Mercedes’ AMG division is where the company has its fun. Yes, the sub-brand’s ultra-powerful versions of regular Benzes sell very well, delivering massive profits, but they also give the conservative Mercedes brand a sporty image boost. The AMG lineup is topped by a true halo car in the SLS, but it all begins with the wicked little C63, and it seems that the Affalterbach-based group has again turned its attention to its entry model.
This test mule, which our spy photographer caught in flagrante, could be the seed of something very exciting: a C63 AMG Black Series. Such a car would have a V-8 good for around 550 hp—the current car makes 451 hp, or 481 with the Development package—and be assigned the task of setting the limited-edition BMW M3 GTSdirectly on its ear.
Twenty years ago, Mercedes wouldn't have even dreamed of selling such things. Back then, tuners that built Black Series–esque, wide-bodied M-B sleds were told in no uncertain terms that they couldn’t even think about leaving any three-pointed stars on the cars. (It’s true that the Mercedes-built 190E 2.5-16 Evolution II was wild for the times, but that car was constructed specifically for racing homologation purposes.) Times have changed. Check out AMG's other Black Series cars—the SL65 and CLK63—and you can guess what this super C-class will look like. Bank on super-wide fenders front and rear, a diabolical-looking rear diffuser, large wheels stuffed with carbon-ceramic brakes, and a generous slathering of carbon fiber inside and out. A C63 AMG Black Series won't be cheap, and you won't see many around. If you do, you’ll have been alerted well in advance of visual confirmation, thanks to a raucous exhaust system.
While some feel that this car will get an upgraded version of the base car’s awesome, naturally aspirated 6.2-liter V-8, we believe that AMG could use this opportunity to switch the C-class AMGs—both regular and Black Series—to its new, twin-turbocharged 5.5-liter V-8. It really wouldn't make sense to keep a C63 AMG that gets poorer highway fuel mileage (19 mpg) than the 2011 S63 AMG (22 mpg), which uses the new engine. Whatever’s installed will channel its output—this bears repeating: it could be as much as 550 hp—to the rear wheels through AMG's seven-speed Speedshift automatic transmission. Top speed likely will be governed at 186 mph, which equals an even 300 km/h.
This potential Black Series and its lesser AMG sibling also will get the C-class visual updates scheduled to debut at the Detroit auto show in January. These include reshaped headlights, a new front fascia, and a completely new dashboard styled similarly to the E-class coupe's. AMG also has more pots on the stove: The upcoming C-class coupe will be breathed on by the firm as well, and the car is being referred to by insiders as “a real M3 killer.” We’ll gladly be the judge of that.
Thanks to: Car and Driver