Paul Horrell16 June 2014

The full lowdown on the Merc AMG GT

Paul Horrell with everything we know on Merc’s 911 competitor, coming this autumn with new turbo V8…

Everyone at Mercedes openly calls it their 911 competitor. That's fighting talk. But of course as a front-engined two-seater with a forced-induction V8 and 500+bhp, its actually a dead ringer for the F-Type R and Corvette Z06. 

Well whatever way you spin it, this autumn's Mercedes-AMG GT is shaping up to be a Big Story.

AMG has now given us technical details of the all-new in-house 4.0-litre twin-turbo engine. The car has its own home on the interweb with blurry action clips, shadowy profile shots and the odd line drawing. Plus a rather good library of sound clips. We have photos of the interior.

It's normal practice when Mercedes launches a car with no predecessor that the first sight is a 'Vision' concept. Sure enough, a massively pumped-up and caricatured Vision GT has been launched for gaming on Gran Turismo 6.

It's going to be a proper sports car. Though it'll end up half the price of the SLS, it will still be proper fast. It uses an aluminium spaceframe, and the engine makes 510bhp and 480 torques. The engine might be new but it uses the seven-speed DSG transaxle from the SLS (signalling plenty of scope for later power upgrades…)

Mercedes hasn't yet officially mentioned it, but we hear this car will be called the GT S. Later there will be a non-S edition with about 10 percent less power.

The GT will be smaller than the Gullwing SLS, and more agile. But it'll retain some of the proportions: a very long nose, and a shallow upright windscreen close to the driver. But both the nose and tail are pointier than the SLS, and the sides have more of a fuselage section: it's going to be a voluptuous car.

But a very lean one. The bonnet, carrying a pair of power bulges, sits below the level of the front wings.

At the back, things take a distinct turn towards the F-Type. The cabin narrows, so it rides on a wide haunch. The base line of the rear side window kicks up going rearward. The back window is a hatchback, and behind it is an active rear spoiler and rear light clusters in a horizontal shape. 

Under the hatch is a boot bigger than the SLS's, because Mercedes wants this to be a car for everyday. The expensive, heavy and theatrical gullwing doors have been given the heave-ho for much the same reasons.

But we also gather the wings will be back, because in a few years AMG intends to do a true SLS successor.

Interestingly, one Mercedes insider told us there won't be a convertible version of the GT for the time being. They're afraid it would cannibalise the SL. Hmmm… ugly, fat SL or gorgeous, fast GT. Yup, not the hardest choice in the world.

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