MERCEDES-AMG is reportedly planning to slap its performance flagship R badge on the rump of the recently introduced C63, creating an even more track-focused version of the C-Class and following the evolution of the GT halo sports car.
US publication Car and Driver is reporting that the German car maker will introduce the C63 R in 2019, effectively interrupting the previous line of AMG Black variants, with the R moniker living on as the most potent representative for now.
Pundits are predicting that the new R will borrow the mighty 450kW/850Nm drivetrain and four-wheel drive of its larger AMG E 63 S sibling, but Wheels understands that, in the name of weight-saving and track dynamics, the C63 R will stick with rear-drive only.
That decision almost certainly rules out the use of the E63 S engine which would turn tyres into smoke in the blink of an eye without the beast-taming all-paw traction.
More likely will be a strict weight-loss diet for the C63 S that could see as much as 100kg dropped through modifications such as the deletion of rear seats and extensive carbonfibre panel and component use.
The car-maker may squeeze a little more grunt from the ‘standard’ 4.0-litre turbocharged V8 as a gesture, but a majority of the added performance will most likely be thanks to weight-reduction and a sharpened chassis.
Mercedes-AMG is remaining tight-lipped regarding the legitimacy of the report’s claims, but Mercedes-Benz Australia Public Relations and Communications Manager Jerry Stamoulis told Wheels that if the R is chalked for production, it was likely to be offered locally.
“The R formula for the AMG GT works and to see that in other AMG models is something we would welcome,” he said. “Any variant outside the 63 S, we know Australians love. C63 Black Series are still holding their current values”.
If other morsels in the report are to be believed, the new variant will bring a more aerodynamic body for increased downforce, larger wheels and carbonfibre wings and roof.
If it follows the lead of the AMG GT R in every way then expect to see a fatter exhaust, tricked-up interior and a lurid paint scheme.
Exact rivals to the C63 R will remain unclear until more information regarding body styles surfaces. If the badge is applied to Mercedes’ coupe then BMW’s M4 GTS will be firmly in the rifle sights, where as a sedan version would go after the most potent versions of the M3.
An Estate wagon version seems unlikely at this stage, but it would bump gloves with Audi’s yet-to-be-made-official RS4 Avant and the BMW Alpina B3 Touring.
Local pricing would certainly exceed the current C63 S sedan and coupe pair which currently retail in Australia for $158,115 and $162,115 respectively before on-road costs, but let’s not get too excited until the C63 R is officially confirmed.