Mercedes-AMG GT R: Flagship of the AMG family, now in Malaysia

The Mercedes-AMG GT R made its debut in Malaysia yesterday. ― Pictures by YS Khong
The Mercedes-AMG GT R made its debut in Malaysia yesterday. ― Pictures by YS Khong

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 3 ― The AMG GT family is spearheaded by the Mercedes-AMG GT R, which debuted here in Malaysia yesterday ― with 585 horsepower developed by its V8 twin turbo engine, it does the 0-100km/h dash is 3.6 seconds, and will hit 318km/h.

Driving fans will be happy to know that power is transferred to the rear wheels via an AMG SPEEDSHIFT DCT 7-speed dual clutch transmission. Under the skin, an extensively modified suspension, improved aerodynamics and intelligent lightweight construction translate into an exceptionally dynamic driving experience.

The Mercedes-AMG GT R was developed on the Nordschleife of the Nurburgring race track, and boasts of an impressive lap time of 7:10.92.

From the world’s most demanding racetrack directly onto the road, never before has Mercedes-AMG packed so much motorsport technology into a production car than into the new AMG GT R.

“The Mercedes-AMG GT R is a street-legal race car which spearheads the AMG GT family, featuring many desirable characteristics of the GT3. This beast is without a doubt a true testimony to AMG’s racing DNA, the driving performance brand of Mercedes-Benz,” said Mark Raine, Vice President, Sales & Marketing Passenger Cars, Mercedes-Benz Malaysia.

Aerodynamics engineers and designers worked together more intensively than ever during development of the new AMG GT R. Form follows function, and function supports form: All elements have an inherent technical benefit and contribute to the enhanced driving dynamics, while the aerodynamics experts have made the designers' wishes a reality. This networking even resulted in an innovation that now has a patent pending.

Apart from the powerfully sculpted body and the motorsport components, the new AMG Panamericana grille is a real eye-catcher. This unique feature also comes from the world of motorsport and is celebrating its standard-production première in the AMG GT R: Its 15 chrome-plated vertical fins cite the look of the new AMG GT3 racing car. The basic form of the new radiator grille goes back to the Mercedes Benz 300 SL racing car that won the legendary Panamericana road race in Mexico in 1952.

The interior of the Mercedes-AMG GT R.
The interior of the Mercedes-AMG GT R.

The wide front splitter reduces lift at the front axle. Additional Air Curtains on the outside of the front fascia calm the airflow, improving the Cd value of the AMG GT R. Thanks to their narrow, vertical openings, the Air Curtains also guide the air specifically towards the wheel arches, optimising the flow properties in this area. To ensure ideal airflow through the double wheel arch radiators, the AMG GT R additionally features new and unique wheel arch liners with special cooling-air slits.

A special engineering feat is the completely new active aerodynamics profile, which is concealed almost invisibly in the underbody in front of the engine. At a speed of 80km/h in RACE mode, this carbon component, weighing only about two kilogrammes, automatically moves downward by about 40 millimetres and changes the airflow considerably. This process results in what is known as the Venturi effect, which draws the car towards the road and reduces the front-axle lift by around 40 kilogrammes at 250km/h.

Another technical highlight improving the aerodynamics of the AMG GT R is the active air management system. This system has vertical louvres positioned in the lower area directly behind the front fascia. These louvres are electronically controlled and can be opened and closed in around a second by an electric motor to improve the airflow and consequently the aerodynamic performance.

The louvres are normally closed   including at top speed, during braking and when cornering at high speed. This position lowers drag and makes it possible to route the air to the underbody to reduce front lift even further. Only once predefined components have reached certain temperatures and the demand for cooling air is particularly high do the louvres open and allow the maximum amount of cooling air to flow to the heat exchangers.

The side view additionally benefits from the new AMG 10-spoke forged wheels in titanium grey, sized at 10.0 J x 19 ET56 at the front and 12.0 J x 20 ET52 at the rear. The lightweight design of the wheels has three advantages: it reduces the overall weight, the rotatory mass and the un-sprung mass.

The wheels afford a clear view of the brake callipers, which are painted in yellow exclusively for the AMG GT R. New side sill panels make the vehicle look even lower stance on the road, while inserts in high-gloss black set an individual tone. The same applies to the high-gloss black caps on the housings of the door mirrors.

The new AMG coil-over suspension was designed specifically for the AMG GT R and is combined with the AMG Ride Control continuously variable, adaptive damping system. The system is electronically controlled and automatically adapts the damping on each wheel to the current handling situation, the speed and the road conditions.

