The two GT models are the first from the performance division not to be based on standard Mercedes derivatives, but Moers said they are by no means the last. However, he was swift in ruling out a unique AMG SUV, which might be the most obvious choice for Affalterbach’s next project.
“There was a clear space in the market for the four-door GT,” he said, “but we already have many excellent AMG SUV derivatives and it makes no sense to steal from them just so we can make our own car.”
Quite what the new car would be is not clear, but it seems most likely to be a smaller, more affordable sports car to steal sales from Porsche’s Boxster and Cayman – something the current Mercedes SLC has never had the firepower or focus to achieve.
As previously revealed by Autocar, Moers also confirmed that the GT 4dr Coupé will get a 4.0-litre V8 hybrid powertrain with at least 800bhp in the future. The hybrid set-up, first seen in the concept version last year (pictured above), will become the flagship model for the car when it arrives in 2020. It is likely to use the ‘EQ Power+’ soubriquet and will be a direct response to the Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid, which currently has 670bhp and is good for 193mph.
The additional power of the AMG model suggests a 200mph top speed and a 0-62mph dash of little more than three seconds are very much on the cards. The new powertrain won’t be restricted to the GT 4dr Coupé, either; in time, it will be used in the S-Class and the next GLS (where it might also power a Maybach model). This means it will in effect replace the ‘65’ models with their 6.0-litre V12 engines.