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Mercedes-Benz AMG GTR

Bright Green and Bellicose

Ever wondered what it must feel like to to be Bruce Banner, forever doomed to be transformed into the destructive ball of fury that is the Incredible Hulk?

Well, get ready.

Prepare yourself for the scene you're about to make

Comics, hey? Domain of the nerd? Nothing to tell us about life? Think again, because there is a comic book character from the Marvel Universe so analogous to the car you see in these pictures it’s almost uncanny. And if you can bear the following lines of geek-out, you’ll see why.

The Incredible Hulk is essentially about rage. It’s about what happens when a normal man, in this case the brilliant Bruce Banner, tries to do the right thing, gets out of his depth and is forced to live with the insane power that he has unleashed.

The Hulk himself is an aberration, a form of being so grotesquely animalistic that even in his feats of extreme physical, acrobatic prowess he is regarded as nothing but pure savage.

The extension of his will through the use of his body is so instinctive as to be almost accidental.

And Bruce, well Bruce merely goes along for the ride, desperately trying to exert some sort of restraint in the form of cutting through the red mist of the Hulk with the application of his own sense.

This is an unsubtle metaphor we’re working with here. But that’s OK. For heaven’s sake, the Mercedes AMG GTR is the same colour as the monster. Also, as far as road going machines go, this one is, on the surface at least, about as subtle as a sledgehammer to the face.

So, let’s be straight. The car is the hulk and you, dear driver, are the scientist trying to keep this thing on the straight and narrow.

Make no mistake...

This guy wants to get out of hand. Which is why the boffins at AMG have spent so much time developing the aerodynamic capabilities to generate the ludicrous downforce force required to keep it in check.

To put things in perspective, there is the large carbonfibre wing that occupies a large part of the car’s underside that leverages the Venturi Effect to suck the car onto the ground. Remember that this thing generates 100% more groundforce than a GTS at 50mph.

Then there are a bunch of other above-the-surface adaptations that reduce drag over the top, increase pressure at the rear for grip and, in the case of the front grill, redirect air over the splitter whilst siphoning some into the wheel arches. The latter for enhanced brake cooling, you see?

It does all of this and yet it still manages to deliver a raucous, squirmy ride. Albeit one with extreme purpose, counter intuitively imagine being strapped to an MX Missile on take off and still being able to thread a needle. That’s what you have here, strangely directable but always terrifying power.

And this ungodly tinkering with the GT platform in order to create a straight up race car doesn't end at the outward appearance. The engine has had a serious mauling too to increase output by 74bhp on the GTS. The old 4.0 litre twin turbo V8 has been given new turbo chragers and re-machined compressors to boost pressure when combined with a cleverer engine remap. The effect on performance is obvious with a snatchy, snarling torquiness coming through in abundance.

Sonically, it's devastating. As you will realise as you attempt to do anything in an urban environment. People stop mid-conversation, cameras come out, some people make inexplicable hand gestures. As an aside, be warned, on narrow streets car alarms do go off when you pass. Like the Hulk, you can forget slipping under the radar.

You wouldn't like me when I'm angry

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Figures shown are for the Mercdes-Benz AMG GTR

The verdict

And there you have it and there he goes, our Bruce Banner, clothes ragged and body battered at the end of this week’s episode. The Hulk put away until next time. He’s been laughed at, he’s been pointed at, he’s been bellowed at by people who’ll never understand. But, by all that is good and right, asses have been kicked.

He has tasted something, something awful, too much power – but he has known intoxication. It is an intoxication he will pretend he is forced to endure until he is its master but he knows he never will be. And so he is doomed to go back, time after time, to be drunk with wild potency until… who knows?

How we're responding to COVID-19.

At XL we've introduced several measures to ensure the safety of our customers and staff. Our head office is open for drop-offs and collections and all our vehicles are fully valeted and sterilised. Collections and drop-off staff all have full PPE including face masks, sanitising spray and hand cleaning fluid.

Our procedures for customers collecting vehicles:
  • New vehicles will be cleaned, sanitised and disinfected by our staff member, who will then place the keys on the windscreen and then go 2 metres away whilst the client goes to the vehicle to inspect it. Once our customer has checked and is happy with the vehicle a copy of the inspection report is emailed straight to them.
  • The handover is complete, and no contact is made between the customer and staff member. Spare gloves and sanitising wipes are available for our customers to use should they be required.
Our procedures for customers returning vehicles:
  • When a customer arrives with the vehicle our staff member will direct you to park the vehicle in a dedicated parking area and ask you to leave the vehicle, locking it and placing the keys on the windscreen. Once our customer has done this and is the required 2 metres away our staff member will approach the vehicle to disperse the sanitising/disinfecting fluid on the keys unlock and enter the vehicle sanitising the dashboard, steering wheel, handbrake, door and window controls, seat adjustment controls. Our staff member will then perform the initial visual checks inside the vehicle, such as mileage, servicing and fuel levels. A full external check of the vehicle is performed, along with tyres, under to bonnet and boot. Any new damage is noted. Once the inspection is complete a copy of the inspection will be emailed straight to the client.

Keep on keeping on... and stay safe!