The claims by manufacturers to fastest lap times around the 21km-long Nordschleife loop is always a contentious affair. Was the car in production spec? Did it use special tyres? Did the driver consume the permissible amount of Red Bull? One thing is for sure, the race to be the fastest around Green Hell won’t end anytime soon, and the latest one to stake a claim is a ‘beast’ in green: the 585hp/700Nm Mercedes-AMG GT R.
Mercedes-Benz is calling the feat “the fastest-ever lap time on the Nürburgring Nordschleife in a test drive conducted by sport auto” (a German auto magazine with a distinguished history of setting lap times around Nürburgring since the 1990s). In the hands of the magazine’s test driver, the road-legal 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8 Mercedes-AMG GT R stopped the clock at 7:10.9 minutes.
The time isn’t technically the fastest for a road-going sports car in the all-time list; the Porsche 918 Spyder, Lamborghini Aventador SV and Nissan GT-R Nismo have gone faster in tests conducted by their own factory drivers, but what’s interesting is that the Porsche, Lamborghini and Nissan put their power down through all four wheels. And that makes the Mercedes-AMG GT R the fastest rear-wheel-driven, street-legal sports car to have lapped Nordschleife.
Ah, we await Porsche’s response with bated breath.