The new 2023 Mercedes-AMG C 63 S E PERFORMANCE
The Mercedes-AMG C 63 S E PERFORMANCE (fuel consumption weighted, combined: 6.9 l/100 km; combined CO2 emissions, weighted: 156 g/km; combined electric energy consumption, weighted: 11.7 kWh/100 km) is a real game changer: the hybrid powertrain is designed for maximum performance. It combines the AMG 2.0-litre turbo engine with an Electric Drive Unit (EDU) on the rear axle for a completely new driving experience. In addition to the clearly noticeable immediate thrust, the independent layout also ensures a balanced weight distribution – which benefits driving dynamics and handling in equal measure. Depending on the driving mode, the electric motor boosts power and torque according to the situation, for a particularly comfortable or performance-oriented driving experience. All-electric driving is also possible. The electric powertrain and the high-performance battery with 400 volts are AMG exclusive, in-house developments. Just like in Formula 1™, the battery is specifically designed for fast power output and draw with innovative direct cooling of the cells. The electric range of 13 kilometres allows a practical operating radius, for example in the city or in residential areas. The combined system output is 500 kW (680 hp), the combined maximum system torque 1,020 Nm. These are new peak values for the C-Class.
Other highlights of the new model series, which is being launched simultaneously as a Saloon and as an Estate: for the first time in a C 63, the fully variable all-wheel drive system AMG Performance 4MATIC+ is used to transfer the drive power to the road, and includes a Drift Mode for even more driving pleasure. Added to this is active rear- axle steering as standard, another unique feature in this segment.
“With the C 63 S E PERFORMANCE, we are opening a new chapter in the history of our brand. The new C 63 in particular is a real game changer. With its revolutionary concept, it brings a completely new approach to the segment, which until now has been primarily characterised by the promise purely of performance. With a maximum system output of 680 hp, we do indeed keep this promise. But the intelligent P3 hybrid concept offers much more. I am sure that with this technology, which incorporates a lot of know-how from Formula 1, we will also appeal to a new group of customers."
Philipp Schiemer, Chairman of the Board of Management of Mercedes‑AMG GmbH
"With its Performance hybrid drive and electrically assisted exhaust turbocharger, the new C 63 S E PERFORMANCE is a technological masterpiece that takes a new approach. The electrified powertrain offers a whole new driving experience. The immediate response of the electric drive at the rear axle, the rapid torque build-up as well as the fast power output and also draw of our battery are very special features. Add to this the standard-fit rear-axle steering and the fully variable all-wheel drive - the new C 63 illustrates once again the high level of technical expertise that AMG possesses.”
Jochen Hermann, Technical Managing Director of Mercedes-AMG GmbH
Expressive design with striking front apron
Form follows function: the design of the new C 63 S E PERFORMANCE differs from the Mercedes‑Benz C‑Class in its more muscular proportions. The Saloon and Estate models are both based on an extensively modified AMG body-in-white. The front end is 50 millimetres longer and the front wings are wider. All in all, the overall exterior dimensions differ considerably from those of the Mercedes-Benz C-Class. In terms of length, the Saloon and Estate measure an extra 83 millimetres. The larger track width at the front axle results in 76 millimetres more overall width at the front. And the wheelbase has grown by ten millimetres. All in all, the new C 63 S appears powerful and stretched.
A new distinguishing feature and exclusive to the C 63 S E PERFORMANCE is the narrow air outlet in the centre of the bonnet, which transitions elegantly into the two power bulges. For the first time on a Mercedes‑AMG production model, a round badge with black AMG crest replaces the Mercedes star with laurel wreath on the bonnet. Hallmark elements continue to be the AMG-specific radiator grille with vertical struts and the AMG front apron in jet-wing design. Flics, large inlets and air curtains direct the airflow specifically to its various functions. Two electronically controlled AIR PANELS (behind the radiator grille and in the front apron) allow the air to be regulated as required.
