Being one of the world’s fastest man means you’re granted some special opportunities—like meeting a well-known runner named Bolt. Usain Bolt—and no, his name isn’t fabricated for the purposes of showmanship—neither is Will Power’s for that matter, but you have to wonder.
When you get the two fastest men in the world—that’s more diplomatic—in one car, there are bound to be some chuckles, screams, and occasional “uh-oh” moments. After all, the concentrated ego in the Mercedes-Benz AMG GT R’s cockpit could be bottled, studied, and used to jump start a failing Wall Street, and there’s no way Hamilton’s going away feeling like he didn’t get the fastest man on two feet to whimper once or twice.
With 577 horsepower and 516 lb-ft of torque available from 1,900 rpm, the Mercedes is a rocket, and the acceleration alone ought to give the runner the shivers. But it’s more than a dragster—though it does the quarter mile in eleven seconds—because it is probably the most incisive thing on sale from Mercedes now and possibly ever.
It’s at the Nurburgring where it’s shown its stuff before, but at the fast, sweeping corners of the Circuit of the Americas, it really gets a chance to shine—in the hands of the current World Champion, no less.
With the traction control switched off, Hamilton indulges in some slides that look like they might scare him almost as much as his passenger. It’s a ride any racing junkie dreams of, and it also seems to be quite inspirational—Bolt just tried his hand at a Porsche Cup car last week!