Furthermore, the driver can adjust the adaptive damping characteristics at the touch of a button in the AMG Drive Unit or by using the AMG Dynamic Select drive modes. Three modes are available: “Comfort”, “Sport” and “Sport Plus”. The purpose of each of the three damping characteristics is clear: “Comfort” is the right choice for public roads; “Sport” is perfect for racetracks like the Nordschleife (North Circuit) of the Nurburgring, in other words for highly dynamic driving on partially undulating racetracks with maximum ground contact. “Sport Plus” is ideal for more flat, modern Grand Prix circuits such as Hockenheim and conveys a high degree of structural rigidity.

Conventional suspension measures include the wider front and rear track as well as the factory-fit Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres, of size 275/35 ZR 19 at the front and 325/30 ZR 20 at the rear.

The new AMG GT R is even more sensitive to steering inputs thanks to standard-fit active rear-wheel steering, which is being used for the first time on a Mercedes-AMG model. The maximum toe angle change on the rear wheels of the AMG GT R is 1.5 degrees. Up to a speed of 100km/h, the rear wheels are turned in the opposite direction to the front wheels, corresponding to a virtual shortening of the wheelbase.

Once the speed of the AMG GT R exceeds 100km/h, the system turns the rear wheels in the same direction as the front wheels, corresponding to a virtual lengthening of the wheelbase and improving handling stability. The active rear-wheel steering not only improves cornering, it also assists the driver in the event of sudden evasive manoeuvres and thus enhances active safety, this makes the AMG GT R easier to control at the limit.

The standard 3-stage ESP® with the settings “ESP On”, “ESP Sport Handling Mode” and “ESP Off” works in perfect unison with the limited-slip differential and is optimally tuned to the outstanding driving dynamics of the AMG GT R. The programming for the ESP Off mode is taken from the AMG GT3.

In ESP Off mode, another innovation allows the driver to exert even more influence on the handling characteristics of the AMG GT R. The new AMG Traction Control system also comes directly from motorsport. It allows drivers to pre select the slip on the driven rear axle in nine levels via a special rotary switch located in the centre console. Just like in the current AMG GT3, it isolates the grip on the driven wheels and does not affect the stabilisation provided by the ESP®. Corresponding characteristic maps are programmed into the vehicle electronics to this end. Level 1 is programmed for driving in the wet with high safety reserves. Level 9 allows maximum slip on the rear axle.

To give the driver of the new AMG GT R ideal conditions in which to drive, the interior is also strongly inspired by motorsport. The AMG Performance seats come as standard while the extremely light, manually adjustable AMG sports bucket seats upholstered in nappa leather and DINAMICA microfibre are available as an exclusive, track-focused option.

The rear view of the Mercedes-AMG GT R, which made its debut in Malaysia yesterday.
The rear view of the Mercedes-AMG GT R, which made its debut in Malaysia yesterday.

The new AMG Interior Night package likewise comes as standard. In this package, the shift paddles, steering wheel bezel, door sills and boot cross member are finished in high-gloss black, which combines with the standard-specification AMG Interior Piano Lacquer package to further emphasise sportiness. As an option, customers can order the trim in matt black carbon fibre.

The high-performance composite brake system ensures excellent deceleration and high fade-resistance with internally ventilated and perforated brake discs of diameter 390 millimetres on the front axle and 360 millimetres on the rear axle. The brake callipers are painted yellow. Available as an option are a ceramic high performance composite brake system, which offers a weight saving of 17 kilogrammes, a longer service life and even better fade resistance thanks to the ceramic brake discs, with a diameter of 402 millimetres at the front and 360 millimetres at the rear.

The heart of the new high-performance athlete is pumping stronger than ever: the AMG 4.0-litre twin-turbo engine in the AMG GT R has an output of 430 kW (585 hp) and a peak torque of 700 Nm is available between 1900 and 5500 rpm.

The engine for the AMG GT R is also fitted by hand in the hand-finishing section of AMG's production plant in Affalterbach based on the “One Man ― One Engine” philosophy.

The seven-speed dual-clutch transmission configured in transaxle layout at the rear axle has likewise been extensively revised by the AMG developers, who modified the hardware and the software to make the transmission even more suitable for the racetrack.

Drivers can tailor the AMG GT R to their personal preferences using the AMG Dynamic Select controller. Various modes are available: “C” (Comfort), “S” (Sport), “S+” (Sport Plus), “I” (Individual) and “Race” mode. By pressing the separate “M” button in the centre console, the driver can activate the manual transmission mode in any drive mode.

The exhaust system features two infinitely variable exhaust flaps as standard, which open and close depending on the selected AMG Drive Select mode, although they can also be controlled individually using a separate button in the AMG Drive Unit. In the “Comfort” and “Sport” settings, the low-frequency sound typical of a V-8 is designed for comfort. In “Sport Plus” and “Race” modes, meanwhile, the sound composition is far more emotive.

The Mercedes-AMG GT R data at a glance:

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