Matching side skirts, the rear apron with large diffuser as well as the two trapezoidal, externally ribbed dual tailpipe trims round off the design. Exclusive details at the rear include the special airflow breakaway edge on the boot lid (roof spoiler on the Estate), the plug-in charging flap and the model designation set against a red background. The "E PERFORMANCE" badge on the wings indicates the hybrid drive. The C 63 S E PERFORMANCE runs on AMG light-alloy wheels and 19-inch mixed tyres as standard. Optional wheel/tyre combinations are available in 20-inch size, likewise with mixed tyres, among them a new forged wheel.
Numerous paint finishes and equipment items are also available to provide further individualisation. The AMG matt graphite grey magno paint finish is available exclusively for the C 63 S E PERFORMANCE. The exterior design can be further accentuated with the AMG Exterior Carbon Fibre Packages I and II, the AMG Night Packages I and II or the AMG Aerodynamics Package.
Stylish interior, new generation of the AMG Performance seat
In the interior, AMG sports seats with a special upholstery layout and a distinctive stitching pattern add to the refined impression. There are also many individual choices available for the interior. Exclusive colours and various nappa leather upholstery with embossed AMG crest in the front head restraints emphasise either the sporty or the luxurious side of the C 63 S E PERFORMANCE.
The completely redesigned second-generation AMG Performance seat is available as an option. Its special feature is the seat side bolsters with weight-saving openings that also allow better ventilation. If nappa leather upholstery is selected, these also feature a contrasting colour as an extra highlight. The shape of the backrest tapers towards the bottom. The AMG logo is now placed between the matt chrome openings under the integral head restraint.
MBUX multimedia system with hybrid-specific displays
The MBUX infotainment system includes various AMG- and hybrid-specific displays and functions. These include the displays in the instrument cluster, on the multimedia central display in portrait orientation in the centre console and the optional head-up display.
The instrument cluster view can be personalised with different display styles and individually selectable main views. The AMG-specific Supersport style offers the option of displaying various contents via a vertical menu structure. These include a menu with hybrid-specific temperatures or a set-up menu that displays the current settings for the suspension or transmission. In addition, the driver can also have a navigation map or consumption data displayed in the Supersport style.
The head-up display also offers AMG-specific display styles such as Race and Supersport. These can be accessed via the main menu in the instrument cluster. High-quality graphics on the multimedia display also visualise the power flow of the entire drive system, speed, power, torque and temperature of the electric motor as well as the battery temperature in an AMG-specific manner. The time can be shown on an analogue IWC chronograph.
AMG TRACK PACE, the data logger for use on the racetrack, is also integrated. The software records more than 80 vehicle-specific data such as speed, acceleration, steering angle and brake pedal actuation ten times per second while driving around a racetrack. In addition, the lap and sector times are displayed.
Track-based boost strategy for the racetrack
New in the C 63 S E PERFORMANCE, it is possible in TRACK PACE to intelligently distribute the use of electric energy over a racetrack lap in order to optimise the lap time with the targeted use of the electric motor’s power. This track-based boost strategy is already stored for 30 well-known racetracks. It is to be expanded gradually to a total of 70 circuits via download.
Before driving, the driver only has to select the track on the central display, for example the German Hockenheimring, and then switch on the boost strategy with a slider. Then they activate the RACE driving mode and are ready to go. The vehicle then displays an upcoming boost sector in the instrument cluster and on the head-up display. When boosting (via kick-down with 150 kW electric power), a countdown and a horizontal bar count down the boost seconds. As soon as the indicator shows the end of the boost sector, the driver should release the kick-down. Two options are available: a strategy for a particularly fast single lap ("Hot Lap") and another strategy for several consistently fast laps in succession ("Endurance Mode"). In a further expansion stage, the individual boot sectors are also to be shown on the multimedia display in the track view. The Boost feature will be introduced in the course of next year.
AMG Performance steering wheel in twin-spoke design
The standard-fit AMG Performance steering wheel with its distinctive twin-spoke design and seamlessly integrated function buttons offers a tangible and visible everyday benefit. The round AMG steering wheel buttons impress with brilliant displays and their intuitive turn-and-push operating logic. This allows important driving functions and all driving modes to be controlled without the driver having to take their hands off the steering wheel. As a new feature, it is possible to select the regeneration levels of the hybrid drive via the steering wheel buttons.
