2023 Mercedes-AMG C43 4Matic loses V6 but gets 416 HP from electric 4-Cyl Turbo | Carscoops
Mercedes achieved a world premiere earlier this month when it introduced the four-cylinder SL 43, a two-seat luxury roadster fitted with an electric turbocharger. And now the same tech has been rolled out to the new 2023 Mercedes-AMG C43 4Matic sedan and station wagon, although in a shocking twist the C-Class makes far more horsepower than its glamorous sibling.
Both cars use essentially the same code M139l engine, a 2.0-liter inline-four fitted with a 48V electrical system that allows AMG engineers to adapt electric turbocharger technology similar to that which the company’s F1 team currently uses on its grand prix cars. The 48V hardware also means both cars get mild hybrid assist, a combined starter generator giving a 14PS (14hp) boost for brief periods, and a ‘navigation’ function.
Related: New 2023 Entry-Level Mercedes-AMG SL43 Gets Four-Cylinder With Electric Turbo
But while the SL’s petrol engine develops 376 hp (381 hp) at 6,750 rpm, the C 43 develops 402 hp (408 hp) at the same crank speed. The C43 also tops the two-seater for torque, generating 367 lb-ft (500 Nm) at 5,000 rpm, while Mercedes-AMG quotes 354 lb-ft (480 Nm) from 3,250-5,000 rpm.
4Matic all-wheel drive is mandatory
Both cars send their power through a nine-speed automatic transmission that features a wet clutch instead of a torque converter, but from there only the SL’s rear wheels can handle the power. As its name clearly suggests, the C 43 4Matic is all-wheel drive, which allows it to reach 100 km/h in 4.6 seconds, three tenths faster than the SL 43.
It’s interesting to compare the C 43 with its SL sibling, but more relevant is how the four-seater 43 compares to rivals BMW M340i xDrive and Audi S4. Both cars feature turbocharged 3.0-litre six-cylinders (inline in the BMW, see in the Audi) and all-wheel drive, like the AMG, although the rear-wheel-drive M340i is also available. The BMW produces 382 hp (387 hp) in North American trim (369 hp / 374 hp in Europe) and sprints to 60 mph (97 km/h) in 4.4 seconds, while the US market Audi S4 produces 349 hp less impressive. (354 PS) but hits 60 mph at exactly the same time.
Quad pipes, sports seats and AMG Track Pace data logger
To let other drivers know you’re packing over 400 horsepower even when you’re unable to let them gallop, the C 43 features AMG’s signature Panamericana grille, a more aggressive bumper than the models regular C-Class cars with chrome trim elements, AMG sills, a “diffuser” rear apron (so as functional as the one on my 2004 CR-V) and two pairs of tailpipes. Eagle-eyed onlookers will also spot the “Turbo Electrified” badging on the front fenders. Stock wheels measure a relatively puny 18-inches in diameter, but 19s and 20s are on the list of options ready to save your street blushes, if not save you some cash.
Inside, you get black AMG seats covered in faux leather and Merc’s Artico microfiber, and offset with red stitching and red seat belts. They’re joined by a flat-bottomed steering wheel with controllers for AMG Dynamic Select driving modes, a covered dashboard again in Artico, and an MBUX infotainment system that gets AMG-specific displays and functions, including the AMG Track Pace data logger which not only measures lap times, but also speed, acceleration, steering angle and brake pedal actuation. Well, at least it will give you something to play with while you’re stuck in that traffic jam on your way to work.
Four-wheel steering and adaptive dampers are standard
Escape daily traffic jams to find decent roads, and you can use the C 43’s chassis tricks, which include AMG-spec steel springs mated to standard adaptive dampers, and a heavily forward-oriented all-wheel-drive system. rear with a 31:69 front:rear split, but does not have the option to become rear-wheel-drive only like on the AMG E63. And with a variable-geometry steering rack up front and rear-wheel steering fitted for the first time, the C43 should feel pretty nimble around corners.
Related: Mercedes Says It’s Considering AMG SL 43 4-Cylinder For US, But Do You Even Want It?
The question is, what will it look like and be exciting (and luxurious) enough when its rivals are still powered by six-cylinder engines? AMG says the adaptive exhaust system, which can change its sound depending on the selected drive mode, engine speed and engine load, provides “the right acoustic background” to the C 43 experience. But owners those who want more can pay extra for the ironically named AMG Real Performance Sound system, which picks up engine noise from the exhaust system and transmits it electronically to the cabin.
How much is it and does the wagon come to the US?
Pricing for the C 43 sedan and wagon will be announced when they go on sale at the end of the year, but should start at around $55,000. Unsurprisingly, the Charging Charger variant is once again missing from the US lineup. While Canada got the older model, Mercedes opted not to sell this one in America.
Would AMG’s move to four-cylinder deter you from buying a C 43 before one of its six-cylinder rivals, and now we know what the AMG small sedan looks like, what do you want to see from the next C63 ? Leave a comment and let us know.
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