Introduced late last year, the current generation GLC 63 S is proof how a muscular 4.0-litre V8 bi-turbo engine with enhancements on suspension and brakes can turn a standard GLC into a fire-breather.
Of course, such motorsports and smart driving technology upgrades are not cheap, with the final tally for the GLC 63 S at RM915,888.
While its based on the regular Mercedes-Benz GLC, the high performance GLC 63 S came with more emotive exterior styling.
The immediate giveaway is the imposing Panamericana grille with 15 horizontal slats which are the preserve of the current Mercedes-AMG GT sports cars.
Next are the lower enlarged front side “jet wing” air intakes and rear diffuser along with oversized 21-inch matte black AMG cross-spoke forged wheels.
In addition, wider wheel arch claddings give a muscular-appearance to scream the part of the king of the hill.
It’s a black and red theme with Nappa leather and Artico-man-made leather to impart a sporty and upmarket look.
The steering wheel is the AMG motorsports-inspired flat-bottom type, and comes with fine Nappa leather and Dinamica microfibre for good grip and tactile feel.
Its carbon-fibre trims on the centre console and instrument panel gauges together with red designo seatbelts further add to the motorsports appearance.
The front AMG performance seats, though not as generously padded as typical Mercedes-Benz comfort seats, come with adjustable side support to grip you in while you undertake sharp high-speed manoeuvres.
Since the GLC 63 S is a two-box vehicle design, front and rear passengers get plenty of head and leg room.
Rear passengers even get their own air-conditioner vents with adjustments for air speed and temperature.
The panoramic sliding sunroof’s large opening lets in plenty of light if you want to brighten up the interior for a breezier feel.
Meanwhile, sound system is the premium Burmester surround-type that has a crisp and clear delivery.
Large door pockets allow bottles and other small items to be stored within easy reach.
Bootspace is 550 litres but can be increased to 1,600 litres with rear seats folded down flat.
Rear seats come with 40:20:40 split and can be configurated to provide best comfort for those sitting when long items in the boot intrude into passenger space.
Rear doors also come with sunblinds to block out the sun or provide some privacy.
Powered tailgate is handy so there is no need for pulling or lifting the large back door.
The surround view camera system which gives a overhead view of the GLC 63 S is extremely useful when driving into tight parking bays.
A long list of safety equipment from the usual airbags, anti-lock braking system, electronic stability programme, active brake assist with cross traffic function, blindspot assist to lane keeping assist is standard for the GLC 63 S.
The Distronic active cruise control comes with semi-autonomous steering pilot which allows the GLC 63 S to steer itself within its lane when taking gentle curves.
Large cross-drilled disc brakes offer good stopping power and can bring the GLC 63 S from high speed to a full stop without drama.
Ride and handling
If you are hoping for ride comfort, the GLC 63 S has traded some of the typical Mercedes-Benz cushiony ride for one that is firm and more suited for high-speed driving.
The air suspension system can be set for comfort but this only reduces the ride firmness slightly.
The plus point is that body roll is well-controlled for a tall vehicle during fast cornering or on twisty roads.
With 510hp and 700Nm of torque available at your beck and call, the GLC 63 S is extremely fast and agile even for a vehicle weighing 1,935kg.
The 0-100kph dash is achieved in 3.8 seconds and top speed is electronically capped at 270kph.
Flooring the accelerator will get the GLC 63 S up and running instantly with the throaty exhaust roar filling up the cabin and heightening the driving excitement, even when you are just a passenger.
Automatic gear shifting via the nine-speed AMG Speedshift MCT is fast, allowing the GLC 63 S to continue its rapid acceleration.
Its AMG Dynamic Select of Comfort, Sport, Sport+, Individual and Race tweaks the settings of the engine, transmission, suspension, steering, electronic stability programme, exhaust and all-wheel drive system according to the chosen drive mode.
The AMG performance exhaust system using flap technology, if fully deployed, creates a track car-like burble that announces your arrival.
Steering is pin sharp as well as being very responsive and natural to your steering inputs.
Meanwhile, the 4MATIC+ drive system ensures a grippy hold even during fast driving on wet roads.
Mercedes-AMG claims the GLC 63 S can return a combined fuel consumption of 11.9 litres per 100km but our best efforts with gentle and light-footed driving were still off the mark.
With the GLC 63 S possessing sports car-like performance, the primal urge to drive fast is difficult to keep in check.
Well-heeled owners can easily afford the hefty fuel bill but have to make frequent trips to the petrol stations if they are heavy-footed drivers.
Warranty is four years with unlimited mileage, whichever comes first.
Approaching a RM1mil, the GLC 63 S will likely find its way to a small group of wealthy hardcore AMG rather than Mercedes-Benz enthusiasts.
Though the GLC 63 S has the performance of a two-seater sports car, it can still carry five persons in luxury and be a daily drive.
Mercedes-AMG GLC 63 S 4MATIC+
Engine: 3,982cc, V8, bi-turbo
Maximum power: 510hp from 5,500 to 6,250rpm
Maximum torque: 700Nm from 1,750 to 4,500rpm
Transmission: Nine-speed AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT with 4MATIC+ all-wheel drive
Features: Airbags, AMG sports suspension based on Air Body Control, AMG Dynamic Select, anti-lock braking system, electronic stabilty programme, head-up display, 21-inch AMG cross-spoke forged wheels, AMG high-performance composite braking system, aluminium-look running boards with rubber studs, adaptive highbeam assist plus, Multibeam LED headlamps, AMG Performance exhaust system, Burmester surround sound system, surround view camera, Driving Assistance package plus, Distance Pilot Distronic with Steering Pilot, Active Lane-keeping Assist, Active Blind Spot Assist, Active Brake Assist with cross traffic function, Active Parking Assist, panoramic sliding sunroof, AMG performance steering wheel in Dinamica, Nappa leather upholstery, dashboard and beltlines in Artico man-made leather and black nappa-look, AMG front door sill panels with LED illumination, sat-nav
Acceleration (0-100kph): 3.8 seconds
Top speed: 270kph (electronically limited)
Price: RM915,888 (OTR without insurance):