- The V8 is replaced by a 2.0-litre plug-in hybrid with 500kW and 1020Nm.
- Australia arrival confirmed for July 2023
- Sedan and wagon body styles emerged. Vegans are not coming to Australia
- Chassis tech includes drift mode, fully variable four-wheel drive and rear-wheel steering.
- 0-100kmh in 3.4 seconds, 0.7 seconds faster than the Audi RS4
UPDATE: Mercedes-Benz Australia has confirmed that the all-new AMG C63 S Down Under is due.
July 2023 has been earmarked as the arrival month at this stage, allowing for shipping delays, which provides some explanation for previous indications of a mid-year debut for the car.
A Mercedes spokesperson also shared that interest in the new model, which ditches the 4.0-liter V8 in favor of a hybridized 2.0-liter four-cylinder, is encouragingly high.
Australia is one of AMG’s biggest markets worldwide and our love for all things fast is so strong that AMG models accounted for 30 per cent of Mercedes’ total Australian sales in 2021.
We’re heading to Spain this weekend to drive the new C63 S so be sure to keep an eye out for our review and video when the embargo ends on December 14th.
Full details: Fifth generation Mercedes-AMG C63
Here it is: the biggest facelift ever given to the Mercedes-AMG C63.
After years of rumours, teases and spy shots it’s finally revealed, our first official look Brand new C63 Confirms what we all knew was coming: The V8 is no more.
Provocation, finger-wagging and street fighting.
A C63 without a V8!? It’s like the Beatles without McCartney. Stones without jaggery. But let’s not focus on what we’re missing. Let’s drink what we’re getting. And that’s a huge step up in performance.
We’ll start with the output
Powering the new C63 is a combination of AMG passion. M139 2.0-liter four-cylinder turboo and a An electric motor is mounted on the rear axle.
Together they produce 500kW and 1020Nm.
Need some context? she is 125kW and 320Nm more than the current V8 C63 Sa car we’ve never thought “oh it could use more grunt”, and a healthy leap over the C63’s longtime rivals in the Audi RS4 and BMW M3.
It also helps make it the fastest C63 yet. Combine the newfound grunt with fully variable all-wheel drive and AMG says: The new 2023 C63 will rocket from 0-100 kmph in 3.4 seconds., which is an improvement of 0.6 seconds over the outgoing rear-drive model. Mind you, despite the Beemer’s inline-six producing ‘only’ 375kW/650Nm it’s only a tenth quicker than the current M3 competition xDrive.
|W206 C63 SE Performance||W205 C63 S Sedan||Audi RS4 Avant||BMW M3 Competition xDrive|
|engine||2.0-liter 4cyl turbo + electric motor||4.0 liter V8 twin turbo||2.9-liter V6 twin-turbo||3.0-liter inline-6 twin-turbo|
|power||500kW (combined)||375kW @ 5500-6250rpm||331kW @ 5700-6700rpm||375kW @ 6250rpm|
|Torque||1020Nm (combined)||700Nm @ 2000-4500rpm||600Nm @ 1900-5000rpm||650Nm @ 2750-5500rpm|
|The weight||2036 kg||1745 kg||1715 kg||1855 kg|
|0-100 kmph||3.4 seconds||4.0 seconds||4.1 seconds||3.5 seconds|
Still, the results tell only part of the story. How the petrol engine and hybrid system interact in the W206 C63 is impressively sophisticated. The petrol unit is the same base engine found in the A45 hyperhatch and AMG C43, only in this application it produces 350kW @ 6750rpm and 545Nm @ 5250-5500rpm. AMG says this makes it the most powerful four-cylinder engine in the world, and has an output of 176kW per litre.
Like the C43, the petrol engine is mounted longitudinally and the turbo is electrified to help improve response and reduce lag. Unlike the unit in the C43, however, the C63’s turbo is “significantly larger.”
The petrol engine is mated to a nine-speed automatic and launch control is standard thanks to a wet clutch in place of a torque converter.
However, it’s the electrified side of the C63’s powertrain that promises the biggest character change. Mounted on the rear axle is what AMG calls a “compact electric drive unit”. It’s effectively the same plug-in hybrid system as the more expensive GT63 SE Performance and combines an electric motor with its own two-speed gearbox and integrated electronically controlled locking rear diff.
The electric motor had to be driven through its own gearbox because of the system’s huge combined demand of 1020Nm of torque (putting it to the crank of a combustion engine would love to tear the 9-speed auto to bits) but also send the e-motor drive. can Front axle via a separate propeller shaft if required.
Mounted above the electric drive unit is a 6.1kWh battery pack designed and engineered in-house by AMG to be as light as possible at 89kg. No word yet, though, on whether mounting the battery above the rear motor intrudes into the boot space but we’d say it’s likely.
