Mercedes-AMG snatches outright production car record from Lamborghini with 6:43.616 lap time
By PH Staff / Wednesday, November 18, 2020
There was a sense of inevitability about this, right? Mercedes-AMG left us in know doubt about the significance of the GT Black Series at its launch last month. After all this was a car that featured a unique flat-plane crank version of its 4.0-litre twin-turbocharged V8 – and with it came 730hp, the largest output ever delivered by an eight-cylinder AMG engine. Around it the firm added carbon fibre panels, and motorsport-grade chassis components underneath.
Factor in the 400kg of downforce generated at 155mph by a dramatic new aero pack, and it's conceivable that Mercedes-AMG had one objective in mind when it created the Black Series – capturing the production car lap record at the Nurburgring. (Naturally it also envisaged shifting a few examples of the £335,000 model, too; a goal not hindered one bit by topping the leaderboard at the world's most famous proving ground.)
In fact, Mercedes-AMG went to the trouble of recording two times: an officially measured and certified time of 6:43.616 min for the 20.6 kilometre-long track (measured without the straight at track section T13) and 6:48.047 min for the 20.832 kilometre-long total track (measured with the straight at track section T13). Obviously the shorter lap is the more famous one, the GT Black Series time dipping below the 6:44.97 claimed by the Lamborghini Aventador SVJ back in 2018.
Mercedes-AMG factory driver Maro Engel had the pleasure of sending the car round. "That was a really impressive ride," he commented afterwards ."With speeds of up to almost 270 km/h in the Kesselchen section of the track or well over 300 km/h on the long Döttinger Höhe straight, the AMG GT Black Series is significantly faster than my GT3 race car. To finally drive around the Nordschleife in 6:48.047 minutes with a production road car in these track conditions is really awesome. Like my GT3 race car, the AMG GT Black Series offers a lot of adjustment possibilities, all of which enabled me to create a setup that was tailor-made for me."
Those adjustments were extensive. The manufacturer indicated that the front splitter was extended to the 'Race' position, and the lower and upper wing blades of the rear spoiler were each adjusted in the middle position. The coilover suspension was lowered by five millimetres at the front and three millimetres at the rear to further enhance the venturi effect of the front diffuser.
Elsewhere the camber was adjusted to the maximum possible values of negative 3.8 degrees at the front axle and negative 3.0 degrees at the rear. In the case of the adjustable anti-roll bars, Engel opted for the hardest of the three possible settings, and adjusted the nine-stage traction control between positions six and seven, depending on the section of the track in front of him. Of course Mercedes-AMG was at pains to point out that the Black Series customer is free to indulge in precisely the same level of fettling.
That also applies to the MICHELIN Pilot Sport Cup 2 R MO tyres with "soft compound," which are standard equipment, alongside the Track Package that offers a rollover protection system and four-point safety harness.
Additionally, Mercedes reported that the record was set on the same day as the one laid down by the GT 63 S, meaning that some stretches of the track were not totally dry and certainly not warm. "It's really impressive how much downforce the Black Series generates and how confident and reliable it can be driven, even at the absolute limit. My hat is off to the developers from Affalterbach for what they have put on wheels here. And I'm very pleased that I was able to demonstrate these fascinating engineering skills with this great lap time," said Engel.
- Mercedes-AMG GT Black Series | PH Review
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