A hypercar developed by Daimler AG and McLaren Automotive, the Mercedes Benz SLR McLaren combines McLaren’s Formula 1 proven technology with Mercedes innovation. This beast features a carbon fiber chassis and produces an output greater than 600 HP, and is one of the world’s fastest automatic gearbox automobiles. Developed at McLaren’s Technology Center in Woking, England, the car aimed at delivering heart-pounding performance and comfort at the same time. Contrastingly, Saleen launched the S7 intending to change its brand identity from a vehicle tuner to an automobile manufacturer. In under eighteen months, the supercar was built in partnership with British automotive supplier RML Group. Although the vehicle was designed and developed in the United States, most of the work was done in the United Kingdom by Ray Mallock Limited, a race team best known for competing in endurance racing and the British Touring Car Championship. The S7 was powered by a Ford V8 and produced an output of 575 HP, thereby making it a solid competitor to European supercars.
The nomenclature for Mercedes-Benz SLR might be confusing as many thought that SLR stood for ‘Sportlich, Leicht, Rennsport,’ which translated to ‘Sport; Light; Racing,’ but it really stands for ‘Super-Light Racing,’ or ‘Super-Light Racing.’ The S7, on the other hand, was manufactured from 2000 to 2009, and in 2005, it received a twin-turbo engine as an upgrade.
Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren vs Saleen S7: The Design
SLR’s bodywork was inspired by Mercedes-Benz’s classic car, the Silver Arrows. The arrow-shaped nose, which encircled the Mercedes star at the front, gave the bumper a bolder and more powerful cut that exponentially enhanced the aerodynamics and cooling. SRL also made a record in the motoring field as the world’s first series-produced automobile with an all-carbon-fiber front crash structure. When subjected to impact, carbon fibers absorb four to five times more energy than steel or aluminum. Mercedes-Benz used this technology by incorporating two 620 mm longitudinal carbon fiber sections into the front construction of the SLR. Thus, in case of a head-on collision, they absorb the whole energy of the accident without exceeding the occupants’ tolerated deceleration levels.
The Saleen S7, on the other hand, is made out of a steel space frame and aluminum honeycomb panels that are enclosed in autoclave-cured carbon fiber bodywork. The carmaker offered integrated split-channel airflow throughout the car, full bottom aerodynamics, advanced-design front tray and side skirts, whole-body-width rear spoiler, and heat-rejecting tinted glass. The S7 featured strong similarities to the McLaren F1; however, unlike the F1, the S7’s construction was exceptionally low-tech since there was no carbon fiber central tub, which would have to be rebuilt in the case of an accident. Instead, Saleen chose a tubular steel space frame that could be readily repaired and wrapped glass fiber and carbon fiber bodywork around this, making it lightweight yet robust.
Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren vs Saleen S7: The Engine
The SLR is powered by a supercharged 5.4-liter dry sumped 90-degree V8 engine. It generates 626 HP at 6500 RPM and 580 lb-ft of torque between 3250 and 5000 RPM. AMG engineers improved the capacity of the original SL-55 AMG engine by increasing the fuel pump and cylinders and installing a bigger cooling system that absorbs air to cool the engine. The car’s performance numbers were among the greatest in its class. It took just 3.8 seconds to sprint from 0 to 62.5 MPH, 10.6 seconds to pass the 124 MPH milestone, and 28.8 seconds to reach 186 MPH from a standing start. The two-seater could reach a top speed of 208 MPH.
The Saleen S7, on the other hand, was equipped with a simple all-alloy 7.0-liter pushrod V8 behind the cabin that began as a Ford Windsor V8 but was substantially modified. With only two valves per cylinder and natural aspiration, it was pretty effective as it produced 550 HP and 525 lb-ft of torque. The vehicle could achieve the 0 to 60 MPH sprint in 2.8 seconds and from 0 to 100 MPH in 7.1 seconds. The maximum speed was predicted to be 220 MPH. The carmaker also fitted a pair of Garrett turbochargers to the S7 in 2005, resulting in a 750 HP monster. With 700 lb-ft of torque, the S7TT’s bodywork was altered to reduce drag and enhance downforce. The stated top speed increased to 248 MPH, with a 0-100 MPH time of under 5.9 seconds.
Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren vs Saleen S7: The Legacy
The Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR from 1955 served as inspiration for this vehicle. The SLR’s gullwing doors were a standout feature, a nod to the original 300 SLR. It was also the first production car to utilize a full carbon-fiber monocoque, the first production car to include a carbon-fiber front crash structure, and the first car to feature a V-8 engine manufactured entirely in-house by AMG, according to Mercedes. The Saleen S7 road car, on the other hand, debuted in 2000, followed by the S7R racing car a year later. These were raced in the FIA GT, ALMS, Grand-Am, European Le Mans, and 24 Hours of Le Man’s series, racking up 27 fastest laps, 29 pole positions, and 19 victories.
SLR McLaren was quite an acclaimed icon from the company with a proven performance track record. Whereas S7, the one-time wonder from Saleen, came with an advanced style, power, and performance.
Sources: Saleen, Super Cars, Car And Driver
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