2022 Mercedes-AMG GLC63 S SUV First Look Review: Finally, 503 HP!
When Mercedes-AMG introduced the V-8-powered GLC63 in 2018, we did a little dance. Here was Mercedes and its power-crazed AMG arm reaching out and punching the compact luxury crossover field with not one, but two GLC-Class contenders with stonkin’ V-8 engines, which joined the six-cylinder GLC43. Bust out the champagne, right? Well …
The elephantine engine in the room, of course, was that things weren’t equal in GLC63-land. Only the GLC63 Coupe—the SUV’s hunched-over (slightly) odd-looking mechanical twin—was available in higher-strength “S” guise. This meant a 503-hp version of the GLC63’s twin-turbo 4.0-liter V-8 engine, not to mention a few other upgrades. The more useful, better-postured GLC63 SUV made do with “just” 469 hp. (Peak torque also was trimmed back, by 37 lb-ft to 479 lb-ft.) For 2022, Mercedes-AMG has finally done the obvious: It adds a GLC63 S SUV to the lineup, which means it packs the same 503-hp V-8 tune enjoyed by the GLC63 S Coupe since 2018.
More GLC Than You Can Shake a V-8 At
There are now four eight-cylinder GLC models to choose from: The GLC63 SUV, GLC63 Coupe, and the S versions of both. The S designation, therefore, brings a touch of wild to the otherwise more practical, less flashy GLC63 SUV. With 503 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque on board, the GLC63 S chops 0.2 second off the standard GLC63 SUV’s zero-to-60-mph time, per Mercedes, netting the S a 3.6-second rip, while the top speed sits at 174 mph—19 mph greater than the plain GLC63.
The S’s handbuilt V-8 engine is backed by the same AMG Speedshift nine-speed automatic transmission and 4Matic+ performance-tuned all-wheel-drive system as the standard GLC63. As with the rest of the GLC lineup, the GLC63 S features full-LED headlights and taillights (the GLC family received a refresh in 2020) and comes standard with 20-inch wheels, an air suspension, a dual-mode exhaust, and the three-pointed star’s latest MBUX infotainment system with a 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster.
Oh, and with its squarer body, the GLC63 S SUV boasts an additional 2.0 cubic feet of cargo space (and vastly more understated looks) relative to the slinky GLC63 S Coupe.
S an SUV!
Setting aside the awkward redundancy in the name “GLC63 S SUV” (couldn’t Benz have just used “GLC63 S UV?”), the S model is a fine topper for the boxier GLC lineup. It arrives in the fourth quarter of this year (so, winter 2021), alongside the 469-hp GLC63, 385-hp GLC43, and the four-cylinder non-AMG GLC300. Pricing is forthcoming, but expect to pay about $8,000 more than a regular GLC63 SUV for the S (the rough difference between the GLC63 Coupe and GLC63 S Coupe today).
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