 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC. When the brakes are applied over long periods of driving, they can heat up and reduce performance, increasing the risk of a crash and fire. Before buying a 2017 SLC, make sure this recall has been addressed by a Mercedes-Benz dealer.

See more information on Mercedes-Benz SLC safety recalls »

Which Used Mercedes-Benz SLC Model Is Right for Me?

The 2017 Mercedes SLC is available in two trims: the base SLC 300 and the performance-oriented AMG SLC 43. Of the two, the AMG SLC 43 is more fun to drive because of its significantly stronger engine. The list of standard and available features is pretty much the same between the two models, so you'll have to weigh the increase in engine power against the higher prices you'll likely see for the AMG models.

See 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC trims and specs »

What Does Mercedes-Benz's Certified Pre-Owned Warranty Cover?

Mercedes-Benz offers a certified pre-owned program for vehicles six years old or less and with fewer than 75,000 miles. Eligibility is determined by the vehicle’s initial sale date. Mercedes-Benz certified pre-owned vehicles come with the balance of the original four-year/50,000-mile new-car warranty, plus an additional one-year/unlimited-mileage warranty. This warranty can be renewed for a fee. If the new-car warranty has expired, you’ll receive the one-year warranty with unlimited mileage. Every Mercedes-Benz CPO vehicle must pass a 165-point inspection.

If you’re unsatisfied with your CPO vehicle, Mercedes’ Exchange Privilege program allows you to exchange it for another CPO vehicle of equal or lesser value within seven days or 500 miles. Additional benefits like towing and 24-hour roadside assistance may be available, so read the Mercedes-Benz warranty page carefully.

Among luxury car manufacturers, Mercedes-Benz’s CPO program is about average. It’s better than BMW’s but not as robust as Jaguar’s or Lexus’, according to our analysis.

See the best CPO programs »

How Safe Is the SLC?

Like many luxury or sports cars, the 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC did not undergo any crash testing. Standard driver assistance features include a rearview camera, a driver drowsiness monitor, forward collision warning, and automatic emergency braking. Available safety features include blind spot monitoring, lane keep assist, adaptive cruise control, and parallel park assist.

See SLC safety scores »

2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC or 2017 Jaguar F-Type?

The 2017 Jaguar F-Type has better overall performance than the SLC. A standard 340-horsepower supercharged V6 engine gets the F-Type going quickly, and a manual transmission is available. An available supercharged V8 engine delivers a monstrous 575 horsepower. Both the F-Type and the SLC have sharp handling, but their rides can feel a little harsh over rough patches in the road. The SLC has a higher predicted reliability rating and lower ownership costs (including depreciation). You'll also get a more user-friendly infotainment system with the Mercedes. Unless you really want the Jag's stronger engine, the SLC is the better buy.

Which Is Better: 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC or 2017 Mercedes-Benz SL?

The 2017 Mercedes-Benz SL has stronger engines and a nicer interior than the SLC, but it's difficult to recommend because its average price and ownership costs are much higher. Both cars boast the same great predicted reliability rating. However, the SL has a little more passenger and cargo space, as well as a longer standard features list. The AMG SLC's engine is the base engine in the SL, and there are available V8 and V12 engines that churn out up to 621 horsepower in the SL. If you can afford it – both now and later – go with the SL. Otherwise, the SLC is a smarter choice.

Compare the SLC, F-Type, and SL »

2017 SLC Performance

How Does the 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC Drive?

The 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC comes standard with a turbocharged four-cylinder engine that puts out 241 horsepower. That’s a decent amount of oomph, but it doesn’t have the sprightly acceleration you might expect from a sports car. Spring for the AMG SLC 43 if you're looking for quicker acceleration. This high-performance model features a twin-turbocharged V6 engine that produces 362 horsepower and rockets you from zero to 60 mph in just 4.6 seconds. All models feature a nine-speed automatic transmission and rear-wheel drive.

The SLC roadster has precise steering and buttoned-down handling that let you aggressively dart around turns, with little body lean to boot. The suspension is on the firm side, but the SLC comes standard with Dynamic Select, which lets you choose from four different modes that alter driving dynamics. This allows you to gear the SLC toward maximum fuel economy, better performance, or a softer ride.

Does the 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC Get Good Gas Mileage?

With the standard turbo-four engine, the SLC 300 gets 25 mpg in the city and 32 mpg on the highway. Those are great estimates for a luxury sports car. Even the AMG SLC 43 version gets decent estimates, at 20/29 mpg city/highway.

Read more about SLC performance »

2017 SLC Interior

How Many People Does the 2017 SLC Seat?

The SLC is a two-seat roadster. The seats are comfortable, and the upholstery has a nice feel, whether you go with leatherette or genuine leather. However, the seats don’t provide a ton of room, so taller passengers may feel confined. Power-adjustable seats are standard, and heated seats, Nappa leather, and Mercedes’ Air Scarf neck warmer system are all available.

2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC Features

The 2017 Mercedes SLC comes with a retractable hardtop with a panoramic glass roof, the mbrace Connect telematics system, Bluetooth, two USB ports, HD Radio, and a 7-inch display screen.

Though its standard features list is on the short side, the SLC has a long list of available features. Upgrades include dual-zone automatic climate control, an 11-speaker Harman Kardon audio system, satellite radio, an in-dash DVD/CD player, and the COMAND navigation system with a 7-inch screen. There’s also an available panoramic roof with Magic Sky Control, which lets you control how much sunlight passes through the glass. The audio and climate controls are intuitive and easy to reach.

See 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC specs »

Read more about SLC interior »

2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC Dimensions

Mercedes-Benz SLC Cargo Space

The 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC has 10.1 cubic feet of trunk space, which shrinks to 6.4 cubic feet when the top is down. Those values are in line with most other roadsters.

2017 SLC Length and Weight

The Mercedes SLC is 13.6 feet long. SLC 300 models weigh 3,296 pounds, while AMG SLC 43 models weigh 3,541 pounds.

Where Was the 2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC Built?

Mercedes-Benz built the 2017 SLC in Germany.

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