The AMG-specific E PERFORMANCE hybrid drive: combustion engine in the front, electric motor in the rear
In the new Mercedes-AMG C 63 S E PERFORMANCE, the 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo engine is combined with a permanently excited synchronous electric motor, a high-performance battery developed in Affalterbach and fully variable AMG Performance 4MATIC+ all-wheel drive. The system output of 500 kW (680 hp) and the maximum system torque of 1,020 Nm enable impressive driving performance: the Saloon and Estate accelerate from a standstill to 100 km/h in 3.4 seconds. Acceleration only ends at an electronically governed 280 km/h (Estate 270 km/h, in both cases with optional AMG Driver’s Package). The 150 kW (204 hp) electric motor is positioned at the rear axle, where it is integrated with an electrically shifted two-speed transmission and the electronically controlled limited-slip rear differential in a compact electric drive unit (EDU). Experts refer to this layout as a P3 hybrid. The lightweight high-performance battery is also located in the rear above the rear axle. This compact design has numerous advantages:
- The electric motor acts directly on the rear axle and can therefore convert its power more directly into propulsion – for that extra boost when moving off, accelerating or overtaking.
- The inherent design of the electric motor means that its power can kick in straight away at full torque, making particularly agile starting possible.
- In addition, the driver immediately experiences a noticeable performance increase thanks to the integrated, electronically controlled limited-slip rear differential: the hybrid model accelerates out of bends with great agility.
- If slip occurs at the rear axle, the drive power of the electric motor is also transferred to the front wheels as needed for more traction. The mechanical connection of the fully variable all-wheel drive makes this possible by means of a propeller shaft and the drive shafts of the front wheels.
- The positioning on the rear axle improves the weight and axle load distribution in the vehicle. This forms the basis for the compelling handling.
- The AMG concept offers very high recuperation efficiency, as the system allows only minimal mechanical and hydraulic losses from the engine and transmission.
- The automated two-speed transmission at the rear axle with its specially calibrated gear ratio ensures the spread from high wheel torque for agile starting to safe continuous output at higher speeds. An electric actuator engages second gear at around 140 km/h at the latest, which corresponds to the electric motor’s maximum speed of around 13,500 rpm.
- With the increase in performance due to the additional electric motor, the development team was also able to improve the efficiency of the entire vehicle in parallel – and achieve lower emissions as well as lower consumption.
Inspired by Formula 1™, developed in Affalterbach: the AMG high-performance battery
When the electrification strategy was being defined, it was clear from the outset that all essential components would be developed in Affalterbach. Among these is the AMG high-performance battery (HPB). The development of the lithium-ion energy storage system is inspired by technologies that have proven themselves in the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team’s Formula 1™ hybrid racing cars. In the course of the development, the experts at the Formula 1™ engine shop High Performance Powertrains (HPP) in Brixworth intensively exchanged ideas with Mercedes-AMG in Affalterbach. The AMG high-performance battery combines high power that can be called up frequently in succession with low weight to increase the overall performance of the vehicle. Added to this are the fast energy draw and the high power density. This means that during a brisk drive in hilly terrain, for example, drivers can immediately call on the full power potential on uphill stretches, while recuperation is strong when driving downhill.
70 kW continuous output and 150 kW peak output
The high-performance battery in the C 63 S E PERFORMANCE offers a capacity of 6.1 kWh, continuous output of 70 kW and a peak output of 150 kW for ten seconds. The low weight of only 89 kilograms allows the very high power density of 1.7 kW/kg. For comparison: conventional batteries without direct cooling of the cells achieve about half this figure. Charging is via the 3.7 kW on-board AC charger, at a charging station, wallbox or household socket. The battery is designed for fast power delivery and draw, not for the longest possible range. Nevertheless, the electric range of 13 kilometres allows a practical radius of action, for example for quiet and all-electric driving from the residential area to the outskirts of the city or to the motorway.
