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Country of origin:Germany
Produced in:2020
Source:Company press release
Last updated:July 15, 2020
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Click here to download printer friendly versionThe most powerful AMG V8 series engine of all time, the most expressive design, the most elaborate aerodynamics, the most intelligent material mix, the most distinctive driving dynamics: For the new Mercedes-AMG GT Black Series, the Affalterbach designers have pulled out all the stops when it comes to the art of vehicle design. The new super sports car perfectly embodies the brand's rich tradition in motorsport, as well its many years of expertise in developing complete vehicles which impress in every respect. The result is an output of 537 kW (730 hp) from a V8 engine with a 'flat' crankshaft, combined with active aerodynamics and a design which stems directly from the current AMG GT3 racing car.

At Mercedes-AMG, the Black Series has been synonymous with a very special type of car since 2006: uncompromisingly sporty, with an expressive design and the most consistent technology transfer from motorsport to series production. Black Series models are exclusive automotive rarities. They have not been developed to gather dust in collectors’ garages, but for high-speed use on racetracks, despite being approved for roads. The AMG GT Black Series represents a new highlight in this tradition: It is the most powerful Mercedes-AMG with a V8 series engine.

In order to emphasise the redefinition of the super sports car, the engine specialists in Affalterbach have once again extensively further developed the tried-and-tested 4.0-litre biturbo unit - despite it already being renowned for excellent driveability, power delivery and torque progression. The specifications were clear: Significantly more power than the previous flagship model of the AMG GT family, an even more agile throttle response, maximum torque - all of which meant that a radical change was needed in the form of a new, 'flat' crankshaft.

“The new GT Black Series is our latest automotive highlight and continues a tradition established in 2006. The sixth version of its kind is another AMG milestone and impressive proof of the incredible development expertise in Affalterbach. I am proud of the team who have created a unique super sports car, which now represents the absolute peak of our successful GT family. The performance, looks and driving dynamics of the GT Black Series are second to none. This project was a fantastic end to my work at AMG, for which I am truly thankful,” says Tobias Moers, Chairman of the Board at Mercedes-AMG GmbH.

The design of a V8 engine gives designers plenty of room to play with in one key element: the crank arrangement on the crankshaft. This influences the characteristics of the engine. There are usually two variants in V8 engines: the ‘cross plane’ where the crankpins of the four pairs of cylinders are at 90-degree angles to each other, which AMG has used in all previous V8 engines, or the ‘flat crankshaft’, where all crankpins are on the same plane with a 180-degree offset ('flat plane').

If you look at the front of a cross-plane crankshaft, you will be able to identify the cross that gives it its name. The benefits of these crankshafts are superb smoothness and high torque at low rotational speeds. The characteristic sound is another hallmark feature of the cross-plane V8 engine. In order to make optimal use of the displacement and therefore the performance potential in the case of the 4.0-litre V8 biturbo engine, the AMG engineers have essentially moved the exhaust side into the hot internal V of the two cylinder banks in the V8 engine.

Another way of increasing performance is by using a 'flat' crankshaft. In the flat-plane V8 engine, it looks like an inline four-cylinder model – except for the wider crankpins, which have two connecting rods each in the V8. Ignition in the flat-plane V8 jumps from one cylinder bank to the next, which further improves the gas cycle. The characteristic firing order with a 180-degree crankshaft angle offset is 1-8-2-7 4-5-3-6. This creates uniformly oscillating gas columns in the exhaust tract and on the intake side, whose resonance can easily be used to increase performance. An even greater advantage is a more agile throttle response.

The new GT Black Series engine may be based on the AMG 4.0-litre V8 biturbo engine with dry sump lubrication, but it has been given the new internal code M178 LS2 due to the numerous modifications. It achieves 537 kW (730 hp) at 6700-6900 rpm and delivers a maximum torque of 800 Nm at 2000-6000 rpm. New camshafts and exhaust manifolds are adapted to the new firing order and further improve the gas cycle.

Both twin scroll exhaust turbochargers are mounted in anti-friction bearings, as in the top-of-the-range four-door AMG GT Coupé, which optimises their throttle response even further. However, in the Black Series, the turbochargers have been given a larger compressor wheel, meaning that both can deliver a total of 1100 kg air per hour. By way of comparison: The figure is 900 kg/h for the AMG GT R. 7000 rpm is not critical as a continuous speed, the speed is limited at 7200 rpm. And the larger intercoolers guarantee that they always keep the charge-air temperature within the best possible range. The unique standing of the new engine is also reflected in the engine badge, which is kept in black.

What does the engine do for the AMG GT Black Series? It gives it a completely independent character, which is not only reflected in the type of power delivery, but also in its very particular sound pattern. And it enables highly impressive driving performance: The two-door vehicle shoots from 0 to 100 km/h in 3.2 seconds, and to 200 km/h in under nine seconds. The top speed is 325 km/h.

Power is transmitted to the rear wheels via the seven-speed AMG SPEEDSHIFT DCT 7G dual clutch transmission, which is located on the rear axle in a transaxle arrangement for optimal weight distribution, as is the case for all AMG GT models. It has been modified for use in the AMG GT Black Series and adapted to the increased torque of 800 Nm. The previous limits governing shift performance and response time have been extended, making them more suitable for racetracks.

This all adds up to very different handling characteristics, as not only are the accelerator and engine response more agile - the drive programs, start-up characteristics and gear changes are, too. The Race Start function is also now even more impressive, thanks to the increased starting revs, the more sensitive wheel slip control and the sports tyres fit for the racetrack. Furthermore, the transmission cooling has been adapted to the tougher requirements, and the transmission ratios have also been slightly modified.

The 'torque tube' creates the connection between the engine and the transmission. It is made of carbon fibre and, at just 13.9 kilograms, is around 40 percent lighter than its already weight-optimised aluminium counterpart in the AMG GT. As a structural component of the transaxle drivetrain, it creates an extremely flexurally and torsionally stiff connection between the engine and the transmission. It permits a very direct connection of the drivetrain that is favourable to driving dynamics and also plays a role in the vehicle’s balanced weight distribution. The drive shaft which rotates inside is also made from light carbon fibre.

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  Article Image gallery (30) Specifications