Brabus Vanish Is the Ultimate Mercedes-Benz SL65 AMG Black Series Made Moreso
Mercedes AMG is justifiably proud of its ultimate evolution of the SL, the SL65 AMG Black. With flared fenders, a fixed roof, a pop-up rear spoiler, upgraded suspension and brakes and, oh yeah, a ridonkulously-potent twin-turbo 6.0L V12 that has been upgraded to produce 670hp and 738 lb.-ft of torque, (It’s actually limited to 738; any more twist would mince the stock 5-speed automatic transmission.), it’s one of the baddest cars to ever wear the Three-Pointed Star. But what if you want yours to be even badder?
Well, you could talk to a marque-specialist tuner like Brabus, which is just what the mystery Middle Eastern owner of this particular SL65 AMG Black, which has been rechristened the Vanish, did. The first thing you notice is, of course, the matte black paint. Is it safe to say that matte finishes have jumped the shark? Yes, perhaps even more so than the use of the phrase “jumped the shark.” However, that doesn’t necessarily make such paint jobs (particularly this one) look less wicked. As for that thing on the hood? No idea. Almost looks like they took the plastic shroud normally stuck over the top of the engine, trimmed it and attached it to the outside of the hood. Whatever the case, it looks pretty tacky compared to the Corvette ZR1’s hood window.
But really, it’s what’s under that hood that counts, right? In the case of this baby, Brabus has added 130hp (primarily through bigger turbos and a freer-flowing exhaust system), for a total of 800 horses. Brabus was also able to increase the torque thanks to a new, beefier gearbox that won’t cry “Uncle!” when the full fury of the dozen-cylinder beast is unleashed. Not surprisingly, the Vanish is expected to best the stock SL65 AMG Black’s 0-62 mph mark of 3.8 seconds, and the removal of the electronic speed limiter guarantees that it will handily eclipse the latter’s artificially-low 199 mph top speed.
Other custom touches on the Vanish include bigger brake pads, sill plates, black leather and suede upholstery with red stitching, and a small plaque on the ashtray lid confirming that the Vanish is one of one (as if the SL65 AMG Black Series wasn’t rare enough to begin with, at only 350 units worldwide). Is it over the top? As far as looks are concerned, it’s fairly tame; as far as performance is concerned, it’s anything but. And you know what? We’re okay with that.