The continual push for innovation: direct cooling of the battery cells
The basis for the high performance of the AMG 400-volt battery is its innovative direct cooling system: for the first time, a high-tech coolant based on an electrically non-conductive liquid flows around all 560 cells and cools them individually. Every battery needs a defined temperature for optimum power delivery. If the energy storage unit gets too cold or too hot, it temporarily loses noticeable power or has to be turned down in order not to be damaged if the temperature level is too high. The consistent temperature of the battery therefore has a decisive influence on its performance, service life and safety. Conventional cooling systems, which only cool with air or the entire battery pack indirectly with water, quickly reach their limits – especially as the requirements continue to increase due to cells with ever increasing energy density. If the thermal management does not fulfil its function optimally, the battery is at risk of ageing prematurely.
For the direct cooling, the AMG specialists had to develop new cooling modules that are only millimetres thick. Around 14 litres of coolant circulate from top to bottom through the entire battery past each cell with the help of a specially developed high-performance electric pump, also flowing through an oil/water heat exchanger attached directly to the battery. This conducts the heat into one of the two low-temperature circuits (LT) of the vehicle. From there, it goes on to the LT cooler at the front of the car, which releases the heat into the ambient air. The system is designed to ensure even heat distribution in the battery.
The result is that the battery is always within a consistent, optimum operating temperature window averaging 45 degrees Celsius, no matter how often it is charged or discharged. It may well be that the average temperature is exceeded when driving at high speeds. The protection mechanisms are therefore set in such a way that the maximum power can be drawn from the battery in order to subsequently lower the temperature level again through direct cooling. Conventional cooling systems cannot cope with this, and the battery can no longer fully utilise its capacity. Not so the AMG High Performance Battery: even during fast laps in hybrid mode on the racetrack, where acceleration (battery is discharged) and deceleration (battery is charged) are frequent, the energy storage system retains its high performance capacity.
Only effective direct cooling makes it possible to use cells with a very high power density. Thanks to this individual solution, the battery system is particularly light and compact. The low weight is also due to the material-saving busbar concept, and the lightweight yet strong crash structure of the aluminium housing. It ensures the highest level of safety.
Operating strategy: electric power always available
The basic operating strategy is derived from the hybrid powerpack of the Mercedes‑AMG Petronas Formula 1™ racing car. As in the top class of motorsport, maximum propulsion is always available when the driver calls it up by kick-down – to accelerate powerfully out of corners or to overtake quickly. The electric power can always be called on and frequently reproduced via high recuperation performance and needs-based recharging. The car's specific battery concept allows the optimal compromise between maximum driving dynamics and contemporary efficiency. All components are intelligently coordinated with each other: the performance gain can be experienced directly.
Eight AMG driving modes
The eight AMG DYNAMIC SELECT driving modes "Electric", "Comfort", "Battery Hold", "Sport", "Sport+", "RACE", "Slippery" and "Individual" are precisely tailored to the new drive technology. They thus offer a wide-ranging driving experience - from efficient to dynamic. The driving modes adjust important parameters: the response of the drive and transmission, the steering characteristic, the chassis damping or the sound. The boost power of the electric motor also depends on the respective driving mode. It can be selected via the display in the centre console or the AMG steering wheel buttons. However, one thing is the same in all modes: the peak power of the electric motor with a boost of 150 kW can be easily demanded via the kick-down function. The haptic accelerator pedal provides a tangible pressure point that the driver's foot must overcome.
As standard, the Performance Hybrid starts silently ("Silent Mode") in the "Comfort" driving mode with the electric motor being switched on. In the instrument cluster, the "Ready" icon signals that the vehicle is ready to drive. In addition, a powerful, sonorous start-up sound typical of AMG is emitted in the interior via the vehicle's loudspeakers as acoustic feedback showing readiness to get going. Slight pressure on the accelerator pedal is all it takes to set the AMG Performance hybrid in motion.
