What is it?
The very powerful, very rapid and very loud range-topping version of Mercedes-Benz’s new C-class coupe line-up, the C 63 AMG coupe. Sister car to the recently facelifted C 63 AMG saloon and estate with which it shares elements of its styling, mechanical package and excellent interior, it takes over from the CLK 55 AMG, providing renewed competition to the likes of the Audi RS5, BMW M3 and Lexus ISF.
Powering the latest in an ever growing range of Mercedes-Benz performance models is its naturally aspirated 6.2-litre V8 engine. As in the C 63 AMG saloon and estate, it kicks out a nominal 451bhp at 6800rpm. However, an optional Performance package, which brings the same lightweight pistons, connecting rods and crankshaft as those used in the SLS, bumps its reserves up to a headlining 480bhp.
What’s it like?
A lot like the C 63 AMG saloon and estate in overall character. But given they share their entire mechanical package save for a few unique chassis tweaks we really didn’t expect anything else from the C 63 AMG coupe.
Predictably, the driving experience is dominated by the engine. As impressive as the outright power – and it is generous in comparison its two door rivals - is the ease at which you can tap into the C 63 AMG coupe’s vast reserves of torque. Reach the mid-range and it is nothing short of explosive. The performance is effortless, enabling it to reach seriously high speeds without seemingly drawing breath. On top of this, it makes a wonderful sound at full throttle, emitting a deep baritone growl that fully befits its muscle car brief.
Just how fast the rear-wheel drive C 63 AMG coupe is in a straight line is fully reflected in Mercedes-Benz’s official performance claims, which put its 0-62mph time at just 4.3sec when running the optional Performance Package. That’s quite a bit faster than the RS5 (4.6sec), M3 (4.8sec) and ISF (4.8sec), and if our experience with the C 63 AMG saloon and estate is any guide, it’ll likely go faster still in independent testing.
Still, there’s a lot more to this car than an immensely powerful engine and rapid acceleration. The C 63 AMG coupe also engages with the sort of handling, response and balance that sees it closely challenge the RS5, M3 and ISF for outright driver appeal.
There’s an appealing completeness to its dynamic repertoire that allows you confidently explore its limits on public roads.
Criticisms? There are a few. The downside of providing the C 63 AMG coupe with such outstanding body control is a fairly firm ride. It’s not harsh, but it can be caught out on occasion. The gearbox also lacks the rapid fire qualities of the double clutch units that are offered as optional equipment on the RS5 and M3, especially on up-shifts. Combined fuel consumption of just 23.5mpg is also a little on the high side in comparison its rivals.
Should I buy one?
No doubt about it, Mercedes-Benz has pulled off something special with the C 63 AMG coupe. But given the praise we’ve heaped on the C 63 AMG saloon and estate in recent times, that’s no real surprise.
Whether you’d choose it above the RS5, M3 and ISF really depends on your priorities. As an everyday proposition, the C 63 AMG coupe would certainly take some beating. It’s just so unforced, so effortless in the way it goes about its business. And for many, that’s going to count more than anything else.
Mercedes-Benz C 63 AMG coupe
Price: £63,000 (est); Top speed: 155mph (limited); 0-62mph: 4.3sec; Economy: 23.5mpg (combined); CO2: 280g/km; Kerb weight: 1730kg; Engine: V8 6208cc, petrol; Power: 451bhp at 6800rpm; Torque: 443lb ft at 5000rpm; Gearbox: 7-speed automatic