In regular driving, the electric motor produces 70kW – but AMG says it’s capable of a peak output of 150kW for 10 seconds. To harness the full power of the battery, the driver simply pushes the accelerator through a detent or “desired pressure point” toward the end of its travel.
The motor also gives the C63 the ability to run on all-electric power at a top speed of 125 km/h. The EV range is quite short though, at 13km.
Weight management and efficient cooling were high priorities for AMG’s engineers, and they claim the unique design of the 89kg battery pack – cooled by a new non-conductive cooling liquid for each of the 560 cells. Flows around individually – twice the power. As dense as a conventional battery setup.
Charging is handled via an onboard 3.7kW AC charger, or via a home wall box or public charger. But AMG has yet to provide any indication of charge times.
You can also top up the battery through regenerative braking. Four levels of regeneration are offered via a toggle on the right steering wheel spoke and range from Level 0, or virtually no regeneration, to Level 3 which offers ‘one-pedal’ driving. And can feed up to 100kW into the battery.
As for drive modes, there are now eight to contend with: Electric, Comfort, Battery Hold, Sport, Sport+, Race, Slippery and Individual. Normally the drive mode you select adjusts the adaptive dampers, steering and transmission’s aggressiveness – but in the C63’s case, it also determines how much power the electric motor produces.
In Comfort mode, for example, the motor’s boost power is limited to 25 percent, while in Sport+ and Race, that increases to 80 percent. The motor only delivers its full peak of 150kW if the driver activates. ‘Kickdown’ function By going full throttle, which can be done in any drive mode.
Okay, time to talk about the sound
Or to be more precise, the lack of it, if you’re driving in electric mode.
Perhaps well aware that the current C63’s menacing V8 rumble is intrinsic to the car’s appeal, AMG has worked hard to craft this new car with its own sound. Start the car in EV mode, for example, and AMG says it will deliver a “powerful, beautiful startup sound” through the car’s speakers.
At low speeds, the C63 will also warn pedestrians by emitting a “specially composed, low-frequency” sound through loudspeakers mounted in the front and rear of the body, while in regular driving the 2.0-liter engine’s soundtrack is extended by internal speaker.
We’re a touch scared about all of this, but we’ll keep an open mind. At least they haven’t tried to make it sound like a V8…
Naturally, that means moving to a hybrid powertrain. The new C63 is all-wheel drive., and AMG says the system is fully variable. There’s also a drift mode function and four-wheel steering is now standard, which can move the rear wheels up to 2.5 degrees. Suspension is steel springs with three-stage adaptive dampers and we bet they’re going to get a workout because the new C63 is a bit porker.
Adding the battery, e-motor, four-wheel steering and two gearboxes brings the curb weight to 2036kg without driver, 300kg lighter than the W205 C63.
It’s also significantly heavier than the M3 or RS4 but the AMG’s bigger power output means it still beats them in the power-to-weight stakes. For example an M3 Comp has 202kW per tonne. The new C63 produces 245kW per tonne.
Design-wise, the C63 doesn’t offer too many surprises, given that we’ve already seen it in camouflage – although we’re fans of the thin air passage between the two power domes on the bonnet.
Don’t write it off as a regular C-Class with some pumped-up guards and a subtle rear wing, though. There are serious bodywork changes at play here.
Overall length is 83mm longer than the C300, the front track is 76mm wider, and the wheelbase has also changed and is now 10mm longer.
The wheels are staggered 19s, although 20s are optional and will likely be standard fare in Australia, and hidden behind them is a high-performance composite braking system with six-piston front calipers. Even more powerful carbon ceramic stoppers will be an option.
Another small detail worth mentioning? Take a closer look at the nose and you’ll notice that the traditional Mercedes stars and stripes have been replaced by black AMG badging.
Inside there’s the usual fare of an AMG-specific steering wheel and grippier bucket seats, though AMG has redesigned its optional performance seats with “weight-saving holes” in the side bolsters, which you’ll find in the BMW M3. Looks like a vacuum found in carbon. Seats
There are also digital screens and dedicated hybrid displays on the head-up display that show how the powertrain is performing and determine the temperature of the motor and battery.
So there you have it. Our first chance to properly digest the most radically different C63 in decades. Is it a shock?
Given the shift to electrification and AMG’s long drip feed of information, no not really. Is it going to deliver a driving experience that is completely alien to existing C63 owners? Almost certainly. Whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing will have to wait until it runs later this year. Stay tuned for that. As for the cars we’ll see coming down? Mercedes is hinting at a mid-2023 release and we wouldn’t be surprised if the price starts at two. The game has really moved on…