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Matte Missile: BRABUS Bullit Black Arrow to attack Geneva

03/03/2008   [Original: BRABUS via Autoblog]
Category: Aftermarket, Tuner Tuesdays, Sedans/Saloons, Sports/GTs, Geneva Motor Show, Euro, Supercars, Mercedes Benz, Brabus

Click above for high-res gallery of the BRABUS Bullit Black Arrow

At its Frankfurt introduction last year, the BRABUS Bullit was positioned as the tuner's ultimate "sleeper." Painted a fairly standard-looking gray with subdued black wheels and carbon-fiber accents, the Bullit did differ from some of BRABUS' more wildly extroverted vehicles, which scream "SUPER TUNER! LOOK AT ME!" That's not to say that the Bullit doesn't have the creds, though -- a 720-horsepower twin-turbo V12 with torque electronically limited to 811 lb-ft will certainly get the job done. (Sans the electronic safety net, it produces 974 lb-ft, in case you were wondering. Tires become one with the ozone layer at the mere thought of this.)

For Geneva this year, BRABUS is bringing the Bullitt Black Arrow. What's different about it? Not much, except that its matte black finish transforms it from "sleeper" to outright "stealth fighter." You can almost imagine the finish absorbing police radar and dissipating it as the Bullit screams past Johnny Law at 224 mph. Time to call in the chopper, officer -- you're not catching this one on four wheels. Still, in the end, the Black Arrow is essentially just a paint package for an already super-mega-double-secret-handshake special edition tuner car. And it's got a price to match -- €348,000 (same as the regular Bullit).

Gallery: BRABUS Bullit Black Arrow

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Roadster & Toaster: BRABUS SLR with ULTIMATE 112 "tender"

03/03/2008   [Original: BRABUS via Autoblog]
Category: Aftermarket, Tuner Tuesdays, Convertibles, Economy, Sports/GTs, Geneva Motor Show, Euro, Supercars, Mercedes Benz, SMART, Brabus

Click image for a hi-res gallery of the Brabus SLR and its tender

Megayachts usually come with fancy tenders, so why not supercars, too? BRABUS has taken the idea and run with it, pairing one of its tuned McLaren SLR Roadsters with a matching runabout in the form of a smart fortwo-based ULTIMATE 112. The SLR is the beneficiary of the usual complement of upgrades, including a full body and trim kit (dig those carbon fiber replacement "gills"), a custom interior, and the requisite underhood tweaking, which bestows the roadster with 650 horsepower -- enough to make the Kessel run to 62 mph in 3.6 seconds, with a top end of 211 mph.

When its time to park the super-Merc and head into more constrained areas of the city, it's occupants can switch over to the car's ULTIMATE 112 "tender" which is finished and appointed to perfectly match its "mothership." In this case, that means the same white paint, deep red roof fabric, and right red leather interior -- right down to the waffle-patterned leather footwell trim. Of course, the little shuttlecraft gets a power bump as well, with 112 thundering horses prancing ponies under the wee bonnet. The cost of this matching set? A mere €699,000 gets the job done for owners of either an SLR or a Maybach, and it shows us that BRABUS is uniquely capable of finding new and innovative ways to separate the obscenely wealthy from large chunks of their money.

The BRABUS press release gets into the minutiae after the jump.

Gallery: BRABUS SLR Roadster with ULTIMATE 112 "tender"

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Brabus mods coming to U.S. smart in the next few years?

12/06/2007   [Original: smart USA via Autoblog]
Category: Aftermarket, Tuner Tuesdays, Economy, SMART, Brabus

With all the hype surrounding the eminent sale of smart fortwos beginning next month here in the U.S., we overlooked a line on the smart's website that may hint at some hotted-up versions of the diminutive coupe. Although the model will initially be introduced with 1.0-liter three-pot, "Other engine types and sizes (including BRABUS) may become available in the next few years though no specific timeline has been outlined." What size engines they're referring to is up in the air, but if smart begins selling factory-authorized Brabus accessories - particularly the tuner's engine packages - it might open up a whole other demographic to the smart's growing fan base.


