2019 Ford GT vs. 2019 Mercedes SL

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

Both the GT and the SL have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights and rearview cameras.

Warranty

The GT comes with a full 3-year/unlimited-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The SL’s 50,000-mile basic warranty expires sooner.

There are almost 8 times as many Ford dealers as there are Mercedes dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the GT’s warranty.

Reliability

The GT has a standard “limp home system” to keep drivers from being stranded if most or all of the engine’s coolant is lost. The engine will run on only half of its cylinders at a time, reduce its power and light a warning lamp on the dashboard so the driver can get to a service station for repairs. The SL doesn’t offer a lost coolant limp home mode, so a coolant leak could strand you or seriously damage the car’s engine.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Ford vehicles are better in initial quality than Mercedes vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Ford fifth in initial quality, above the industry average. With 11 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mercedes is ranked 14th.

Engine

The GT’s 3.5 turbo V6 produces 285 more horsepower (647 vs. 362) and 181 lbs.-ft. more torque (550 vs. 369) than the SL 450’s standard 3.0 turbo V6. The GT’s 3.5 turbo V6 produces 198 more horsepower (647 vs. 449) and 34 lbs.-ft. more torque (550 vs. 516) than the SL 550’s standard 4.7 turbo V8. The GT’s 3.5 turbo V6 produces 70 more horsepower (647 vs. 577) than the AMG SL 63’s standard 5.5 turbo V8.

As tested in Motor Trend the Ford GT is faster than the Mercedes SL:

 

GT

SL 550

AMG SL 63

Zero to 60 MPH

3 sec

4.1 sec

3.5 sec

Quarter Mile

10.8 sec

12.5 sec

11.8 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

130.5 MPH

115.2 MPH

123 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

The GT has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The SL doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the GT’s standard brake rotors are larger than those on the SL:

 

GT

SL

Front Rotors

15.5 inches

13.5 inches

Rear Rotors

14.2 inches

12.6 inches

The GT has standard air brakes, which adjust the rear spoiler automatically during high-speed braking in order to shorten stopping distances. The SL doesn’t offer air brakes.

The GT stops much shorter than the SL:

 

GT

SL

 

70 to 0 MPH

145 feet

154 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

95 feet

109 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

For better traction and acceleration, the GT has larger rear tires than the SL (325/30R20 vs. 285/30R19).

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the GT has standard 20-inch wheels. Only 19-inch wheels are available on the SL.

Suspension and Handling

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the GT’s wheelbase is 5 inches longer than on the SL (106.7 inches vs. 101.7 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the GT is 3.4 inches wider in the front and 2.4 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the SL.

The GT handles at 1.11 G’s, while the AMG SL 63 pulls only .93 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

Chassis

The Ford GT may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 450 to 750 pounds less than the Mercedes SL.

The GT is 7.5 inches shorter in height than the SL, making the GT much easier to wash and garage and drive (lower center of gravity).

The GT uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The SL doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Ergonomics

The GT’s instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge – which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The SL does not have an oil pressure gauge.

Recommendations

The GT was chosen as one of Automobile Magazine’s “All Stars” in 2018. The SL has never been an “All Star.”

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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