“There is no shame in it sharing its DNA with the SL, which takes the roadster role in our portfolio.” The two AMG cars are based on the same Modular Sport Architecture platform, a lightweight spaceframe-style structure that uses a combination of aluminium, steel, magnesium and plastic composites.
Schiebe said the new GT will be more rigid than the SL, which is to be expected, given that it has a fixed roof and other additional stiffening measures, including substantial engine bay bracing.
Dimensionally, the new GT has grown. Official details have not yet been released, but we expect it to mirror the latest SL with a length of around 4705mm – 159mm longer than the old model.
The wheelbase has increased by 70mm to 2700mm too, and the interior (identical to the SL’s) has been repackaged, which provides the scope for a set of rear seats and a larger boot.
“The feedback we got from customers was to keep the performance but broaden the scope to make it a more amicable car in everyday driving conditions. We’ve got people who use the GT for weekend trips and longer,” said Schiebe.
At launch, cars will use AMG’s twin-turbocharged 4.0-litre V8 engine. Schiebe would not go into detail yet but said it has been engineered with Euro 7 emissions regulations in mind. He also hinted at electrified models further down the line: “They are not planned from the beginning but we’re well prepared to bring them online when the regulatory framework demands it.”
Will the new GT line-up encompass as many models as its predecessor, which, at last count, ran to 11? “Wait and see,” said Schiebe, adding: “We already offer the SL in 43, 55 and 63 models.” In a development brought to the SL, the previous Speedshift MCT seven-speed dual-clutch transaxle of the first-generation GT is replaced by a nine-speed gearbox mounted directly to the engine.
As before, it offers both manual and automatic shifting. However, new for 2023 will be a fully variable four-wheel drive system in place of the traditional rear-wheel drive.
Noticeable from the passenger seat is just how close the new model feels to the original. Despite larger dimensions, a more spacious interior and a heavily reworked drivetrain, it still feels like a GT.
There is the same deep staccato engine sound, the same elongated view down the bonnet and the same exuberant accelerative force under load in Sport Plus mode.
It is traditionally AMG in character. Schiebe admitted the larger dimensions, the new interior layout and the addition of four-wheel drive have inevitably increased weight. He’s confident, however, that the new GT is every bit as dynamically adept as its predecessor, if not more so.
He said the decision to go with four-wheel drive opens up a new dimension for the GT. “We have a fully variable apportioning of power front to rear. That means that you can not only decide to drive to the Alps in June or July, but also in October or November, because you feel safe,” he said.
The double-wishbone front and multi-link rear suspension, with variable damping control and active anti-roll functions, is uniquely tuned. The new GT is firmer than the SL, but it gives the impression that it delivers greater compliance and better absorption of road shock than the original model.
On the way back to AMG’s HQ in Affalterbach over undulating country roads, Schiebe identified what he believes to be the defining characteristics of the company’s new flagship. “It is still a supercar with an ability to excite and engage the driver on a very high level,” he said. “But it now has greater comfort and ease of use. It is a more agreeable car on an everyday basis.”
Everything else you need to know about the new AMG GT
The current-generation GT is exclusively a two-seater, but with the SL adopting a pair of rear seats for the first time in several generations and direct rivals in the form of the Porsche 911 and Ferrari Roma carrying a pair of child-sized buckets in the rear, AMG will offer the car with rear seating.