Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Roadster Spied with Less Camouflage

While we've yet to see the all-new SLS AMG Gullwing that is scheduled to make its world debut at the upcoming Frankfurt Motor Show, Mercedes-Benz has already begun working on a topless version of the SLR McLaren's replacement that was scooped here by our photographers during testing. The convertible model, which will feature an electric folding canvas top, is expected to go on sale almost two years later than the coupe, in late 2011.

If you pay close attention to the photos, you can see that the SLS AMG roadster features normal door handles, meaning that Mercedes has most likely ditched the coupe model's "gullwing" doors in favor of conventional openings. However, there is a possibility that Merc may use scissor-type doors like the those found on the outgoing McLaren SLR roadster.

Sans the rooftop and the rear deck, the roadster model's styling appears to be identical to that of the coupe.

Don't expect to see any changes under the hood either, with the roadster using the same front-mounted 6.3-litre V8 engine as the Gullwing. It produces an output of 571HP and 650Nm (479 lb-ft) of torque with power being delivered to the rear wheels through a new seven-speed dual-clutch transmission.

According to the German automaker's preliminary figures, the SLS AMG Gullwing takes 3.8 seconds to reach 100 km/h or 62mph and achieves a top speed of 315 km/h or 196 mph. Because of the increased weight due to the necessary structural reinforcements, the roadster should be a tad bit slower in acceleration than the fixed-roof SLS AMG.

It remains to be seen if Mercedes will also offer a roadster version of the recently confirmed, all-electric SLS "Gullwing" eDrive that will be powered by four electric motors positioned near the wheels producing a combined output of 526HP and a peak torque of 880Nm (649 lb-ft).