The New Mercedes-AMG GT: Bigger, Heavier, and More Capable
For all the AMG enthusiasts out there, the anticipation leading up to the launch of the new AMG GT has been nothing short of nail-biting. After a few disappointments with other AMG models, such as the underwhelming four-cylinder AMG C63 E-Performance and the somewhat lackluster early SLs, hopes were not exactly high. On top of that, the new GT came with its own set of concerns – it weighed a hefty 270kg more than its predecessor and traded the cherished transaxle layout for an all-wheel drive chassis. However, after getting behind the wheel and driving it in the Sierra Nevada, it seems that the new GT has successfully delivered on its promises.
So, what has AMG done with the new GT? Well, while the power output remains the same as the previous GT R, with a twin-turbo 4.0-liter V8 producing 577bhp, the dimensions have increased significantly. The length, width, height, and wheelbase have all grown, and although the all-wheel drive model is slightly faster off the mark, the fuel consumption has also increased by over 20 percent. Sometimes, progress comes in unexpected shapes and sizes.
The GT shares its basic DNA with the SL, and like its sibling, it is technically a 2+2-seater. However, don’t expect to comfortably accommodate rear passengers over five feet tall. That being said, the new shape and hatchback boot opening have allowed for a more generous boot volume, with an increase of 175 liters to a total of 321 liters. With the optional rear bench folded, you can even enjoy a cavernous 675 liters of storage space. Perhaps the most noticeable difference between the old and new GT is the driving position, which has been brought forward by a full 200mm. This change, coupled with the overall growth of the car, enhances the driver’s sense of control and improves front visibility.
When it comes to the interior, the GT bears a resemblance to the SL at first glance. However, upon closer inspection, you’ll notice the GT offers additional bespoke colors, eight different screen designs, and seven shades of soft nappa leather. It’s a beautifully crafted and lavishly appointed interior, but compared to the minimalist SLS from 2009, the dashboard of the 2024 GT is a software-powered culture shock. The array of screens, controls, and driving modes can be overwhelming at first, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll appreciate the level of customization and the technology at your fingertips.
Nearly every aspect of the GT can be tuned to your preferences, thanks to a sophisticated black box that coordinates various components of the car. From steering and drivetrain calibrations to dynamic select options and adaptive aerodynamics, the possibilities are extensive and can be tailored to your desired driving experience. However, finding the perfect balance can be a challenge, as some settings may have unintended side effects. It’s best to experiment and find the combination that suits your preferences and driving style.
So, how does the GT drive? In terms of acceleration, it’s a blistering 0-62mph in just 3.2 seconds, thanks to the combination of the latest Michelin Pilot 5S tires and the all-wheel drive system. The GT delivers impressive front-end bite, tenacious roadholding, and excellent exit traction, providing a thrilling driving experience. Whether you prefer to unleash its hooligan side or carve clean, flowing lines, the GT offers a level of confidence and performance comparable to certified sports cars.
When pushed to its limits, the GT truly comes alive. Engaging Dynamic Select in Race mode, Sport Handling ESP, Sport damper settings, and Manual transmission allows you to fully exploit the car’s capabilities. Despite the aggressive setup, the GT remains composed, with smooth upshifts, a compliant ride, and responsive steering. Even the rear end, known for its liveliness, proves manageable and predictable. Whether you’re tackling tricky corners or pushing the car to its maximum potential, the GT instills confidence and provides ample warning before reaching the limits of adhesion.
For those seeking the ultimate driving experience, the GT offers a range of features to enhance performance, such as carbon fiber brakes that provide exceptional stopping power. While the steel brakes perform admirably, the carbon-fiber stoppers are worth considering if you tend to push the car to its limits.
In conclusion, Mercedes-AMG has quelled any doubts with the latest AMG GT. It’s a genuinely impressive car that exudes confidence from every pore. The wider comfort zone and improved driving dynamics make it a delight to drive, ensuring that it’s not just tailored for professional racers but for enthusiasts like you and me. The new GT proves that sometimes, bigger and heavier can also mean more capable.