- "Electric": the focus is on the electric driving experience. All-electric driving is possible from standstill up to 125 km/h, with the combustion engine always switched off. The mechanical connection to the AMG Performance 4MATIC+ components means that all-wheel drive is always available: if the rear wheels suddenly have too much slip, the power of the electric motor is also transmitted to the front wheels via the propeller shaft and drive shafts. When the battery has run down or the driver requests more power, the intelligent operating control automatically switches to the "Comfort" driving mode: the combustion engine starts up and takes over the drive power.
- "Comfort": starting off takes place mostly in electric mode. Combustion engine and electric motor then run as the situation demands - with electric drive at low speeds, for example in residential areas or in the city centre. Hybrid driving with combustion engine and electric motor usually happens on country roads and on the motorway. The boost power of the electric motor is a maximum of around 25 per cent. Overall, the result is a harmonious and consumption-optimised driving impression, thanks in part to the early upshifts of the AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT-9G transmission. Suspension and steering are set up for an emphasis on comfort. The steering focus is on energy efficiency, so that fuel consumption and emissions can be reduced. The hallmark AMG sportiness and agility are retained.
- "Battery Hold": as with the "Comfort" drive program, the combustion engine and electric motor run according to the specific situation with a maximum boost of around 25 percent. The biggest difference is that the operating strategy keeps the battery state of charge constant. For example, if the battery is at 75 per cent charge, it remains in this range in "Battery Hold". Use of the electric motor is then limited and optimised for low power consumption, which is compensated for by recuperation, for example. Advantage for drivers: they can decide when to make full use of the battery charge again, simply by changing the drive program.
- "Sport": starting off with combustion engine and electric motor and situational interaction of the two drives. More boost from the electric motor is enabled, up to around 65 percent. Sporty driving impression owing to more agile accelerator response, shorter shift times and earlier downshifts. A more dynamic suspension and steering set-up.
- "Sport+": starting off with combustion engine and electric motor and situational interaction of the two drives. Even higher boost performance of up to 80 percent. Extremely sporty character thanks to even more agile throttle response and targeted torque intervention during upshifts, with cylinder deactivation for optimum shift times. Increased idle speed for faster starting. An even more dynamic set-up for suspension, steering and powertrain.
- "RACE": for highly dynamic driving on closed-off race tracks. In this mode, all the parameters are configured for maximum performance. Starting off with combustion engine and electric motor and situational interaction of the two drives. Electric boost power of the electric motor up to 80 percent. Strong battery recharging when power demand is low for maximum electrical availability. In addition, the "Boost Mode" can be called up via the left-hand steering wheel button. The boost power is then limited to a maximum of 30 percent in order to conserve energy reserves. These can be used specifically on the race track for spontaneous power request via kick-down and 100 percent boost power - for example, for an acceleration manoeuvre or powerful acceleration out of corners.
- "Slippery": Is optimally tuned for slippery roads, with reduced power input and a flat torque curve. Electric-only driving and recuperation adjustment are deactivated.
- "Individual": individual customisation of the drive, transmission, AMG DYNAMICS, suspension, steering and exhaust system.
New sound experience in all driving conditions: electric, hybrid and internal combustion engine
When driving on all-electric power, the legally required acoustic vehicle alert system warns the surroundings of the Performance hybrid's approach. A specially composed, low-frequency and speed-modulated AMG sound is emitted to the outside via a speaker at the front and a soundbar with two speakers at the rear. The sound can also be heard at a subdued level in the interior, as acoustic feedback for the passengers. In the European Union, the system is active up to 20 km/h, in the USA up to the equivalent of approx. 30 km/h. Afterwards, the electric drive signal fades out harmoniously. Anyone who so wishes can also experience the electric driving sound at higher speed ranges. All they need to do is to select the sound via the corresponding button on the steering wheel (identifiable by the frequency wave symbol).
In addition, the AMG developers offer customers a more advanced sound experience. For this purpose, they pick up the real sound of the combustion engine via a pressure sensor in the exhaust system and additionally enrich it before it is emitted in the interior via the entertainment sound system. This makes it possible to experience the characteristic AMG sound up close and personal. In addition, the sound signature is modulated via the exterior loudspeakers. All within the framework of the legal requirements that apply in the respective markets. The intensity depends on the selected drive program. It can, however, also be set individually via the display in the centre console or the steering wheel button. In every situation, one thing remains the same: the Performance hybrid is also immediately recognisable acoustically as an AMG under all conditions.
