Development of the hardcore 208mph Mercedes SLS Black Series has switched to the arctic circle. The powered-up and pared-down SLS AMG Black Series, spied here in winter testing, will go on sale in 2013, costing around 50 per cent more than the ‘standard’ £168,395 gullwinged-coupe.
Autocar understands the decision to make a Black Series version of the SLS was taken as far back as 2006 when development of the standard AMG supercar first begun. The Black Series’ dramatic bodywork, including a large fixed rear wing, front splitter, rear diffuser and extra cooling on the bonnet, and wider track was first previewed on the SLS GT3 racer at the 2010 New York motor show.
AMG engine boss Friedrich Eichler said in 2009 that there was still “a good deal more to come” from the SLS’s 6.2-litre V8 engine, which produces 563bhp and 479lb ft in the standard car.
Mercedes insiders have revealed that outputs well over 600bhp and 500lb ft are likely in the Black Series. A larger air manifold, higher compression ratio and reprofiled camshafts are among the tweaks expected. A mechanical locking differential is also tipped to be included as part of the Black Series upgrades and the seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox will be beefed up to handle the extra torque.
These performance upgrades, plus a 50kg reduction in kerb weight and improved aerodynamic package, are expected to result in a 0-62mph time of 3.5sec and a top speed of 208mph. The standard SLS can crack 0-62mph in 3.8sec and reach a top speed of 197mph.