The Mercedes-AMG retails at INR 77.4 lakhs (Ex-India)
What is the 43 AMG?
Intended as an entry-level and stepping stone toward the full-fledged AMG 63 experience, AMG 43 models come with subtle engines, as well as a much subtle price tag.
All the cars also share the same drivetrain, a twin-turbo 3.0-litre V6 mated to the latest nine-speed 9G-Tronic automatic transmission, and 4Matic all-wheel-drive system – although with power split 31% and 69% to the front and rear to inject some life into the handling department. The engine sounds great. The V8 in the AMG 63s may skyrocket your adrenaline, but the V6 is good too. Especially considering the VFM proposition it’s just bang for the buck $$$
After the comprehensive review of the GLC 300 last year, it was time to get my hands on the almighty-powered GLC 43 AMG:
Disclaimer: Outmost care was taken, and no plants were harmed during the photoshoot of the car.
+ The design department scores 100 marks. Period.
+ Offers an overall package of style, luxury, performance and quality. Great fit & finish of the interiors
+ Excellent power on tap. Probably the best performance car you can buy this side of INR 1cr
+ The Adaptable suspension is a boon to Indian driving conditions.
+ The sweet exhaust note at higher RPM especially on the “Sport” mode is really addictive
– No “one man, one engine” philosophy as AMG V-8s and V-12s
– You don’t get stuff like keyless-go, a touch screen system and auto parking function which has become a norm even in cars that costs half as much
– Due to the coupe design, rear passengers may feel claustrophobic over long journeys
– Brakes felt a little soft for the size of the vehicle
What’s on the outside?
An AMG body kit and an attractive grille packed with pinpoints make this GLC look a bit more aggressive but not too flashy:
AMG badging on the front grill:
ORVM’s with turn indicator is blacked out to add to the sporty character:
Bi-Turbo powered V6:
Footrest helps in ingress/egress and also retains the sporty character:
Massive 19-inch alloys with AMG inscribed calipers:
Affalterbach alloy wheels that stand out and give the car a taste of elegance:
The simplistic and not-too-loud design of the rear will be preferred by many:
The V-6 storms to life, amplified by an AMG exhaust system that delivers the kind of adrenaline rush expected from performance cars:
it’s from the rear that this coupe-SUV looks really alluring as the sloping roofline ends in a bulging spoiler and tailgate with striking LED tail lamps:
The GLC Coupe has struck the right balance between looking unique while not seeming out of proportion when viewed from most angles:
Especially, the front:
Three-pointed star is proudly housed in the center:
The LED headlamps not only add to the subtle touch & overall appearance but offer great throw at night.
A closer view of the integrated DRL:
The 3 most powerful letters:
For starters, the three-pointed star represents the automaker’s drive towards motorization with its engine dominating the land, sea and air:
The Bi-Turbo badging is also present on the right panel:
the GLC Coupe is based on the C-Class and shares many of the GLC SUV’s body panels, though a sweeping roofline makes it look sportier:
The rear quarter window with the coupe design completes the sporty package:
One of the few cars that was a definite head-turner in the media drive:
Unfortunately, Keyless-Go is sorely missed:
Worth the $$$
A parting shot:
The coupe looks best when viewed sideways:
Ready to roar:
Notice how the grill curves inwards:
However, it would have done wonders if the spoiler was covered with carbon-fiber or at least blacked out like the ORVM’s:
Switch the car into reverse and we have the superbly integrated reverse camera neatly hidden behind the Three-pointed star ready to shoot:
Headlamps + Turn Indicators ON:
The LED tail-lamps look great from dusk to dawn:
What’s on the Inside?
And the GLC43’s cabin like that of the standard GLC300 feels ahead of the competitors in terms of quality. With the overall layout and most controls taken directly from the C-class, You feel like home, pretty soon. Thanks to the excellent fit and finish and well-chosen materials.
AMG’s updates include sports seats and red contrast stitching as standard. The stop-start system, which stalls the engine when you come to a halt to save fuel, isn’t the smoothest because when it thrusts the engine back into life the whole car kinda shudders. That’s something you won’t be happy with a car of this $$$. Better, to leave the start-stop at rest.
Like all other Merc’s you get a 7″ color screen mounted high up on the dashboard, which is controlled using a rotary dial and touchpad between the front seats. Honestly, If I had to omit one feature from this beautiful beast, without a doubt, it would be this! You’re better off sticking with the dial most of the time. it’s quicker and easier to use on the move than the gimmicky touchpad. A touchscreen would have done the trick:
8-way-adjustable seat with memory function and massage feature:
AMG tweaked the GLC43’s steering, which livens it up a little over the admittedly slow setup in the GLC300:
The 3-pointed star is housed in the center of the steering, although you’ll have to stretch your thumb a bit to reach the horn pad:
Aluminum AB pedals. Notice the red border of the floor-mat. yeah! Small yet significant things make wonders:
AMG inscribed skid-plates which are back-lit. You could drool over it all the time:
With the sweet exhaust note, you won’t need them often. Hmmm:
Paddle-shifters in Manual mode will add to the aura but they aren’t as quick as the Auto-box:
The GLC’s front seats slide back a very long way, so even seriously tall drivers won’t complain about the amount of legroom on offer. You could drive all day & night and still not a complaint about the fatigue:
Both the rear tail-lamps are equipped with LED reverse light:
In-spite of being a coupe, the doors open wide enough so that you don’t complaint about the ingress/egress:
The GLC’s load bay is widest at the very back of the car, which means you can slot in long, narrow items, such as a set of golf clubs, easily enough. Folding down the rear seats leaves a virtually flat extended load bay
All models come with powered tailgate, retaining nets on the boot floor and a lockable compartment under the floor itself.
