The Best of Mercedes-AMG. We spend 2 days on the tracks of Willow Springs with 41 AMGs... doing 150mph in the SLS black series, exploring the desert with the G63, peeking at the late night garage repairs, and more! featured post *NOTlabs

The Best of Mercedes-AMG. We spend 2 days on the tracks of Willow Springs with 41 AMGs... doing 150mph in the SLS black series, exploring the desert with the G63, peeking at the late night garage repairs, and more!

October 16th, 2013

Firstly, NOTCOT's love of AMG is no secret. In nearly a decade of NOTCOT, our adventures visiting the AMG factory in Affalterbach, meeting the man behind our engine, and getting a test lap in one of the first C63 Coupés on the Bremen test track while visiting the factory... still ranks as one of the most incredible things we've experienced over the years. Well, i guess Mercedes-AMG just topped that...

I just spent the last two days at Willow Springs International Raceway experiencing the Best of Mercedes-AMG. With 41 AMG vehicles and over 16,000 horsepower there was a lot of driving to do. So far, we've shown you the donut duel between the C63 507 edition sedan and coupé.

The two days were a dream. I did 150mph in the SLS AMG Black Series, a beautiful machine with exceptional performance. Yes, that was like a face melting 1.2G in the corners... Went desert exploring in the G63. Found the E63 AMG 4Matic to be a surprising race car hidden in a station wagon body. Did laps with Maxi aka Maximilian Götz - who lived up to his reputation as quite the driver! Got a taste of just how fun the AMG Driving Academy is with its head, Reinhold Renger. And even got a peek into the garages late at night where they worked on all the cars till the wee hours of the morning to get ready for the next day. Take a peek below at the adventures with Mercedes-AMG... as anyone who has driven one knows, the power of the AMG engines feel amazing. Getting to play with them all on the track... that was truly another kind of rush.

Here's a a press photo from Mercedes-Benz USA of the AMG line up since I did not have a 60 ft scissor lift handy.
Pulling into Willow Springs International Raceway, which is about an hour and a half north of LA out in the desert.
I started out on the Streets of Willow, which is the smaller, technical track.
Grab a hemet and pick a car!
Reinhold Renger, head of the AMG Driving Academy, led us on a couple of warm up laps in the SLS AMG.
I followed behind him in the CLA45 AMG, which is the the most powerful 4-cylinder car in the world with 360hp.
Next up, the C63 Coupe with the 507 Edition package.
Perhaps the most surprising of all, the E63 AMG 4Matic is a race car that looks like a station wagon!
C63 507 Edition Coupe and Sedan before the donut duel (check out the video!)
The C63 507 Edition shifter features the emblem of Mercedes-AMG. Surprisingly nice in your palm while driving...
Check out the Donut Duel that ensued.
The tires after the donut dual were impressively destroyed.
After that, the tires needed changing.
There were plenty of AMG's to grab for test drives on the roads around the racetrack.
Had fun with the G63 exploring in the desert.
As we wrapped up the first day, I watched all the cars line up over by the garage area to be inspected and repaired for the next day.
Mercedes-AMG brought a whole crew of engineers, technicians, and mechanics to make sure that each car was performing perfectly. In the left garage you can see boxes of spare parts, mostly brake pads. Apparently they had nearly a palettes worth of brake pads on hand for the activities.
SLS AMG Black Series in the garage getting new brake pads and tires.
Still stunning even in pieces... imagine if it was a wheel-free levitating car of the future!
Time for a dinner and drinks with the the AMG crew.
Day 2 : We arrived at the track around 7:30 AM to find a fleet of SLS AMG Black Series' waiting for us.
The SLS Black Series is lighter, faster, and wider than the standard SLS, making it perfect for the race track.
All the additional trim on the black series' exterior improves the aerodynamics.
The gullwing style just doesn't get old.
Once again we grabbed a helmet, but this time everything felt a bit more intense. Yesterday was a smaller and slower track. Today was fast and not for the faint of heart.
Grab a key. Hop in the car.
We were led out onto the Big WIllow track by Maxi aka Maximilian Götz in pairs. During the warm up lap we were hitting speeds in excess of 100MPH without braking. All I could do was focus on the race-line and controlling the car. We would eventually work our way up to 150+ MPH.
Maxi was constantly on the radio giving us pointers and helping us find the fastest way around the track. He was usually driving with one hand on the wheel and the other on the radio. Despite this, we usually could not catch him.
Here's a vide of a hot Lap on Big Willow with championship winning race car driver Maximilian Götz. This is my only track video because I was driving the other laps! Hopped in with Maxi to give you a feel of what it was like inside.
Flyby at the main straight. The sound from the 622hp V8 is incredible.
Maximilian Götz's race car
A press pic of Black Series SLS' at sunset...
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