Meet the new Mercedes-AMG GT4!
At the occasion of the 2017 Total 24 Hours of Spa, Mercedes-AMG has presented its latest competition car: the Mercedes-AMG GT4. The new model is based on the Mercedes-AMG GT R (combined fuel consumption: 11.4 l/100 km; combined CO2 emission: 259g/km) and has been made to meet the requirements of international GT4 race series, including the FIA-sanctioned GT4 European Series Southern Cup and Northern Cup.
Its production-based concept combines fully matured racing technology with the highest level of safety and efficiency. With the Mercedes-AMG GT4, the sports car and performance brand from Affalterbach expands its Customer Racing Programme with a promising vehicle category. After an intense testing and trial phase, the Mercedes-AMG GT4 will be delivered to the first Customer Racing Teams at the end of 2017.
“The GT4 segment is getting more and more popular. The production-based concept is an important factor, especially when you want to get started in motorsport as a team or as a driver. For some teams, the GT4 category also serves as a sensible addition to their existing involvement in GT3, for instance to support young drivers,” says Tobias Moers, Chairman of the Board of Management of Mercedes-AMG GmbH.
“For us as a manufacturer, GT4 competition is a logical next step to extend our Customer Racing Programme. After the achievements in GT3 racing, the Mercedes-AMG GT4 is opening another valuable platform for us to prove our competence as a globally successful sports car and performance brand. There is no doubt that we will once again be setting new benchmarks in the segment with the latest member in our Customer Racing Programme.”
Like with the introduction of the SLS AMG GT3 and the Mercedes-AMG GT3, aspirations for the new race car are high: the Mercedes-AMG GT4 is entering the scene as a fully matured and proven competition car. It arrives to set new benchmarks in its class relating to safety, ergonomics, driveability, performance as well as service- and user-friendliness.
“Our customers have high expectations when we are presenting a new car. And rightfully so: the SLS AMG GT3 and the Mercedes-AMG GT3 were capable of winning from their very first lap of racing onwards and were able to prove it in an impressive way. That also is the benchmark for the new Mercedes-AMG GT4. Therefore, we have taken the time that was necessary for development and testing to be able to offer a perfect product in the end. We aren’t entering a new segment to finish second,” Stefan Wendl, head of Mercedes-AMG Customer Racing, says.
As Test and Development Drivers, Bernd Schneider, Thomas Jäger and Jan Seyffarth are largely contributing to the maturity of the Mercedes-AMG GT4. Like with the SLS AMG GT3 and the Mercedes-AMG GT3, the co-operation between the experienced drivers and the engineers from Affalterbach is an important element in the complex vehicle development process. The close interaction between the experts results into excellent driveability, a characteristic that is typical for the Mercedes-AMG Customer Racing cars.
The Mercedes-AMG GT4 is powered by the 4.0 litre V8 biturbo engine with direct fuel injection, known from the road cars from Affalterbach. Depending on the balance of performance, this results into an output of up to 375 kW (510 hp) and a maximum torque of over 600 Nm. Like in the Mercedes-AMG GT3, the sequential six-speed competition gearbox in the Mercedes-AMG GT4 is linked to the rear axle in transaxle formation and is pneumatically operated.
The suspension with double wishbones and dampers with adjustable rebound and compression gives a direct and clear feedback to the driver in every situation. A powerful competition brake system with multi-adjustable ABS ensures maximum stopping power. The Mercedes-AMG GT4 is equipped with 18 inch forged AMG light-alloy wheels.
To achieve maximum performance at the race track, the Mercedes-AMG GT4 has been weight-optimised in every area. An intelligent mix of aluminium and carbon has been used for the chassis and the bodywork.
The aerodynamics are playing a leading role: building on the innovative aerodynamic concept of the Mercedes-AMG GT R, the race car was further optimised in a comprehensive wind tunnel test to achieve a handling that is as neutral as possible. Like this, it is easier for the teams to find an individual track set-up. To this end, the rear wing of the GT4 car has a very wide adjustment range to select the required combination of low drag and high downforce levels.
The Mercedes-AMG GT4 has adopted the proven safety concept of its ‘big GT3 brother’ and is thus setting new benchmarks in its class. The best possible driver protection has the highest priority. Here, the rollcage of high-strength steel, screwed onto the aluminium spaceframe, is playing a central role. The carbon driver safety cell meets the latest FIA homologation standards and features an integrated headrest. Optionally, this is also available for the passenger seat. Because of its design, the safety cell also provides a very high level of protection for a driver’s shoulders, hips and legs. Moreover, it is compatible with the HANS (Head And Neck Support) system. An extrication hatch in the roof and a powerful fire extinguishing system round out the competition-specific safety features.
Ergonomics and functionality can be found in the interior of the Mercedes-AMG GT4: all the elements, systems and displays have been designed in such a way that less experienced drivers can also handle them quickly. In the large cockpit, even tall drivers find sufficient space, especially as the steering wheel has a wide adjustment range and the pedals can be adjusted as well. For easy handling and good visibility in the dark, the controls on the steering wheel are illuminated. So are the large switches on the centre console that is orientated towards the driver. The effective circulation of fresh air in the interior is particularly pleasant for the driver. To allow the drivers to keep cool in all racing conditions, air conditioning is available for the Mercedes-AMG GT4 as an option.
Prior to the first deliveries, scheduled for the end of 2017, the Mercedes-AMG GT4 is to undergo further intense testing. The programme includes a total of over 30,000 kilometres of track testing. The new car has already successfully proven its reliable endurance performance and high durability in a 30-hour endurance test at race speed at the Lausitzring.
To allow for experience from real racing conditions to be integrated into the development, three prototypes will be participating in selected test races during the current 2017 motorsport season. For these outings, the cars will be run in co-operation with development partner HWA AG and, if required, with support from partner teams.
More information about the Mercedes-AMG GT4’s technical specifications can be found on the official Mercedes-AMG website.
Check out our special Mercedes-AMG GT4 photo gallery, courtesy of Mercedes-AMG Motorsport.