23 October 2019

 

Unrestrained & Unhinged in the C63s

Words: Gugu Masuku

 

 

From the time I could hold myself up on my own two legs, the obsession for cars and a thirst for high octane has always resided in me - but it was back in 2007 that everything changed. This was the year that the team at Mercedes-Benz introduced us to the very first AMG C63. From that very moment, something inside of me was ignited. I had never heard anything like it - a family saloon producing a brutal scream I had only ever witnessed in supercars. There was something undeniably special about this so-called C63, and it was then that I fell in love with this model. 

 

For many years to come, I dreamt about getting my hands on one of these brutes - even if it was for a moment. But I also knew that one day I would sign my name on the dotted line for my very own. As fate would have it, the former took place first, giving me a taste of what it would be like to one day own a C63. 

 

In 2019 the stars aligned and I finally got some seat time in what is arguably one of my top bucket list vehicles to buy and to own until God calls me home. The Mercedes-AMG C63 S facelift is not where I envisioned my relationship with this range-topping C Class would begin, but who was I to say no to such a treat?

AMG C63

The current 63 format has moved away from the naturally breathing 6-litre V8 and now comprises of a 4.0 V8 twin-turbocharged unit on tyre shredding duty. What I find impressive with this new setup is that even though the Germans may have scaled-down on cylinder displacement, they've maintained that famous signature AMG soundtrack, and it still sounds like a naturally aspirated V8 in a world filled with high pitched performance cars emitting crackles and pops. It's easy to see why the C63 is the money-spinner in the C Class range.

 

The Mercedes W205 has undergone a nip and tuck here and there and the C63 S exclusively wears this new style donning a more refined-looking grille with vertical slats. The large air intakes on the bumper are also unique to this derivative and aren't just there to merely enhance the AMG's already handsome face. They're very functional and house radiators to assist in cooling. 

 

Despite having handled many potent machines in my time as a motoring journalist, I was exceptionally excited to be taking delivery of this model. As stated before, this was special - a true bucket list item.  

AMG C63

From the first click, the sound was intoxicating, and things got even better when I found the exhaust button perfectly positioned on the steering wheel. This part of the C63 S they got right - the new AMG steering wheel has a button for opening up the exhaust flaps, and another dedicated to unlocking full power to the rear wheels when the need arises. The special one, however, is the little dial on the right-hand side of the wheel. This has two functions; one with the ability to move swiftly between the many driving modes (Slippery, Comfort, Sport, Sport+, Individual and RACE) and the other allows you to make use of the AMG Traction Control, giving you 9 stages of traction control intervention on the fly - dial it to 9 and you're on your own.

 

For drifting purposes, I found this unrestrained setting ideal, as I can predict and engage with the vehicle on an authentic level. Of course, depending on your level of skill, it may be advisable to go up in small increments when making use of this function. The C63 S was built for lateral movement, and executes it with such ease and willingness - I love it! When pressing on and commanding all of the 375kW and 700Nm, the C63 S eats up the tarmac with impressive running legs. The carbon-ceramic brakes, however, never lose focus - not for a second! They clamped down on their prey with a serious bite on command every time.

 

My time with the AMG C63 S was special, and despite it being a thirsty fuel-guzzling V8 on paper, I found that when driven considerately it sips the juice mildly. Leaving me to deduce that this is a vehicle one could use every day without suffering the harsh penalties of owning a V8.

AMG C63 - A Mercedes Experience
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