This is the Mercedes-AMG GTR, and you’ll be delighted to know it’s just as shouty as it looks. It is the most honed AMG model, and the most powerful, since the old SLS Black Series.
There are so many highlights, it’s very hard to know where to begin. But let’s be obvious, and begin with its Green (and really quite mean) exterior. The paint is called Green Hell, to honor the track-the Nurburgring-on which much of the GTR’s development has taken place. The roof is carbon, unpainted for extra paddock kudos.
It’s wider than the already wide AMG GTS, that more muscular body smothering broader tracks. The front splitter not only gulps in extra air, but actively directs it via moving flaps. Unlike the rear wing, that is, which is fixed, but can be mechanically adjusted to suit how you want the car to behave, or the speed of the track you’re visiting.
Which brings us neatly to the suspension. Double wishbones all round, it is also mechanically adjustable. Worried you’re an engineering degree short of understanding it? There’s electronic, adaptive damping, too.
That adjusts through three modes-Comfort, Sport and Sport Plus-AMG recommending the first for the road, the last for smooth circuits, and the middle option for bumpy tracks like the Nordschleife.
While the GTR stays true to AMG’s roots with rear-wheel drive, there’s a trick up its sleeve. Just like the Porsche 911 GT3 and Ferrari F12tdf, it has rear-wheel steering. Like the GT3 (but unlike the tdf), the rear wheels can turn in both the opposite and matching direction to the fronts. They oppose at low speeds (well, below 100kph) to make the car hyper-agile, and match at high speeds for more stability.
And while we’re on stability, its traction control comes with nine modes, switchable via a race car-like toggle-slap-bang in the middle of the dashboard. Lewis Hamilton, who helped unveil the GTR at Mercedes-Benz World in Brook lands, seemed particularly taken by that feature when we spoke to him. But then he is probably paid to say things like that…
That we’ve made it this far without acknowledging a new AMG engine tells you how serious the rest of the GTR’s spec is. But its V8 naturally deserves some attention. A twin turbo 4.0-liter, it’s effectively the same unit as the GTS’s, with sharper-reacting turbos and a new exhaust system yielding an additional 74hp and 50Nm.
That means peaks of 577hp and 700Nm, enough to hustle the 1,630kg GTR (around 15kilos lighter than the S, despite the addition of wings ’n’ things) from nil to 100kph in 3.6sec, and on to a 319kph top speed. But despite its unsubtle nods to the place, no Nurburgring lap time-at least for the time being. Expect sub-7:20, but when we spoke to AMG boss Tobias Moers, he said publicly chasing a time-such as the Nismo GTR’s-is off the menu. “No, we don’t do that,” was his blunt response.
He did promise, though, this GTR would be one of many new AMG GT variants, with a Roadster and GT4 customer race car among others arriving this year. For now, though, this GTR is giving us plenty to salivate about…