New Sasol GTC cars set for thrills

The iconic Grand Prix Circuit will present a new challenge to the GTC drivers as they tackle the country’s fastest racetrack on June 16.

Suzuki’s new Swift hatch and sedan in SA

Suzuki kicks off its new model assault with an all new Swift hatchback and standalone sedan called the Dzire.

Hamann's 468kW winged wonder

2011-02-28 10:51

WINGED-WONDER: If you really desire a fixed rear spoiler and a surfeit of chequered-flag composite trim, this Hamann Hawk is just for you.

Vehicle Specs
Manufacturer Mercedes-Benz
Model Hamann Hawk
Engine 6.2l V8
Power 468kW
Torque 680Nm
Transmission Seven-speed
Zero To Hundred 3.6 sec
Top Speed 320km/h
Tyres F: 245/30 ZR21, R: 345/25 ZR21
In an about turn for its business, German tuner Hamann, best known for its BMW aftermarket conversions, has now taken an interest in Mercedes-Benz’s AMG-built SLS.

Although one could hardly unpack a single suspect detail necessitating improvement on Mercedes-Benz’s outstanding gullwing supercar, Hamann says its new ‘Hawk’ package is just the thing for those discerning (or plainly mad) SLS owners requiring something a touch more individualistic.


The Hamann Hawk package adds a rather interesting aesthetic to the SLS. With an endurance racer specification rooftop air intake, reshaped front apron, composite bumper (featuring regulation aero cut-outs), lower side skirts, rather ornate fixed rear wing and diffuser those gracious SLS styling lines are slightly, well, let us be kind – compromised.

Rolling in the Hawk’s re-sculptured wheel arches are for 21" wheels, forged with what Hamann’s technicians claim are a unique technique to attain the best anodized finish available.

An adjustable coil spring over damper suspension upgrade is added to each wheel, too, enabling 30mm lowering for optimal tracking stability – which is a good thing considering the additional urge Hamann’s engine technicians gave managed to extract from the Affalterbach 6.2-litre V8.


Although AMG thought it had taken the naturally aspirated M156 unit to its most extreme level of road-legal tuning, Hamann’s engineering workshop has added a custom-made titanium exhaust system, swopped out the catalytic converters for high-flow units and brazenly fooled around with the engine’s electronic control parameters.

MONSTER MERC: Although brand purists will be upset about its BMW-biased Hamann badge, this Hawk is the quickest AMG yet…

The result? How does 468kW of the finest naturally aspirated V8 power grab you? Beyond the 48kW increase in power, torque is up by 30NM to 680.

Measured statistically by virtue of the car’s 0-100km/h sprint time of 3.6 seconds, the extra power doesn't improve the series production AMG SLS by much (only 0.2 seconds).

Hamann says its newfangled exhaust plumbing adds an even deeper, more menacing, resonance to the 6.2-litre V8’s acoustic signature though; which is a trifle difficult to believe considering the production SLS gullwing’s soundtrack, a cacophony of noise nearly able to raise the dead.

GREAT WING: Plenty of downforce here for the Hawk.

Beyond the (extensive) exterior styling modifications, revised suspension and power upgrade Hamann’s trim and texture craftsmen have also reupholstered the SLS cabin with a combination of suede and composite surfacing.

So, is Hamann’s take on the SLS a worthy alterative to Affalterbach’s own handiwork? Well, if you really desire a fixed-wing SLS, we would rather go all-out and place an order signature for the GT3 specification racecar.

More 2011 Geneva auto show reports.

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