Very few celebrities have a passion for cars like Jay Leno. The star of late night doesn’t keep his love for all things on four wheels a secret, owning over 200 vehicles. Of the 200, Leno houses 40 various Mercedes-Benz models in his collection, from classics to current sports cars to Mercedes motorcycles. Surprisingly, the only AMG model that Leno has is an E55 AMG, and it looks like AMG wanted to add to that collection by letting Leno tour the AMG facility, test out the SLS AMG Roadster and E-CELL and help hand-assemble one of the SLS AMG’s V8 engines.
After being greeted by the Chairman of the Mercedes-AMG GmBH management board, Ola Källenius, at Stuttgart airport, Leno was allowed to take an SLS AMG Roadster on the motorway and the country roads but the Daimler AG test track in Stuttgart-Untertürkheim was the highlight of his trip.
“The SLS AMG Roadster delivers top performance. Whether the engine, transmission, handling or brakes – you feel that the engineers at AMG are serious! When I was 18 or 19 years old I worked for Mercedes-Benz in America. I knew about the test track in Stuttgart-Untertürkheim from films in which Mercedes sedans like the 220 SE or the 300 SEL 6.3 were driven through the banked curve. I have always wanted to see this for real. It took me over 40 years to do it, but now I’m here! It’s fantastic to drive the latest AMG models here on the test track today,” Leno said.
After a tour through the AMG Studio, Leno paid a visit to the AMG engine shop and assisted in the assembly of an AMG 6.2-liter V8 powerplant for the SLS AMG. And true to AMG tradition, each motor is hand-assembled by a single individual, except for Leno’s case. With the assistance of two experienced AMG technicians, Leno was able to install the crankshaft, cylinder heads, wiring and even carried out the subsequent quality tests. The special engine features an AMG engine plate with his signature on it and then he was able to watch his motor go through rigorous testing.
Highlights from his trip will be posted on his website, www.jaylenosgarage.com, and it would appear that AMG has given Leno enough influence to add one or two more AMG vehicles to his fleet.