( Worldcarfans ) - Less than 24 hours ago we showed you first photos of the partially covered SLC test mule setting up for its first test drive. And now, after following the test team for two hundred miles deep into California canyon country, the AMG test group finally stopped and unloaded their Mercedes SLC mule for some test runs.
We can now get a good feel for the altered proportions of the mule despite the Dodge Viper exterior panels. It appears that the SLC's dimensions will be similar to the McLaren SLR with the cab rearward design which makes way for the front-mid-engine layout which positions the engine behind the front axle but in front of the cowl panel (firewall). The exhaust set-up, however, looks like it will be much more conventional on the SLC, than the front-mounted sidepipes on the SLR.
Despite previous reports of the SLC being a smaller SLR, based on the R230 SL-Class platform, it now seems unlikely judging by the overall dimensions of this test mule. As a result, some uncertainty as to the true nature of this vehicle is starting to circulate. For example, we've read some theories of a possible Maybach coupe or SLR replacement but they seem like a bit of a reach.
The source of the confusion comes from the first spy photos of the SLC which showed a suspicious looking R230 SL-Class wearing dramatic body treatments which suggested a super high performance vehicle. Instead, it is our interpretation that the highly modified SL was just a host body for the purpose of engine testing. Which engine they were testing, remains to be confirmed but we like to think a SLC engine could be the most likely candidate.