It's a long way — from the endless laps between your living room and your bedroom as you try to burn calories to doughnuts on a racetrack, burning rubber. The more we’re held in by the lockdown, the more we want to be liberated, stretch our legs, spread our proverbial wings, and step on the gas to make a ferocious engine grunt under us.
That’s what the Mercedes C63 AMG Coupe brought to the table. I lapped it up, with the hope of my first run turning into something more landmark than any other test run I’ve attempted.And it was something, really.
Having not smelt the burning fuel or the interiors of a car for a while, it was oddly nostalgic, albeit it was only five months ago that I chanced upon a summer spin. But I wasn’t going to let rational thoughts dampen this feeling.
The C63 greeted me in the driveway with a rather snarly sneer. It just looks as mean as you would expect it to be towards other less ambitious coupes. It challenges you to brave its fury.
The front looks a lot more wider than the former 4-door variant, sporting a handsome panamericana grille that looks like it could swallow stubborn auto-rickshaws in its wake. The quad-exhaust looks just as intimidating as you would expect it to sound, with the rest of the rear sloping down in a graceful arc.
The empty roads seemed tempting enough for me, already. The power-domes on the bonnet are imposing and add character to the front façade of the C63. And then you have two doors, instead of the 4-door configuration, you may have gotten used to seeing in C-Class cars. And that’s all you need to recognise the C63.
You may not be faulted to call the C63 a muscle car, much to the grimace of Mercedes purists, but there seems to be that rigid appeal that emanates throughout its body. Now that the erstwhile 4-door C63 S has been compressed into a two-door variant, the doors automatically seem to be longer. Something about it all makes it look like a raging monolith on a copious dose of speed.
An expansive panoramic sliding sunroof welcomed me into the cockpit with a scatter of monsoon droplets playfully sliding off it. The interiors justify the track-ready plaudit the C63 has come to enjoy.
It is indeed a sports car cockpit, once you step in. The steering wheel is lined with Nappa leather and has a perforated grip. Inspired by its motorsport siblings, the steering wheel has a flattened shape that is characteristic of its AMG genes. Ergonomic touch-controlled buttons spec the wheel for quick and easy access while driving.
On the dash sits a fully-digital instrument cluster with customisable styles to choose from, form Classic to Sporty. The 10-inch display screen helps you with navigation, smartphone integration, and controls, Spotify-compatibility and accepts voice commands. If you’re fortunate enough to drive the C63 on a race-track, you would enjoy the AMG Track Pace interface that performs the role of a virtual race engineer, tracking performance and times.
There’s ample assistance for the driver within the C63, with easy access to critical features and ergonomics that are testimony of German engineering. The touchpad controller offers multi-touch and direct access keys for commands you use most often. You can swiftly switch between driving modes as well, using the Dynamic Select, but we will come to that later.
I was especially awestruck by the Burmester surround sound system with its 9-channel DSP amp that delivered powerful, crystal-clear sound. You wouldn’t be asking for too much tech, ever, when it’s a Mercedes. Or comfort. The C63 spoils its occupants with fragranced dual-zone air-conditioning, The ambient lighting with 64 colour options, 12-way electronically adjustable seats that remember your preferences, lumbar support for better posture, heat-controlled seats, intelligent wipers, independent boot locking system, Head-up Display, Wireless Charging for a mobile device, and refreshing ionization and filtering of in-cabin air, all ensure your convenience and safety.
The C63 is incredibly powerful, and I’d rather speak in specifics to substantiate that claim. With 476bhp produced along with 650Nm torque, it can go from 0 to 100 kmph in four seconds. I did dare switch to the Sport+ mode, which wouldn’t be recommended for anywhere other than a race-track. My track was the perimeter of the ocean along Bandstand, in Mumbai.
It had its share of minor straights, turns, inclines, and slopes. As I made my way to Carter Road, which is a wider, better stretch of street, I could feel the C63 grunt in appreciation, as it screamed past streetlamps in the Queen of Suburbs. It is just so incredibly quick that you would find yourself being extra careful while nudging the accelerator.
When you’re unacquainted, it feels like touch, scream, go! Signal-after-signal, it just kept happening, giving me doses of adrenaline, the kind you get when you know you’re controlling something far too powerful for your own good.
But that’s what the C63 AMG was made for. To be fast, comfortable, an absolute head-turner, even if the number of heads on the streets was tragically low. We’ll never forget these unprecedented times for a long time to come.
For me, this spin in the Mercedes C63 will continue to be the promise of a world that is rearing to roar again.
Engine: 3982cc, V8 Bi-Turbo
Power: 469bhp / 650 nM of torque
0-100 kmph: 4.0 seconds
Transmission: 9-Speed automatic
Top speed: 250 kmph
Safety: 8 airbags, Active park assist, ABS, Pre- Safe, TPM
Price: Rs 1.39 Crore