World’s fastest street-legal SUV touted

Dec 29, 2009

With a top speed of 200.3 mph the Brabus GLK V12 set a new speed record for street-legal SUVs on the Italian high-speed test track. The special model, powered by a 12-cylinder, twin turbo engine with 740 bhp / 552 kW, celebrated its world debut at the Dubai International Motor Show in December.

Brabus, Bottrop, Germany, built the high-performance SUV based on the Mercedes GLK-Class. Its starting price is a mere plus-$568,000.

The displacement engine, lubricated with synthetic motor oil, delivers 5,500 rpm and produces a peak torque of 1,350 Nm (995 lb.-ft.) at 2,100 rpm, limited in the car electronically to 1,100 Nm (811 ft.-lb.).

Displacement is increased from 5.5-6.3 liters with the help of a special crankshaft, larger cylinder bore, special pistons and piston rods. The twin turbo system has two larger turbochargers and more efficient intercoolers.

Special mapping and OnBoard Diagnostics II result in clean emissions that meet the strict requirements of the Euro IV standard. The GLK V12 is equipped with the latest driving dynamics systems such as ABS, ASR and ESP.

Power is transferred to the rear wheels via a reinforced five-speed automatic transmission and a Brabus limited-slip differential with a locking rate of 40%. These measures make this GLK V12 the fastest street-legal SUV in the world.

Exterior and interior designs upgrade the SUV, as well. The front apron of the Widestar version has large air dams that provide radiators and front brakes with ample cooling air. In combination with a carbon-fiber spoiler lip, the front apron also minimizes aerodynamic lift on the front axle.

Additional aerodynamic properties include fender flares on front and rear axle that add 2” to the width. LED lights in the rocker panel undersides activate with the keyless remote or by pulling on a door handle; these lights illuminate the ground next to the SUV for safe entering and exiting the vehicle in the dark.

A Brabus roof spoiler also reduces aerodynamic lift. The rear also has a rear apron.

Four tailpipes jut out from the stainless steel sport exhaust system.

Larger wheel houses provide space for Monoblock wheels up to king-size wheels with a diameter of 22”: 10Jx22 wheels come in five different designs. High-performance tires can be mounted up to size 295/25 ZR 22.

Brabus coilover sport suspension was developed specifically for the SUV; it is height-adjustable on front and rear axle and features 10 selectable settings each for bound and rebound.

The interior of the GLK V12 comes with a Brabus full-leather interior, an ergonomically shaped sport steering wheel, speedometer with 205-mph scale and stainless-steel scuff plates. Custom-tailored consoles for the backs of the GLK front seats feature an integrated 7” LCD screen and a DVD player.