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Mercedes-AMG Concept PureSpeed: a necessary successor?

AMG PureSpeed reveal

The new Mercedes-AMG PureSpeed has been unveiled in suitably glamorous fashion, the first of the 'Mythos' ultra-limited edition specials. For Siddharth Limaye however, the new speedster misses the mark.

It seems like Mercedes-AMG are developing a habit of revealing new cars on Formula 1 race weekends. This time, they unveiled the new Concept AMG PureSpeed on the streets, or should I say, waters of Monaco. F1 royalty Sir Lewis Hamilton and George Russell were present to unveil this “concept”, although AMG have confirmed that they will build 250 of them for their most loyal customers and collectors next year. So what makes this car special, I hear you ask? Let us take a look at the details of this rather polarising limited edition.

AMG PureSpeed in Monaco harbour
AMG PureSpeed with Sir Lewis Hamilton and George Russell

To start, your eyes are not deceiving you, the PureSpeed indeed does have a F1-inspired Halo running through the centre of the cabin. This means the car has no roof - not even a detachable one - no windows and a miniscule windscreen that will try its best to deflect air above your head to prevent bugs flying straight into your face. The modern speedster concept is not new as we have seen the Ferrari Monza SP1 and SP2, Aston Martin V12 Speedster, McLaren Elva, and famously the first to do it this century: The Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren Stirling Moss. This modern rendition takes heavy inspiration from the ethos of the Stirling Moss, by exposing the driver and passenger to the elements, providing an unmatched (and extremely windy) driving experience, although two helmets are provided. 

The PureSpeed is the first car in the Mythos series of hyper-exclusive Mercedes models and is based on the new SL’s platform; the lights, doors, mirrors, spoiler, boot lid and exhaust tips are direct carryovers. From our only glimpse of the cabin, it looks like the dashboard design and dual-screen layout are shared with the SL too.

In my opinion, the front end should have also been taken from the SL, which looks astronomically better than what has been cooked up here. Mercedes-AMG calls the front end a “shark nose”, however the shark in question appears to be the docile Nurse Shark. There is a striking resemblance between the PureSpeed and the Bussnik Speedlegend - a coachbuilt speedster based on the Mercedes-AMG GT R which also features a halo above the cabin and two roll hoops behind. Personally, I prefer the look of the Speedlegend. 

AMG PureSpeed rear
AMG PureSpeed nose

There is a lot of history and heritage to go along with the PureSpeed, with the flying buttresses at the back paying homage to the legendary 300SL, driven by Sir Stirling Moss and Denis Jenkinson. The paint scheme pays tribute to the 1924 Targa Florio race in Sicily. The number 10 can also be found on the front wings of the Concept Mercedes‑AMG PureSpeed and refers to that Targa Florio victory 100 years ago.

Mercedes-AMG decided not to reveal any performance figures, although we can expect the numbers to be close to the AMG SL 63 with at least 577 bhp on offer. In principle, the PureSpeed ticks some boxes to be a worthy successor to the rich history of the SLR McLaren Stirling Moss, but I’m not sure it’s outdone the SLR in terms of style. This begs the question, did the last Mercedes speedster need a successor?

AMG PureSpeed nose, side
AMG PureSpeed halo
AMG PureSpeed interior
AMG PureSpeed rear side


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