Mercedes-AMG celebrates anniversary with sale of race cars
An SLS GT3 and two AMG GT3 cars are being sold to commemorate AMG’s 1971 win at the 24 Hours of Spa.
50 years ago, AMG had no official ties to Mercedes. It was merely a tuning company created by some ex-Mercedes engineers. There was one car that really put the AMG name on the map, the Red Pig. They modified a damaged 300 SEL by increasing the V8’s displacement from 6.3 litres to 6.8, taking power to 422hp.
Measures were taken to bring the weight down by just under 200kg, but the car still sat at a portly 1600kg. It had lighter doors, bucket seats and no radio, but still had its interior wooden trims. Livery aside, there wasn’t too much to give away that this was a serious race car.
In 1971, the car was taken to the 24 Hours of Spa and shocked everyone by winning its class and even finishing second overall. This was a huge surprise due to its ungainly size compared to all of its competitors. It was a pivotal moment in the relationship between AMG and Mercedes, with the German giant eventually taking a controlling interest in the tuning company.
Mercedes-AMG is celebrating 50 years since this achievement with a trio of one-off race cars, all of which have liveries made to resemble the original ‘Rote Sau’. There’s one SLS AMG GT3 accompanied by a pair of Mercedes-AMG GT3 cars - a 2016 model and the current version.
These cars aren’t homologated so they’re not bound by any restrictions. The SLS’ power figure sits at a particularly healthy 650hp. All three cars will have anniversary plaques mounted on the interior with the original signature of the AMG founder Hans Werner.
None of these cars are particularly cheap if you're looking to buy. The 2016 AMG GT3 will empty your pocket of €500,000, the 2020 AMG GT3 is €575,000, whilst the SLS is the most expensive of the bunch at €650,000. Mercedes stopped producing the SLS 7 years ago now, so Mercedes used the last SLS shell it had to bring it up to GT3 specifications.