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Five Aussie AMGs set to fly

Published: November 29, 2012 | 7:34 am
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amg gull wing
Slim pickings: Much of the SLS’s enhanced performance comes from shedding weight
FRENZIED enthusiasts have already swooped on Australia’s allocation of AMG’s latest gull-wing weapon.

The SLS Black Series, set for its public debut at the Los Angeles motor show, had a quota of only five for next year and Mercedes Australia is scrambling for more.
“We are now talking to AMG (but) realistically the total number will not exceed 10 cars for Australia,”says spokesman Jerry Stamoulis.
“The final price has not been set but it’s likely to be similar to the SL65 Black Series which was around $700,000.”
Carsguide saw the new SLS Black Series, inspired by the track-only SLS GT3, at AMG headquarters in Affalterbach just before it was flown to LA. Sporting exposed carbon-fibre components, black wheels and gold brake calipers, it is lower than the regular SLS, hunkered down on its fat wheels and aggressive with its dominant rear spoiler.
AMG engineer Alexander Weber says its specifications are closer to a GT3 car than a road car. It has a 6.2-litre V8 with 464kW – up 44kW on the SLS – but torque has been clipped back to 635Nm, down 15Nm on the SLS.
The coupe needs less torque as it has a lower final drive ratio and weighs 100kg less than the standard SLS. The engine is redlined at 8000rpm, up from 7200rpm in the normal SLS. It hits 100km/h from rest in 3.6 seconds on its way to 315km/h.It has launch control – with software tailored for this car – that allows for a 10 per cent slip for better acceleration.
“We changed a lot in the engine,” says Weber. “It has a new intake manifold – made shorter – and new valve gear that is a lot lighter. The oil circuit is new and so are the engine bearings.
“We have reduced back pressure and fitted a 100 per cent titanium exhaust system.
“There is an improved cooling system that was developed for the race track.”
Much of the performance increase has come from the weight-loss program, bringing the car down to 1550kg through extensive use of carbon-fibre and carbon compounds, including trim in the cabin, brake rotors and spoiler.
Weber says the car has hydraulic engine dampers specific to the Black Series but other AMG cars may get this system to improve handling.
Compared with the standard SLS the SLS Black Series is 26mm wider at the rear and 13mm wider at the front.Mercedes-Benz Australia says the car will arrive in here from the second half of next year and that most of the buyers who have placed orders are previous AMG owners.
The SLS Black Series is the fifth of this model line-up to be produced by AMG. The company started the Black Series with the SLK55 in 2006, following it with the CLK63 in 2007, SL65 in 2008 and C63 Coupe in 2011.


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