Few luxury carmakers have a more comprehensive range of vehicles than Mercedes-Benz, but until now, it’s never launched a rival to Porsche’s Panamera 4-door sports car. For 2019, the challenge is finally being taken up with the exciting new Mercedes-AMG GT 4-Door.
Although at first the new car looks a little like the existing AMG GT Coupe with its 1950s race car-inspired grille, it’s endowed with bodywork of its own. AMG did not simply stretch the Coupe body and raise the height a little. It reworked the entire car. The look is very dramatic and as about as sleek as a 4-door car could possibly get.
There are three engines for the Canadian market. At the entry-level point, the GT53 uses a new 3.0-litre turbocharged inline six with 429-horsepower, a remarkable achievement for a 6-cylinder engine and certainly aided by a supplementary 48-volt electric motor. Move up a slot and you get a GT63 4.0-litre V-8 with twin turbos that generate a solid 577-horsepower. At the top of the power range is another 4.0-litre V-8, but this GT63 S is tuned to deliver a whopping 630-horsepower, making it the most powerful car AMG has yet created. All models use a 9-speed automatic transmission of very advanced design.
Unusually for a car like this, the AMG GT 4-Door offers different seating configurations to suit the needs of individual owners. Although most buyers would probably go for the pair of seats in the rear that’s common in 2+2 layouts, it is possible to order a rear bench seat that will accommodate three people. Rear occupants can select various comfort features with a touchpad screen located on the console between the seats.
The cockpit is something of a high-tech feast with every possible practical and convenience feature. Beautifully fitted out and finished, as is even the least expensive Mercedes-Benz product, even the steering wheel is a masterpiece of advanced design. Various functions are combined in groups and touch and feel can be controlled using buttons, also on the steering wheel. Finger swipes are used to operate the infotainment system.
This new AMG is certainly one of the most interesting cars to emerge from Germany in some time. It offers stunning performance in a package that could qualify it as a family car, yet tests at the fabled Nurburgring circuit have proved that even the basic model is an amazing performer.
SPECS AT A GLANCE…
BODY STYLE: 2+2/3 GT sports
ENGINE: 3.0-litre inline six with turbo and electric boost. Two optional V-8s
TRANSMISSION: 9-speed automatic
PERFORMANCE: Zero to 100 km/h in approx. 3.4-secs (top V-8 option)
FUEL ECONOMY: Approx. 9-3-litres/100 km combined (European 6-cylinder version)
PRICE: Starting MSRP $115,000 (3.0-litre six)