Performance hybrid drive can control the traction of one wheel instead of ESP
The control of vehicle dynamics also benefits from the hybrid drive. Instead of braking intervention by ESP®, the electric motor can also control traction as soon as a wheel signals too much slip. To do this, the intelligent control system reduces the drive torque of the electric motor that is transferred to the wheel via the limited-slip rear differential. The result is that, ESP® does not have to intervene at all, or only later. Advantage: the combustion engine can thus be operated at a higher torque. This improves agility afterwards and increases efficiency. In addition, the power otherwise "destroyed" during braking can be used to charge the battery.
Regeneration selectable in four stages
Because the high-performance battery is always in the optimum temperature window of around 45 degrees thanks to direct cooling, regeneration can also be optimised: normally, a battery heats up strongly at high regeneration capacity, so that energy recovery must be limited.
Recuperation starts when the driver takes their foot off the accelerator pedal, i.e. in overrun mode without touching the brake pedal. This charges the battery and creates a strong braking torque, protecting the wheel brakes. Depending on the regeneration level and traffic situation, they do not have to be applied at all. Another advantage of regeneration: the vehicle does not speed up on steep downhill slopes. The system works like an engine brake and feeds energy into the battery.
The driver can select four different recuperation levels using the right-hand AMG steering wheel button. This applies in all drive programs with the exception of "Slippery", and the energy recovery is configured differently depending on the driving mode.
- Level 0: The vehicle behaves in a similar way to a conventional combustion engine with manual transmission, where the clutch is disengaged. If the driver lifts off the accelerator, the car coasts on with the least resistance. The recuperation level is very low, and serves only to maintain the vehicle's power supply. With the combustion engine switched off, friction losses in the powertrain are reduced to a minimum.
- Level 1: This is the default setting. The regeneration is noticeable for the driver. It corresponds approximately to the deceleration of a conventional combustion engine with the clutch engaged.
- Level 2: Stronger regeneration. When going with the flow of traffic, the brake pedal hardly needs to be depressed.
- Level 3: Highest energy recovery. Here, so-called one-pedal driving is possible, just like in an all-electric car. Depending on the driving condition, over 100 kW of power can be fed back into the battery.
- Special feature of the RACE drive program: on the racetrack, the driver wants to squeeze the maximum time possible out of any braking action. In the "RACE" drive program, recuperation is automatically set at level 1 to allow the most reproducible vehicle behaviour possible at the limits.
AMG 2.0-litre engine with electrically assisted exhaust gas turbocharger
The AMG 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine was developed entirely in Affalterbach. Experienced fitters produce it there in manufactory quality according to the "One Man, One Engine" principle. In doing so, Mercedes-AMG combines the craftsmanship of its highly qualified employees with the state-of-the-art production methods of Industry 4.0 and a high degree of digitisation.
The internally named M139l engine (l for longitudinal installation) is the world's first series-production engine to be turbocharged with an electric exhaust gas turbocharger. This innovative system is derived directly from the technology that the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team has been using so successfully in the premier class of motorsport for many years. The new form of turbocharging guarantees particularly spontaneous response across the entire rev range. This leads to an even more dynamic driving experience, while at the same time increasing efficiency. Compared to its C 43 4MATIC and SL 43 siblings, however, the turbocharger in the C 63 S is significantly larger. This enables a higher airflow rate and thus more power. In addition, the integrated electric motor is powered by the 400-volt high-voltage system (48 volts in the 43 models).
The functional principle of the electric exhaust gas turbocharger in detail
An electric motor around four centimetres thin is integrated directly on the turbocharger shaft between the turbine wheel on the exhaust side and the compressor wheel on the intake side. Electronically controlled, this drives the shaft of the turbocharger directly and thus accelerates the compressor wheel, before the exhaust gas flow takes over the drive in the conventional way.
