Mercedes Benz Unveils The AMG GT Supercar |

Automotive

Published on September 11th, 2014 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez

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Mercedes Benz Unveils The AMG GT Supercar

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Mercedes-Benz unveiled the AMG-GT, a new top-of-the-line sports car targeted at buyers of the Porsche 911. The GT is the second high performance sports car developed by Mercedes’ in-house tuners AMG, following the gullwing SLS. The GT is powered by a 4.0-liter V8 engine with output ratings of 510hp or 462hp. The 510hp GT S accelerates from 0 to 100km in 3.8 seconds and has a top speed of 310kph.

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To help lure Porsche buyers, the car is designed to compete on the track, Moers said, adding the car achieved a lap time of seven minutes and 36 seconds on Germany’s Nordschleife, the infamous northern loop of the Nuerburging racetrack. The car will arrive in dealerships in Europe in March and in the U.S. market in April. Chinese buyers will have to wait two to three months longer. The 462hp GT will cost 115,430 euros in Germany including sales tax and 134,350 euros for the GT S.

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Mercedes says the car’s bodyshell is the lightest in the segment, with weight reduced by using aluminum for more than 90 percent of the spaceframe’s components. The GT has a curb weight of 1540kg. The 462-hp version version uses 9.3 liters of fuel per 100km and has CO2 emissions of 216 grams per kilometer.

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The engine has internally mounted turbochargers and dry sump lubrication, a first in its class, which together allow a more compact engine to be mounted lower to the ground.

By shifting the car’s center of gravity closer to the road and giving it a near even front-to-rear weight distribution, the GT can hug corners at high speeds. It has a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission and an aluminum double wishbone suspension to help give the driver precise and clear feedback on the road. The GT will also compete against the Audi R8 and BMW’s i8 plug-in sports car but  analysts say the real money is to be made by conquering some of the 30,000-odd annual sales of Porsche’s iconic rear-engine 911 coupe.

AMG’s Moers said the GT will be positioned below the SLS, which went out of production two months ago. He said there are no current plans for an SLS successor. The GT will be built in Sindelfingen, Germany, where the Mercedes S-class flagship sedan is also built. The GT is part of Mercedes’ parent Daimler’s plans to launch 12 entirely new models by 2020 with the goal of passing BMW as the top-selling global luxury brand after losing the top rank in 2005. Mercedes is currently No. 3 after Audi. Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche also aims to lift Mercedes’ operating margin to 10 percent from 6.5 percent last year.

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GT a ‘necessity’

Premium cars brands can no longer survive just by developing tuned versions of their popular sedans, such as the E 63 AMG or the Audi RS 7 Sportback. “BMW enthusiasts have long grieved over the lack of a replacement M1, and only now has the company come with a thoroughbred sports car in the i8. High-performance sports cars like these define premium automakers and build the heritage of a brand, so going into the segment is almost a necessity for Mercedes.

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Signed engine

AMG’s hallmark are engines that have been signed by the technician that built them by hand. The same goes for the GT, which creates a limit to the volumes the unit can produce. Still, the point of the model is to cast an aura across the lineup rather than boost sales. AMG now offers 21 vehicles typically souped-up versions of production sedans like a 235,000 euro version of the S class compared with 17 five years ago. The offering includes compacts such as the 49,980 euro A45 hatchback. Helped by the broader lineup, AMG sales have doubled in five years to about 32,200 vehicles in 2013, beating an annual target four years early.

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