BRABUS works over the Mercedes Benz SL500 to create the world's most powerful roadster
By Mike Hanlon
August 3, 2006
August 4, 2006 With its convertiable hardtop and softtop, the Mercedes SL500 is one of the most civilised of all luxury sports cars but with only 517 horsies, it’s a tad anaemic compared to the Koenigseggs and Paganis so … German tuning company Brabus has worked over the latest top-of-the-line Mercedes Benz SL500 to create the world's most powerful roadster. The reworked twelve-cylinder three-valve engine is increased from 5.5 to 6.3 litres to become the BRABUS SV12 S Biturbo and rated power output jumps from a standard 517 hp / 380 kW at 5,000 rpm to 730 hp / 537 kW at 5,100 rpm. Simultaneously peak torque grows from 830 Nm to 1,320 Nm, though custom engine mapping ensures peak torque is limited electronically to 1,100 Nm, which is available from 2,100 rpm onwards. Not surprisingly, performance of the two-seater is outrageous with a sprint time of 4.0 seconds from rest to 100 km/h, 10.5 seconds to 200 km/h, 29.5 seconds to 300 km/h and an electronically limited top speed of 350 km/h (217 mph).
More power by increasing displacement is one of the core philosophies behind the BRABUS SV12 S Biturbo engine. The displacement of the twelve-cylinder three-valve engine is increased from 5.5 to 6.3 liters with the help of a billet steel crankshaft, larger cylinder bore, special pistons and piston rods. The conversion also includes re-machining the cylinder heads and fitting them with special camshafts.
The peripherals of the twin-turbo engine also play a large role in the engine's power yield. The BRABUS engineers have also developed a completely new turbocharging system with two larger turbochargers and more efficient intercoolers. Metal catalysts with low back pressure let the BRABUS SV12 S Biturbo displacement engine breathe more freely.
Special mapping for engine electronics and on-board diagnostics coordinate perfect interaction of the new components and guarantee an optimal symbiosis of maximum power yield and running smoothness. But that's not all: The engine also offers exemplary clean emissions and excellent fuel efficiency in light of the available power. Like all BRABUS high-performance engines the most powerful engine in the product lineup is lubricated with ARAL Synthetic Oil.
Form and function at the highest level of perfection: The BRABUS aerodynamic-enhancement parts are available for all current SL models and give the SL a sporty yet elegant appearance while at the same time providing aerodynamic benefits. At high speeds they reduce lift on the front axle and thus further improve directional stability.
For the latest SL generation the BRABUS designers have developed a strikingly styled front fascia whose sophisticated shape reduces lift on the front axle. The large central air inlet further optimizes cooling of engine and front brakes. The high-quality Pur-R-Rim BRABUS front fascia with its four auxiliary headlights is designed to be fastened to the original mounting points and thus simply replaces the production bumper.
The BRABUS rocker panels smooth the airstream between the wheel arches and come with a useful extra feature: Pushing a button on the keyless-entry remote or pulling on an inside door handle activates four LED entrance lights on either side of the car. They illuminate the ground next to the vehicle and help to avoid unfortunate missteps in the dark.
The BRABUS designer suit for the new SL is rounded out by the BRABUS rear fascia with integrated diffuser. It too was designed to replace the original part and fits precisely in its place.
Just as important for a customized look are one-piece or multi-piece BRABUS Monoblock light-alloy wheels that can be mounted on the two-seater in various designs and diameters ranging from 17 to 20 inches. The largest possible version for the R 230 series SL features multi-piece BRABUS Monoblock VI, S or E wheels in size 9Jx20 in front with size 255/30 ZR 20 tires. On the rear axle the wheels measure 10.5Jx20 with Pirelli or Yokohama tires in size 305/25 ZR 20.
For further improving the incredible handling of the latest SL roadster BRABUS has developed an electronic module for the ABC suspension that lowers the ride height by some 15 millimeters.
The BRABUS high-performance brake system handles even extreme stress without any signs of weakness. It features vented and cross-drilled 375x28-mm mega-size discs and 12-piston fixed calipers on the front axle. The rear axle features vented and cross-drilled 355x28-mm discs and six-piston fixed calipers.
Luxurious and highly customized interiors are yet another BRABUS specialty. The list of available product ranges from exclusive accessories such as genuine carbon-fiber door sills with illuminated BRABUS logo to ergonomically shaped sport steering wheels with heated rim and shift paddles. Also available is a speedometer with 360-km/h dial and genuine carbon-fiber interior trim in various colors.
In addition the company-own upholstery shop creates especially exclusive BRABUS interiors from a combination of especially soft yet durable BRABUS Mastik leather and Alcantara.