The Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Edition 507 might not be the most powerful C-Class ever (that accolade goes to the Black Series), but it's still a mighty thing.
Available in saloon, Coupé and Estate bodystyles, the C63's 6.2-litre V8 has been tweaked to produce 500bhp (507PS, hence the name). That's another 49bhp over the standard C63, and takes the 0-62mph time down to 4.2 seconds and the top speed up to 174mph, thanks to the AMG Driver's Pack; average economy and emissions remain the same at 23.5mpg and 280g/km. The Edition 507 also gets lightweight performance brakes.
That's where the mechanical mods end. Whereas the Black Series received a host of dynamic tweaks, the Edition 507's other embellishments are cosmetic. Externally there are 19-inch AMG Cross-Spoke alloy wheels, red brake calipers and gloss black bonnet vents, door mirror casings, radiator grille and front apron, while inside you get black leather upholstery, an AMG Performance steering wheel, gloss black trim and Edition 507 badging.
What's the 2013 Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Edition 507 like to drive?
V8 engines are not for the shy and retiring - and the 6.2-litre example in the C63 is no exception. It erupts into life and settles to a delicious burble. It sounds just about perfect from the driver's seat - fruity and potent, yet the decibels never get close to ear-splitting levels, even at the rev limit. It's a different story if you wind down the window, of course.
As with the standard C63, the ride is firm but not uncomfortable in town, and the steering is light and accurate. Head for the open road and you'll want to change the drive mode from Comfort to Sport, which sharpens the throttle response and makes the seven-speed automatic gearbox hold on to gears for longer.
S+ mode sharpens things further and allows the gearbox to shift up only at the engine's redline, while M mode lets you make use of the steering wheel-mounted paddles. The gearbox is an accomplished thing when allowed to shift through the gears by itself, but there's a real joy to be had from taking full control of the changes.
Tremendous grip means you can carry a surprising amount of speed through bends, and when you do need to bring things to a halt the enhanced brakes work well, although more pedal feel would improve the driving experience. The C63 automatically blips the throttle as it downshifts gears in S and S+ modes, helping maintain stability under heavy breaking.
The extra 49bhp might knock a couple of tenths off the 0-62mph time, but it's difficult to appreciate the extra benefit on public roads. Suffice to say that there's more than enough power; it's all too easy to get the rear end squirming out of a roundabout in dry weather, even with the traction control engaged, although the electronics quickly bring everything back into line. Despite its scorching pace, the Edition 507 remains reasonably composed.
The suspension keeps the body in check on most roads, although things can get a little choppy during enthusiastic B-road cornering. The steering is quick, allowing you to place the car perfectly, but a little more feel would help to inspire confidence. In fact, although things are a mite more dramatic in the Edition 507, you'll never feel as much a part of the action as you should.
What's the 2013 Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Edition 507 like inside? Apart from a few pieces of bespoke trim, plus that Alcantara-covered steering wheel, it's business as usual. That means a well crafted interior and heavily bolstered, electrically operated, leather sports seats, plus room for four adults to sit in comfort – five at a squeeze – and a decent boot.
As you'd expect, goodies such as sat-nav, climate control and a high-end stereo are included.
There are five (no-cost option) exterior colours to choose from, plus Magno Platinum at £3660.
Should I buy one?
At a starting price of £66,960 for the saloon, the Edition 507 costs a whopping £9685 more than the standard C63. That's a hefty premium for a small power hike, tweaked brakes and a slightly posher cabin, and you'll have to fork out even more – £68,160 – for the Coupe and Estate.
However, with the new BMW M3 and Lexus IS-F yet to go on sale, the Edition 507 is currently devoid of direct competitors. Hot estate buyers may want to check out the Audi RS4 Avant, and if you're after a super-coupe, the Audi RS5 is worth a look – both are considerably cheaper, although their engines aren't quite as charismatic as the Merc's.
Ultimately, we'd opt for the standard C63. It sounds just as good, is virtually as fast to 62mph and costs almost £10k less.
What Car? says...
Engine size 6.2-litre V8 petrol
Price from £66,960
Torque 450lb ft
0-62mph 4.2 seconds (Estate 4.3sec)
Top speed 174mph
Fuel economy 23.5mpg