Mercedes SLS AMG GT revealed
Mercedes-Benz has launched a new high-performance version of its SLS AMG supercar, with even more power and performance. The new 591hp SLS AMG GT is offered as both coupe and Roadster, and will launch in October 2012 for a list price estimated to start at around £180,000.
The new SLS AMG GT is a bit of an acronym mouthful to say out loud but its purpose is clear on the road: it has darkened headlights and tail lamps, red brake calipers, plus high-gloss cross-fins and Mercedes star in the grille that are complemented by high-floss door mirrors and bonnet fin detailing. 19-inch front and 20-inch rear alloy wheels have a matt finish but polished surfaces.
Subtle but effective, the SLS AMG GT is pleasingly more purposeful than the standard car, confirming its newfound potency with a 'GT' logo added to the AMG badge on the bootlid.
GT means more below the surface too: it is not all just show, thanks to a 20hp power boost that takes the 6.2-litre V8 engine's output up to 591hp. This helps it hit 62mph from rest in 3.7 seconds, an all-important 0.1 second faster than the standard car.
The top speed has been raised too, to 199mph - but this Mercedes SLS AMG GT remains a sub-200mph supercar on purpose, as the top speed is once again electronically limited. Is Mercedes planning even more for its range-topping icon, then?
In support of the extra engine power is a more focused AMG SPEEDSHIFT DCT 7-speed paddleshift gearbox. This has "significantly" faster shifts, which should make the SLS more satisfying to drive: remember, this is the same gearbox that's so brilliant in the Ferrari 458 Italia.
The suspension too is more focused. The standard AMG Ride Control suspension becomes AMG Ride Control 'Performance': this has stiffer springs and dampers, plus no 'Comfort' mode - Sport instead becomes the recommended default setting, with Sport Plus available too.
In typical race-inspired GT car style, there's lots of Alcantara inside, for the centre sections of the seats, door centre panels and grip section of the flat-bottom steering wheel. There's a rallycar-style red 12 o'clock marking too.
The black colourscheme is livened up by red seatbelts that we wish were inspired by the MG Metro, but suspect are not. The AMG dial pack is also finished in black, and features a seven-LED upshift indicator in its upper section.
UK prices are yet to be revealed for the new Mercedes SLS AMG GT, but it will launch to the market just after the Paris Motor Show in October, with deliveries to Brits undoubtedly starting soon after.
And if the extra potency of the Mercedes SLS AMG GT isn't for you but the standard car is just a bit too, well, standard, Mercedes also now offers a special optional 'AMG designo Exclusive STYLE leather' kit.
The pack includes diamond-finish leather seats, leather dashboard, Alcantara rooflining and even floormats with porcelain leather edging. It means there's much more opportunity for individualising the Mercedes SLS AMG, as the brand's range-topping supercar continues to develop.
Our eyes are firmly on the SLS AMG GT, though. Just one question - coupe or Roadster?
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