|Friday, 23-Mar-2007 09:35
Mercedes-Benz CLK DTM AMG
The Mercedes-Benz CLK DTM AMG: Thoroughbred race-track technology for the road
With its combination of state-of-the-art motorsport technology, driving dynamics more familiar from the race-track, captivating styling features and unrivalled exclusivity, the new Mercedes-Benz CLK DTM AMG will set the pulses of car enthusiasts racing that much faster.
Limited to a production run of only 100 units, this two-door masterpiece combines an AMG 5.5-litre V8 supercharged engine developing 428 kW/582 hp, a newly developed chassis, optionally available sports tyres and aerodynamics optimised in the wind tunnel to deliver a truly exceptional high-performance experience. The AMG thoroughbred accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in just 3.9 seconds, and on to an electronically governed maximum speed of 320 km/h.
The template for the development of the new CLK DTM AMG was the racing version of the Mercedes-Benz CLK, which Bernd Schneider drove to overall victory in the 2003 German Touring Car Masters (DTM) race series and which finished the season as the most successful model in the championship. The fixtures and fittings of the CLK DTM AMG also take their cue from its race-track sibling. Two leather-trimmed AMG sports bucket seats with four-point safety belts ensure unbeatable lateral support, whilst the oval AMG racing steering wheel with suede covering and new AMG instrument cluster with 360 km/h speedometer dial bring extra touches of motor racing allure to the interior. The first examples of the 100-unit limited-edition series will be delivered to customers from autumn 2004.
You need look no further than the exterior design of the new CLK DTM AMG to find the first traces of its racing pedigree, the transfer of high-end motorsport technology to the road given visual expression by the low slung front apron with large cooling air inlets, striking fender flarings, 19 and 20-inch AMG light-alloy wheels and the diffusor-look rear section with rear wing, all of which recall the head-turning muscularity of the successful CLK racing touring cars competing in the DTM. Added to which, a host of body components have been constructed from the high-strength and ex-tremely lightweight carbon-fibre-reinforced material CFRP.
Under the bonnet lurks a specially revised version of the AMG supercharged eight-cylinder engine familiar from the SL 55 AMG, featuring modifications to the crank-case, pistons, valve train, cooling system, intake duct, supercharger and exhaust system. The AMG V8 engine develops 428 kW/582 hp at 6100 rpm from its 5439-cc displacement, with peak torque of 800 Newton metres available from 3500 rpm.
Performance comparable with a super sports car
Boasting instant accelerator response, impressive torque development, free-revving vivacity and an unmistakeable V8 soundtrack, the wonderfully powerful AMG 5.5-litre supercharged V8 at the heart of the CLK DTM AMG was born to deliver performance characteristics normally the preserve of super sports cars. The sprint from 0 to 100 km/h vanishes in only 3.9 seconds on the way to an electronically governed maximum speed of 320 km/h.
The AMG SPEEDSHIFT five-speed automatic transmission injects further doses of motor-racing magic into the new arrival. The driver changes gear with a short dab of the steering-wheel-mounted shift paddles, the amazingly short shift times pushing back the boundaries of sporty driving and dynamic feel.
Newly developed spring and shock absorber units with adjustable coil springs, plus a locking differential on the rear axle
The chassis, meanwhile, is a more than worthy complement to the beguiling muscle of the powertrain. Already a firm fixture on the race-track, height-adjustable spring and shock absorber units with adjustable coil springs are also an integral feature of the new road car. The rear axle has been redesigned to include totally new spring links and hub carriers, as well as reinforced drive shafts. Uniball joints on both axles replace rubber elements and imbue the car’s driving characteristics with unrivalled precision. A multiple-disc limited-slip differential at the rear axle ensures optimum traction, whilst Acceleration Skid Control ASR and the Electronic Stability Program ESP® have been adjusted to take into account the enhanced levels of performance.
Optional Dunlop sports tyres offer exceptional grip
Optionally available sports tyres from DTM motorsport partner Dunlop (225/35 R 19 at the front and 285/30 R 20 at the rear) help the car maintain unrivalled contact with the road surface. These tyres offer particularly high levels of grip and are fitted on multi-piece AMG light-alloy wheels in double-spoke design (front: 9 x 19, rear: 10 x 20) which have been developed exclusively for the CLK DTM AMG. Their visually alluring spokes are extremely effective not only when it comes to turning heads, but also in providing ventilation for the brakes. And the newly developed AMG high-performance composite braking system with six-piston fixed callipers at the front and four-piston fixed callipers at the rear can be relied on to ensure flawless deceleration.
Functional racing-car ambience in the interior
Once inside the CLK DTM AMG, the driver is struck by a functional racing ambience laced with the trademark exclusivity of AMG high-performance cars. Two leather AMG sports bucket seats made from exceptionally lightweight CFRP and fitted with four-point safety belts offer the two occupants optimum lateral support, whilst the thick and oval-shaped rim of the high-grip suede-trimmed AMG racing steering wheel helps to transmit a particularly acute feel for the car. The door panels are made from CFRP, as are many other elements of the interior such as the instrument cluster. The newly designed centre console boasts a selection of eye-catching features, including the silver-coloured selector lever surround, the starter button, four rocker switches for auxiliary functions and a badge bearing the vehicle number.
The racing credentials of the CLK DTM AMG have not in any way diluted its adher-ence to the hallmark virtues shared by all Mercedes models – practicality, durability, safety, quality and service all meet the highest standards. The racing-inspired AMG Coupé will be built by hand as part of a close cooperation between Mercedes-AMG GmbH and H.W.A. GmbH. One of the most successful touring car racing teams of all time, H.W.A. GmbH is also responsible for the development and running of the new C-Class DTM cars. The first examples of the 100-unit limited-edition CLK DTM AMG will be delivered to customers from autumn 2004. Mercedes-AMG GmbH is responsible for marketing, sales and service activities relating to the new car.
Text and photos: DaimlerChrysler