The Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG is one of the most aggressive cars offered by the German automaker, but apparently someone in Merc's hierarchy thinks the company can go even harder. It's dreamed up an angrier, more focussed version known as the SLS AMG Black Series.
The car, fettled by Merc's in-house AMG tuning division, sports the same 6.2-litre naturally aspirated V8, but here it's been tuned to produce 621bhp at 8,000rpm– a whopping 38 horses more than the standard 2013 car creates at its 7,200rpm redline.
AMG has implemented changes to improve performance. The standard car's steel exhaust has been swapped for a lighter titanium unit, it sports lighter wheels and ceramic composite brakes, a lighter lithium-ion battery and a carbon-fibre bonnet and torque tune that runs between the engine and gearbox. They've even dumped the sat-nav screen, all of which helps reduce overall mass by 70Kg.
Together, the changes help the car accelerate from 0-62mph in a grin-inducing 3.6 seconds and onto a top speed of 196mph. The headline acceleration figure is the same as the 2013 car, and the top speed is lower, but the extra horsepower should mean it's a better, more responsive performer.
The SLS AMG Black Series should certainly handle well. AMG has fitted the seven-speed twin-clutch gearbox 10mm lower in the car to lower its centre of gravity, increased the speed of gear changes and fitted a gas-filled strut to brace the engine on the car's chassis, which prevents it wobbling around, destabilising the car during fast direction changes. Race-tuned suspension with adjustable dampers and coil-over springs mean you can firm up the ride for flatter cornering.
Most importantly, perhaps, the car now features a GTE-style body kit, which includes wider wings, an angry carbon-fibre front splitter and diffuser and an optional AMG Aerodynamics Package, which constitutes a huge carbon wing at the rear.
The SLS AMG Black Series will go on sale in summer 2013. You won't be able to afford it.