AMG chief Tobias Moers is never shy in offering an opinion, and his response was definitive when CarAdvice asked whether the proliferation of AMG product is diluting the heritage and premium image of the performance brand.
My question followed a recent launch drive of the E43 AMG, where I was genuinely impressed with the dynamic ability and execution of the - let's call it 'entry grade' - AMG variant, but wondered whether its existence could start to erode some of that special, handmade, low-volume feeling AMG owners have with their performance vehicles.
“I don’t see any dilution in the brand no,” Moers said at the New York motor show. “If every car fits perfectly into the brand, these cars in Germany and Europe for example, they win every comparison test, so my expectations are moving targets as well.
"For me the product you’re referring to doesn’t dilute anything. It would be easy for us to just put an AMG badge on the trunk, but the idea behind these vehicles is to make the brand more approachable.”
This is his way of saying that there is definitively more room for even more AMG-badged vehicles, even if they aren't the ones we’re used to. It’s hard to argue the logic, too, given the rampant popularity of the brand around the world, but especially markets like Australia where the take up of the AMG line is proportionately high.
Let's not forget, either, that AMG has been modifying a standard Mercedes-Benz engine and improving its performance for more than 50 years.
“When we have a chance to get more driving dynamics than we expected, we’ve got to go for that,” Moers said. “Things are going to happen now which we never expected, because of the volume and opportunities.
"It gives you additional momentum on sales, as well.”
“We have an all-wheel-drive C63, it’s out there now,” Moers says, laughing and pointing to the just-released GLC 63 and GLC 63 Coupe on the show floor.
“The C63 AMG in this generation will never get all-wheel drive, and a Black Series of the C63 would be rear-wheel drive of course, but we are so busy, I don’t know if that’s going to happen.”
The GLC 63 and Coupe variants get the same AWD system as the E63, so there’s no reason content can’t be shared in the manner suggested, but Moers is keeping his cards close to his chest about the heavily desired Black Series, perhaps leaving the door ajar by not ruling it out entirely.
Above: the SLS AMG Black Series
Are there any other immediate plans for the C-Class then?
“We’re going to see the facelift next year as everybody knows,” Moers said. “There is still room, there is always the chase for a better vehicle. We need to improve drivability, driving dynamics, there’s always more to do.
"A facelift provides us with the opportunity to have some room to move.”