The new Mercedes-AMG GT impresses with the sound of the V8 engine as only AMG can, but does the coupe also impresses in terms of lateral dynamics with active aerodynamics, variable all-wheel drive and active anti-roll bars? German auto motor und sport magazine gives its verdict.
The Mercedes-AMG GT already has a history. It was the first SLS AMG with butterfly doors. Then Mercedes wanted a more affordable successor and launched the first generation AMG GT (C190). Now comes the successor to the C190, codenamed C192.
But while the C190 was the flagship of the AMG division, the C192 is a derivative of the new SL roadster version. Therefore, the crucial question is how different is the new AMG GT optionally available with a glass roof from the new SL with the textile roof?
The new SL developed by AMG on a dedicated platform is the sportiest SL to date, but as we saw in our SL test, it is not a purebred sports car but aims to combine the qualities of an athlete with those of an everyday GT.
The new Mercedes-AMG GT takes the technical basis from the SL with an aluminum structure, but only the doors are identical to the SL. The interior is similar to the SL, with natural metal inserts, fine leather upholstery, and a multimedia system with a portrait display. With the optional Performance seats, the driver sits very low and perched closer to the middle of the car than before.
The rear emergency seats are only available as an option for 1,904 euros, and if ordered, transform the AMG GT from a 2-seater to a 2+2 seater. And unlike the SL, the two seats offer more than just two child seats or a boot extension. The boot is also practical with a volume of 321 to 675 litres.
The new double-wishbone front axle has allowed the use wider Michelin Pilot Sport 5 S with a dimension of 295. The larger wheels give a very good grip at the front, while the rear axle with wheels that rotate 2.5 degrees in the same or opposite direction to the front depending on speed is 31 mm wider and contributes to excellent agility.
Also, the suspension with electronically controlled interconnected dampers cancels out any body roll and helps the coupe get closer to the asphalt as speed increases. This is made possible by aerodynamic tricks. A carbon profile drops below the bodywork at over 80 km/h, like in the case of SL, and increases downforce thanks to a Venturi effect. Vertical flaps in the spoiler and horizontal flaps in the radiator grille regulate the airflow, and the rear wing has five adjustment positions from -11 degrees to +22 degrees for the race track.
All in all, the coupe is a bit more incisive than the SL version. It hides its large 2-ton weight well with a good weight distribution of 54/46% front/rear. It feels lighter than the SL, and it helps that the fixed roof is 40% stiffer and the suspension is tuned firmer than the SL. Logically, it’s not very comfortable on cobblestone roads, but that’s normal for a sports car.
The V8 still makes good music
The V8 engine still sounds great and hasn’t lost any of its tone and exclusivity, being assembled by one man. The engine retains its superb sound despite the introduction of the particulate filter and the amplification provided by the Burmester audio system. This will please AMG fans as well as the rumble in Race mode and the fact that Mercedes did not use any hybrid system.
The M177 engine has a new oil bath, the crankcase is actively vented, the intercooler has been repositioned, and the intake and exhaust pipes as well as the catalytic converter and particulate filter have been redesigned. The 9-speed automatic transmission with wet start clutch is directly attached to the engine and no longer positioned at the rear axle. Power is distributed predominantly to the rear axle, with a maximum of 50% on the front axle if required, and there is a Drift Mode, which is not available on the SL.
Power is in abundance, although the 800 Nm maximum torque is only available from 2500 rpm. With launch control, the AMG GT reaches 100 km/h in just 3.2 seconds. The top speed is 315 km/h, but colleagues at Auto Motor und Sport who attended the launch event write that at the Granada event, in Spain, the police watched them with drones, so the top speed will only be tested on Germany’s no-speed limit motorways.
The new Mercedes AMG positions itself more clearly as a sports car and drives more excitingly than the SL. But there’s still room for improvement.