As Mercedes-Benz promotes its performance division, AMG, to become more of an independent sports brand, it is also increasing its fleet with some stand out models.
AMG will have 48 models in its lineup by the end of 2016, including the much-anticipated GT R, to be revealed at this year’s Goodwood Festival of Speed in June.
AMG CEO Tobias Moers confirmed the much-rumoured race version GT R at the recent Geneva motor show.
Based on the Mercedes-AMG GT coupe with its 4-litre twin-turbo V8, it is set to rival the Porsche 911 GT3 RS and will have a more powerful engine, boosting excess of 420kW, a new body kit and larger brakes.
And as Driven predicted at the Mercedes-Benz SL roadster media launch in San Diego, AMG is releasing a soft-top GT.
We stated at the late-February event, that while “the SL is still an iconic car for the brand, if rumours are correct and the brand makes a convertible version of the GT, maybe customers will rethink their choice”.
When Driven questioned Moers about the launch of a GT convertible he said, “it makes sense... early next year will be a nice time”.
The division will also be adding a C63 convertible, also to be revealed soon.
At the Geneva motor show, Mercedes-Benz head designer Dr Gorden Wagener, said that “AMG was more of an independent brand”, when talking about the success of the GT in global sales.
The biggest sellers for AMG are the A45, C63, combined GT/GT S and the G-wagon.
Explaining the expansion of the brand, Moers said, “it would be easy for us to just tune the engine of the C43... badge it as AMG and sell it”.
“Would that be the right approach? If you had short thinking. But that is not our attitude.
“It’s all about being exclusive with this technology with these cars, we don’t provide wannabes to the market , then you’re going to struggle with your brand.
“This is our mission, when expanding our portfolio, take care that every car we are going to bring to the market is going to meet our brand approach of driving performance. Never bring to the market a car badged AMG that is a wannabe.”