The news confirms speculation over the past year that the flagship would get a new V8 heart.
Based on the biturbo engine powering a number of AMG's bigger beasts, the new engine does away with the turbo but produces a hefty 315kW and 540Nm of torque - up from 270kW and 510Nm for the older model.
The new engine also gains AMG's Cylinder Management system which allows for improved fuel efficiency through cylinder deactivation. According to Mercedes, the 30-millisecond switch to four-cylinder operation (at 3600rpm) is "immediate and imperceptible".
Fuel consumption for the new SLK AMG is listed at 8.5 l/100km, marking a 30 percent improvement over its less powerful predecessor.
Little else is known about the model at this point, however we can likely expect large forged alloy wheels in front of bigger, more powerful brakes. A test car spied last year also revealed quad-tip tailpipes and a more significant front bumper with larger intakes.
The new SLK 55 AMG is expected to make its global debut at September's Frankfurt Motor Show.
Speaking with TMR today, Mercedes-Benz Australia's David McCarthy said that production slots for Australia have not yet been locked in.
"I don't think we'll see it here before 2012, definitely not before the first quarter. A launch sometime in the first half is definitely expected, though," Mr McCarthy said.