Mercedes-AMG Applies Active Aerodynamics to the GT Coupe

Movable aerodynamic devices let the car adjust to changing conditions.

Dan Carney, Senior Editor

October 24, 2023

2 Min Read
The Mercedes AMG GT Coupe in the wind tunnel.Mercedes-AMG

Mercedes-Benz engineers seeking to maximize aerodynamic downforce and stability in the new AMG GT Coupe developed active aerodynamic devices for the car.

“Downforce,” in the context of a production coupe like the AMG GT is actually a matter of minimizing the lift generated by the car’s overall shape. The goal was to do that, so the car doesn’t become light at speed, and to ensure that the weight on the front and rear axles stays in balance so that grip levels don’t shift as the car’s speed changes.

Starting where air approaches the car at the front, a technical highlight is the Airpanel two-part, active air control system. Vertical slats immediately behind the air intake opening in the car’s front fascia are normally closed for reduced drag. This also pushes air under the car, reducing front-end lift.

Mercedes Gives Drag the Slip with Sophisticated Wheel Aerodynamics

If the engine temperature reaches a trigger threshold, then the vertical slats open to provide cooling air. If that’s not enough, and the car’s speed exceeds 112.5 mph (180 kph), then the second set of horizontal slats also opens.

Beneath the car, the AMG GT Coupe features an active aerodynamic element hidden in the underbody in front of the engine. This employs the ground effect to suction the car to the ground using a movable carbon fiber part that automatically lowers by 1.6 inches (40 mm) when the GT reaches 50 mph (80 kph) to create a Venturi effect sticking the car to the road.


The active rear aerodynamic device is external, and therefore more visible in its work. At speeds faster than 50 mph (80 kph), the retractable rear spoiler changes its position depending on speed, longitudinal and lateral acceleration, and the steering wheel’s rotational speed. This optimizes its effect to minimize drag while also providing the necessary rear grip at elevated speeds.

About the Author(s)

Dan Carney

Senior Editor, Design News

Dan’s coverage of the auto industry over three decades has taken him to the racetracks, automotive engineering centers, vehicle simulators, wind tunnels, and crash-test labs of the world.

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