AMG Black Series monster set to impress

The new Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Black Series could be available in New Zealand late next year. Photo /  Supplied
The new Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Black Series could be available in New Zealand late next year. Photo / Supplied

An even stroppier version of Mercedes-Benz' already wild SLS AMG has been announced - although getting hold of one could be easier said than done.

The SLS AMG Black Series, said to be inspired by the GT3 series race car, will be built in limited numbers, with a maximum of 10 destined for Australia and possibly New Zealand.

AMG has built four other Black Series models, further enhancing the SLK55, CLK63, SL65 and, most recently, the C63.

The SLS Black Series will run a hand-built naturally aspirated 6.3-litre V8 producing 464kW at 7400rpm - a 44kW jump on the 'standard' SLS - and 635Nm of torque at 550 rpm. It uses a lower-mounted and quicker shifting version of the current seven-speed DCT sequential transmission. Despite these brawny credentials, the car is not as powerful as the electric version of the SLS unveiled at the Paris Motor Show in September, with its electric motor at each corner clocking up an impressive 552kW/1000Nm combination.

But the Black Series is the lightest SLS so far, with materials like carbon fibre used extensively, dropping 70kg from the standard version to tip the scales at 1550kg.

AMG claims a 3.6-second sprint to 100km/h, and a top speed of 315km/h. Pricing is yet to be announced, but it is expected to be well over half a million dollars.

Mercedes-Benz Australia has confirmed that the car, released worldwide next June, will be available in Aussie in the third quarter. If any cars came to New Zealand, they will be likely to be part of the Australian consignment.

Changes to make the Black Series live up to its name include lifting the engine redline to 8000rpm, adding gas-filled strut braces to improve on-track stability, and a new lightweight titanium sports exhaust.

Carbon fibre has been used for the bonnet, seats, underbody braces, torque tube and driveshaft, as well as replacing a number of components on the car's aluminium spaceframe. Even the battery has been replaced by a lithium-ion version, in the interest of cutting weight - saving 8kg in the process.

The track has been widened front and rear by 20mm and 24mm respectively and the tweaked SLS gets firmer two-stage adjustable shocks all round. and bigger ceramic brakes have been added.

The car takes styling cues from the GT3 race machines, including a carbon-fibre front splitter, skirts and rear apron, as well as fatter air intakes, a new bonnet vent and a large rear wing.

- NZ Herald

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