Some may miss the panoramic sunroof, while others may rejoice the wind-in-the hair experience:
The red-stitching on black leather feels great. Also, interesting bits like the Red color of seatbelts make a significant difference. Well done, Mercedes.
How does it DRIVE?
Read on to find the answer to the biggest question. Instead of shooting for the stars with only big V-8s, AMG is now having its 3.0-liter twin-turbo V-6 into just about everything in the lineup. Around town, the GLC is running its 3.0L V6 at low rpm, like any normal V6. However, the one thing you can’t really hear around town is the engine. All you can hear is the exhaust.
On the matter of actual driving experience, the GLC43 harnesses and deploys its new power wisely. We loved the GLC300’s chassis, and the GLC43’s power hasn’t ruined it. AMG’s done a fantastic job of integrating the more powerful engine into this car, and it doesn’t just put up better numbers. The GLC43 remains highly composed in corners and puts its power down well. The body rolls a little as you first turn the wheel, but rather than floppy, it feels controlled and calculated
There’s a sweet spot at idle from the quad exhaust tips that stay muffled but still pleasant in the Eco/Comfort drive mode, and changes to a superb thrilling note with the sport-plus setting engaged:
You get to choose between 5 driving Modes:
In Sports+ and Sports modes, the exhaust makes delightful noises on overrun with occasionalcrackles whilee the engine note itself is a pleasing growl. In the Comfort & Eco modes, the quick-shifting nine-speed automatic transmission also adopts the sportier behavior, downshifting as you brake for a corner and delaying upshifts until you’re right at redline.
Turbo-lag? Kinda, but not really an issue due to the car’s more relaxed attitude. Torque comes on strong and the auto does a good job of shuffling itself between the nine gears. And yes, there is a plain ‘Sports’ mode, but you would rarely use that. Under heavy throttle, the GLC43 just sprints to 100 in no-time. The AMG tune to the AWD system sees the rear drive bias rise from 55 to 69 percent and the nine-speed 9G-Tronic automatic transmission is fast enough to keep things moving.
The rear passengers do not get climate control, but the vents do a decent job of cooling:
Despite its relatively sporty styling, there’s plenty of space in the back to accommodate a “couple” of six-footers. There’s a chunky transmission tunnel on the floor that a middle seat passenger has to straddle, so this isn’t the best choice if you need to carry three adults in the back on a regular basis:
A closer look at the twin-pod exhaust and neatly-integrated rear parking sensors:
Ride & Handling:
The sports suspension fitted to AMG Line models –is a little less forgiving over bigger obstacles, such as speed bumps, but overall it’s actually the more comfortable set-up. It brings a more controlled ride with less pitch and more effective damping over potholes and broken surfaces. That’s true even if you choose to upgrade from the standard 19in wheels to the optional 20s.
The adaptive suspension does an impressive job of smoothing out imperfections. Drive the Coupe in Comfort mode, and you’d find a car which is unbelievably quiet, and ever so willing to cruise on its 9th gear.
The most interesting feature comes at the end. Loved every bit of the adaptable suspension. What more? Set it at a higher GC and the car automatically lowers itself in high speeds. A big boon in those corners of our expressways or occasional track days.
Better safe than sorry:
All GLCs come with a collision prevention system that can automatically apply the brakes to help prevent you running into the vehicle in front. There’s also a tire-pressure-monitoring system to alert you early if you have a slow puncture. All versions have seven airbags and a system that can detect if you’re getting drowsy on a long journey, too.
This all helped the GLC score impressive marks in its Euro NCAP crash test. It was awarded the maximum five-star overall rating, along with scores of 95% for adult protection, 89% for child protection and 82% for pedestrian protection. The GLC43 has no rain, snow, or off-road mode to speak of, putting it at a disadvantage to the competition.
If you want a thrilling driving experience, the GLC 43 AMG is your best bet. It’s good fun when you’re driving briskly, although push really hard and you’ll find the car’s electronics holding back the engine’s power and stopping you accelerating out of slower corners
Diwali night? You bet:
You can switch to the digital speedo to focus on the road more than the speedometer:
Allows you to adjust the timing of the external lights once the car is turned off:
Odometer & Tripmeter being displayed along with plethora of symbols:
Wow! Loved the 360-degree camera:
Should I Buy One?
With a price tag of Rs 74.80 lakh (ex-showroom), it’s the least expensive Mercedes-AMG 43 car out there. With 367 PS and over 500 Nm of torque, there’s little you could ask for in terms of performance. The GLC43 is a practical, usable and entertaining Coupe, that has just the right amount of value to set the benchmark. Mercedes could have got it better with better ergonomics on center console while being more tech-savvy and right blend of note from engine & the quad-pod exhaust.
Nothing is perfect, but this is the closest you can get to a compact performance car that can do everything. Well, almost everything!
Composed by Zahoor Hassan