• Looks, sound, performance, ride dynamics, cornering ability, character, interior
  • Comand system compared to iDrive

9 / 10

Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review
Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review
Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review

It used to be a clear-cut situation: BMW M cars were fast around corners, and Mercedes AMG cars were fast in a straightline. But now the lines – and the curves – are blurred.

BMW also once dominated the luxury high-performance coupe sector with the mighty M3 while Mercedes-Benz kept the mantle of the best-selling high-performance sedan. But once the non-aggression treaty was broken, both German manufacturers jumped into each other’s territory.

The result? BMW brought back the M3 sedan and now Mercedes has produced a two-door version of the Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG.

The new Coupe that can go from 0-100km/h in a ballistic 4.3 seconds – faster than the sedan but also faster than the fastest M3, also the coupe, which takes 4.6 seconds.

Of course it’s not all about numbers and acceleration times. We know from the success of the BMW M3 Coupe that there is more to a car than just being the fastest and that the C63 AMG coupe has a lot to prove in the ride and handling department to be a worthy contender for the M.

Before we charge into the coupe, it’s important to analyse its sedan sibling. The C63 AMG sedan has always been a manic car; it can be truly brutal in every sense of the word and yet as comfortable as an E-Class saloon all in the space of five minutes.

It has so much power and torque that it’s become a hit with tyre salesmen. Then there’s the sound emitted from the quad-pipes that is almost deliberately tuned to scare little children and enrage environmentalists. It’s like an enraged wolf, hungry to devour its next meal. If you’re one of the few lucky C63 sedan owners, you know what we are talking about. It’s about as fun as a practical sedan can be.

Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review
Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review
Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review
Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review

But the folks at Mercedes-Benz have taken the C63 AMG coupe to a different level. It’s more grown up, more skilful and certainly more elegant in its road-hugging behaviour. It also seems to have worked out its differences with the rear tyres. Thankfully, though, it’s still just as fun as the sedan.

Our C63 AMG Coupe test car came in obsidian black with AMG 19-inch matt-black alloys ($1980) and the highly recommended Performance Package ($14,900). With 358kW and 600Nm of torque (with the latter option), the 6.2-litre Mercedes-Benz AMG V8 will go down in history as one of the best naturally aspirated eight-cylinder engines of all time (along with the current M3’s V8, to be fair). Its effortless power delivery and addictive sound is pure ecstasy in a world regulated by bureaucrats and red tape.

Behind the wheel the C63 is every bit a driver’s car. It oozes enormous street presence and drives you in a never-ending pursuit of an open patch of road to unleash its might.

Coupled to Merc’s new AMG Speedshift multi-clutch 7-speed transmission (MCT), the 6.2-litre V8 extracts its strength better than ever. Although not a dual-clutch transmission (DCT), the MCT does away with a traditional torque converter with lock-up clutch for a wet start-up clutch with the hydraulically operated multi-disc clutch located in an oil bath. Sound complicated? It is. But the result is rapid gearshifts, better acceleration and, believe it or not, better fuel economy.

Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review
Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review
Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review
Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review

In comfort mode the C63 behaves very much like a standard C-Class. If it wasn’t for the AMG instrument cluster, AMG badging and the gorgeous sports seats, you could almost delude yourself into thinking it’s a C250. Of course if you flatten the accelerator it instantly springs to life but otherwise the pedal response is very progressive and ideal for traffic or inner-city conditions. The V8 also tends to keep a low key in this mode to avoid unnecessary noise. Comfort mode is the only way you’re ever going to come close to Mercedes-Benz’s claimed 12.1L/100km fuel economy figure.

Turn the rotary dial in the centre instrument cluster to engage Sport and things begin to get a little more exciting. The accelerator pedal becomes sharper, engine revs get higher and gearshifts get 25 per cent faster. But the real party starts in Sport+, with an additional 25 per cent decrease in gearshift times (to 100 milliseconds) and the double-declutching function getting more ferocious on the downshifts. And even if you’re legally deaf, you’ll still hear the quad-exhaust pipes come to life with an adrenaline-charged note that will have the men in blue ducking for cover.

Driving around in Sport or Sport+ does come at a cost, though, as you’ll become a regular at the local fuel station. Our average fuel economy for the week was at 18.2L/100km and that included long stints on the highway. If you’re the type who is concerned about fuel usage, we suggest giving this one a miss (we hear Toyota is releasing a new Prius soon).

Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review
Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review
Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review
Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review

Although not exactly a pure race car, if you do happen to take it to a race track the manual mode is the way to go, giving you complete control over the gears thanks to the aluminium paddle shifters. Power delivery is exceptional in Sport+ and manual mode, ideal for when you absolutely must make that meeting (with the next corner).

