Rear-wheel-drive is already gone. What could go next?
In late July we reported that the next-generation Mercedes-AMG C63, due sometime in 2021, will come equipped with a Drift mode feature, just like in the AMG E63. This system deactivates the front driveshaft when you want to go sideways. In other words, the next AMG C63 will be all-wheel drive by default, switching to RWD only when directed by the driver. This same report also indicated the twin-turbo 4.0-liter V8 will return with several updates and a power increase.
According to Autocar, however, that won't be happening. That's right. The Mercedes-AMG C63 is now expected to lose its V8. In its place will reportedly be a new turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four with hybrid assistance.
This is actually the same four-pot found in the AMG A45 where it produces as much as 416 horsepower and 369 lb-ft of torque - without the added hybrid punch. Engineers have already prepared the engine for longitudinal mounting and mild-hybrid electric assist. For further economies of scale, Mercedes-AMG is also expected to utilize this engine, albeit with a lowered output, in the next AMG C43, which is currently propelled by a turbocharged 3.0-liter V6.
To sum up, the 2021 Mercedes-AMG C63 will lose half of its cylinders but will gain a 48V gearbox-mounted starter motor, similar to the one found in the CLS 53 4Matic. What's cool about this starter motor is that it offers another 22 hp and 184 lb-ft of electric boost. In the case of the 2021 C63 AMG it'll have even more power. And speaking of gearboxes, expect to find the automaker's nine-speed torque-converter transmission.
As of right now, Mercedes-AMG has neither confirmed nor denied any of the above information, but inside sources claim the new four-cylinder hybrid drivetrain will, at the very least, match the current C63 4Matic's V8 output of 503 hp. Another huge benefit to engine downsizing is weight loss. The turbo four-cylinder weighs quite a bit less than the turbo V8 even when combined with the electric motor and lithium-ion battery.
An exact reveal date has not been announced, but we don't expect it to be until sometime in late 2021 as the next-generation C-Class lineup is expected to come first.