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Mercedes CLK 63 AMG Black Series in the super test on the Nordschleife and Hockenheimring

Herzog, Gargolov
Mercedes CLK 63 AMG Black Series in the sport auto-Supertest
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A black series is commonly equated with a longer sequence of negative events. Whether that was what the namesake had in mind when their hottest sports league was launched, can now be seriously doubted. All the more so, as the CLK 63 AMG 'Black Series' is actually the first real representative of this special series developed in the new AMG Performance Studio and therefore cannot be called a series in the conventional sense.
So far there has only been one prototype variant based on the SLK 55 AMG. It was presented in detail for the first time in cooperation with sport auto as part of a 'tune up', and accordingly the respective contribution of the engine, chassis and brakes to the overall sporting result was examined and backed up with measured values.
It is well known that adding up is always done at the end. So only a hopefully long series of crisp, sporty Black Series versions will clarify whether this energetic AMG initiative actually started a black series, or whether it was actually hit the mark.
The stars for the latter assumption are certainly not bad. Because what talents the Performance Studio was able to uncover in the CLK 63 AMG, which has so far not been sporty, is truly impressive.
D he long-awaited release from the parent company to be able to do what is necessary to sharpen the sporting profile has now put AMG in the conciliatory position of the Finally, to counteract the company's own DTM campaign with something adequate for the road: namely a sports car that does not have the smell of a ridiculous alibi function, but also makes a credible statement in terms of driving dynamics. If, as usual, the press release raves about 'Formula 1 technology for the road', then the reference - viewed benevolently - in this case is not completely fooled.

A credible representative of the sporty image

After all, an atmospheric relationship can be established with the Formula 1 scenery. TheThe Black Series special model is based on the safety car that has been in use in Formula 1 since 2006, which is evident not only from optical analogies - large cooling air openings in the front, widened fenders and the rear apron with diffuser optics - but also from a technical point of view finds.
The fact that, in addition to the increase in performance that is customarily carried out at AMG on every occasion, radical modifications have also been made in the areas of suspension, steering and brakes that have hitherto received less attention, is a process that is as remarkable as it is laudable.
The newly developed coilover kit with 19-inch forged wheels, the modified wheel suspensions, the more heavily dimensioned braking system and, last but not least, the new steering, along with the targeted stiffening measures on the bodyshell, are a strong indication of the final change in values ​​at AMG. The appropriate programming of the seven-speed automatic called Speedshift 7G-Tronic, which in the manual drive program neither allows automatic downshifts at full load or during kickdown, nor automatically upshifts when the engine speed limit is reached, gives a clear understanding of what the - if sports drivers who only occasionally practice in the borderline area are important.

For the racetrack operation, which AMG has openly recommended for the first time, the suspension setting can even be varied in professional fashion to suit your taste. So not only the level, but also the rebound and compression stages of the shock absorbers, the toe and camber on the front axle and the toe on the rear axle are adjustable.
Accordingly, both axles have new spring links, wheel carriers, push, camber and tension struts as well as completely redesigned elastokinematics including the strut dome bearings on the front axle. Compared to the standard CLK 63 AMG the Black Series-CLK also competes with a 75 millimeter wider track on the front and an additional 66 millimeters on the rear axle.
The strut struts in the engine and trunk as well as additional diagonal struts in the front of the car provide additional rigidity. The crowning achievement of the sports coupé, which has been reduced to a pure two-seater, is the use of sports tires from the Pirelli P Zero Corsa brand, as intended by the manufacturer from the showroom, without whose grip-promoting contribution the constructive but far-reaching modifications would certainly only have been effective to a limited extent.

Reduced equipment in high quality

FirstAgainst this pleasant background, it seems justified to give the interior the same professional as it is reduced equipment, which, as the press text again notes somewhat grandly, is presented with the “functional atmosphere of a real racing car”. Mind you, not without missing the well-known quality nimbus from AMG, which is noticeable, for example, in the finely crafted carbon trim, for example in the door panels and on the center console.
Solely the sports steering wheel, which is greatly reduced in diameter and flattened at the bottom, is a bad compromise because of its voluminous impact absorber and the extremely thick steering column cladding, also adopted from the series. The control instrument is simply difficult to hold with the shift paddles attached directly behind the rim.
The waiver of the complete rear seat system and the use of perfectly cut AMG sports bucket seats covered with flame-retardant nylon velor to compensate for this is undoubtedly due to the always tiresome issue of weight - apart from the excellent fit of the seats.

The slight improvement in the power-to-weight ratio of 3.4 kilograms per hp (series: 3.7) results in part from the total weight of 1,745 kilograms, which has been reduced by just over 40 kilograms, and the increase in performance from 481 to 507 PS.
The expansive temperament of the series CLK 63 AMG outperforms the Black Series model if equipped as you wish. Both in the sprint to 100 and 200 km /h, the Black Series model rushes away from the base as easily and lightly as if additional turbo boost was at work. In addition, thanks to the generosity of his extremely confident V8 drive, he is allowed to let off steam in the speed range beyond the 250 km /h mark, which was previously prohibited for political reasons. However, at the achievable 300 km /h performance and driving resistance are not in balance either, but electronic interventions still gently limit, but determine the further forward drive.
If the provision of a large-volume, pithy, babbling 90-degree V8 can generally be described as a stroke of luck, then this is especially the case with this marriage between 6.3-liter eight-cylinder and two-door, which is almost obtrusive even in paper form Coupé about something like a dream come true. If only because it is understandable that the AMG systems are in this environmentAluminum blocks constructed from scratch come into their own extremely well. The spontaneous response behavior, the extremely well-kept running culture and, last but not least, the grandiose sound condense into a spectacle in which a transcendental connection seems to be established between the two main actors - man and machine. Instead of critical concerns, for example because of the politically incorrect emissions, there is first and foremost a broad agreement that - admittedly - sometimes suffers a small damper when adding more fuel.

The black sprinter is thirsty

A minimum consumption in the test of 14.3 liters of Super Plus does not do so well on the balance sheet - not to mention the Average or even maximum consumption.
It is not known whether it was done with a view to potential savings or whether the speed level had to be kept low following a philosophical attitude. In any case, the fact is that the theoretical possibilities of the Speedshift automatic, which at least operates with no less than seven gear steps, are only used incompletely - although in this case the rear axle ratio has already been chosen to be six percent shorter.
Even the jump from the fourth to the fifth stage has been chosen so large with the standard gear ratios that the engine has to use all its power in order not to forfeit the merits it has previously acquired. The driver approaches the top speed better in fifth gear. The sixth allows - mathematically - Tempo 377; in the seventh stage, theoretically an astronomical 424 km /h would be possible. You first have to find such a big gradient and so much tailwind ...

Knowing the fabulous functionality of the five-speed automatic with fantastic shifting speed in the small series called CLK DTM AMG made by HWA years ago don't hide a little disappointment. This also occurs in view of the somewhat delayed reactions to the shift impulses emitted by the shift paddles on the steering wheel. The Racetimer, which is standard on board and is ready to determine the lap time, would certainly have been able to spit out even better results here and there - if there had been a better consensus on the gear ratio. It is true to say that the translation topic is only noticed in manual and not in automatic mode. On the other hand, it is also true that the driver who operates at the limit firstly wants to determine for himself which gear he takes the passage, and secondly it is one with at least 630 Newton metersNot worthy of the 6.3 liter engine when the automatic system constantly suggests that it has too little power in its stocking by hectically offering shorter gear steps. Because that is definitely not the case.

The circuit leaves nothing to be desired

Therefore, the praise for the engine and the tuning work of the chassis is doubly emphatic. The agility of the AMG sports coupé amazes first and foremost in a way that - sorry - Mercedes is quite unfamiliar. The steering behavior leaves nothing to be desired with a demanding driving style. The same applies to the pleasant self-steering behavior that is so promising on the last groove.
The balanced neutrality is extremely remarkable: Neither understeer when entering a bend nor excessive oversteer tendency when exiting a bend are part of the behavior pattern of the Black Series version, which presents itself at the very highest level in terms of chassis technology. The fact that this extraordinary handiness is not bought with bone-dry hardness justifies the predicate summa cum laude.
Who knows: Maybe the AMG suspensions have always had such a strong performance up their sleeves, but we weren't allowed to discover them. The Black Series variant allows itself the luxury, which is normally not allowed with Mercedes products, of bringing the driver closer to the fantastic driving dynamics limits even without ESP interventions. This is certainly a strong indication that the sporty Mercedes subsidiary AMG is finally allowed to face the competition on an equal footing.


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