RE: Brabus K8: Spotted

Saturday 26th January

Brabus K8: Spotted

Bottrop's take on the SL55 AMG had 530hp and cost £165k in 2002. Now, it's yours for less than a third of that



They say the best time to buy a convertible is in the winter because demand is so low. But we're not sure if the statement rings true for cars as rare and special as a Brabus K8. There's just one on the classifieds at the moment, which might make it difficult to convince the seller that you've got two more to see that day.

Those not familiar with the K8 will at least recognise that this is an enhanced version of the Mercedes SL55 AMG. Launched back in 2002 with a supercharged 5.4-litre V8 producing 500hp, the AMG convertible cost £90k and mixed deep throated drama with luxury and technology. It was the gentleman's performance drop-top, with enough class and style to turn heads without the need for garish details. A bellowing V8 exhaust note helped too, of course.


Then Brabus came along. The boys from Bottrop extracted 530hp from the SL55's handbuilt V8 engine, making the K8 95hp more potent than the Ferrari 360 Challenge Stradale and 80hp better than the 996 911 Turbo S. Sure, it weighed almost two tonnes, but with 571lb ft of torque it had the muscle to well overcome its mass. 62mph therefore came in just 4.4 seconds. Top speed was 186mph.

Brabus also tweaked the car's aerodynamics to enhance high speed stability with a new front spoiler, while a more prominent diffuser worked the air harder at the back to increase downforce. Underneath, the car's active body control suspension was also lowered by 15mm, with the slowing down handled by an uprated braking system. To the casual passer by, however, only a set of gorgeous 20-inch monoblock wheels signalled that this was no ordinary SL55.


Only six K8s were ever made for the UK market, meaning today's Spotted is a rare beast indeed. It's also in tiptop condition, with no sign of wear on the leather seat bolsters or marks on the gleaming wheels; mind you, the car has only covered 15,700 miles. Just 14 years ago this car would have cost its owner £165,000. Today, it's yours for £49,950. Isn't depreciation wonderful?


SPECIFICATIONS - BRABUS K8

Engine: 5,439cc V8, supercharged
Transmission: 5-speed automatic, rear-wheel drive
Power (hp): 530@6,200rpm
Torque (lb ft): 571@3,000rpm
MPG: 22.8
Top speed: 186mph (limited)
Price new: £165,000
Yours for: £49,950

Click here to see the full ad.


Author
Discussion

st4

Original Poster:

827 posts

71 months

Saturday 26th January
quotequote all
Amazing engine for sure but that's a car for the truly brave.

Gameface

6,851 posts

15 months

Saturday 26th January
quotequote all
Looks lovely but only 30bhp more than standard is disappointing for Brabus.

samoht

845 posts

84 months

Saturday 26th January
quotequote all
An extra 6% or so horsepower feels like it would be hardly noticeable, so I'm not seeing the attraction of this car.

Either buy a normal SL55 for half the money, leaving £20k to fix the roof, or splash out another £10k for this Brabus SV12 https://www.pistonheads.com/classifieds/used-cars/... , with 640hp and 757 lb ft of torque - now that would catch your attention.

AC43

6,580 posts

146 months

Saturday 26th January
quotequote all
Only this morning my head was turned by a beautiful standard silver 55K. Love those cars. If I won the lottery I'd by the best one I could. The K8 would do nicely :-)

ZX10R NIN

12,997 posts

63 months

Saturday 26th January
quotequote all
I'd buy that V12 version every time.

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MrHooky

89 posts

80 months

Saturday 26th January
quotequote all
Anyone else thinking these are starting to age nicely? When they first came out I wasn’t all that fussed by them, but they are increasingly appealing. I very nearly (and completely by accident) purchased a 50k mile ‘05 Obsidian black SL350. I know not the performance matching this is, but looked immaculate, and was nearly mine for £7.5k. Winning bidder only paid £8k at a Practical Classic auction.

Don’t see why you’d have this over the SL55, for which decent examples seem to go through auction for £15k. Does look immaculate admittedly.

st4

Original Poster:

827 posts

71 months

Saturday 26th January
quotequote all
MrHooky said:
Anyone else thinking these are starting to age nicely? When they first came out I wasn’t all that fussed by them, but they are increasingly appealing. I very nearly (and completely by accident) purchased a 50k mile ‘05 Obsidian black SL350. I know not the performance matching this is, but looked immaculate, and was nearly mine for £7.5k. Winning bidder only paid £8k at a Practical Classic auction.

Don’t see why you’d have this over the SL55, for which decent examples seem to go through auction for £15k. Does look immaculate admittedly.
They are one of the nicest styled cars of all time - Merc's of this era were extremely well styled inside and out. It's just a shame they a) corroded like a 70's Lancia b) broke down like a 80's Leyland.

