2018 Mercedes-AMG GLC63/GLC63 Coupe/GLC63 S Coupe Bow
Mercedes-AMG, the performance sub-brand of the German luxury car maker, unleased a trio of high-performance compact SUVs at the New York Auto Show that feature handbuilt 4.0-liter twin turbo V8 engines. The 2018 Mercedes-AMG GLC63, GLC63 Coupe and GLC63 S Coupe now sit atop the V6-powered AMG GLC43 variants in the lineup.
“For us, the new GLC63 is a quite special vehicle,” said Tobias Moers, CEO of Mercedes-AMG. “It is no easy job designing an SUV to be highly sporty and dynamic while at the time offering inherent extreme driving stability and efficiency. With our V8 biturbo engine, we hold a decisive unique selling point in the performance market. What is more, with both SUV and Coupe variants available, we offer the widest choice in the segment.”
Sports car heritage
Underscoring the link to AMG’s rich performance history, all GLC63 models are fitted with Panamericana-inspired grille treatment previously reserved for the AMG GT family of sports cars. A wide front bumper, which is inspired by the look of a jet wing and large front aerodynamic splitter, also calls attention to the GLC63’s capabilities.
Sill extensions on all models also give the GLC63 SUV, Coupe and S Coupe a lower profile and the muscular look is enhanced by wider wheel arch cladding front and rear. The tail of the vehicle is also fitted with a wide rear bumper and diffuser in grained black. GLC63 S Coupe models are further distinguished by Matte Iridium Silver inserts on the side and the rear diffuser trim. The GLC63 SUV has a roof-mounted rear lip spoiler, while both Coupes have the same rear spoiler used on the AMG GLC43.
The cabins on all three models also reflect the AMG performance spirit with MB-Tex synthetic leather with microfiber used to upholster the sport bucket seats, with MB-Tex also used to cover the dash. S models have contrast topstitching as well as an AMG Performance steering wheel covered in black Nappa leather.
One engine, two states of tune
The 4.0-liter twin turbo V8 produces 469 horsepower and 479 lb-ft of torque in the GLC63 SUV and GLC63 Coupe. The S Coupe version makes 503 horsepower and 516 lb-ft of torque. Output is delivered to all four wheels through an AMG Speedshift MCT 9-speed automatic transmission coupled to a performance 4Matic+ variable all-wheel-drive system. The gearbox uses a single wet clutch instead of a traditional torque converter and can provide multiple downshifts and double-clutch action for faster and more exciting sounding operation than a standard automatic transmission.
The new 4Matic+ all-wheel-drive system is adapted from the Mercedes-AMG E63 S sedan and employs fully variable torque distribution to the front and rear axles. A electromagnetic central clutch connects the permanently driven rear axle with the variable front axle. Standard GLC63 SUV and Coupe models feature a mechanical limited slip rear differential, while the S Coupe benefits from an electronic unit.
Dynamic select on all models
Mercedes-AMG’s Dynamic Select drive programs feature Comfort, Sport, Sport+ and Individual modes and work in concert with specific throttle and steering responses as well as stiffness of the air spring suspension system. There’s also a manual M mode that allows the driver to manually shift the gearbox using the steering wheel-mounted paddles.
The vehicles are also fitted with an ECO stop/start feature that is enabled in the Comfort mode, which also decouples the engine from the transmission when coasting between 37 and 99 mph. Sport and Sport+ modes feature more aggressive throttle responses and shorten the shift time in the 9-speed gearbox. The GLC63 Coupe and S Coupe also have an additional Race setting in which all driving parameters are configured for maximum performance.
Among the options offered on the GLC63 SUV, Coupe and S Coupe is a performance exhaust system that changes sound characteristics using two additional flaps that increase in volume as you move from the Comfort and Sport to the Sport+ and Race modes. AMG also offers a Night appearance package that includes high-gloss black treatment of the bumpers, side sill inserts, outside review mirror caps and roof rails. An exterior carbon fiber package uses the material on the spoiler lip and mirror caps.
The 2018 Mercedes AMG GLC63 SUV, Coupe and S Coupe deliveries are expected early next year, with pricing announced closer to the on-sale date.