AMG, the performance brand from Mercedes has been an integral part of the company's plans in India over the last few years. There are more takers for performance cars and SUVs now, than ever before. And that has resulted in a rather significant development! Now, there have been many AMG models from Mercedes in India over the years, but the GLC43 that you see in these photos is special! It is after all the first Mercedes-AMG model to be assembled in India and that translates into aggressive pricing! It also proves the fact that Mercedes is excited about growing the AMG brand in India. We had an opportunity to review the SUV, well, Coupe SUV, and it turned out to be a rather fun exercise.
The GLC43 gets a 3.0-litre V6 engine that pumps out a massive 382 bhp between 5,500-6,100 rpm and the peak torque output is 520 Nm which comes in at a low 2,500 rpm. With a claimed acceleration run of 4.9 seconds from standstill to 100 kmph and an electronically limited top speed of 250 kmph, the performance has to be a hoot and a half, right?
It is an AMG after all and if you go ahead and explore the wild side of it, you will not want to stop. The overrun when you shift at high rpms is literally music to ears and the exhaust note too is something that just seems like mellifluous rendition to a petrolhead. Put the car in Sport mode and you will be rewarded with immediate throttle response and aggressive gearshifts. The handling and the ride firms up to, adding to the satiating driving experience. You are not going to run out of performance on this car any time soon. The way the car builds up speed is something else and it can be addictive.
The ride quality on the GLC 43 is stiff. Now it is understandable because it is a performance SUV from AMG. But, when you couple that with the massive 20-inch wheels, the ride quality is not comfortable, even in the comfort mode, with the softest suspension setting. The movement from the slightest of undulations on the road is going to be felt in your spine. The handling on the GLC43 is in tune with the AMG line of thought but the steering could have been a little more responsive in general. It is deft, but not razor sharp. And yes, hard cornering will generate body-roll!
Like any other AMG, the GLC 43 gets a long list of creature comforts. On the dashboard is a 10.25-inch screen which gets Mercedes' latest MBUX system. Then you have a big 12.3-inch instrument console that is fully digital. Plus, a sunroof and ambient lighting add to the feel good factor inside the cabin. The front seats are heated too.
But given the hot and humid conditions in India, cooled seats would have worked better. A special mention here for the AMG hotkeys which can be used to change the settings for exhaust note, suspension and toggle between different driving modes, which are Comfort, Sport, Sport+, Slippery and a configurable individual mode.
The India-made GLC 43 is basically an updated model. The new panamericana grille along with the sloping roofline gives the car an athletic stance. The front and rear bumper, diffuser and the quad-exhaust tips are new and differentiate it from the regular GLC coupe. The cabin is sumptuous and is every bit premium as you would expect from an AMG. Well-bolstered seats, red seat-belts, red contrast stitching and subtle use of Alcantara leather gives you the best of comfort and premium-feel.
Pricing and Rivals
At a price of 76 lakh 70 thousand rupees, the Mercedes-AMG GLC43 Coupe is just a tad more expensive than when it was first launched in 2017 at a price of 74 lakh 80 thousand rupees. In terms of rivals, it goes up against the newly launched BMW X3 M which is priced at 99 lakh 90 thousand rupees and the Porsche Macan S, which is priced at 85 lakh rupees. The ideal rival to the GLC 43 is the BMW X4 M, but India has just the X4 at present. The X4 M is not sold in India, yet!
The AMG GLC43 Coupe offers solid performance and is practical too, once you get used to the firm suspension. It is big, bold and a fast Coupe SUV and at the price point, few cars can match its presence. Plus, the price point of ₹ 76.7 lakh is quite attractive, especially for those, who are looking for a proper performance SUV under a crore of rupees.