Mercedes promises that new V8 super-saloon will be as agile as it is powerful
25 June 2007

Watch out BMW M3. Underneath the disguise, this is the forthcoming new Mercedes C63 AMG, and it's set to be the most focused AMG C-class yet.According to a senior Mercedes source, the new V8-powered car "has been designed from the ground up to make the best of the 6.3-litre engine."Among other refinements, that means it uses many components borrowed from the impressive new CLK 63 Black Series, including much of that car's front subframe."This isn’t just a case of slotting a big engine into the C-class," said our source, tacitly admitting that previous high-powered C-classes have been more about autobahn-storming than bowling along B-roads.The C63 is likely to benefit from Merc's new Advanced Agility Package, soon to be an option on all C-classes. This provides a 'Sport' mode, which firms up the dampers, speeds up the steering, attenuates throttle response and on automatic cars makes for more rapid gearshifts.Like previous AMG C-classes, expect the new C63 to be automatic-only, but with wheel-mounted paddles and a sophisticated manual mode.The C63's expected new agility doesn't mean that it will be short of grunt: our source said that it will pack 500bhp, making the M3's 414bhp seem almost weak.Mercedes is also facing a new type of competition from the M3, which is likely to be available as an estate for the first time. Traditionally Mercedes has only had to compete with Audi in the fast, compact estate market.Even if Mercedes has its work cut out to beat the M3 for agility it seems likely to beat it for boot space: the 3-series Touring will fit a maximum 1385 litres, within a litre of the old C-class. The new Merc wagon is said to have an even bigger load area.UK sales of the C63 AMG Estate begin in the second quarter of 2008, but we'll get behind the wheel in October, when it's launched along with the standard C-class estate. We can't wait.

Read our exclusive first drive of the new C63 AMG saloon, at, on July 4

Our Verdict

Mercedes-Benz C-Class

The Mercedes C-Class marks a return to the company's old-school values of all-round quality and maturity

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Nissan Leaf Tekna
    The is the new Nissan Leaf
    First Drive
    21 March 2018
    The new version of the world's best-selling electric car gains a bigger battery and more power. How does it compare to rivals such as the Volkswagen e-Golf?
  • Range Rover p400e
    First Drive
    20 March 2018
    The original luxury SUV is now available as a plug-in hybrid, promising lower emissions and the capacity for silent electric motoring
  • BMW i3s
    Car review
    20 March 2018
    Revised hatchback sets out its range-extended electric stall in a new, sportier tune
  • BMW X2
    This is the new BMW X2
    First Drive
    20 March 2018
    Doesn’t deliver many typical crossover selling points but looks perky, handles keenly and is well capable of winning over your latent cynic
  • First Drive
    20 March 2018
    The newest version of Rolls-Royce's flagship model sets new standards for opulence and luxury whether you're driving it or being driven in it