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HomeClassic CarDo You Care That The Mercedes-AMG C63 S Only Has Four Cylinders?

Do You Care That The Mercedes-AMG C63 S Only Has Four Cylinders?


There’s a horsepower war raging and Mercedes-AMG has just reached for the nuke button, delivering an all-new 2024 C63 S with so much muscle it makes its BMW M3 rival look like its competing in an entirely different market.

With the help of hybrid assistance the latest C63 S produces 671 hp (680 PS), which is a staggering 167 hp (170 PS) more than what the M3 Competition makes. It’s the same story with torque: 752 lb-ft (1,020 Nm) plays 479 lb-ft (650 Nm). It’s hard to see how the M3 has a hope of catching up until BMW launches an all-new car in several years’ time.

But does it need to catch up? There are a couple of other figures that stand out on the C63’s spec sheet beside the power output. One is the number of driven wheels, which is now four for the first time; another is the colossal 4,489 lbs (2,036 kg) curb weight. And yet another is the number of cylinders: four. The old C63 S could lord it over the M3 by reminding us even though they made the same power, the AMG had a 4.0-litre turbocharged V8 and the BMW only had a 3.0-liter turbo six. But now the C63 S has downgraded right down to a 2.0-liter turbo four.

Related: 2024 Mercedes-AMG C63 S Returns As A 671-HP Plug-In Hybrid That Says 4 Cylinders Is Fine

Obviously we’re in no position to make a call on the success of that move until we’ve driven one (and seen how many Merc sells), but we’ve be lying if we said the idea of a $100k super sedan with an inline four gets us as excited as the thought of one with a six or V8, no matter how much more power it makes or how easier it is to live with.

There’s just something deliciously naughty about a firing up an engine that’s way bigger than it needs to be, hearing the way it sounds at startup, at idle and under load and how that sound changes as you ask more of it. Cars with big ICE motors have a swagger that small ones don’t, and while we’ve driven enough hot hatches to know you can make plenty of noise and power with a four-cylinder engine, they’re rarely as interesting to listen to or as characterful as an engine with more pistons.

But on the flip side it’s going to be difficult to say no to 168 extra ponies, and although there’s only 0.1-second between the C63 S’s published 3.4-second zero to 62 mph (100 km/h) time and the 3.5 seconds BMW claims for the M3 Competition xDrive, and the C63 weighs much more, we suspect the Benz will romp away in the slew of YouTube drag race videos heading our way next spring.

But we want to know whether that matters to you. Is absolute power and performance the most important consideration when choosing a car like an AMG C63 S? Or would you rather take a horsepower hit and have the M3’s additional cylinders, much like Lamborghini buyers happily choose the Huracan and its naturally aspirated V10 over turbocharged Ferrari and McLaren rivals that make it look puny? Leave a comment and let us know whether it matters to you that the AMG has “only” a four-cylinder ICE engine.


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