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Brabus builds its own Exelero, hits 205 mph at Nardo

11/21/2007   [Original: Brabus via Autoblog]
Category: Aftermarket, Sedans/Saloons, Maybach, MINI, Brabus

Click on the images to view in high-speed and high-resolution

Remember the Maybach Exelero? The ultra-premium marque from Merceceds-Benz built it almost two years ago as a high-speed test vehicle based on its Maybach 57 luxury sedan, but unfortunately never offered production versions to the public. To the rescue comes Brabus, those whacky German tuners who give the go-fast treatment to everything produced by the three-pointed star, from the Smart ForTwo all the way up to this 730-hp limousine.

Like the Exelero, Brabus' monster is based on the Maybach 57 and was built in order to achieve the highest speeds attainable. To get there, Brabus tuned the Maybach's twin-turbo V12 to the same standard as the CLS-based Brabus Rocket speed record car: that means boosting power from 550 hp to 730, thanks to an increase in displacement from 5.5 liters to 6.3, coupled with a new crankshaft, pistons, cylinder heads... the works. The turbos were beefed up, and along with the intercoolers, a custom exhaust was installed and the ECU was reprogrammed.

The result is a top speed of 330.2 km/h (205.2 mph in American speak) achieved at the same Nardo test track in Italy where the Exelero was put through its places. A far cry from the 218.4 mph achieved by the Exelero, but not to shabby in its own right. And here you thought the S versions of the Maybach 57 and 62 were obscene enough....

Check out the images in the gallery below, and the press release after the jump.

Gallery: Brabus Maybach 57 @Nardo

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Autoblog Podcast #77

09/21/2007   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Concept Cars, Frankfurt Auto Show, Podcasts, Coupes, Sports/GTs, Crossovers/CUVs, Aston Martin, Bentley, BMW, Bugatti, Dodge, Ford, GM, Jaguar, Lamborghini, Mercedes Benz, MINI, PSA, Volkswagen, Volvo, Renault, Brabus

We're back with Autoblog Podcast #77, and it's a Frankfurt-recap extravaganza. We discuss our favorite picks, as well as touching on some of the numerous highlights from the monster-sized show. We got a glimpse of the Jaguar XF in person, and it's better in person, but can it save Jaguar? BMW unveiled the X6, it's own AMC Spirit ripoff, not to be left behind by the Audi Cross Coupe Quattro from Shanghai. We continue on about exotic sheetmetal from Brabus, Schnitzer, Bentley, and Aston Martin, to name a few. On the more mundane tip, the Mazda 6 rocked, the Aveo was ugly, the Journey landed on its face, and could we please, please knock it off with the front quarter panel vents? After Alex's speed-round wrapup, we discuss a solitary piece of non-Frankfurt news, the Jeep J8. Yes, it's awesome, no, you can't buy one. Damn, that's stupid, Chrysler. Onward!

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Frankfurt 2007: BRABUS Bullit, live and brutally insane

09/12/2007   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Aftermarket, Frankfurt Auto Show, Tuner Tuesdays, Sedans/Saloons, Mercedes Benz, Brabus

Click the pic above for more high-res shots of the BRABUS Bullit.

The term "sleeper" isn't quite accurate when referring to the BRABUS Bullit. It has presence, with an air of understated brutality. The aero mods speak volumes about its predilection for sinister speed, and the V12 emblems flanking the sides only tell half the story. Housed within the engine bay is BRABUS' own SV12 Biturbo mill, producing 720 HP and an electronically governed 811 lb.-ft. of torque (974 lb.-ft. of twist would be available if it wouldn't tear apart the rear diff and liquify the tires). On your way up to the 224 MPH top speed, you'll pass 62 MPH in just under four seconds, and if you want all the details, you can read through our initial post here and check out our high-res pics in the gallery below.

Gallery: BRABUS Bullit

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Frankfurt 2007: BRABUS Ultimate 112 - Diminutive and demented

09/12/2007   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Aftermarket, Frankfurt Auto Show, Tuner Tuesdays, Economy, Hatchbacks, SMART, Brabus

Click the image above for a gallery of live and press shots of the BRABUS Ultimate 112.

