Mercedes-AMG GT Black Series is fastest production car on the Nürburgring-Nordschleife
The incredibly close link to motorsport found in the new Mercedes-AMG GT Black Series was impressively demonstrated by GT3 driver Maro Engel on the "North Loop" of the famous Nürburgring. With an officially measured, notarized and certified time of 6:43.616 min for the 12.8 mile-long track and 6:48.047 min for the 12.944 mile-long total track, the new V8 rocket is placed in the top group of the street-legal "sports cars" category and is number one among the fully standard, unmodified models.
Maro Engel made full use of the entire potential offered by the new Mercedes-AMG GT Black Series, including the most powerful AMG V8 series engine ever offered with 720 hp, sophisticated aerodynamics and the extensive suspension adjustment options. For example, the carbon fiber front splitter was extended to the "Race" position, and the lower and upper wing blades of the rear spoiler were each adjusted to the middle position. The adjustable AMG coilover suspension with adaptive damping was lowered by 0.2 in at the front and 0.1 in at the rear to further enhance the venturi effect of the front diffuser. 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, racing professional Engel opted for the hardest of the three possible settings, and the 35-year-old adjusted the nine-stage AMG traction control between positions six and seven--depending on the section of the track. Mercedes-AMG GT Black Series customers can also take advantage of all these settings and adjustment possibilites.
The MICHELIN Pilot Sport Cup 2 R MO tires with "soft compound," are standard equipment and were developed in collaboration with development partner Michelin especially for the top sports car in the AMG GT lineup. The highest possible level of stopping performance was ensured by the standard AMG ceramic high-performance composite braking system.
"That was a really impressive ride," said Maro Engel after completing the record lap. "With speeds of up to almost 168 mph in the Kesselchen section of the track and well over 186 mph 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 (for the 12.944 mi total track) 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."
Also in terms of aerodynamic efficiency, the Mercedes-AMG GT Black Series shares a great deal from the race car. The carbon-fiber hood with two large exhaust outlets is a direct derivation from motorsport, for example. These specifically guide the warm air flowing from the slanted radiator setup out of the engine compartment. This increases overall downforce, as does the sophisticated rear wing and the largely enclosed underbody.
"It's really impressive how much downforce the Black Series generates and how confident and reliably 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.
Just as they were for AMG development engineer Demian Schaffert, who set a new lap record with the Mercedes-AMG GT 63 S on the same day, the conditions were not quite ideal for Maro Engel either. When the GT3 professional drove through the light gate of the timing system on November 4, 2020 at 5:02 p.m., not only were 12.944 miles of Green Hell behind him in the dim light – the GT3 professional also set the fastest time at an outside temperature of 44.6 degrees Fahrenheit and 50 degrees Fahrenheit on the asphalt. In addition, some sections of the extremely demanding track were not yet totally dry.
The fast lap times were precisely measured by neutral experts from "wige SOLUTIONS". An independent notary also certified the condition of the vehicle as well as the measurements. The spectacular drive can be watched on a video here:
Why there are two differently timed laps on the Nürburgring-Nordschleife
The Nürburgring-Nordschleife is regarded as the most difficult racetrack in the world and is included in every new development by Mercedes-AMG. A record lap is therefore the most demanding test of the qualities of a sports car. The times are determined for two track alternatives – 12.8 and 12.944 miles long.
Since 1997, the 12.8-mile circuit has been the measure of all things. The specialist magazine sport auto from the Motor Presse Stuttgart publishing house drives this circuit as part of their so-called "Supertest". For historical reasons, the short straight at the T13 grandstand – from the turnoff from the Nordschleife to the Grand Prix circuit to the exit of the Grand Prix circuit onto the Nordschleife – was not included in the timing. The starting line is therefore at the end of the T13 grandstand in a northerly direction and the finish line is at the beginning of the T13 grandstand in a southerly direction. Therefore, no complete lap is measured after the flying start. The total length of the course is exactly 12.8 miles.
In 2019 the official Nürburgring lap was added. It was organized by the operating company "Nürburgring 1927 GmbH & Co. KG" and is 761.155 ft longer, because the start and finish line are identical here, also on the T13 section, so a full Nordschleife lap of 12.944 miles is driven and measured with a flying start.
Numerous conditions must be met for both record times to be recognized: In addition to timekeeping with calibrated photoelectric sensor technology, official record attempts and attempts to achieve a lap time are always accompanied by a notary. In addition to monitoring the timekeeping, the vehicles and the tires are also inspected and approved by the notary. The classification of the vehicle classes is based on the official categories of the German Federal Motor Transport Authority ("Kraftfahrtbundesamt" KBA).