BIRMA

2,451 posts

132 months

Saturday 26th January
quotequote all
Very nice and all the better for not letting Brabus 'chav it up' like they seem to do with most of the cars they alter.
Fantastic engineering on the engines and running gear etc but truly hideous with some of the exterior alterations.

928

156 posts

115 months

Saturday 26th January
quotequote all
BIRMA said:
Very nice and all the better for not letting Brabus 'chav it up' like they seem to do with most of the cars they alter.
Fantastic engineering on the engines and running gear etc but truly hideous with some of the exterior alterations.
Quite, not sure how many loons have £160k for this monstrosity despite shoehorning a V12 into a E


st4

Original Poster:

827 posts

71 months

Saturday 26th January
quotequote all
928 said:
Quite, not sure how many loons have £160k for this monstrosity despite shoehorning a V12 into a E

It's the wheel spats that ruin it but don't they do something like 230mph as it's so slippery. 230mph for 165,000 might even be described as good value.

BIRMA

2,451 posts

132 months

Saturday 26th January
quotequote all
928 said:
BIRMA said:
Very nice and all the better for not letting Brabus 'chav it up' like they seem to do with most of the cars they alter.
Fantastic engineering on the engines and running gear etc but truly hideous with some of the exterior alterations.
Quite, not sure how many loons have £160k for this monstrosity despite shoehorning a V12 into a E

Well done that was the car I saw for sale a while ago, there was also an SL model that they completely ruined.
I have great admiration for the engine work they do but very little for what they do to the exterior and interior of some cars but not all.
When my CL65 was in for service at Brooklands last year it was parked next to the 6 wheel Brabus monster I had very mixed feelings about it ranging from initial revulsion to complete admiration of the exposed mechanicals the inside was quite sober but very expensively nice.

J4CKO

26,330 posts

138 months

Saturday 26th January
quotequote all
Thats not very Brabus is it ?

Modest power output that can be achieved with a pulley and map, plus a red engine cover, some body kit and they have stuck it on the computer and adjusted the ride height a bit.


Gandahar

6,140 posts

66 months

Saturday 26th January
quotequote all
This seems like a lot of money for something not extreme enough to explain to your better half why it costs so much to run over standard.

This at half the price is far better, as has a proper big AMG engine in it.

https://www.autotrader.co.uk/classified/advert/201...

And with that spare £30k you can afford the running bills and take your better half for the next 50 years to Butlins / Centre parks as a reason to buy it.


ZX10R NIN

12,997 posts

63 months

Saturday 26th January
quotequote all
Gandahar said:
This seems like a lot of money for something not extreme enough to explain to your better half why it costs so much to run over standard.

This at half the price is far better, as has a proper big AMG engine in it.

https://www.autotrader.co.uk/classified/advert/201...

And with that spare £30k you can afford the running bills and take your better half for the next 50 years to Butlins / Centre parks as a reason to buy it.
But it doesn't have a proper Brabus engine in it.

Gameface

6,851 posts

15 months

Saturday 26th January
quotequote all
And it's not an SL.

st4

Original Poster:

827 posts

71 months

Saturday 26th January
quotequote all
Gandahar said:
This seems like a lot of money for something not extreme enough to explain to your better half why it costs so much to run over standard.

This at half the price is far better, as has a proper big AMG engine in it.

https://www.autotrader.co.uk/classified/advert/201...

And with that spare £30k you can afford the running bills and take your better half for the next 50 years to Butlins / Centre parks as a reason to buy it.
Early 6.2 - head bolt issue etc. Run for the hills. Junkyard engines.

SimonTheSailor

9,375 posts

166 months

Saturday 26th January
quotequote all
Looks just very average doesn't it ?

AdamV12AMR

1,121 posts

94 months

Saturday 26th January
quotequote all
Bottrop?

Now you’re just taking the piss rofl

ZX10R NIN

12,997 posts

63 months

Saturday 26th January
quotequote all
st4 said:
Gandahar said:
This seems like a lot of money for something not extreme enough to explain to your better half why it costs so much to run over standard.

This at half the price is far better, as has a proper big AMG engine in it.

https://www.autotrader.co.uk/classified/advert/201...

And with that spare £30k you can afford the running bills and take your better half for the next 50 years to Butlins / Centre parks as a reason to buy it.
Early 6.2 - head bolt issue etc. Run for the hills. Junkyard engines.
The head bolt issue was widely over hyped, the running costs are actually pretty okay (I'd actually say cheap when compared to my brothers E90 M3) my CLK63 has been perfectly reliable, & as for a junkyard engine I'd say you're talking rubbish.


MDL111

3,127 posts

115 months

Saturday 26th January
quotequote all
I don’t think it was launched with 500hp, more like 476 PS or a figure close to that