This significantly improves response from idle speed and across the entire rev range. The combustion engine reacts even more spontaneously to accelerator pedal commands, and the overall driving experience is much more dynamic. In addition, the electrification of the turbocharger allows higher torque at low revs. This also increases agility and optimises acceleration from a standstill. Even when the driver takes their foot off the accelerator or brakes, the technology is able to maintain boost pressure at all times. This ensures a continuous and immediate response.
Powered by the 400-volt on-board electrical system, the electric exhaust gas turbocharger operates at speeds of up to 150,000 rpm. The turbocharger, electric motor and power electronics are connected to the cooling circuit of the combustion engine in order to ensure an idea temperature environment at all times.
The closed-deck design of the M139 - a motorsport design - ensures high rigidity in conjunction with low weight and allows peak combustion pressures of up to 160 bar. The areas around the cylinders are mostly solid, and the cover plate is penetrated only by smaller ducts for the coolant and engine oil. Another outstanding feature is the two-stage petrol injection. In the first stage, particularly fast and precise piezo injectors deliver the fuel into the combustion chambers at pressures of up to 200 bar. The second stage adds intake manifold duct injection with solenoid valves, which is needed to achieve the engine's high specific power output.
The high output also necessitates a sophisticated cooling system that can cool the cylinder head and crankcase to different temperature levels. This measure makes it possible to maintain a cold cylinder head for maximum power with efficient ignition timing, along with a warm crankcase to reduce internal engine friction. The cylinder head is cooled by a mechanical high-performance water pump; the crankcase is cooled by a second, electrically driven water pump. After a cold start, this pump remains passive until the engine has warmed up. In operation it is regulated by the engine control unit so that the crankcase is always cooled according to need.
The most powerful production four-cylinder in the world
In the C 63 S, the four-cylinder unit develops 350 kW (476 hp) at 6,725 rpm. This makes it the world's most powerful series-production four-cylinder engine. The maximum torque of 545 Nm is available at 5,250‑5,500 rpm. A belt-driven starter generator (RSG) combines an alternator and starter in one component. The RSG starts the combustion engine and ensures the basic supply of the ancillary components such as air conditioning or driving lights. This also applies when the vehicle is at a traffic light and the charge level of the high-voltage battery is no longer sufficient to support the low-voltage on-board electrical system. The RSG is integrated into the 400-volt high-voltage network.
Power is transmitted via the AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 9G transmission (MCT = Multi-Clutch Transmission), in which a wet start-off clutch replaces the torque converter. It reduces weight and, thanks to its lower inertia, optimises response to accelerator pedal input, especially during spurts and load changes. The elaborately calibrated software ensures extremely short shift times as well as fast multiple downshifts if required. In addition, the intermediate throttle function in the "Sport" and "Sport+" driving modes delivers a particularly emotionally appealing gearshift experience. The RACE START function guarantees optimal acceleration from a standstill.
AMG RIDE CONTROL suspension with Adaptive Damping System
The standard AMG RIDE CONTROL steel suspension with Adaptive Damping System combines sporty driving dynamics with a high level of long-distance comfort. The basis for this is provided by the front axle, with specially developed steering knuckles and suspension joints on the spring control arm, and by the rear axle, which also features elastokinematics designed for driving dynamics. Based on this, the damping at each individual wheel is continuously adjusted to the current demand - always taking into account the preselected suspension level, the driving style and the condition of the road surface. In addition to an improvement in ride quality and comfort, this leads, above all, to an increase in driving safety. The system used has already proved its worth in GT3 customer sport and in the AMG GT Black Series. The key components are dampers made of lightweight materials that can move significantly more hydraulic fluid than conventional systems: instead of a slim piston, a significantly larger disc displaces the oil in the damper. Each damper is fitted with two external electrohydraulic valves, which act independently of each other to control draw and pressure. In the process, the system's control software continuously monitors operating data such as steering wheel angle, vehicle speed, acceleration and body movement. In this way, the dampers are controlled within milliseconds as the situation requires. The result is that, even during extreme driving manoeuvres or on poor roads, the wheels are always firmly on the ground. There is a choice of three different damping maps ("Comfort", "Sport" and "Sport+").
