At a starting sticker price of $106,900, the Mercedes SL550 needs to have a lot of bang for that kind of buck. Never fear. Like most cars from the German carmaker, this Mercedes luxury automobile doesn’t disappoint in either performance or amenities. For starters, the SL550’s engine. Its turbocharged V-8, 4.7-liter powerplant puts out an impressive 429 horses, as well as 516 pound-feet of torque. Paired with a rear-wheel drive and a seven-speed auto transmission, the car can go from zero to 60 in only 4.4 seconds. But there’s a price for all that performance. Don’t expect to save up for your car payment with your savings at the pump. With only 18 miles to the gallon in the city and 25 on the highway, you will be shelling out a lot of change just to fuel this beast. But the amenities. Ah, therein also lies the car’s seductive appeal. With a retractable hardtop, the Mercedes SL550 gives owners the option of open-air driving during warmer months while providing ample protection from the elements on cold winter days. A two-seater, the SL550 is loaded with both luxurious and practical features: an adaptive suspension and Xenon headlights, fog lights in both fore and aft, automatic dual-zone climate control, ventilated leather seats that can give driver and passenger massages, 12-way heated power seats, and a rearview mirror that dims automatically. Bluetooth connectivity, Mercedes’ trademark COMAND interface, that allows drivers to surf the Internet while on the road, a navigation system, satellite and HD radio, keyless ignition, and a state-of-the art Harmon Kardon audio system with surround sound all come standard. Safety features on the Mercedes SL550 include an automatic parking system that can even parallel park, a rear view camera, antilock brakes, a full set of airbags, including knee airbags, as well as airbags that guard the delicate head and thorax areas, and parking sensors in the rear. Roll bars and drowsy driver alerts also come standard. For an upgrade, owners can add blind-spot warning and lane-keeping assistance.