Lot 250

London 2023

2009 Mercedes-Benz SL 65 AMG Black Series


£353,750 GBP | Sold

United Kingdom | London, United Kingdom



Chassis No.
  • One of only 350 examples produced
  • Astonishing performance from its 6.0-litre twin-turbocharged V-12 engine
  • Odometer reads only 835 miles at the time of cataloguing
  • Finished in Palladium Silver over a Black Nappa leather and Alcantara interior

The high-performance division of Mercedes-Benz, the renowned subsidiary AMG, has created some exceptional cars over the years. Few have acquired such a unique reputation, though, as the extremely rare SL 65 AMG Black Series—widely regarded as the ultimate version of the R230-generation SL. The attractive coupé was unveiled to widespread wonderment at Monterey Car Week in California in 2008, and immediately gained great acclaim—further to a degree of notoriety—as the most powerful road-going AMG car up to that point.

The Black Series was based on the SL 65, itself a muscular interpretation of the standard roadster, but featured an array of enhancements intended to add to the car’s desirability and performance. These included a comprehensive weight loss regime thanks to the use of carbon fibre-reinforced plastic—notably replacing most of the body panels—resulting in a fixed roof being fitted in place of the convertible hard-top. The only body components shared with the production SL 65 were the doors and side mirrors.

Furthermore, the addition of a brawny body kit enhanced the visual appeal of the Mercedes-Benz—extending its width by 4.5 inches at the front, and 4.1 inches at the rear—while a retractable spoiler, again made from carbon fibre, was added to the boot.

The most significant tweaks, however, were carried out under the bonnet. Although the SL 65’s 6.0-litre twin-turbocharged V-12 engine was retained, the use of larger turbos, a bigger intercooler and a remapped ECU had a major effect, with power increased to 661 horsepower and 738 pound-feet of torque. AMG’s SpeedShift Plus five-speed automatic gearbox channeled this performance to the road, and the results were predictably devastating, with Mercedes-Benz claiming that 0 to 62 mph was achievable in a blistering 3.8 seconds. The top speed was electronically limited to 199 mph.

The modifications didn’t end there. Among other key changes were sharper steering, a wider track, suspension fettled by motorsport expert KW for improved roadholding, and new AMG alloy wheels. It was, quite simply, a Mercedes-Benz that rewrote the rulebook in terms of performance potential, and although production was limited to a mere 350 examples worldwide, there was no shortage of demand for the Black Series and the entire production run swiftly sold out.

Interest in the car has remained high, and the Black Series offered here represents a rare opportunity to own a lightly used example, with the odometer reading only 835 miles at the time of cataloguing. Finished in stunning Palladium Silver—one of just six colours that were offered by the factory—its visual appeal is aided by a stunning Black Nappa leather and Alcantara interior.

Built to left-hand-drive specification, this example is documented to have been domiciled in Kuwait prior to being acquired by the consigning owner at RM Sotheby’s London auction in 2019, at which point its odometer read only 923 kilometres (573 miles). It has been registered in the United Kingdom since. Its most recent service history is documented with an invoice on file from Mercedes-Benz of Peterborough in March 2022, which details the supply and fitting of new boot struts as well as the replacement of its engine oil and filter. The car is offered for sale with its Mercedes-Benz operating manual and service book.

This stunning SL 65 AMG Black Series is sure to attract plenty of attention from Mercedes-Benz aficionados, given both the rarity of this model and such sparing use.