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When I really press on in the car, it gives the full Nascar violence for about 30 seconds, then, Ford Ka.... Almost as if the wastegate is stuck open, or it has dropped into a default get-you-home mode. No indications from the electronics or error messages from the console. Drive sedately for 5 minutes, and you get some performance back, but for a shorter period.

There is also a 'click' noise when I gently press the throttle at low speed that sounds like high pressured air being released, and I think this is new..

Also, the gearbox has clunked badly a few times too under full acceleration, and I wonder if the gremlin lives there? Lost drive completely once joing M42. Had to park up and restart to reset the 'box. Omigawd.

If I can't trace the problem, I'm going to have to replicate the problem with a M-B dealer service man in the car, but he will probably fill his pants!
 

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I'm not too familiar with the SL line (yet :)) but I was wondering if it has a supercharged engine by any chance. If so, it could be that it was a hot day and the car heated up. Superchargers are known to lose some power when the temperature of outside air is high.
 

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As for the lack of power and driveability problem take it in and have a
shop forman take a ride with you or simply tell them that it only happens
under those driving conditions and that it is ok to try and duplicate. The
gas noise may be a broken exhaust hanger in the rear which is becoming
common on the SL55. Just my opinion.
 
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