In 1997, the engineers at Mercedes-Benz and AMG decided to celebrate the company’s 30th anniversary and their ten-year tenure with Daimler in a very unusual way – the release of the small-scale CLK GTR racing car. In total, 35 copies of the model were collected, of which 10 were purebred racing cars, and the other 25 were adapted for driving on public roads.
The debut of the racing version of the Mercedes CLK GTR took place at the 1997 World Championship, and then the German supercar beat out its main competitors in the person of McLaren F1 and Porsche 911 GT1. Well, a year later, the car won at all victories at all stages of the world championship, killing the intrigue in the bud!
Sales of 25 “road” cars, of which 20 were made in a coupe, and the remaining 5 in a roadster version, began in 1998. Mercedes asked for a whopping $ 1.5 million for their brainchild, thanks to which the Mercedes CLK GTR even got into the Guinness Book of Records as the most expensive car of that time. Despite the exorbitant price, the demand for the supercar was extremely high, and soon all the cars acquired owners.
The road version of the supercar differs from the racing version by the presence of air conditioning, a stereo system, power windows and ABS systems, as well as a unique design of doors that open vertically upwards. Naturally, the Germans also took care of the safety of the civilian modification. So, in the cockpit there are two airbags, and six-point seat belts hold the driver and passenger in the seats.
The Mercedes-Benz CLK GTR is powered by a 7.3-liter V12 engine with 612 hp, mated to a six-speed manual transmission. Thanks to such a powerful engine, the dynamic characteristics of the supercar are at a very high level. So, acceleration from zero to hundreds is carried out in just 3.4 seconds, and the maximum speed of the car reaches 346 km / h.
Interestingly, some buyers found the engine not powerful enough, therefore, for particularly fastidious customers, the Germans also released a Supersport modification, which differs from the original by the engine boosted to 710 hp. Out of 25 road-going CLK GTRs, only 2 cars received Supersport performance, while buyers had to fork out an additional $ 250,000.
The dimensions of the Mercedes CLK GTR are 4 855/1 950/1 164 mm (length, width, height, respectively). The wheelbase is 2,670 mm. The vehicle weighs 1,498 kg when equipped.
The design of the racing version of the supercar looks a little rough, but its “road” version is more sophisticated. A powerful front bumper with a menacing “mouth” of the air intake, as well as an impressive rear wing make the CLK GTR exterior more aggressive and memorable.
Note that the civil modification of the Mercedes-Benz CLK GTR is suitable for travel on public roads only on paper. In fact, none of the happy owners of a unique German supercar even thinks about driving around the city or beyond.
Firstly, the concept of the model is definitely racing, which means that on public roads on such a car you feel “out of place”. Second, it’s stupid to drive around the city or outside of it in a $ 1.5 million car.
Most owners of such expensive cars consider their car not as a means of transportation, but as a serious investment, since after some time the cost of a limited version of a car can double or even triple. So, at one of the auctions one Mercedes CLK GTR was sold for 2 million US dollars, while its odometer was just over 1,500 km!