• The 2021 Mercedes-AMG GT 63 4-Door S Set a New Nürburgring Record

There’s a new king of luxury cars at the Green Hell

The 2021 Mercedes-AMG GT 63 S 4-Door has a new (old) record to add to its shelf after reclaiming the fastest lap around the Nurburgring Nordschleife in the “luxury class” segment.

The AMG GT 63 S 4-Door reclaimed the title from the Porsche Panamera Turbo S after AMG development engineer Demian Schaffert clocked a time ofseven minutes and 27.8 seconds (7:27.8) for the 12.944-mile-long version of the race track with straight-line measurement for track section T13 and seven minutes and 23.009 seconds for the old 12.8-mile-long version without the straight-line measurement for track section T13.

The new record serves as validation for Mercedes-AMG after the automaker took to social media to suggest that “it’s high time to hit the track again” after the Panamera Turbo S beat the GT 63 S 4-Door’s old record by 0.3 seconds. Mission accomplished, Mercedes-AMG.

What’s the story behind Mercedes-AMG’s return to the Nurburgring with the AMG GT 63 S 4-Door?

The Mercedes-AMG GT 63 S 4-Door held the lap record in the “luxury class” at the Nurburgring Nordschleife with a time of 7:30.11. Then, in August, the Porsche Panamera Turbo S unseated the mighty AMG sedan when it posted a lap time of 7:29.81. It didn’t sit well with the folks over at Mercedes-AMG that the record held by the GT 63 S was upended by a slim margin of just 0.3 seconds. So, the German automaker took to social media and wrote this post:

"Our record lap was the best of its class and only 0.3 seconds off of a recent record time you may have heard about. Maybe it’s high time to hit the track again..."

It wasn’t so much of a hint as it was foreshadowing on Mercedes-AMG’s part. It wanted its record back.

How did the Mercedes-AMG GT S 4-Door do this time around?

The 2021 Mercedes-AMG GT 63 4-Door S Set a New Nürburgring Record
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Mercedes-AMG returned to the scene of Porsche’s conquest and did what it set out to do. With AMG development engineer Demian Schaffert behind the wheel, the 2021 AMG GT 63 S 4-Door went to work, flying around the almost 13-mile track to clock a time of 7:27.8 on the longer track with straight-line measurement for track section T13 and 7:23.009 on the old - and shorter - 12.8-mile track without straight-line measurement for track section T13.

The 2021 Mercedes-AMG GT 63 4-Door S Set a New Nürburgring Record
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The important lap time relative to the Panamera Turbo’s existing lap record is the second one.

The Porsche clocked a time of 7:25.04 around the 12.8-mile layout, making the 2021 AMG GT 63 S 4-Door more than two seconds quicker than the incumbent record-holder in the “luxury class” category. In effect, the 2021 Mercedes-AMG GT 63 S 4-Door has reclaimed the fastest lap record among cars in its category, and it did so with the optional AMG Aerodynamics Package in place.

Not only did the package’s contents help improve the AMG GT 63 S 4-Door’s stability at higher speeds, but it also helped reduce wear and tear on the set of Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires the rocket of a sedan was wearing.

The 2021 Mercedes-AMG GT 63 4-Door S Set a New Nürburgring Record
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How long it will keep that record remains to be seen, but don’t count Porsche out just yet. The folks from Stuttgart could have something in store to reclaim the record that the AMG GT 63 S 4-Door just got back for Mercedes-AMG. Heck, a new contender might even rise through the ranks. The 2021 Bentley Flying Spur has the chops to make a claim on the AMG GT 63 S 4-Door’s crown, as does the Alpina B7 under the right conditions.

Why are there two timed laps at the Nurburgring now?

The 2021 Mercedes-AMG GT 63 4-Door S Set a New Nürburgring Record
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For the longest time, automakers who tried to set lap times at the Nurburgring drove around a 12.8-mile track where timing starts at the end of Turn 13 in the grandstand section of the track and ends at the beginning section of the same grandstand after the vehicle running a timed lap goes all the way around the circuit. But in 2019, the Nurburgring 1927 GmBh & Co. KG created a new method for timing laps. This new method involves the clock starting and stopping at the same point in Turn 13. This new method adds 232 meters compared to the old layout, and it explains why the Mercedes-AMG GT 63 S 4-Door posted two lap times, one of which was a lot quicker than the other.

Is the 2021 Mercedes-AMG GT 63 S 4-Door really the fastest four-door sedan at the Nurburgring?

2018 Jaguar XE SV Project 8 High Resolution Exterior
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It is if you don’t count the Jaguar XE Project 8, which clocked a lap time of 7:18.361 around the old 12.8-mile track back in July 2019. Unfortunately for the Jag, a lot of automakers don’t consider this the real record, citing the XE Project 8’s lack of a rear seat, which effectively means it’s not a four-door luxury sedan and it’s disqualified from the class.

Kirby Garlitos
Kirby Garlitos
Automotive Aftermarket Expert - kirby@topspeed.com
Kirby’s first exposure into the world of automobiles happened when he caught Knight Rider on television as a five-year old boy. David Hasselhoff didn’t leave much of an impression on him (that happened later on in Baywatch), but KITT certainly did. To this day, Kirby remains convinced that he will one day own a car with the same ‘spirit’ as the original KITT (not the 2008 monstrosity). He doesn't know when that will be, but until then, he’s committed to expressing his love for KITT, and all cars for that matter, here at TopSpeed.  Read full bio
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