Sensational appearance, unique performance, lightweight design throughout and total exclusivity - that's the new Mercedes-Benz SL 65 AMG Black Series. This high-performance coup is a motorsport engineering thoroughbred. The AMG 6.0 liter V12 biturbo engine, with a maximum output of 670hp and 738 lb-ft of torque, guarantees super-sportscar level performance. The powerful two-seater was developed in the AMG Performance Studio and represents the continuation of the successful Black Series strategy pursued by AMG, the Mercedes-Benz Cars' performance brand.
Broad, muscular and ready to pounce - that's the new Mercedes-Benz SL 65 AMG Black Series. Even when stationary, the coup's dynamism can arouse great passions. The strikingly broad fenders, the retractable rear spoiler and the rear apron with diffuser fins point to its motorsport origins, part of the Mercedes-AMG corporate philosophy for more than 40 years.
One glance at the new SL 65 AMG Black Series and you are reminded of the successful AMG racing sports cars like the present DTM C-Class or the 1997 CLK-GTR from the FIA-GT series.
Wide cooling air apertures in the front apron and the hood are the clearest indication of the massive power of this AMG 12 cylinder, twin-turbo engine. From its 5980cc, the V12 generates a maximum of 670hp at 5400rpm and an electronically limited torque of 738 lb-ft between 2200 and 4200rpm. Without a limiter, the engine, which is hand-built in the AMG engine factory in accordance with the "one man - one engine" philosophy, would achieve a maximum torque of 885 lb-ft.
Compared with the basis power pack in the 612hp SL 65 AMG, new turbos were developed for the 12-cylinder SL 65 AMG Black Series engine. The turbos' spiral cross-section (now 12% larger) and the optimized wastegate ducts permit increased airflow and an impressive display of power at all engine speeds.
The new design for the AMG sports exhaust system's rear silencers reduce the back pressure and help increase the output. The acoustic effect of this is to produce a distinctive 12-cylinder sound from the two trapezoidal tailpipes.
The extraordinary engine specifications, which make the SL 65 AMG Black Series the most powerful AMG model yet, help to produce unique performance data: from a standing start, it takes just 3.9sec to reach 62 mph; top speed is 199mph (electronically limited).
Equally responsible for its excellent dynamics is the attractive power-to-weight ratio of only 2.79hp/kg, resulting from the comparably low unladen weight of 1870kg (4122 lb). This makes the car 250kg lighter than the SL 65 AMG - a respectable weight saving due specifically to the use of lightweight construction. Numerous bodywork components are made of carbon fiber composites (CFRP), a well-proven motorsports technology. The 5.5" wider front fenders, the front apron with the visible carbon front splitter, the hood and the trunk lid are all made from CFRP. Large apertures in the hood ensure excess heat is ducted away from the engine. "V12 Biturbo" lettering on the front fenders gives an indication of the engine's power.
The whole CFRP roof shell has taken on a completely new design. Not only does it now have an integral roll bar but, by no longer having the typical SL vario roof means the roof line has a significantly flatter profile. This is also evident from a glance at the bigger rear window, now placed at a gentler angle to the trunk lid. The CFRP rear spoiler, concealed in the boot lid, automatically extends 4.7" at 75mph, effectively reducing the lift force on the rear axle at high speeds.
Looked at from the rear, the conspicuous feature is the new apron with its visible carbon diffuser. Concealed within it is the active cooling system for the locking differential.Matching the outstanding performance potential and the versatile drive dynamics, the SL 65 AMG Black Series also displays its power pack and suspension at their best. An AMG Speedshift Plus five-speed automatic gearbox transmits power to the rear wheels. There is a choice between four transmission modes: "C", "S", "M1" and "M2" which has gearshift times 25% quicker than the "M1" mode. The torque converter's lockup clutch guarantees extremely direct shifting. The automatic double-declutch function not only makes shifting down a more pleasurable task, it ensures the load effect is reduced.
As for the suspension, the AMG experts put their trust in a new design. The AMG sports suspension has been designed on adjustable coil spring; a proven motorsport solution allowing the shock absorbers' rebound and compression stages, ride height, wheel alignment and camber to be adjusted. This means the driver can adjust the suspension to suit his personal specifications when driving on racing circuits. The spring links, camber struts and pull/push rods on both axles are new and each axle has a weight-optimized aluminum wheel hub. Compared with the standard SL 65 AMG, the Black Series front axle track width is 3.8" wider and the rear axle track width 3.3" wider. A multiple-disc limited-slip differential on the rear axle with a 40% locking effect guarantees optimum traction.
The three-stage sports function ESP means the driver can choose between "ESP ON", "ESP SPORT" and "ESP OFF" by pressing the button; the AMG instrument cluster will then show which mode is activated on the central display.New, weight-optimised, twin-spoke design, AMG forged alloy wheels - 19" front and 20" rear -occupy each fender. With their black paintwork, high-sheen surface and matte finish, they lend a note of extravagance to the profile.
The wheel/tyre combination chosen is also responsible for a superb performance by the SL 65 AMG Black Series on racing circuits. 265/35 R19 tires are fitted to 9.5" wide wheels on the front axle. The impressive format for the rear axle is 20x11.5" light-alloy wheels with 325/30 R20 tires. Dunlop, DTM's motorsport partner, supplies the Sport Maxx GT tires.
The large AMG high-performance brake system can be seen through the structure of the AMG twin-spoke light-alloy wheels. The drilled rotors engineered in particularly strong composite materials are employed all round. On the front axle, braking is undertaken by six-piston fixed calipers and 390x36 mm discs; on the rear axles, this task is carried out by four-piston fixed calipers and 360x26 mm discs.
Nappa leather, alcantara and carbon: the interior of the SL 65 AMG Black Series provides the perfect ambience to set the pulse of sports car enthusiasts racing. The interior, entirely in black, exudes the functional atmosphere of a sports car while the details have the power to captivate.
Newly developed AMG sports bucket seats made of CFRP (European version only) provide perfect lateral support for the occupants when taking bends fast. The seats without side airbags are upholstered in fine-grained nappa leather and alcantara with embossed AMG lettering in the head restraints. The smaller diameter, flattened and perforated steering wheel provides maximum vehicle control. The silver aluminum shift paddles allow manual gear selection.
Additional highlights in the centre console are the high-quality carbon trim parts, the gleaming matte start/stop button, the new selector lever with carbon inlay and the AMG logo with "Black Series" lettering. Matching features are the carbon door centre panels with embossed AMG lettering, together with the roof lining and the A and C-pillars upholstered in anthracite alcantara.
The AMG instrument cluster is a completely new design. The black speedometer with its scale reading up to 220mph has been re-designed; and the same is true of the white rev counter, which has four integral LEDs to advise the driver of the optimum gearshift points.
Like the SLK 55 AMG Black Series and the CLK 63 AMG Black Series before it, the SL 65 AMG Black Series was also developed in the AMG Performance Studio, which opened in 2006. The first SL 65 vehicles will be delivered to customers in November 2008.
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