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Geneva show: Mercedes-AMG springs C43 Coupe

Six and out: Mercedes-AMG’s C43 AMG Coupe is just the first C-Class variant to get the new AMG-developed 3.0-litre bi-turbo V6.

Blown V6 C43 powertrain set to spread across the Mercedes-AMG C-Class family


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24 Feb 2016

MERCEDES-BENZ Australia/Pacific is expected to have a new threesome of AMG-fettled C-Class variants – sedan, cabriolet and coupe – in a new biturbo V6 C43 trim by the end of this year.

A half-way house to the full-blown V8 C63 AMG variants, the C43 range will get the same 270kW/520Nm 3.0-litre V6 as the C450 AMG sedan sold overseas, but mated with the new nine-speed automatic transmission instead of the older seven speeder.

The German company today revealed details of the C43 4Matic Coupe ahead of the Geneva motor show where it is expected to take the stage with the upcoming new-generation C-Class Cabriolet.

Mercedes-AMG chairman Tobias Moers today confirmed that the C43 Coupe marked the introduction of a whole series of new 43 models this year.

“The ‘43’models boast the characteristic AMG genes which are also included in our GT and ‘63’ vehicles, and thus consistently interpret our brand essence of ‘driving performance’ in their segment,” he said.

The C43 AMG Coupe has been confirmed for Australian launch late this year, but pricing and range specification are yet to be confirmed.

The Australian importer is also expected to add the C43 AMG sedan and cabriolet variants around the same time, but it is unclear if the Australian outfit will also take the C43 Estate that will be offered in Europe.

As well as the C-Class C43 variants, the new SLC sportscar range that replaces the SLK in Australia about June this year will get the new AMG engine in place of the former 5.5-litre V8 .

All C43 variants are expected to share the same AMG-enhanced V6 that hits peak power of 270kW at 5500rpm and top torque between 2000rpm and 4200rpm.

This engine slots halfway between Audi’s 245kW/450Nm S5 coupe and BMW’s 317kW/550Nm M4.

In the Mercedes C-Class coupe range, the C43 AMG will become the second six-cylinder variant, sitting atop the 3.5-litre V6 $99,040 C350 and below the $159,120 V8 C63.

Just a guess, but we would speculate a price somewhere within spitting distance of the Audi S5 that hits the road for $119,510 plus on-roads.

Thanks to the introduction of the slick new transmission, the C43 AMG 4Matic Coupe is said to be capable of sprinting from zero to 100km/h in 4.7 seconds – 0.2 seconds faster than the seven-speed C450 AMG sedan that made its debut on the American market at the Detroit show a year ago but never made it to Australia.

The new transmission offers double de-clutching on downshifts and “exhilaratingly short” shifts in Sport Plus – the sportiest of five selectable driving modes. Others are eco, comfort, sport and individual, with the latter offering a customised set up.

Manual mode is selected by the press of a console button. This time, more onus is put on the driver, as the transmission will not automatically shift up in manual mode.

Fuel consumption is claimed to be about the 8.0 litres per 100km mark under the European combined test regime.

To ensure plenty of traction, the coupe is equipped with Mercedes’ 4Matic all-wheel drive system that in this case is biased towards the rear wheels to the tune of 69 per cent.

A standard feature is AMG’s ride control suspension with adaptive variable damping in three stages – a feature pinched from the C63.

AMG engineers have tweaked the front and rear suspension systems – again using tricks from the C63 – for better handling, as well as substituting new steering knuckles.

More negative camber has been induced in the four-link front suspension. The driver can select from three suspension models – comfort, sport and sport plus – again using a button on the console.

Bigger brakes involve 360mm discs on the front and 320mm units at the back.

Of course, the C43 Coupe gets an AMG styling lift, with fresh front fascia incorporating AMG’s diamond-pattern grille and black central bar.

Wheels are 18-inch five spoke alloys, again in gloss black.

Inside, the instrument cluster gets chequered flag design, while the flat-bottomed steering has red contract stitching.

The sports seats get a mix of Artico fake leather and black fabric upholstery.

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