Three-stage AMG parameter steering and standard rear-axle steering
The steering layout also contributes to the increase in dynamics and comfort. The three-stage AMG parameter steering system, for example, features a variable steering geometry ratio that adapts to the selected drive program. At high speeds, the steering power assistance decreases; at low speeds, it is steadily increased. As a result, only a comparatively small amount of force is required at low speeds as well as when manoeuvring and parking. When driving faster, the best possible control of the vehicle is maintained. In the "Sport" and "Sport+" suspension settings, the driver also experiences significantly more feedback about the driving conditions via the steering wheel.
The standard rear-axle steering operates with a maximum steering angle of 2.5 degrees. Up to this point, the rear wheels turn in the opposite direction to the front wheels at speeds of up to 100 km/h (variable depending on the AMG DYNAMICS setting). This leads to a virtual shortening of the wheelbase and results in significantly more agile turn-in, less steering effort and increased manoeuvrability. This noticeably reduces the turning circle when turning or parking. At speeds above 100 km/h (variable depending on the AMG DYNAMICS setting), the rear wheels turn in parallel to the front wheels - up to a maximum of 0.7 degrees. The virtual extension of the wheelbase has a positive effect on driving stability: it builds up lateral force more quickly when changing direction, allowing the vehicle to respond more directly to steering commands. The response of the rear-axle steering depends on the selected AMG DYNAMIC SELECT driving mode.
The integrated AMG DYNAMICS dynamic control system is also part of the standard specification. It influences the control strategies of ESP® (Electronic Stability Program), the all-wheel drive, and the electronically controlled limited-slip rear differential. This increases agility without compromising the vehicle's stability. Particularly noteworthy: AMG DYNAMICS determines how the vehicle should react. The system uses the available sensors, among other things, to ascertain the speed, lateral acceleration, steering angle and yaw rate. Thanks to an intelligent pilot-control principle, it is possible to anticipate how the driver wants the vehicle to behave, based on the driver's actions and on data from the sensors. Regulation is tailored to the dynamic driving competence of the driver – without any noticeable or disruptive interventions by the system. The driver gets an authentic driving experience with high cornering dynamics and optimal traction with high stability and predictable handling. Even experienced drivers receive optimum assistance without feeling patronised by the system.
- "Basic" is assigned to the driving modes "Comfort and "Electric". The design results in a very stable ride with high yaw damping.
- "Advanced" is activated in "Sport" mode. The vehicle remains neutrally balanced. The reduced yaw damping and increased agility support dynamic manoeuvres such as driving on winding country roads.
- "Pro" (abbreviation for "Professional") is part of the "Sport+" mode. In "Pro", the driver receives even more assistance for dynamic driving manoeuvres, while agility and feedback from the road when cornering are further enhanced.
- "Master" is coupled with the driving mode "RACE". The "Master" mode is aimed at drivers who want to experience dynamism and driving enjoyment on cordoned-off circuits. "Master" offers a slightly oversteering vehicle balance, more direct steering and more agile turn-in behaviour. In this way, "Master" ensures maximum agility and optimally exploits the dynamic potential of the "S" version. To activate "Master" mode, the driver must use the separate button in the centre console to switch ESP® to ESP® SPORT handling mode or ESP® OFF.
In the "Individual" drive program, drivers can set the AMG DYNAMICS levels "Basic", "Advanced", "Pro" and "Master" themselves.
Good control and fade-resistant: the AMG high-performance compound brake system
Nor are there any compromises when it comes to the brakes: in keeping with the extreme output figures and the associated performance, the AMG high-performance compound brake system with six-piston fixed callipers at the front and one-piston floating callipers at the rear is fitted as standard. The brake system impresses with very short braking distances as well as maximum stability and fade-resistance under heavy use. In addition, it scores with a long service life and a particularly fast response. Comfort features include Hill Start Assist and priming/dry braking in wet conditions. With the ignition switched off and the vehicle at a standstill, the transmission automatically selects the parking position "P". Meanwhile, the electric parking brake releases automatically when pulling away. A ceramic high-performance compound brake system is available as an option.