After months of speculation that sent the expectation levels skyrocketing, Mercedes-Benz finally unveiled the Mercedes-AMG GT, heralding the brand’s entry into the lucrative sports car segment. As the name signifies, the GT is the second model to be developed jointly by Mercedes-Benz and AMG, the first one being the big, brutal and striking SLS AMG.
Of late, Mercedes-Benz has been coming out with strikingly stylish models across all segments and the GT is no exception. What’s most impressive about this new sports car from Mercedes-Benz is the seamless integration of several classic styling cues in a modern avatar. That’s something that the Porsche 911 has always been famous for. While Porsche had several generations of 911s to borrow from, Mercedes-Benz seems to have chosen the legendary 300 SL as an inspiration for the GT. The wide, single-bar chrome grille with the big three pointed star in the middle, the long hood, the fins in the fenders, the dome-shaped roof and the short and stubby rear are strongly reminiscent of the iconic coupe from the past that shot to fame with its ‘gull wing’ doors. The uniquely-shaped LED headlights, the massive air intakes right below, the power domes in the hood, the exquisitely-detailed but narrow taillights, the tapered rear end and the rear diffuser with integrated twin tailpipes are the other standout design elements of the Mercedes-AMG GT. An ode to the past it may be, but the GT is one automobile that is every bit as futuristic as it is retro.
As we have seen in Mercedes-Benz sports cars of the recent past, the ‘aviation design’ theme lends a cockpit-like look and feel to the interiors of the GT. Four central spotlight-style air-conditioning vents and the AMG DRIVE UNIT, which is nothing but a multitude of knobs arranged like eight cylinders in a V layout to signify the V8 engine under the hood, constitute the center console.
A new 4.0-liter, twin turbocharged V8 engine sits under the hood. Placed behind the front axle in a front mid-engine layout, the power is transferred to the rear wheels through a 7-speed dual clutch transmission. The standard AMG GT boasts 456 horsepower at 6000 rpm, a peak torque of 600 Nm at 1600 - 5000 rpm, an electronically-limited top speed of 304 km/h and 3.9 seconds to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h. The sportier S variant has the same engine in a higher state of tune. With 503 horsepower to boot, the Mercedes-AMG GT S can accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in just 3.7 seconds and can reach speeds of up to 310 km/h.
The Mercedes-AMG GT is said to have several performance-enhancing features on board such as the AMG RIDE CONTROL sports suspension with electronically controlled damping, three AMG DYNAMIC SELECT drive modes – Comfort, Sport and Sport Plus and an AMG DYNAMIC PLUS package that adjusts the engine and transmission mounts depending on driver’s inputs. As always, we expect Mercedes-Benz to stuff the GT with active and passive safety features of highest caliber.
Unlike the SLS AMG that competed in the upper echelons of automotive supremacy, the GT is targeted at the Porsche 911, a thoroughbred sports car nurtured and perfected over decades. For you and me, that’s good news, as it means that the Mercedes-AMG GT would be priced a lot lower than the SLS AMG and we could get to see more of these on road.