Thursday, February 3, 2011

Facelifted Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG

    Mercedes-Benz has issued official pictures of a mildly facelifted C63 AMG prior to its public premiere at the Geneva auto show in early March.

    Typically, the German car maker is making much of the mid-life changes to what is currently its most affordable AMG model. But get beyond all the PR hype contained in the official press release and there’s really precious little to report.

    As with standard versions of the facelifted C-class upon which the C63 AMG is based, the styling changes are mostly concentrated on soft parts like the bumpers, headlamps and tail lamps. One exception is the new hood with its more pronounced power domes. Beside this, all the existing body panels remain untouched.

    It’s a different story inside, though, where the C63 AMG, which is sold in both sedan and wagon bodystyles in many markets, receives a new dashboard and the same three-spoke steering wheel as the new second-generation CLS63 AMG as part of an effort to improve the overall perception of quality.

    Unlike other recently introduced AMG models which have adopted the company’s new twin-turbocharged 5.5-litre V8 engine – S63, CL63 and all-new CLS63 included, the facelifted C63 AMG retains its naturally aspirated 6.2-litre unit, which develops 457bhp in standard form and a more potent 487bhp when combined with AMG’s so-called Performance Package, which introduces a larger variable inlet manifold for added combustion efficiency and greater power.

     But while the C63 AMG used to channel its impressive reserves though a beefed up version of Mercedes-Benz’s 7G-Tronic seven speed automatic , it now runs AMG’s MCT (multi clutch transmission) as standard.

    The seven speed unit is a development of the 7G-Tronic, but instead of a conventional torque converter it uses a series of wet clutches to do the shifting. It also provides the driver with four different modes: C (comfort), S (sport), S+ (sport plus) and m (manual). There’s also a launch control function denoted by the letters RS (race start).

    Despite the new gearbox the facelifted C63 AMG is no faster than before. Mercedes-Benz claims 0 to 62mph (100km/h) in 4.5sec for the sedan and 4.6sec for the wagon. With the Performance Package option, the times are lowered to 4.4sec and 4.5sec. Top speed is limited to 155mph (250km/h), although customers can specify an optional driver’s package that bumps Vmax up to 174mph (280km/h).

    AMG says it has reduced the C63 AMG’s fuel consumption by 10 per cent though the adoption of a new steering pump. Official figures have the sedan at 19.6mpg (USand the wagon at 19.1mpg (US) – or for those used to metric measurement 12.0L/100km and 12.3L/100km respectively. Despite it’s added 30bhp, Mercedes-Benz says the consumption of the C63 AMG with the option Performance Package is the same as that running the standard engine.

    While automatic stop/start now comes as standard on AMG models running the new twin-turbocharged 5.5-litre V8, it has not been developed for the older naturally aspirated 6.2-litre V8.Source URL:
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