The 2024 Mercedes-AMG C63 S E Performance is the dawn of a new era for the three-pointed star. It’s also a wrench in the gears for the competition, offering more power and torque while having the smallest gas-powered engine among its peers, including the Audi RS5, BMW M3, and the Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing, to name a few.
Gone is the mighty M177 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 that Mercedes-AMG exploited to perfection since the first AMG 63 debuted in 2015. The C63 S E Performance has the most powerful series-production four-cylinder engine the world has ever seen. Topping it off is a hybrid-electric system obtained from Formula 1, the pinnacle of automotive engineering.
“With its performance hybrid drive and electrically assisted exhaust turbocharger, the new C63 S E Performance is a technological masterpiece that takes a new approach,” said Jochen Hermann, Member of Executive Board – Chief Technical Officer of Mercedes-AMG GmbH.
Best of Both Worlds
Mercedes-AMG is not pulling punches with its C63 S E Performance. Under the hood is a hand-built 2.0-liter M139I four-cylinder engine with an electric turbocharger, technology derived from the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 team. The turbo draws power from the vehicle’s 400V P3 hybrid system, first seen in the Mercedes-AMG GT63 S E Performance, currently the most potent Mercedes-AMG car on sale today. The high-voltage hybrid comprises a 6.1 kWh high-density battery pack, a rear-mounted electric motor, a two-speed gearbox for the electric motor, and an electronic limited-slip differential.
The gas engine pumps out 469 horsepower and 401 lb-ft. of torque, the latter arriving at 5,000 to 5,500 rpm. Meanwhile, the 150 kW rear-mounted electric motor churns out 94 horsepower and a peak output of 201 horsepower (and 236 lb-ft. of torque) for 10 seconds, enabling quicker overtaking during passing maneuvers. With a combined output of 671 horsepower and 752 lb-ft. of torque, the Mercedes-AMG C63 S E Performance has other German and American contenders sitting on pins and needles. It has 168 more horsepower and 236 more lb-ft. of torque than the outgoing V8-powered C63, which speaks highly of the engineering that went into Mercedes-AMG’s newest creation.
Power goes to all four wheels using an AMG Performance 4MATIC+ all-wheel drivetrain and an AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT nine-speed with a wet start-off clutch instead of a traditional torque converter. The electric motor’s two-speed gearbox on the rear has an electric actuator that engages second gear at 87 mph. Oh, and the C63 S E Performance remains an AWD vehicle in all-electric mode, which it can do for eight miles before the gas engine kicks in.
2024 Mercedes-AMG C63 S E Performance: Zero to 60
Mercedes-AMG claims zero to 60 mph in 3.3 seconds and up to a 174 mph top speed. Moreover, the C 63 S E Performance could reach 81 mph using only all-electric propulsion. The zero to 60 time of the C63 S E Performance is close to the Mercedes-AMG GT Black Series (3.1 seconds), which is one of the top five fastest production cars around the Nürburgring as of 2022.
Rear-Wheel Steering & Drift Mode
The 2024 Mercedes-AMG C63 S E Performance has more high-performance hardware worth mentioning. It has rear-axle steering that turns the rear wheels in the opposite direction as the front at speeds up to 62 mph. In addition, it turns the rear wheels in the same direction as the front wheels at higher velocities to optimize handling, cornering, and stability.
The driver has no less than eight AMG driving modes to choose from, including a new Drift mode for “even more driving pleasure,” said Mercedes-AMG. Moreover, there are four stages of energy recovery and three suspension settings. Otherwise, the C63 S E Performance has standard steel springs with AMG Ride Control adaptive dampers and six-piston front brakes with a single-piston rear floating caliper.
The 2024 Mercedes-AMG C63 S E Performance is two inches longer in the front and 3.3 inches longer overall than a regular C-Class sedan. It also has a 0.4-inch longer wheelbase and a wider front track, making it three inches wider in the front. New styling details include an air outlet in the hood, an AMG-specific front grille, and an AMG “jet-wing design” front apron. It also has new side skirts, standard 19-inch aero-optimized wheels, a redesigned rear bumper, a rear diffuser, and quad tailpipes.
Inside, it has a recognizable C-Class cabin layout but with bespoke touches like AMG sports seats with distinctive stitching, an AMG steering wheel, and an updated MBUX infotainment and multimedia system with hybrid-specific displays and personalized menu functions. It even has an Acoustic Vehicle Alerting System that uses front and rear externally-mounted loudspeakers to warn pedestrians when the car is moving in all-electric mode. Additionally, the system transmits amplified sounds to the internal and external speakers in full attack mode, a feature you won’t need if you have a V8 – just saying.
Pricing & Availability
Mercedes-AMG was not keen on revealing the MSRP for the newest C63 S E Performance sedan, at least not yet. Considering the outgoing AMG C63 S had a sub-$77,000 base price, we expect the 2024 Mercedes-AMG C63 S E Performance to start between $85,000 and $88,000. American buyers will probably have to wait until September or October 2023 for the first deliveries to arrive. Global markets could get their hands on one by early 2023.
Alvin Reyes is an Automoblog feature columnist and an expert in sports and performance cars. He studied civil aviation, aeronautics, and accountancy in his younger years and is still very much smitten to his former Lancer GSR and Galant SS. He also likes fried chicken, music, and herbal medicine.