Mercedes-AMG calls it the beast of the Green Hell, but all you need to know is that the GT R is the fastest AMG that you can buy off the Mercedes-Benz showrooms today. Giving it those credentials are two lap times – a 7:09.10 around the Nurburgring Nordschleife, giving it the title of the fastest rear-wheel-driven production car at the ‘ring, and a 2:09.853 around the Buddh International Circuit, which makes it the quickest production car to lap India’s erstwhile F1 circuit.
The Mercedes-AMG GT R is range-topper for the GT line and, as expected, it comes with a host of mechanical upgrades over the base GT that help it achieve those enviable lap times. Motivation for the GT R still comes from the same 4.0l biturbo V8, but a higher boost pressure of 1.35 bar helps the engine produce 585 horses and 700Nm of twist. 0-100kmph is claimed at 3.5s and top speed is tapped at 318kmph. In comparison, the GT S with a 1.2 bar boost pressure manages 510PS/650Nm, which is good for a 0-100kmph sprint of 3.8s and a top whack of 310kmph.
The engine is mated to AMG’s SPEEDSHIFT DCT 7-speed dual-clutch transmission. The driving modes have been optimised to take advantage of the revised mechanicals, while the launch control now allows the car to shoot off the line at higher revs than its lower-spec siblings. The GT R also comes with a new nine-level traction control system which allows the driver to fine-tune the level of slip on the driven axle. There is an electronic lockable differential too. The bigger news is the inclusion of a rear-wheel steering system which allows the rear wheels to be steered at an angle of up to 1.5 degrees to aid turning agility. Braking power comes from 390mm and 360mm ventilated and perforated discs at the front and back respectively, and if that seems inadequate, Mercedes-AMG offers optional ceramic brakes too.
Mercedes-AMG would like you to look at the GT R as a racecar for the road, rather than a souped-up GT S. To that effect, the GT R uses top drawer equipment derived from the AMG GT3 racecar. These include components like coil-over suspension, uniball spherical bearings on the driven axle, carbon-fibre torque tube and tunnel cross, and active aerodynamic components like the rear wing, front splitter and air dam flaps. Even the exhaust system has been engineered to produce a note evocative of the GT3 racecar. The GT R also uses an intelligent mix of aluminium, steel, magnesium and carbon fibre in the construction of its chassis and drivetrain components. The result is that the GT R is around 15kg lighter than the GT S and has better aerodynamic efficiency too.
Visually, the GT R distinguishes itself from its siblings with its prominent ‘Panamericana’ grille, which is inspired by the 300 SL racecar of the ’50s. Apart from the 15-slat grille, the GT R also gets distinctive front and rear bumpers and a wider body work that allows fatter racetrack-ready tyres and in turn, a 57mm wider rear track. The cabin, though largely similar to the GT S, benefits from racecar-derived bucket seats, GT R specific upholstery options and a newer version of the Comand infotainment system.
The Mercedes-AMG GT R is priced at Rs 2.23 crore and will rival the likes of the Porsche 911 GT3/RS. Customers who have already placed their orders for the AMG GT R are expected to receive deliveries this September.