A sedan that makes any­one feel like Lewis Hamil­ton

The Witness - Wheels - - MOTORING - KYLE VENKTESS

IT is hard to men­tion the MercedesAMG C63 and C63 S in ca­sual con­ver­sa­tion with­out sound­ing like a sales rep­re­sen­ta­tive for the man­u­fac­turer.

The C63 boasts un­prece­dented power and turns head on the road as not many ve­hi­cles can, go­ing from zero to 100 in 4,1 sec­onds for the stan­dard model and four sec­onds for the S model.

A posse of mo­tor­ing jour­nal­ists was in­vited to test the C63 and C63 S to their lim­its at the Zwartkops Race­way in Cen­tu­rion and in the ter­rain of the sur­round­ing area.

The first ques­tion to be an­swered was how well the C63 sits on the skid­pan when faced with sharp bends. The C63 fea­tures a three-stage ESP with the ESP On, ESP Sport Han­dling Mode and ESP Off func­tions, which work with the lock­ing dif­fer­en­tial, and is tuned to driv­ing dy­nam­ics of the ve­hi­cle.

The ESP On mode is ac­tive the mo­ment the en­gine is started and it ini­ti­ates a brak­ing in­ter­ven­tion and re­duces the torque of the en­gine, when it de­tects op­er­at­ing con­di­tions be­come un­sta­ble.

With the ESP Sport Han­dling Mode ac­ti­vated the driver main­tains 75% con­trol of the ve­hi­cle and al­lows a higher thresh­old to al­low more drift­ing but will catch the ve­hi­cle be­fore a mishap. With the ESP off, the driver main­tains full con­trol of the ve­hi­cle with no brak­ing in­ter­ven­tion and no re­duc­tion in torque.

The ve­hi­cle also fea­tures the AMG Dy­namic Se­lect trans­mis­sion modes — Com­fort, Sport, Sport +, RACE (only for C63 S) and In­di­vid­ual.

De­spite the big block up­front, the C63 AMG of­fers a rel­a­tiv­ity low-fuel com­bined con­sump­tion for a sports car of 8,2 litres per 100 kms.

Tak­ing the ve­hi­cle on an open road or free­way, is a tes­ti­mony to its zero to 100 in four sec­onds. The C63 eas­ily climbs in speed, main­tain­ing the lux­u­ri­ous even while peak­ing at 247 km/h.

While still a rel­a­tively new model, the ve­hi­cle at­tracts much at­ten­tion from other driv­ers, with some even snap­ping pic­tures of the ve­hi­cle.

And if it can­not be seen it can be heard. The four-litre V8 biturbo en­gine roars of­fer­ing an emo­tional and spinechilling en­gine sound, rem­i­nis­cent of pre­vi­ous mod­els of the C63 with an out­put 350 kW for the stan­dard model and 375 kW for the S spec.

At the Swartkops Race­way track, the ve­hi­cle makes a racer out of any driver, of­fer­ing peace of mind for safety, and a per­for­mance to raise the hairs on your neck — mak­ing one feel like Lewis Hamil­ton.

The ex­te­rior of the ve­hi­cle is very close to that of the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, of­fer­ing a se­ries of styling packages, with the tra­di­tional added red ac­cents in the grill and on the cal­lipers and of course, the AMG badge on the rear.

Mercedes-AMG C63 re­tails stan­dard at R1 004 700 and the Mercedes-AMG C63 S re­tails at R1 163 800.

PHOTO: QUICK­PIC

With the ESP off the driver can main­tain full con­trol of the ve­hi­cle with no brak­ing in­ter­ven­tion and no re­duc­tion in torque — or in other words, drift.

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