Mercedes-AMG’s new GT R sports car was hardly a secret, but regardless it’s finally here and there are plenty of details to divulge.
The GT R is a track-focused version of the GT sports car launched by AMG two years ago, and it’s coming onto the market next year with even more power, less weight, advanced aerodynamics and active rear-wheel steering, making it a perfect match for cars like the Chevrolet Corvette Z06, Nissan GT-R Nismo and Porsche 911 GT3 RS.
There’s no mistaking the GT R as anything but the most extreme version of AMG’s GT, at least until a Black Series arrives. It features a much wider track than the regular GT as well as an imposing "Panamericana" grille whose design is inspired by the grilles fitted on some classic Mercedes racers.
The grille is also shared with the related GT3 racecar which demolished the competition during May’s Nürburgring 24 Hours race. The car claimed the top four spots with the winning car coming from AMG-Team Black Falcon.
Mercedes-AMG GT3 one-two-three-four finish at 2016 Nürburgring 24 HoursEnlarge Photo
Like the GT3, the GT R has been extensively tested on the world’s most punishing racetrack, the Nürburgring. This fact has even inspired the car’s hero color, labeled AMG Green Hell Magno.
Under the hood is the familiar twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V-8, though here it’s been tuned to deliver a supercar-like 577 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque. Drive is to the rear wheels via a 7-speed dual-clutch transaxle, and owners can expect 0-60 mph acceleration in just 3.5 seconds. The top speed is 198 mph.
To go along with the extra power is an extensively modified chassis and new aerodynamics. Aluminum and carbon fiber reinforcements have been made throughout to increase stiffness while helping to bring the curb weight to 3,428 pounds (in European spec). The weight distribution is a rear-biased 47.3:52.7 front-to-rear split.
The suspension of the GT R is also designed for racetrack use. It consists of double wishbones and is constructed from forged aluminum. High camber and toe-in stability makes the car eager to corner hard, and motorsport-inspired “uniball” bearings on the lower wishbones at the rear axle mean camber and toe-in is unchanged even at high loads.