By now, you should know it takes quite a machine to get Chris Harris excited. The guy spends plenty of time being nonplussed by a bevy of lustworthy hardware. But the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Black Series seems to have done the impossible by getting under his skin. The ultra-exclusive, circuit-bred version of everyone's favorite gullwing features a wider track, substantially less weight, a revised engine and carbon ceramic brakes. With 630 horsepower on hand, the monster has no trouble dispatching the straights and corners of France's Paul Ricard with prejudice.
Harris turns two laps in the latest Mercedes-Benz monster, one with the intent of going as quickly as possible and the second with the aim of hanging the tail out past Jupiter. Seems like he succeeds at both goals. you can check out his hijinks in the video below for yourself. Set your jealousy to stun.Permalink | Email this | Comments
There have been four Black Series models since the Mercedes-Benz SLK55 AMG Black Series introduced itself to European audiences in 2006. Following that, the Black Series club has hosted appearances by the 2008 CLK63 AMG Black Series, the 2009 SL65 AMG Black Series and last year's 2013 C63 AMG Black Series. The sixth member of the group is one we would have thought already was a Black Series car in its standard guise. Right out of the box, the SLS AMG is loud, frenetic, cozy, boisterous and frightfully easy to oversteer. How much more Black did it need to get?
Quite a bit so, apparently. The SLS AMG Black Series has lost weight, gained power and been refitted with upgrades and aero bits from front to rear. If you liked the way it looked before, you'll probably be an even bigger fan of this one. If you thought it looked ungainly, well, this one should stay even further away from pageants. Regardless of where you come down this is the best SLS AMG variant we've driven.Permalink | Email this | Comments
As we learned some time ago, the new Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Black Series is one bad boy. The car boasts 622 total horsepower, a top speed of 196 miles per hour with 0-60 coming up in 3.5 seconds, and has shed 154 pounds when compared with the "base" SLS AMG.
Seeing the Black Series in the metal for the first time this morning at the LA Auto Show, we were struck by the sheer volume of carbon fiber that has been employed in its manufacture. From the massive front splitter to the towering wing out back, the SLS is festooned with as much visible carbon as we've seen this side of a Koenigsegg.
Check back on our initial report of the SLS AMG Black Series launch to refresh your memory about the supercar, or just dive into our gallery showing the car's debut amongst the media hordes.Permalink | Email this | Comments
A Mercedes-Benz product isn't officially launched until the release of rolling footage set to driving choral strains akin to O Fortuna. We can hereby report that the launch of the SLS AMG Black Series is done and dusted, the minute-long video below providing a soundtrack for the 622-horsepower coupe's recent announcement.
The SLS AMG Black Series will sit still for our own cameras during its world premiere at the 2012 LA Auto Show at the end of the month. Until then, you can get your fix of the lighter, stiffer, angrier, faster, 196-mph gullwing in moving pictures below.Permalink | Email this | Comments
Just yesterday, Mercedes-Benz released a teaser on its Facebook page showing what we could only guess was the SLS AMG Black Series, and this morning our suspicions proved true as the automaker removed the tight-fitting cover. Preparing for the car's official debut at the 2012 LA Auto Show, the latest addition to the Mercedes-Benz Black Series is by far the most impressive with extensive measures taken to improve performance and reduce weight.
Underneath the SLS' long hood, AMG has reworked the engine squeezing an extra 39 horsepower from the 6.2-liter V8 raising the output to 622 hp. And even though overall torque has dropped by 11 pound-feet, acceleration from zero to 60 miles per hour is quicker at 3.5 seconds. Top speed is 196 mph. The handling of the car has also been improved on all levels, including upgraded ceramic brakes with two-piece rotors (measuring 15.8-inches in the front and 14.2-inches at the rear wheels), adjustable coil over suspension, electronically controlled rear differential and a track that has been widened by almost an inch. For added rigidity, many of the body braces in the aluminum space frame have been replaced with carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) helping to shed precious pounds.
At 3,417 pounds, the SLS AMG Black Series has dropped a total of 154 pounds compared to the SLS AMG GT. Some of the numbers are actually pretty significant, such as the 35.3 pounds saved with the ceramic brakes, 29.3 pounds cut thanks to using a CFRP engine-to-transmission torque tube rather than aluminum and 28.7 pounds from the titanium exhaust system. Showing AMG's determination to shed pounds, even the car's conventional battery has been replaced with a lithium-ion battery which is good for another 17.6 pounds of curb weight savings - possibly the first such application of a lithium-ion battery outside of a hybrid or electric vehicle.
Mercedes-Benz says that the styling of the SLS AMG Black Series was inspired by its GT3 racecar, and elements like the front chin spoiler, forged alloy wheels, rear diffuser and the vented side skirts and rear fascia help the car look the part. Many of the body panels are made of CFRP, including the flared front and rear fenders. This racecar styling is also applied to the interior of the Black Series with a sport steering wheel that features a red 12 o'clock marking and plenty of exposed carbon fiber. The car shown in the images above not only sports the Solar Beam paint exclusive to this car, it also features the optional AMG Aerodynamics package that gets an adjustable CFRP rear wing with aluminum uprights and front fascia flics (the little swooshy fins below the air intakes), but all of the cars get a vented hood that increases front axle downforce.
The 2014 SLS AMG Gullwing Black Series goes on sale next summer, but Mercedes has yet to announce pricing or production numbers. Scroll down for more information than you probably need to know about the car in its lengthy official press release.Permalink | Email this | Comments
When Mercedes-Benz unveils a new model, it is not uncommon for a high-power AMG model to follow. And if the standard AMG treatment of more horsepower and aggressive bodywork doesn't get your heart pumping, AMG has you covered with Black Series versions of select models. In the past, the SL-Class has been given the noir touch, as well as the C-Class Coupe, taking the power up a notch and the refinement out the window in favor of absolute driving excitement.
But what if the model in question is the already insane SLS AMG? Kicking things up a notch indeed requires a Black Series model. To that end, Mercedes-Benz has dropped this little nugget on Facebook: a photo of a new Gullwing supercar, under wraps, accompanied by a few lines of text.
We absolutely suspect that this is the forthcoming SLS AMG Black Series under the cloak, but we won't know for sure until tomorrow. So, as Mercedes-Benz suggests, stay tuned.Permalink | Email this | Comments
"Anticipation is supposed to be the greatest joy. But don't worry, Mercedes-AMG will not wait until Christmas to unwrap this gift. The mystery about the latest Mercedes-AMG model will be disclosed soon. In less than 24 hours, we reveal the secret under the car cover. Stay tuned and check back with us tomorrow."
Mercedes-Benz has been running its new, and most certainly badass, SLS AMG Black Series around the Nürburgring of late, doing the sort of high-speed and handling tests that such supercars require to be perfectly super.
Getting the bugs worked out is a good thing though, as these scary images caught by our spy photographers make clear. This particular SLS seems to have crashed and, quite literally, burned while doing some high-speed runs on the Ring. We're told that the car was carrying both a driver and a passenger, and that both walked away from the wrecked exotic before the fire even started. Good on both counts, then.
As we've reported previously, expectations are that this beastly Black Series will produce horsepower figures north of 600, while also shedding weight and gaining strengthened internals. The fire-damaged hulk seen here would seem to indicate that this latest SLS will make use of the standard car's aluminum superstructure, rather than the carbon fiber used for the SLS AMG Electric Drive, however.
Look for the unscathed production version of the SLS AMG Black Series to be formally introduced sometime in 2013, most likely as a 2014 model.Permalink | Email this | Comments