Intro to AMG
When three significant letters 'AMG' find their way onto a Mercedes-Benz, you can rest assured that the bespoke vehicle is harnessing immense power, motorsport DNA and has a powerful aura about it. But how did AMG come to fruition?
With a passion for motorsport, Hans Werner Aufrecht and Erhard Melcher founded AMG in 1967 (AMG coming from their surnames and Aufrecht's birth town of Grossaspach). After Aufrecht and Melcher worked as engineers in the 'Development Department' at Daimler-Benz, they decided to go their own way and concentrate on building performance race car engines for private teams, resulting in the birth of AMG.
After an AMG-powered Mercedes 300 SEL 6.8 ('Red Pig' - pictured) was declared the champion in its class and won second place overall in the 1971 24 Hours of Spa, AMG received world-wide recognition.
After this, AMG started to equip multiple Mercedes models with performance technology. This included an E-Class Coupe with a 5.0-litre V8, which got given the nickname 'Hammer'. As time progressed, in 1990 AMG became an official department at Mercedes-Benz, although it wasn't until 2005 until they took a full 100% share of AMG. The rest is history.
Birth of the SLS
Mercedes and AMG had great success producing ultra-performance versions of the C-Class and E-Class models. Surprisingly, it wasn't until 2010, five years after Mercedes-Benz took complete ownership of AMG, that Mercedes-AMG created their first car from scratch.
After enhancing regular Mercedes models, Mercedes-AMG decided that it was about time they showed the world what they could really do. This was a chance to showcase everything Mercedes-AMG stands for, offering a bespoke car that paid homage to Mercedes-Benz, AMG performance, raw power and motorsport DNA. The result was the Mercedes-AMG SLS.
Produced for five years between 2010 and 2015, the SLS was like nothing else that had gone before it in performance terms. Complemented by a long flowing bonnet, hardcore side vents and the sheer size of the car ensured onlookers knew this was something rather special, but the real magic is in the car's DNA.
Under the SLS' bonnet sits a glorious 6.2-litre, naturally-aspirated V8 engine, producing a colossal 583bhp. It comes as no surprise that, with all this power, you are not left wanting more performance, as the SLS AMG can launch from 0-62mph in just 3.7 seconds, and go onto a top speed of 199mph. There is no doubt that the SLS AMG is a bona fide supercar.
The vast power available is managed by a seven-speed dual clutch automatic transmission. This has many performance advantages, along with quirks, such as, when required, drivers can simply put the SLS in auto, and then use the car's Mercedes-Benz DNA to turn the SLS into a pleasant cruiser. However, find a majestic country road, or happen to be at a race track, and drivers can use the paddles to change gear manually, for a more involving, and more fitting AMG experience - how it was made to be used after all.
Immense power is one thing, but there is no denying the AMG SLS' ability to turn heads; it's a glorious looking thing. Those who appreciate a classic Mercedes-Benz may think the SLS AMG silhouette looks very similar to that of the legendary 300 SL Coupe from 1954 - only a lot more muscular and modern.
Further similarities include the aforementioned long bonnet, a curvaceous rear-end and the SLS even has the signature gullwing doors too - for the ultimate in head-turning ability. This is a classy way of Mercedes-AMG giving a nod to Mercedes-Benz history and heritage, and blending the gorgeous design of a legendary classic, and mixing it in a tasteful execution.
You can even find SLS AMG models with stunning red leather interiors - again, just like the iconic 300 SL. And despite the SLS being over a decade old, the interior is rather timeless and offers supreme luxury mixed with AMG track-inspired flair.
An Epic Foundation
As the very first car built from scratch by AMG, the SLS sent out a message of intent, that this brand steeped in motorsport heritage, performance and knowhow was going to get even more impressive with its future offerings.
A Roadster version came along in 2011, along with a Black Series version in 2013, upping power to 622bhp. Formula 1 also used an SLS AMG as the official safety car for its races too; if it is good enough to lead F1 cars, that is a pretty good analysis of the car's capabilities and character.
Since the birth of the SLS, Mercedes-AMG have unveiled other sole Mercedes-AMG models such as the AMG GT, AMG GT Roadster and AMG GT 4-Door. We cannot wait to see what the future holds for this incredibly exciting, motorsport-inspired, renown brand.
Discover Your Own AMG with Stratstone
Here at Stratstone, we are delighted to offer a range of high-performance Mercedes-AMG vehicles, via our nationwide Mercedes-Benz retailers.
We would love to hear from you, contact your local Stratstone Mercedes-Benz retailer today.