If you thought the most extreme Mercedes' on the road were standard AMG models then think again – every now and again the official tuners bring out a ‘Black Series’ model and the latest is the C63 AMG Black.
On first impressions you can certainly tell that the C63 Black means business. A wider front and rear track, plus race-derived suspension, gives the coupe a lower and more muscular stance. This is enhanced by a bodykit, 19-inch multi-spoke alloys and blistered wheelarches.
Video: watch official footage of the Mercedes C63 AMG Black Series
There’s also a pair of air scoops on the bonnet, plus quad exhaust pipes and body-coloured brake calipers. Meanwhile, inside the stylish and well-built cabin of the standard car remains but the rear bench has been stripped out to save weight – though you can specify two individual sports seats as an option.
Lurking beneath that reshaped bodywork is a 6.2-litre V8 engine uprated from 451bhp in the C63 AMG to 512bhp, and closely related to the power unit in Merc’s gullwing SLS.
Not surprisngly, then, the C63 Black is the most powerful C-Class ever. The huge engine produces 625Nm of torque, delivered to the rear wheels through a seven-speed automatic gearbox and can accelerate the car from 0-62mph in just 4.2 seconds with a top speed of 186mph.
But, get behind the wheel and you soon realise this isn’t a car that’s compromised for its performance. There’s also a docility about it which makes it terrifically driveable. It might be a car aimed at the weekend track enthusiast – and there are no end of packages to help you dress it up as a pseudo-GT racer, including one built into the Comand central control system so you can keep an eye on your lap-by-lap telemetry – but it’s also a road car, and one nowhere near as sinister as the ‘Black’ labelling might suggest.
Our experience of the car was only limited to the track but the Black was just as at home there as it would be on the road. In corners the huge tyres provide huge amounts of grip and the firm suspension set-up keeps the body level too. But, it’s not uncomfortable either and owners even have the option to choose between six different suspension settings depending on their preference. In our experience this is the best-riding Black Series model ever.
All of this begins to explain how Mercedes can give the C63 Black an estimated £100,000 price-tag, and with 1000 to be built and only around 70 coming to the UK, you’ll have to snap one up very quickly indeed.