Mercedes-AMG GT S Costs $270,000 in China, Is Still Half the Price of an SLS

Just because China is letting its citizens buy any cars they like, it doesn't mean that it's an open market where prices are fair. Take the brand new AMG GT, the sportscar everybody is talking about at the moment, which is twice as expensive as it's supposed to.
Mercedes-AMG GT S 6 photos
Photo: Mercedes-Benz
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The 510 horsepower GT S was launched in China this week, with plans to offer the cheaper GT model in September. That's the good news, the bad news being that it has been priced from 1.68 million yuan or a hefty $270,000.

In America, this 4-liter V8 machine stickers for $130,000 which is still expensive considering you can buy two Dodge Hellcats for that kind of money. Mercedes can get away with that because... well, it's Mercedes. But in China, the GT S costs what you'd pay for a Lamborghini Huracan or a Ferrari 458 Italia.

However, local customers are probably used to this type of treatment from their local dealerships. Everything that's not locally made in China is subjected to high taxation and becomes ludicrously expensive. For instance, the SL 350 Roadster, which we'd consider inferior to the AMG GT, costs almost the same at 1.54 million yuan.

But it can be a lot worse. When new, the SLS AMG retailed for 3.62 million yuan or $590,000. It all has to do with the fact that the Chinese government taxes anything with an engine bigger than 4 liters by 40%, while the ones below that pay 17%. As you all know, the SLS was a naturally aspirated 6.3-liter monster while the AMG GT that followed has a 3,982cc displacement.

Still, the high prices also have to do with the greed of local dealers and the lack of supply. China is the largest car market in the world and every millionaire and his kid wants the AMG GT, so why not ask more than it's worth?!
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About the author: Mihnea Radu
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Mihnea's favorite cars have already been built, the so-called modern classics from the '80s and '90s. He also loves local car culture from all over the world, so don't be surprised to see him getting excited about weird Japanese imports, low-rider VWs out of Germany, replicas from Russia or LS swaps down in Florida.
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