I have a confession to make. As much as I love the Audi R8, especially this new second-gen car, I am a sucker for classic sports cars. The old-school front engine, rear-wheel drive sports car with a really long hood and short rear deck is basically the ideal car for me. So the Mercedes-AMG GT is one of my bucket list cars. In fact, I still say that the older Mercedes SLS AMG S is the best car I’ve ever driven. But, despite my love for the AMG GT, I never really expected it to be as good of a performance car as the Audi R8. So let’s find out.
In the latest video from Auto Express, we get to take a look at a drag race between the Audi R8 V10 and Mercedes-AMG GT S.
The Audi R8 V10 in this video isn’t the “Plus” variant, so that means it packs a 533 hp 5.2 liter V10, a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox and all-wheel drive. It’s also mid-engine and naturally-aspirated, so it’s a proper supercar. On the other hand, the Mercedes-AMG GT S is a sports car, a very traditional one. With a 4.0 liter twin-turbocharged V8, the AMG makes 510 hp and sends it through a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox to just the rear-wheels.
While the AMG isn’t that far down on power, it is heavier. Weighing it at 1,645 kg (3,626 lbs), it’s considerably heavier than the Audi R8, which weighs 1,595 kg (3,516 lbs). So with more power, less weight and more grip, thanks to Quattro all-wheel drive, this seems like an easy victory for the Audi R8. And it is.
When the race starts, the R8 fires off the line instantaneously, thanks to all of that grip. The Merc spins its tires a bit and has a hard time channelling all of that twin-turbocharged torque to just two wheels. The R8 jumps out to a big lead quick and never lets it go. And remember, this isn’t even the “Plus” model. From 0-60 mph, the R8 only takes 3.5 seconds, compared to the Merc’s 4.0 flat. From 0-100, the R8 takes 7.2 seconds where it takes the AMG 8.0 seconds. But it doesn’t look that close, The R8 seems miles ahead and is clearly the much faster car and that’s impressive because the AMG GT S is not a slow car. At all.
However, I honestly don’t know which car I’d rather have if both keys were in front of me. But on thing’s certain — If you’re making your money drag racing, it’s almost impossible to not want an Audi R8 because it’s stonkingly fast.