These exclusive photographs reveal the incredible new Mercedes SL65 AMG Black Series in production form for the first time.
Just 350 examples of the remarkable 670bhp SL65 AMG super coupe will be built over a two-year period, each powered by a twin-turbocharged 6.0-litre V12 engine. Only nine right-hand drive examples will make it to the UK, each costing £214,000.
The Mercedes SL65 AMG Black Series is the first in a series of high-priced performance models, which will trade on Mercedes’s F1 heritage and know-how. The SL65 AMG Black effectively makes the Mercedes-Mclaren SLR supercar redundant and the partnership between the two companies has now come to an end.
Based on the SL65 AMG, this latest Black Series model makes drastic performance gains though extensive weight saving and alterations to the mechanical package.
AMG has replaced the standard SL’s folding metal roof, replacing it with a fixed structure made from aluminium and carbonfibre. The boot has also been remade from lighter carbonfibre and now sports a retractable spoiler that emerges above 75mph for extra downforce. An integral roll cage has also been added.
The net effect is a 250kg weight saving, giving the car a kerbweight of 1870kg.
At the car’s heart lies a tuned version of Mercedes’ 6.0-litre V12 with some potent modification; larger twin turbochargers, a more efficient intercooler and a revised exhaust system. The bonnet has had to be reshaped to fit it all in.
The result is an SLR-beating power output of 661bhp at 5400rpm. Torque is up to 780lb ft, available between 2200 and 4200rpm and limited from a possible peak claimed to be 936lb ft.
AS in the SL600, the monumental torque rules out the use of AMG’s latest seven-speed gearbox, so the SL65 Black gets a beefed up version of Merc’s five-speed automatic transmission.
It features the latest evolution of AMG’s Speedshift software, meant to make full throttle upshifts faster and smoother, and deliver a perfectly judged throttle blip on down changes.
Final performance figures are yet to be confirmed, but AMG development boss Tobias Moers hints at a 0-62mph time of ‘under 3.9sec’, 0-124mph in ‘close to 10.0sec’ and 0-186mph in ‘less than 30.0sec’.
Top speed is limited to 199mph, although the new car is geared to hit 220mph at the engine’s 6200rpm cut out in fifth gear.
And as for the ‘Ring: “On the data we’ve gathered so far I’d be surprised if we don’t crack 7min 45sec,” says Moers.
Radical cosmetic changes identify the SL65 Black Series, although the essential SL features and the coupe DNA are obvious.
Cooling is aided by a trio of gaping ducts mounted low on the heavily reworked front bumper along with two sizeable bonnet vents. The most obvious additions are the monstrously flared wheel arches to cover the wider tracks, giving the SL65 a dominant road presence.
Production of the Black Series will take place at Mercedes-Benz’s plant in Bremen, with final assembly to be carried out at AMG’s recently expanded workshop in Affalterbach on the outskirts of Stuttgart.