If the large number of models in its portfolio is not enough, Mercedes Benz is preparing to launch the AMG spec GLC.
Mercedes has been caught testing the GLC 63 AMG, which will be a performance version of the GLC. Crossovers have been the flavor of the car industry in the last few years. Falling gas prices have led to the sudden growth in crossover and SUV market. Hence, it made no sense for Mercedes to omit the performance oriented luxury crossover market. The GLC 63 AMG is expected to come with the same 4.0-liter V8 seen in the C class performance version from AMG.
The model develops a whopping 470 bhp and offers more than enough 479lb-ft in torque. If this is not sufficient, the company is also expected to offer the S trim. Power will be boosted to 503 bhp with torque also increased to 516lb-ft. One aspect that is expected to be common on both variants is the transmission, which may be the AMG Speedshift MCT 7-speed gearbox. The standard range of vehicles from Mercedes are starting to come with Mercedes-Benz 9G-Tronic transmissions. However, Mercedes sees the seven speed gearbox as the perfect combination for performance oriented cars while the nine speed gearbox is preferred for vehicles that target more fuel efficiency.
Four-wheel-drive will be standard on the GLC 63 AMG. These aspects are substantial improvement over the GLC 43 AMG, which comes with 362 bhp and 383 lb-ft of torque from a slightly smaller motor. The 3.0-liter twin-turbo V6 offers slightly better fuel efficiency figures. The higher end V8 motor will also be joined by features like air suspension with adaptive damping controls, huge brakes, performance body kit, quad exhausts, and beefier tires for better handling characteristics.
Unlike some of the other models that are yet to be announced in any form, the GLC 63 AMG largely features changes internally. Hence, it is unsurprising to see Mercedes testing the vehicle without any camouflage in Stuttgart. The Mercedes GLC 63 AMG may be introduced in the US market before the end of 2016 or in the first quarter of 2017. The vehicle will go up against the BMW X3 M, which is expected to come with a new turbocharged straight-six lifted straight from the BMW M3 or the M4.
Audi may also enter into the performance luxury crossover market with its Q3 RS.