Brabus teamed with Bilstein to come up with a solution that would not compromise high-speed performance. While they were at it, they also decided to incorporate a front lift system for clearing the ramps and other obstacles that are the bane of low sports cars. Operated by a button next to the Ride Control and Exhaust valve activation, this raises the nose of the car by 50mm (2 inches), sufficient to avoid contact with most car park ramps. The final suspension solution uses bespoke coilovers with significantly increased spring rates and adjustable dampers. The front spring rate is increased by 31 percent and the rears are up by 26 percent. The variable rate damping allows a roughly 35 percent difference in damping between the Comfort and Sport settings to be achieved at the touch of a button on the center console. The antiroll bars are also uprated to further reduce roll in fast corners.
In the final analysis, the Brabus Sport setting ends up a few percent stiffer than the factory original, although it is quite discernable with the larger wheels and tires. At the other end of the scale, the Comfort setting makes an appreciable difference to ride comfort, taking the sting out of the low-speed ride. This is a very worthwhile upgrade, even for a standard SLS, and if you stick to factory-size wheels, the ride would be even better.
As it is, our test car had the same 20- and 21-inch front and rear alloys as the Geneva Show car along with the Brabus Widestar rear wheelarch flares that add 20mm to each side. The standard SLS uses Continental ContiSportContact 5 P tires in 265/35 and 295/30 sizes on 19- and 20-inch flow-formed alloy wheels. Brabus goes up one size with 9.5x20 and 11x21-inch ultra-light forged wheels that weigh 12 percent less than the factory ones. Shod with 275/30-20 and 295/25-21 Z-rated tires from either Pirelli or Yokohama, they look terrific and give the car a more purposeful stance.
The other bodywork additions are the carbon-fiber front air splitter and a matching spoiler on the trunk lid. Both contribute to reduce lift over their respective axles for greater stability at speed. Carbon fiber is also used for the air intakes on the sides of the nose, the air outlet covers aft of the front wheel arches and the side sills with their air intakes in front of the rear arches, as well as the rear underbody diffuser, above which are air outlets for the rear valance.
As the gray Geneva Show car was sold, we used its immaculate engine bay and interior to photograph as representative of a customer’s car and drove Brabus’ red development car with its standard interior. “Plush” is the best word to describe the exquisite interior on the show car. The seats, center console, lower half of the dashboard and part of the door panels are covered in off-white leather with contrasting anthracite stitching, cross stitching in the case of the seats.
The floor and floor mats are finished in quilted anthracite leather, and the anthracite leather on the seats and steering wheel airbag have off-white stitching highlights. The dashboard top is covered in non-reflective anthracite Alcantara with off-white stitching, and this is carried through to the door cappings.
Fine details abound, and even the buttons that clip the seatbelt retainers to the seat backrests have been replaced with ones featuring the Brabus logo. The Brabus lettering on the sills lights up blue at night in a 3D design, and LED lights under the sills light your way to the gullwing doors. The final touch is the 400-km/h speedometer.
For most people, a standard SLS AMG is the ultimate Mercedes sports car, but Brabus customers tend to look at any standard Mercedes or AMG car as just the starting point. The Brabus SLS 700 Biturbo is the result of starting at the top of the tree.
Brabus 700 Biturbo
Longitudinal front engine, rear-wheel drive
6.2-liter V8, dohc, 32-valve, twin-turbocharged. Forged Mahle pistons, custom exhaust manifold, custom Garrett turbochargers, twin water-to-air intercoolers, ported cylinder heads, custom catalytic converters, titanium exhaust, Brabus software
Wheels and Tires
Brabus alloys, 9.5x20 (f), 11x21 (r)
Pirelli P Zero, 275/30 (f), 295/25 (r)
Brabus Widestar rear wheel arch flares, carbon front splitter and rear spoiler, carbon vent accents
Custom quilted leather and Alcantara with contrasting stitching, Brabus logo accents
Peak Power: 700 hp @ 6600 rpm
Peak Torque: 627 lb-ft @ 4300 rpm
0-62 mph: 3.7 sec.
Top Speed: 213 mph (unrestricted)