When you think of Mercedes, words like luxury and elegance come to mind. When you think of AMG, the tone changes. Suddenly images of smoke billowing from the rear wheels and an engine powerful enough to send a man to the moon are the default thoughts. In the Mercedes-AMG C63 sedan, the luxury performance sedan billing fits perfectly and encompasses both preconceptions perfectly. A 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 produces up to 503 horsepower and 516 lb-ft of torque, all of which is directed to the rear wheels with the aid of a nine-speed automatic gearbox. As good as it is, the C63's job is made a little easier by the withdrawal of the BMW M3 until the new G-series model arrives. Starting at $68,100, the current 2020 edition of the AMG brute is only a little more expensive than last year's model and gains a number of new features as we'll discuss below.
The 2020 model has seen some slight alterations following on from 2019's extensive refresh. For the new model year, 64-color ambient lighting along with illuminated AMG door sills are standard. Other than that, the C63 is essentially unchanged for 2020 as Mercedes develops a new C-Class. Emotion Start has also been made standard for all 2020 AMG models, meaning if you hold the upshift paddle when you start the car, the exhaust baffles open and the V8 roars to life with enough of a cacophony to wake your mother-in-law 32 miles away.
See trim levels and configurations:
As we mentioned at the outset, the thought of the AMG marque is usually accompanied by images of wanton tire destruction and more clouds than your local stanced-Subaru vape meet. Mercedes-AMG has no reason to be ashamed of the ability its C63 has to change the weather from sunny to overcast, but they do have lap times and bragging rights to worry about. As a result, the C63 can rip up the rear tires at will but is also dynamic enough to be a fast circuit racer if the mood takes you. Turn-in is direct and sharp, albeit devoid of feel at low speeds, and the rear wheels can be kept fully clothed in rubber so long as you're careful with the throttle and show this car respect. In addition, the brakes inspire confidence and are solid, with the appropriate pedal feel and easy modulation that makes it easy to push the C63 harder. If you want to really make the most of this car's abilities, however, carbon ceramic brakes can be specced for even more stopping power and less fade over extended periods of high intensity. True track enthusiasts will want to opt for the C63 S, however, as this model gets dynamic engine mounts as standard.
When you want to relax, the standard AMG Ride Control adaptive suspension damping helps you switch from a firm ride with minimal body roll to a relaxed and compliant one with plenty of comfort.
NHTSA safety ratings are not available at this time.
With the demise of the BMW M3, the current C-Class has few direct rivals from Europe, but even towards the twilight of its time with us, the C63 is an intoxicatingly powerful and ridiculously fast four-door luxury sedan with attractive styling and a gorgeous interior. While the infotainment system is not particularly brilliant, the Burmester sound system, standard seats, adaptive suspension, and smooth gearbox are all brilliant. Playing Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde comes naturally to the C63, a car that is happy to potter along quietly and will just as excitedly snap your neck as it surges towards the horizon or obliterates its rear tires at any opportunity. Even though it's been with us for some time, the C63 commands respect for its impressive performance ability and its duality of purpose. It has its foibles but, in a way, they give the C63 character, and the sound of that glorious V8 should be savored while it's still available.
Sibling rivalry. It makes one stronger and more competitive, but sometimes it also means giving up the best stuff to the dominant family member. In the case of the C63, its big brother is the E63 S 4Matic. This model only comes as an S variant, but its 4Matic all-wheel-drive system is switchable. This means that when you want to be a lunatic, you can slip and slide on the track and when you want to drive to the shops in the middle of a blizzard, you don't have to borrow the neighbor's Jeep. Also powered by a 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8, the E63 S produces a ridiculous 603 hp and 627 lb-ft of torque. The interior is similar to that of the C63, but it boasts a beautiful dual-screen driver-info/infotainment setup. It's naturally bigger too, making it more comfortable for occupants and more capacious in the trunk. However, it costs a lot more too, with a starting price exceeding $107,000. Depending on budget and how comfortable you are with larger cars, the E63 S may be off the cards, but we'd definitely consider it just as good if not better than the C63.
This is another pricey comparison. The RS5 Sportback starts at $74,200, but it's been recently refreshed and boasts definitively modern styling. Despite its increased price, this quattro all-wheel-drive model is not as powerful as a C63. Powered by a 2.9-liter twin-turbo V6, the RS5 generates 444 hp and 443 lb-ft of torque. However, it has a middling top speed of 155 mph in base form (although it's worth noting that the regular C63 has the same top speed), and is more spacious in the back as well as more practical too. Thanks to its hatch-like tailgate, the RS5 Sportback has 11.6 cubic feet of volume. Although this is below the C63's 12.6 cubes, the Sportback has a much wider opening that allows you to fit larger items through the back. With the rear seats folded, cargo volume expands to 35 cubes. All that is good and well, but when it comes to a car like this, it's the heart that makes the decisions, and we can't help but feel that the new RS5 may be a bit boring compared to the insane C63.
The most popular competitors of 2020 Mercedes-AMG C63 Sedan: