Review: Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG 507 goes out with a bang

C 63 AMG Edition 507 (C 204) Lack: designo magno platin, Aussatttung: designo Leder porzellan, 2013
C 63 AMG Edition 507 (C 204) Lack: designo magno platin, Aussatttung: designo Leder porzellan, 2013
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THERE’S a new Mercedes C-Class around the corner and, with every man, dog and car manufacturer embracing turbocharging, there’s something of a swansong feel about this particular C-Class Coupe. The car’s bonnet vents, beefy-looking brakes and low stance aren’t for show, as this car sports an AMG badge and under its nose is a hairy-chested 6.2-litre V8 motor.

If you haven’t already guessed, the clue to this car’s potential is in its name. Yes, 507 really does mean 507 horsepower, and when the engine in question boasts some of the same fettled components as you’ll find in Mercedes’ flagship SLS, this C-Coupe means business. On paper, the car is no slouch. The sprinkling of magic SLS dust results in useful performance gains: try zero to 62mph in 4.2 seconds and a top speed raised from 155mph to 174mph.

With larger AMG-badged cars already packing turbocharged engines, the C and SLS are almost the last bastions of traditional brute force performance motoring. With no turbo in sight, you can rev the nuts off the 6.2-litre motor and soak up a wealth of aural delights. Bark, roar, pop, bang – you name it, it’s all here.

You’ll need to dig deep for one of these C 63 models as you’re approaching low-end Porsche 911 territory even before you start attacking the options list. Is it worth it? You bet, but don’t think the C63 is a straight rival for a 911. Where the latter is a precision instrument, the Mercedes is a sledgehammer. Sure, it’ll do the urban commute with ease, but it’s most comfortable away from the city where you can exploit its mind-bending pace.

Brutal acceleration is, thankfully, matched by direct and communicative steering, while the upgraded brakes are also more than capable. The C63 Coupe is no pussycat, though, and demands respect if you want to keep it in a straight line. It’ll also happily oblige if you crave a more sideways approach to life. Thanks to the hugely flexible V8’s throttle response, changes in direction can be maintained in a pleasingly progressive way.

This car is no one-trick pony; there might be more poke than grip but it also displays sufficient precision to make tackling a sinuous B-road both rewarding and challenging.

Sitting low in the cabin gripped by the car’s supportive sports seats completes what is a special and stimulating driving experience.

In a nod to competition cars, the gearlever and steering wheel eschew leather for a more tactile fabric, with the responsive nature of the auto gearbox encouraging you to use the chunky steering wheel paddle shifters at every opportunity.

The Coupe might be the least practical of the 507 trio (a saloon and estate make up the rest of the range) but it’s potentially the most fun. Its contradiction of Germanic precision and extrovert personality provides the perfect farewell to a much-loved era of old school performance motoring.

VITAL STATS

CAR Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG 507

PRICE From £68,470

ENGINE 8cyls, 6,208cc, petrol

PERFORMANCE Max speed 174mph; 0-62mph 4.2s

ECONOMY 23.5mpg

CO2 EMISSIONS 280g/km