Mercedes-AMG C63 Saloon front three-quarter driving

Mercedes-AMG C63 review

Costs & verdict
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In this review

Costs & verdict

Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is

Clearly, with a 4.0-litre petrol V8 and two turbochargers, there are cheaper cars to run. Yet for the performance it offers, and when judged next to rivals from Audi, BMW and Alfa Romeo, the C63 delivers reasonable emissions and fuel consumption. You can buy a manual version of the M4 for quite a bit less, but if you want an automatic 'box, those rivals are barely any cheaper.

The C63 S looks rather expensive, considering it’s only marginally quicker, but the S package isn't just about straight-line speed. As we've discussed, you’re also treated to an electronic limited-slip differential that makes the car less snappy and more predictable at the limit, larger brake discs that are less prone to overheating, beautiful 19in alloy wheels and supremely supportive AMG Performance front seats. Factor in competitive dealer discounts and the C63 S begins to look comparatively much better value for money.

That said, equipment levels are generous whichever C63 you choose. All come with special AMG styling front and rear, 18in alloy wheels, nappa leather, heated front seats, adaptive cruise control and keyless entry. The coupé and convertible also get an AMG sports exhaust, plus the latter has an electrically operated wind deflector and Airscarf seat heating to keep you warm with the roof down in cooler weather.

All C63s have automatic emergency braking to help stop you from running into the back of the vehicle in front. There’s also a tyre pressure monitoring device to alert you early if you have a slow puncture and a system that can detect if you’re getting drowsy on a long journey.

This all helped the standard C-Class (the C63 wasn't tested as a separate model) score impressive marks in its Euro NCAP crash test in 2014. It was awarded the maximum five-star overall rating, with respectable scores of 92% for adult protection, 84% for child protection and 77% for pedestrian protection.

Mercedes didn’t do very well in our latest reliability survey, finishing 26th out of 31 manufacturers. The C-Class fared similarly poorly, ending up near the bottom of the executive car class. Despite Alfa Romeo’s historic reputation for reliability, the Giulia finished at the top.

An alarm and engine immobiliser are standard on all versions of the C63, while security experts Thatcham Research awarded the car five out of five for resisting theft and four out of five for resisting being broken into.

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Mercedes-AMG C63 Saloon sports seats
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Verdict

The Mercedes-AMG C63 is has rather a broad selection of talents. It has muscle car brutishness, courtesy of that thundering V8 engine, but it's no drag-racing, one-trick pony that's effective only in a straight line. It steers well and has a delightful chassis balance, blended with a comically easy ability to entertain with its progressive, sideways abilities. The Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio may have a slight edge in terms of handling delicacy, but the C63 is still a great alternative.

  • Fabulous engine noise
  • Great performance
  • Playful and easy to drive
  • The Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio offers slightly more precise handling
  • Expensive to buy
  • Road noise on the motorway
Trims
There are 6 trims available for the C-Class saloon. Click to see details.See all versions
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SE
Entry-level trim is well equipped, with sat-nav, cruise control, climate control, heate...
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S
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Sport
This trim gives you larger alloy wheels, sports seats and lowered suspension. You can a...
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AMG Line
Based on Sport, this trim brings stiffer suspension, even sportier seats, more aggressi...
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AMG
The sporty AMG range – including the C43 and upcoming C63 and C63 S – features appropri...
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AMG S
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