Around the twisty stuff the C63 is a little different to its sedan sibling. It corners with even more control and precision and lacks the tendency to step out at the rear. You can indeed punch the throttle out of corners without the fear of God, but even so it’s still the sort of car that requires enormous skill to master.

You can get in and go fast with relative ease but the more you drive it, the more you realise its potential is likely to be higher than your own ability (unless of course you’re Lewis Hamilton, in which case your skill level will get you done by the Victorian police for hooning). It’s not like the all-wheel-drive, RS-badged cars of Audi, where you simply point and shoot; this, like the BMW M3, requires your complete engagement to perform at its peak.

The high-performance AMG brakes get an upgrade as part of the performance package and are capable of pulling the C63 to a standstill in neck-breaking fashion. Despite hours of consistent ‘spirited’ driving, we experienced little to no brake fade. We did, however, get burnt by touching the aluminium pedals after the car was left in Brisbane’s scorching sun.

Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review
Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review
Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review
Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review

The ultimate question still remains: Is the C 63 AMG coupe better than the M3 Coupe? We’ll need a back-to-back comparison to find out, but it certainly feels on par.

Where the M3 feels slightly more agile and light, the C63 Coupe’s frantic personality more than compensates. More importantly though, unlike the high-revving 4.0-litre V8 of the Beemer, which prefers to be revved into the stratosphere for maximum enjoyment (309kW at 8300rpm), the C63 achieves its optimum power level at 6800rpm.

There’s simply just more grunt available from lower down the rev range, thanks to the Benz producing 50 per cent more torque (600Nm) than the M3.

The interior of the Benz is also superior to its direct rival. The two-tone black/red leather skin looks brilliant and there is an overwhelming sense of luxury inside.

BMW’s iDrive is, however, more intuitive and simpler to use than the Comand system found in the Benz. Both support Internet browsing (tethered to your smartphone. Benz has no support for iPhones, but BMW does), Bluetooth telephone and digital audio streaming. Mercedes also offers an AMG instrument cluster with Racetimer, a system that measures lap times and displays an array of information on the state of the vehicle.

Although the current M3 is set for replacement in early 2014 – with a multi-turbo six-cylinder engine – it’s still a great contender if you’re after a pure performance coupe (particularly if you want a manual).

Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review
Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review

Otherwise the choice isn’t necessarily still between the M3 Coupe and the C63 AMG Coupe; it’s more a choice between the C63 AMG Coupe and sedan. We’d highly recommend you test drive both vehicles and go with the one that suits your driving style.

Check out the gallery for more photos of our black and red C63 AMG Coupe test cars.

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Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Review
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  • Asdft

    In love.

  • Devil666

    The One…

  • 440 R/T Charger

     M3 these day is a bit over the top…C63 really is a better choice.

    • Birty_B

      How is an M3 more “over the top” than a C63 ? Between all the Chrome and two tone leather I’d hardly call a C63 subtle. 

  • Thrillhouse

    Nice car. Do they make them for men?

    • Car Bore

      A Snarling 6.2 litre v8 in a car with pumped guards, Side Gills, Massive black wheels, Lowered to the hilt and quad exhausts not manly enough for you?

    • AndrewF

      You mean, do they make them for bogans? The answer is no.

      • theillestlife

         +1 million 😀

  • MattP

    Drug dealers car of choice

  • Lucii Pooky

    The lease on my dads M3 is about to come up and he is now looking for a new car. We went to check this out and WHAT A CAR! (The capital letters are very necessary) 

    The car is amazing to look at ant the black wheels are great. The engine sounds amazing and its much more fun to drive than the M3. Although not as roomy, the interior quality is much better than the M3 and overall feels more expensive even though its a good 20K less. 

    By far the best car around for the money and best of all, you can get the wagon and the dogs can come too!

  • gt86.com.au

    Until the new M3 comes out, this is the TOP DOG! no doubt about it :)

  • Altezza

     I just recently saw one in white…very awesome looking and can’t forget the noise. Even on low rpm, that V8 sound is heavenly.

  • yogi

    Warnie has one of these! I saw him rev up at the chaddy closed car park! Fantastic noise and he was dropping off lovely Liz.

    • http://www.caradvice.com.au/ Alborz Fallah

      The Mercedes badge on this test car actually has radar technology built in to it, hence why it looks like that.

      If you don’t tick the lane departure and active cruise control options, this is what it looks like: http://www.caradvice.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/IMG_2520.jpg

  • Snap

    I see Lexusmudt if inspired Benz with the badge style

  • The Realist

    Or for the same price you could get a Holden W427,,, 😛

  • Devil’s Advocate

    I have been a BMW fan for most of my life, but if I had the money and was in the market for a car in this class I would seriously consider this instead. I thought I would never see the day where I would consider a Merc over a BMW, but the C63 AMG does just that…

  • Oliver Cromwell

    Wow that is a hot car, its just a shame Merc dont make any decent sports car in the mid range ie 335i, S4/5. Dont mention the power specs of the C350 because that is not a performance engine. They really do need to fill that hole. Regardless this engine is damn fine!

