Mercedes-AMG draws on its GT sports car to create the Rotwild GT S mountain bike
Usually when we hear about high-end automakers dabbling in bicycle design, the result is a road bike – recent examples have included bikes made in collaboration with companies such as McLaren, Jaguar, Aston Martin and Lamborghini. Joining the likes of Porsche, however, Mercedes‑AMG has decided to go with a mountain bike. The sports car and performance brand within Mercedes-Benz recently joined forces with German bicycle manufacturer Rotwild, to create the limited-edition Rotwild GT S.
Said to be inspired by the Mercedes-AMG GT automobile, the hard-tail GT S features a monocoque high-modulus carbon fiber frame. Carbon also finds its way into the Pro Tharsis XC handlebar and seat post, the Ergon SRX saddle, the Crankbrothers Cobalt 11 29-inch rims, and the water bottle cage.
Bumps are handled by a 100-mm ThirtyThree fork from Italian brand Formula, while shifting is taken care of electronically via a Shimano XTR Di2 2 x 11 drivetrain. Other specs include Formula R1 Racing FCS hydraulic disc brakes, Continental Race King RaceSport tires, and Crankbrothers Candy 3 clipless pedals. There's no word on total weight.
Also included with the bike is a package including a Thule protective transport case, a Topeak shock pump, and various other Topeak tools contained in a rescue kit.
According to Mercedes' parent company Daimler, the GT S was developed using feedback from the AMG Rotwild MTB racing team. And as for it being inspired by the Mercedes-AMG GT – what exactly does that mean? Well, it's partly a focus on "dynamism, lightweight construction, design and comfort." The bike also shares the car's carbon black and solarbeam (yellowy-gold) color scheme.
And then there's the fact that both vehicles are expensive. Only 100 Rotwild GT S bikes are being made, each one selling for €9,990 (about US$10,870).
Mercedes‑AMG and Rotwild have produced a mountain bike together before, incidentally, in the form of 2013's full-suspension R.X45 AMG.
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I guess history is repeating itself.
Many car manufacturers (especially the "high end" ones) are doing this again because a) they have the know-how and capacity in specialty manufacturing (carbon fiber), b) it's good marketing, and d) they are again trying out new technologies (especially with electric drive train matters - though not in this particular case).