Mercedes has confirmed it will begin production of a rival to the Porsche 911 called the SLC.

Speaking to British motoring magazine Auto Express, Mercedes design boss Gordon Wagener said the announcement was made off the record at the Beijing Motor Show earlier in the week.

The two-door coupe has been put together by both Mercedes' regular car division and its performance specialists, AMG. It will slot into the manufacturer's mid-size line-up and function as a more affordable "baby SLS".

No official powertrain details are available yet, though both a V8 and V6 option are likely.

Besides the Porsche 911, another obvious rival for the SLC is the Aston Martin V8 Vantage. Both cars retail for around $250,000 so expect the SLC to cost a similar amount when it launches in mid-2014.