Mercedes announces special Formula One edition SL 63
To celebrate winning the 2014 Formula One world title and clinching the constructor's title too, Mercedes is building two very special editions of its flagship sports convertible.
Apart from their scarcity -- only 19 examples in white and 19 examples in black will ever be built -- what makes the commemorative cars so special is that they were co-designed by this year's World Champion, Lewis Hamilton, and runner-up and fellow team driver, Nico Rosberg.
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Plump for the black edition and you'll be taking delivery of a car styled by Hamilton. As well as a special black exterior finish that extends to the door mirror covers and door handles, there is gold accenting on the spoilers, fins and rear bumper. The contrasting continues in the cabin with nappa black leather offset by gold stitching and an equally gold sheen to elements such as air conditioning vents.
Go for Nico's slightly more understated taste and the SL will come in an equally rare white finish, but with contrasting grey elements.
However, both cars are the same under the hood -- a 5.5-liter bi-turbo V8 calls the shots, offering 585hp on top, 900Nm of torque and a top speed of 300km/h.
As for the decision to build just 19 of each model, the logic is simple -- there were 19 races in this year's Formula One competition and each model will feature one of the 19 tracks as a hand-embroidered interior pattern as well as on an engraved dashboard plaque and key fob.
And for those collectors that can't decide if they prefer dazzling black and gold or subtler white and grey hues, Mercedes has the perfect solution: don't pick. The company plans to initially offer the cars for sale in matching pairs complete with a helmet worn by both F1 stars plus a choice of either Hamilton or Rosberg's limited-edition IWC Ingenieur chronograph watch.
Lucky owners will also get an invitation to the opening race of the 2015 season in Melbourne, Australia, all for €629,510 ($785,618).
The cars are scheduled to be built and delivered in April where they will be presented to their owners at the German Grand Prix -- Mercedes-Benz's home race.