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 |  Feb 18 2009, 10:29 AM

Carlsson_Aigner_CK55_RS_Rascasse.jpg

Mercedes tuner Carlsson will have on display at the Geneva auto Show its third combined project with European fashion icon Aigner, a modified GL500 (known as the GL550 in North America).

Called the CK55 RS Racasse, this 456hp GL-Class Benz gets its name from a famous corner on a famous racetrack; the second last corner on the Monaco Grand Prix Circuit. (The two previous Carlsson/Aigner projects, the Eau Rouge and Blanchimont, are named after corners on the Spa Francorchamps circuit in Belgium).

With 388hp in stock trim, Carlsson has reworked the V8 engine with modified cylinder heads, high lift camshafts, a remapped ECU and free flow exhaust system with high flow cats. The result it 456hp and 472 ft-lbs of torque. Carlsson claims this is good for a 0-62 mph sprint of just 5.9 seconds, compared to 6.5 seconds for the standard vehicle.

Like all other Carlsson Aigner vehicles, the Racasse features a two-tone paint job. The full-size SUV also features a completely reworked exterior with wider wheel arches, new side skirts, new front and rear bumpers and a new, more aggressive front hood. The front grille has been replaced with a more imposing chrome unit (featuring a large Carlsson logo) with chromed wire mesh behind.

New driving and fog lights are built into the new front bumper, with LED daytime running lights and illuminated Aigner logos on the fenders.

The Racasse rolls on a set of Carlsson 3/11 UL forged aluminum wheels that measure 23×11-inches at all four corners with massive 305/30/23 tires. The SUV also sits low thanks to Carlsson C-Tronic suspension system that lowers the factory air suspension by 40 mm.

Inside is where the Aigner side of the project really shines with Alcantara on the seats, dash, door panels and center console. The headliner is also coated in Alcantara in a custom stitched pattern.

In the rear, major adjustments were made, as the Racasse has just two seats, as opposed to the usual 5 rear seats. As a result there is plenty of space – enough for a fridge, in fact. Passengers can even enjoy a beverage in the hand-blown Carlsson-Aigner glasses.

A full entertainment system is also contained in the back seat with two eight-inch screens integrated into the front headrests.

The car will officially be unveiled at the Geneva Auto Show in March and we’ll be sure to bring you more photos then.

Only 20 models will be built and as for the cost, Carlsson has set it at 228,500 Euros – or approximately $287,000. Yikes!

Official release after the jump:

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