  • O123

    much prefer the M3, Im not a fan of mercedes interiors .

  • Jauffre

    Sitting in a Sedan version at a MB dealer. Blown away by the comfort and quality of the interior. Wish I could have test driven it :(

  • Big Rick from VIC

    I took the C63 Coupe for a test drive last week. This car is AWESOME and so ordered one immediately with the performance package, drivers package, in diamond white with black wheels and custom black mirrors with pretty much every other available option. 4 month build time from the AMG factory. I CAN’T WAIT. 

  • James88

     Hey Big Rick from Vic,
    did you tick the optional mechanical LSD diff if you didn’t you should as it enables you to get more power to the ground without burning your brakes from the electronic LSD,
    a friend has one just like yours including colour with performance pack and mechanical LSD diff.
    Incredibly awesome car.

  • Big Rick from VIC

    Hey James. Funny you mention that. The salesman who sold me the car only made me aware of that option late today. Because the order has been placed with AMG he’s going to have to check tomorrow if it can be included. He wasn’t a huge wrap for it and said that only 1 in 5 ask for that option so I’ll see what happens tomorrow. I’m trading in my 2 year old E500 coupe (which I love) for the AMG and I never thought I’d “trade down” to a C class but as the E coupe will apparently never be released in an AMG, my only other alternative was to move up to a CL class – which are a bit on the expensive side. A mate of mine talked me into taking the C63 for a spin, which I did reluctantly. As soon as I started the engine I was pretty much sold. I’m stoked and the 3rd week of May (my delivery timeframe) can’t come soon enough. Cheers. Rick. 

    • James88

      My mate added the mech LSD well after he ordered the car, so I would really push for it.
      As for going from an E to a C class, I see it as a step up, its lighter more nimble and sharper handling, that is what a performance car should be about.
      Good luck and enjoy your wonderful new car.


      • Big Rick from VIC

        Thanks for that. Good point. Will do.

        Cheers. Rick.

  • Guest

    How much would a set of rear tyres cost? 

    • F1MotoGP

       2 days ago you posted a comment. (Mercedes B class review)
      “Just sold my C250 CDI couple after only 6 months – never again another MB!”
      Few people would like to know why you sold your car?

      • Guest

        Guest is a generic username. I’ve never owned a Mercedes Benz. 

        Theres nothing I love more than a properly loud V8 with a manual gearbox, but I’m willing to endure *gasp* an autobox just to try out this incredible engine! 

  • Rattles29

    If you are going to hit one, you want to make sure your insured

    • Cherylrozen

      How much do you have to earn to buy one?

  • Gstreturns

    150k p/a

Mercedes-Benz C63 Specs

Car Details
W204 MY11
Body Type
New Price
Private Sale
$91,740 - $104,250
Dealer Retail
$88,710 - $105,490
Dealer Trade
$70,500 - $83,400
Engine Specifications
Engine Type
Engine Size
Max. Torque
600Nm @  5200rpm
Max. Power
336kW @  6800rpm
Pwr:Wgt Ratio
Bore & Stroke
Compression Ratio
Valve Gear
Drivetrain Specifications
Drive Type
Final Drive Ratio
Fuel Specifications
Fuel Type
Fuel Tank Capacity
Fuel Consumption (Combined)
13.4L / 100km
Weight & Measurement
Kerb Weight
Gross Vehicle Weight
Not Provided
Ground Clearance
Towing Capacity
Brake:0  Unbrake:0
Steering & Suspension
Steering Type
Turning Circle
Front Rim Size
Rear Rim Size
Front Tyres
235/40 R18
Rear Tyres
255/35 R18
Wheel Base
Front Track
Rear Track
Front Brakes
Rear Brakes
Front Suspension
3 links, Coil Spring, Gas damper, Anti roll bar
Rear Suspension
Multi-link system, Coil Spring, Gas damper, Anti roll bar
Standard Features
Power front seats with memory, Power Sunroof, Sport Seats
Control & Handling
Sports Suspension, Traction Control System
Power Steering, Reversing Camera, Satellite Navigation, Trip Computer, Voice Recognition System
Radio Compact Disc Player, Sound System with 12 Speakers, Premium Sound System
Rear Spoiler, Xenon Headlights
Power Windows, Wood Grain Trim
PreSafe, Side Airbags, Seatbelts - Pre-tensioners Front Seats
Optional Features
Engine & Transmission
Limited Slip Differential, Performance Pack
Carbon Fibre Trim
Service Interval
12 months /  25,000 kms
36 months /  999,000 kms
VIN Plate Location
Right Hand Front Floorpan
Country of Origin