F1's new safety car is 510bhp of awesome | Top Gear
BBC TopGear
BBC TopGear
Subscribe to Top Gear magazine
Sign up to our Top Gear Magazine
Monday 25th September

F1's new safety car is 510bhp of awesome

Published: 06 Mar 2015

The SLS AMG is dead, long live the AMG GT. Grand Prix fanboys and fangirls, meet your official 2015 Formula One safety car, the new Mercedes-AMG GT.

It replaces one of the finest safety cars in the history of Formula One, big brother SLS AMG, which featured that rather glorious 6.2-litre V8. With the advent of 2014's newer, quieter, turbocharged V6 engines, the SLS's eight-cylinder baritone warble was a welcome relief.

This new one, then, promises to be just as loud. How do we know this? "As music to the ears of the Formula 1 fans in the stands and in front of their TV screens," says Mercedes, "the GT S is fitted with a modified Performance exhaust system for an even more striking and emotive AMG V8 engine sound." Good.

Advertisement - Page continues below

Everything else is pretty much as is on the AMG GT S roadcar, which means a 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8 up front with 510bhp and 479lb ft of torque, allied to a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox driving the rear wheels. 0-62mph takes just 3.8 seconds, before hitting a top speed just shy of 200mph.

Being a safety car, it gets a Massive Orange Light on the roof to signal its authority, mounted on a carbon fibre air scoop. Orange lights indicate no overtaking, while green lights indicate FLAT OUT.

Then there's a TV camera mounted inside, a special number plate, strobe-effect head- and tail-lights, and an excellent driver in the shape of Bernd Mayländer, who has been the safety car pilot since 2000.

Merc will also provide the official F1 Medical Car too, in the shape of the new AMG C63 Estate. Same engine as above, but here it'll do 0-62mph in 4.1 seconds and top out at 155mph. It gets all manner of medical equipment - think respirators and defibrillators - as well as AMG adaptive suspension, some fancy lights and an in-car hotspot.

Which one do you lot prefer - the old SLS or this new AMG GT? Don't forget, the AMG GT3 racing car will actually use the SLS's old 6.2-litre V8, too...

Advertisement - Page continues below

Top Gear

Get all the latest news, reviews and exclusives, direct to your inbox.

More from Top Gear

See more on Mercedes-Benz

Promoted Content

Subscribe to the Top Gear Newsletter

Get all the latest news, reviews and exclusives, direct to your inbox.

By clicking subscribe, you agree to receive news, promotions and offers by email from Top Gear and BBC Studios. Your information will be used in accordance with our privacy policy.

BBC TopGear

Try BBC Top Gear Magazine

Get your first 5 issues for £5