Brabus is one brand that can take some of Mercedes-Benz’s most powerful models and turn them into complete performance monsters.
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Mercedes-Benz AMG makes some of the coolest and craziest cars in the market in mass production, from fitting a massive 6.2-litre naturally aspirated V8 into their smallest sedan, to a hugely powerful twin-turbo V12 in their largest and boxiest SUV while Brabus take this already wild idea and increases the ridiculousness.
Brabus is a German aftermarket tuner and restorer of mostly Mercedes-Benz and AMG cars. Brabus has been creating supercars from sports cars for the last 40-odd years, with the name originating from the two of its founders, Klaus Brackmann and Bodo Buschmann.
Brabus at first only focused on increasing performance, but the company also offers cosmetic upgrades in the form of splitters, diffusers, spoilers, and whole-body kits from subtle visual upgrades to blatant and completely noticeable wide-body kits.
Over the years, Brabus has built some amazing cars, from beautiful restorations with the 300SL Gullwing and 280SL Pogoda, to wild custom rides such as the Black Baron and Rocket 900. So, here are some of Brabus’s craziest creations over the years.
The Brabus B45-450 is based on the Mercedes-AMG A45S, but instead of producing only 416 horsepower and 369 pound-ft of torque, Brabus managed to increase it to 450 horsepower and 406 pound-ft of torque from the 2.0-litre turbocharged inline-4. This makes the already most powerful production turbo-4 even more powerful. Brabus also included a wide range of mechanical and cosmetic upgrades over the standard A45S, including slight body kits with more aggressive bumpers front and back, a larger spoiler on the trunk lid, and some customary Brabus wheels. The B45-450 is most likely the hottest of the super-hot hatch segment.
Brabus 6.5 W124
As early as the 1990s, Mercedes wanted a slice of the super-saloon pie and kindly asked Porsche to help them with the 500E, which then had a large V8 in a relatively small saloon. Then AMG tinkered with the car and created the E60 AMG, which had an even larger engine in the same sized car. Brabus saw this and decided that it could do better. So, they tinkered with it even more and created the Brabus 6.5, which had an even larger engine. The Brabus 6.5 was quite a rare car, so rare that Brabus only ever made one of them.
Whilst the extremely but-not-quite-as rare E60 AMG only had to do with 381 horsepower and 428 pound-ft of torque, the Brabus 6.5 had a massive 450 horsepower and nearly 500 pound-ft of torque. Brabus also did the logical thing and removed the 155 mph speed limiter. To handle the power, Brabus fitted the car with a new automatic transmission and a toughened limited-slip differential.
Brabus ML V12 7.3
Brabus saw this engine and decided to do awesome and crazy things with it as well. One of these crazy things was to put it in the front of an SUV, specifically the ML-Class. The standard ML-Class AMG already had a hefty 5.4-litre V8 producing 340 horsepower and 376 pound-ft of torque, however, Brabus’ ML V12 7.3 had a massive 7.3-litre V12 producing 590 horsepower and 590 pound-ft of torque. It also had an unrestricted speed limiter and held an official record as the fastest SUV at the time, achieving an impressive 162 mph all the way back in 1998.
The Brabus Rocket was the original ultra-fast Brabus car that brought forth the name. The Rocket was based on the first generation Mercedes CLS-Class and instead of featuring either a supercharged 5.5-litre or naturally aspirated 6.2-litre V8, the car was fitted with a 6.2-litre twin-turbo V12 producing 720 horsepower and 970 pound-ft of torque.
The Brabus Rocket actually originated out of a program held by the German Federal Traffic Ministry and the German Automobile Tuners Association. Brabus created a police version for the German police service and with the speed limit disabled, the Rocket could do the 0 mph to 62 mph sprint in 3.2 seconds and achieve a top speed of a massive 227 mph.
Brabus 800 BiTurbo Coupé
The Brabus 800 BiTurbo is a Coupé that is based on the Mercedes-AMG S63 Coupé, which is a more luxurious grand tourer compared to the saloon. The 800 BiTurbo Coupé shares much of its drivetrain with the standard S63 AMG, but Brabus has changed the turbos and the engine management unit to produce more power and a lot more torque.
The 800 produces 790 horsepower and 738 pound-ft of torque, going to all four wheels. There are some Brabus visual upgrades, however, they are relatively subtle to keep the more luxurious aesthetic. One slightly obvious option to definitely go for would be the Monoblock M wheels, as they add a little something extra to the slightly sinister nature of the car.
The Brabus Bullit is probably one of the more ridiculous cars in the German tuner’s history. It is a W204 sedan, but instead of being fitted with the 6.2-litre naturally aspirated V8 from AMG, it has a modified 6.3-litre twin-turbo V12 producing 720 horsepower and 974 pound-ft of torque.
Even though the mechanics are absolutely ridiculous, the more eye-watering part of the car is not the fantastical engineering and performance, but rather the price. When the Bullit was new in 2008, the car cost N224 million! That is roughly 8 times the price of a standard C63 AMG.
Brabus G900 Rocket Edition
The Mercedes-Benz G-Class, popularly called the G-Wagon, is a wildly excellent vehicle, with car enthusiasts either really liking it or loathing it. Built as the German equivalent to the American Jeep Wrangler and the British Land Rover, it became popular amongst off-roading enthusiasts and wealthy city-dwellers. Brabus has made multiple versions of the G-Wagon, ranging from wide-body V8 off-roaders to luxurious V12 Maybach-inspired limousines. The most powerful of the lot is the current G900 Rocket Edition, producing 900 horsepower and 922 pound-ft of torque from a heavily reworked 4.5-liter twin-turbo V8. The G900 Rocket does the 0 mph to 60 mph sprint in a time of only 3.7 seconds and tops out at 174 mph.
Brabus Stealth 65
The Brabus Stealth 65 is a tuned version of the Mercedes-Benz SL65 AMG Black Series, which itself is already a tuned version of the normal SL65 AMG. The Stealth 65 has the same 6.0-litre twin-turbo V12 as in the SL65 Black, however thanks to a remapped ECU and some larger turbos, the Stealth 65 produces 810 horsepower and 1047 pound-ft of torque.
The Stealth 65 also gets some visual upgrades over the standard SL65 Black, including many carbon-fibre trim parts and a carbon hood power bulge to add to the more aggressive styling. The Brabus Stealth 65 is by far the most powerful of the SL65 AMG’s custom variants, and can mostly be found amongst the car collections of Dubai.
Brabus Rocket 900 “ONE OF TEN”
The current Brabus Rocket is based on the AMG GT63S 4-Door 4MATIC+ and, as the name suggests, will only be manufactured in a limited run of 10. The Rocket 900 has the same twin-turbo V8 as the standard GT63S, however, it has been upgraded inside and out. The displacement was upped to 4.5 litres and the turbos were exchanged for larger ones. As a result, the engine puts out 900 horsepower and 922 pound-ft of torque, going to all four wheels via a tuned version of AMG’s all-wheel-drive system.
The car can hit a top speed of 206 mph – a bit slower than other Brabus products – and can do the 0 mph to 62 mph run in a remarkable 2.8 seconds, with the 0-125 mph occurring in less than 10 seconds. The Rocket 900 has many cosmetic and visual changes over the GT63S, including carbon fibre everywhere. Brabus also fitted a new permanent spoiler at the back as opposed to a retractable one, and the wheels are aerodynamically designed to lessen drag and help cool the brakes which are also made of carbon fibre to reduce overall mass. The Brabus Rocket 900 is truly one of the craziest saloons to ever exist.
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