Sure it's €45,900, but what better commuter companion could you have if you want to keep your BRABUS Bullit within the safe confines of your garage? BRABUS smart fortwo cabrio-based Ultimate 112 lives up to its lofty moniker with 112 metric horses (110 HP) sending power to 18-inch rollers, controlled by the standard flappy paddle gearbox. Upping the available grip of the tangerine city schlepper are a set of BRABUS coilovers, with 235/35 R 18 high-performance tires out back and 205s keeping things sticky in front.

All the details can be found in our previous post, and be sure to check out our live images in the gallery below.


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The Dark Knight crashes Lambos

09/11/2007   [Original: Kicking Tires via Autoblog]
Category: Concept Cars, Frankfurt Auto Show, Sedans/Saloons, Euro, Dodge, Brabus

When not chasing crims in the Batmobile, what car does Batman use as his daily driver? A Lamborghini Murcielago of course, but it seems the Italian exotic was too hot to handle even for Batman. Gotham City, a.k.a. Chicago, is turning out to be no safe place for Lamborghinis.

Last week, Chicago Bears star Lance Briggs crashed his Lamborghini and now three more have been crashed there while filming the sequel for last year's smash hit Batman Begins. According to's Iver Walkoe, who took these photos from his office, there were three smashed Lambos in total, two seen in the image and a third one just out of picture.

When the sequel opens next summer we can expect to see at least one scene where a dark gray Murcielago gets into a crash. A Bentley Continental GTC that was also spotted on the set and it's possible it may be a part of the movie since Bentley and Lamborghini are both owned by VW. That said, it's also possible it may belong to one of the actors.

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Frankfurt Preview: 335 HP Dodge Avenger-based STARTECH Starster

09/11/2007   [Original: STARTECH via Autoblog]
Category: Concept Cars, Frankfurt Auto Show, Sedans/Saloons, Euro, Dodge, Brabus

Click image for hi-res gallery

The STARTECH Starster is a Dodge Avenger-based concept prepared by BRABUS' Chrysler-tuning division for the Frankfurt Motor Show. In some respects, STARTECH's herculean effort succeeds. In others, not so much. We like the shaved door handles, as the convergence of shapes and curves at he rear door now looks muscular instead of simply cluttered. The big black wheels in the flared fenders are pretty mean-looking, too. On the flip side, the LED crosshairs in the Mustang-looking headlights are just weird, and that replacement front grille looks pretty lame, particularly the blacked-out elements in the middle. That taillamp/trim insert across the rear? More "cheesy aftermarket" than "respected tuner" if you ask us. Lastly, the whole orange-trim thing is just about played out. The tuner segment needs to fall in love with a new color.

The functional hood scoop (how novel!) feeds a 335-horsepower 2.4L turbo connected to a 5-speed manual. The 0-62 sprint takes 5.6 seconds, and this Avenger keeps going all the way up to 165 mph. The ultra-garish, full-leather interior (complete with quilted floormats) is an assault on the senses (and one's taste), yet it's still an improvement over the horribly bland, overly plastic stock interior. We can't wait to hear what Autoblog's Frankfurt posse thinks of this one when they see it in person.

Until then, you can read STARTECH's full press release after the jump.

Gallery: STARTECH Starster

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Frankfurt Preview: BRABUS Ultimate 112

09/11/2007   [Original: BRABUS via Autoblog]
Category: Frankfurt Auto Show, Convertibles, Economy, Euro, SMART, Brabus

Click image for high-res gallery

On tap for introduction in Frankfurt is the BRABUS ULTIMATE 112, based on the open-air smart fortwo. Sporting 112 metric horsepower (PS) from the turbo-3 underhood, and limited to 112 units total, you don't exactly need a detective's shield to figure out where the car's naming scheme comes from. All 112 rides are finished in the metallic/pearlescent orange you see above and are trimmed out in full-dress BRABUS Widestar bodywork and the always good-looking Monoblock V1 wheels. Inside, orange trim adorns the seats and instrument panel. Want one? Well, you need to live in Europe. Assuming you've got that covered, simply fork over €45,900 (!) and you're in. Exactly what you're in after dropping 45K Euros on a smart is a separate discussion. A mental institution, perhaps?


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