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2020 Mercedes-AMG GT R PRO: Affalterbach’s Hurricane

  • The 2020 Mercedes-AMG GT R PRO emerges as the latest in the AMG GT line. 
  • The two-door AMG GT Coupes and Roadsters come with a unique driving control system.
  • Mercedes-AMG says everything about the new GT R PRO was modified for track performance. 

I’m starting to think Mercedes is just messing with us now, especially when it comes to anything with the AMG badge glued to it. The German’s engineering prowess and cultural depth of knowledge is so profound, it’s like trying to argue with Wotan. “Oh, is that what you think,” comes the stentorian voice, booming from the clouds, “Then behold mortal! Witness the AMG GT!”

And now, witness the 2020 Mercedes-AMG GT R PRO.

Delivering The Goods

Yes, Mercedes-Benz is kind of stodgy and conservative in a engineering sense. They lack the design finesse and penchant for experimentality of Ferrari; have nowhere near the impudent glee of Porsche, or the British refinement and reserve of Aston Martin, but Land O’Goshen can they deliver the goods. The goods, in this case, being grip and braking and power; lots and lots and lots of power.

Driving anything hot off the line from AMG means you know what Günther Rall must have felt rolling in on a stream of B-17s over Frankfurt.

Expanding The Family

In an odd way, Mercedes-Benz seems intent on making the GT a sub-brand within the AMG sub-brand itself, sort of a sub-sub-brand. There are, in point of fact, three Mercedes AMG GTs: The Mercedes-AMG GT, the Mercedes-AMG GTC (which is a four door “coupe”), and the Mercedes-AMG GT R/Mercedes-AMG GT R PRO. The latter are twin track terrors with the luxo stuff taken out and speed stuff added.

The 2020 Mercedes-AMG GT R PRO was even inspired by the AMG GT3 and AMG GT4 race cars.

“No other current production Mercedes- AMG is as close to motor racing as the new AMG GT R PRO,” said Tobias Moers, Chairman of the Management Board of Mercedes-AMG GmbH. “A lot of experience from our current GT3 and GT4 motorsport activities entered into its development.”

Where we are at in 2020 with these GTs is a place of refinement, of constant honing of this, sharpening of that, trimming of this bit einfach so, of that bit nur ein bisschen mehr.

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2020 Mercedes-AMG GT R PRO Photo: MBUSA.

Dynamic Controls: A Testament To Refinement

A good example is the AMG Dynamics portion of the AMG Dynamic Select drivetrain/chassis control system. Along with the standard modes (Slippery, Comfort, Sport, Sport Plus, Race, and Individual), AMG Dynamics also broadens the functions of the electronic stability control.

AMG Dynamics has four modes: Basic, Advanced, Pro, and Master. No laughing mortal! Displease Wotan and suffer the consequences! Basic works with the Slippery and Comfort drive programs for stable handling and higher yaw damping. Advanced is coupled with the Sport program for more neutral balance and lower yaw damping. With a reduction in the “steering angle requirements,” the Advanced mode is perfect for winding country roads.

Pro is part of the Sport+ program and provides even more assistance than the Advanced mode does for those spirited driving sessions.

Master, which is only available for GT C and GT R, connects to the Race drive program. Master mode is aimed at those of us driving around on race tracks. This gives the GT an extreme neutral balance and an even lower steering angle. Master ensures the utmost agility and fully exploits the GT’s dynamic potential.

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Photo: MBUSA.

Suspension Tech: All About Wear Resistance

Of course the coil-over suspension got tweaked. Drivers can set the spring preload length mechanically, but the compression and rebound of the shocks is variable. This is done without tools via a click system with an integrated adjustment dial on the damper. You can even set the compression rate separately for high-speed or low-speed driving. The front axle now has a carbon fiber torsion bar while the rear is made of steel. Both are adjustable, natch.

The lower wishbones of the rear axle have Uniball spherical rod-end bearings. They are considerably more wear-resistant than conventional bearings and their design has no play, so toe-in and camber do not change even under high loads. Nasty!

“The agile responses to all driver commands and the overall performance now deliver even more of that incomparable feeling that our racing drivers experience on the track,” Moers said.

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The 2020 Mercedes-AMG GT R PRO has a top speed of 198 mph. Photo: MBUSA.

Carbon Fiber & Aerodynamic Treatments

There’s a carbon fiber shear panel in the underbody to help cut weight and increase overall precision. AMG even retuned the electronically-controlled engine and transmission mounts, a move they say increases agility and response. Along with the carbon-fiber components, the standard ceramic composite braking system also cuts weight.

Aerodynamics are enhanced with a re-designed front apron and two flics at the sides, clear-coated carbon fiber, of course. Air slots in the front fenders are for more than looks, venting the wheel arches and lowering front-axle lift.

Out back, there’s a clear-coated carbon-fiber aero bit at the wheel arch. The rear spoiler now has a lip for increased downforce as well.

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Photo: MBUSA.

Power & Performance: The Numbers Speak!

And there’s even more, all of which Mercedes-AMG goes into great detail on, but the only details that really matter are these: zero to 60 in the mid-3s and top speeds nudging the double ton. The next greatest detail is this: 7.04.632 minutes around the Nürburgring. AMG brand ambassador and AMG GT3 racing driver Maro Engel recorded the time.

The 2020 Mercedes-AMG GT R PRO puts out 577 horsepower and 516 lb-ft. of torque!

“Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!”

Tony Borroz has spent his entire life racing antique and sports cars. He is the author of Bricks & Bones: The Endearing Legacy and Nitty-Gritty Phenomenon of The Indy 500, available in paperback or Kindle format. Follow his work on Twitter: @TonyBorroz.

2020 Mercedes-AMG GT R PRO Gallery

Photos & Source: MBUSA.