As with all SLs, the power hard-top is a work of art. It delivers coupe-quality comfort and silence while in the up position. When lowered, it takes up a good deal of trunk space, but then again there are trade-offs for everything. Wind noise is minimal, even above posted speed limits, and the much-touted Airscarf neck warmers work amazingly well. Basically, it's a headrest-mounted hair dryer that circulates warm air around each occupant's neck and makes keeping the top down bearable as you climb in altitude and drop in temperature.

Overall, the SL65 is a fantastic high-speed tourer. It isn't a track car and it isn't a sports car in the true sense-neither is its goal in life. It will cover ground with remarkable speed, but delivers comfort not often found in an open-top two-seater. Despite a somewhat flashy image, this may be the ultimate gentleman's performance car.

2009 Mercedes-Benz SL65 AMG

*Layout
Longitudinal front engine, rear-wheel drive

*Engine
6.0-liter V12, sohc, 36 valve, turbocharged and intercooled

*Transmission
Five-speed automatic

*Performance
Peak Power: 604hp @ 4800 rpm
Peak Torque: 738 lb-ft at 2000 rpm
0-60 mph: 4.2 sec. (mfr.)
Top Speed: 155 mph (limited)

*What we like
Luxurious grand tourer with amazing manners and ungodly speed

*What we don't
All of 4,555 pounds to start, steer and stop

*Price Tag
$189,700 (est.)

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