Published on August 2nd, 2019 | by Subhash Nair0
GLC 63 S 4MATIC+ Review: The only Mercedes-AMG You Need
Here’s a car that defied our expectations. AMG puts these handbuilt biturbo V8s in a lot of their high-end models, and we’ve driven quite a few of them, from the C63 to the AMG GT C. But we’ve always found these motors to be a little too mad for public use. Not this time. In the GLC 63, the M178 engine finds its perfect home. An SUV, of all places!
So how is it that a tall, heavy, SUV ends up being a more driveable experience than a low slung GT or even a 4-door sedan? In short, all-wheel drive. It’s the only car we’ve driven that marries 4MATIC+ to the 4-litre biturbo and the results are phenomenal.
We can finally use its 510hp and 700Nm of torque without fear of the tail swinging out due to a miscalculation.
The GLC 63 S shows just how awesome a 63 car can be even in slightly inexperienced hands, and that’s why it’s so darn awesome. It turns the experience of a top-spec AMG vehicle from one of fear to one of pure joy. Suddenly the bark of the engine isn’t a warning to you, the driver, but to everyone else on the road.
It’s nearly becoming a tradition of mine to ferry a family member whenever I get my hands on a Mercedes. Its happened with the C63 S, C43, S560, E350e, CLS 450 and even the A250. With the GLC 63 S, it was my mom I had the pleasure of driving down to Johor Bahru. It was a night drive and of course I kept well below the speed limit. Most of the time.
Even when cruising, the GLC 63 S is a star. The 4-litre V8 was barely making an effort keeping the car at 110km/h. The cabin was completely encapsulated from external noise (save for a bit of tyre roar) and the suspension was supple yet communicative. The all-wheel drive system and suspension in the GLC 63 S are really what set it apart from its other 63 stablemates. In terms of performance, this car gets full marks.
Styling on the GLC 63 is more aggressive than ever.
The most obvious features here was the Panamericana grille with its 15 vertical slats.
This is complemented by a more aggressive AMG line bodykit, aluminium-finished running boards, plenty of glossy black trim pieces, red accents on brake callipers and of course, those eye-catching 21″ AMG cross-spoke forged alloys in black.
Inside, it’s the typical AMG interior. Black leather dominates the cabin, but there’s a fair bit of perforated red leather on the seats, red stitching, carbon fibre inlays, and aluminium fittings.
AMG badges are everywhere you look, but it’s not to the point of getting garish.
The only complaint one could have with the whole package is that the infotainment and instrument cluster seems a little dated in 2019.
Where other Benz models have moved towards either larger digital displays here, the GLC63 S still carries on the pre-facelift look, as it has yet to see an update.
Priced at RM915,888, the GLC 63 S 4MATIC+ is actually… decent value contextually speaking. Sure, the C63 S is a whole RM200,000 cheaper, but the C63 is a significantly worse car in many appreciable ways.
- First of all, the C63 is still a C-Class, so no matter how rare, it’s still not going to stand out from the thousands of other C300s and hundreds of C43s with AMG Line bodykits on Malaysian roads. It’s too attainable a supercar as well, which lessens to appeal to those with limitless budgets.
- Secondly, the C63 is harsh. Sure, that’ll probably make it faster around the track, but even on a highway cruise, you’re still going to feel things you may not want to be feeling.
- And finally, the C63 is tough to drive hard. No doubt the thing is fast. And no doubt it handles incredibly well. But 700Nm to the rear wheels can be scary the split second you lose control. It’s really a car you need experience to drive hard, and it’s why the C43 was more appealing even to us.
But the GLC 63 S rights all the wrongs, and fully justifies that price difference. If there was one Benz we could get to serve all our purposes, it would be this. No doubt. Probably in this colour too!
Mercedes-AMG GLC 63 S 4MATIC + Specifications
Engine: V8, Biturbo, Petrol
Gearbox: 9-speed AMG Speedshift MCT Automatic
Max power: 510hp @ 5500rpm
Max torque: 700Nm @ 1750rpm
Top Speed: 270km/h
0-100 km/h: 3.8 seconds