Mercedes-AMG stretches out with the hybrid GT Concept
Mercedes-AMG built its reputation for developing sleek, sexy performance coupes from the ground up with the SLS AMG and GT lines. Now it's ready to try its hand at developing a four-door, and using the AMG GT Concept on display in Geneva as an indication, it'll have no problem adding a set of doors while keeping styling taut and sporty. With a Formula 1-derived 805-hp hybrid powertrain, it won't have any trouble giving its four-door coupe range-topping performance, either.
With the exception of the limited-edition SLS Electric Drive that's all but a faint memory now, Mercedes-AMG has concentrated its efforts around V8 power. It has no intention of losing that focus, equipping the GT Concept with the familiar 4.0-liter V8 biturbo. But instead of stopping there, it drops an electric motor at the rear for even more performance and exhilaration.
Derived directly from the hybrid powertrain of the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 race car, the GT Concept's gas-electric drive puts out a total of up to 805 hp and sends the GT Concept screaming to 62 mph (100 km/h) in less than three seconds, beating the Nürburgring-devouring 577-hp GT R two-door by more than a half-second. Three drive modes let the driver switch from zero-emissions, all-electric driving, to pure V8 power, to a balance of V8 and electric motoring. A 4Matic+ all-wheel drive system and torque vectoring help improve performance off the line and through the bends.
Mercedes' smooth, effortless styling reminds that a four-door layout doesn't have to mean a lumbering saloon. The GT Concept's forward-angled nose stretches into a short, fully sculpted hood, itself giving way to a carefully raked windshield. The length of the car is contained below a long-arching greenhouse with a roofline that slowly cascades all the way to the rear-end.
Up front, the GT Concept wears the powerful Panamericana grille, its ribs painted red on the sides. Mercedes-AMG has slimmed down the headlamps and given them a sharper, more angular character compared to the production GT family. New three-dimensional corded daytime running lights rely on "nano active fiber technology" to further differentiate the look. The powerfully-framed intakes and front spoiler finish off the distinctively chiseled face, while radiator shutters enhance aerodynamics and thermal efficiency.
The GT Concept wears the GT family's familiar rounded rear-end design but brings its own tail lamps. The warm-glowing, pencil-thin lights feature a ribbed cooling element below the three-dimensional lens, keeping waste heat moving. A powerful carbon fiber diffuser, sliced-in air outlets and a large central exhaust complete the view from behind.
The GT Concept's bulging muscles and rolling three-dimensional surfaces are further brought to life with deep red paintwork that shimmers in the open light thanks to a special finish formulation. Finely spoked, two-tone wheels, bronze-painted calipers on the carbon-ceramic brakes, and a carbon fiber roof, side sill panels, front spoiler A wings and rear diffuser add some extra color.
"With the Mercedes-AMG GT Concept we are giving a preview of our third completely autonomously developed sports car and extending the attractive AMG GT family to include a four-door variant," says Mercedes-AMG boss Tobias Moers. "Plus the GT Concept – like the AMG Hypercar, which we are presenting at the International Motor Show in Frankfurt – illustrates how we are defining performance of the future at AMG. Impressive driving dynamics coupled with high efficiency, resulting from an innovative drive system and tailored to the vehicle segment in question – that is future performance made by AMG."
The GT Concept is meant to be a look into Mercedes-AMG's exterior design plans and alternative powertrain ambitions, so outside of promising a versatile trunk space for everyday practicality, Mercedes-AMG doesn't take us inside the new concept, either through words or photos. The only other piece of information we can provide in this regard is that there's a digital feed from the action-cam-like tubular side-view cameras. We'll have to wait for a future iteration to see what a ride in a four-door AMG GT will be like for driver and passengers.
But there's still plenty to see. Get to know the GT Concept a little better in our photo gallery and take a look at the car in action in the video below.