Let’s start this exceptional test with a few figures: 12 km range and a slow recharge to 3.7 kW. In a classic plug-in hybrid model, this would pale in comparison. On the other hand, even in a hypercar, 843 hp and 1,470 Nm of torque (peak) they are sacred values! A big gap that corresponds to the definition of this Mercedes-AMG GT Coupé 4 Doors 63 SE Performance 4matic +. “It’s the longest name I’ve ever been asked for” humorously explains Jochen Hermann, head of engineering at Mercedes-AMG, who presents here the first plug-in hybrid AMG.
Behind its appearance of a large four-door coupe (or rather five with its hatchback), the Mercedes AMG GT E Performance hides a rather unique technical definition. It combines its 639 hp V8 4.0 biturbo equipped with a nine-speed automatic gearbox with 400 V alternator-starter, a 204 hp electric motor and a battery placed on the rear axle. The set is connected by a drive shaft that provides permanent all-wheel drive, regardless of the driving mode used, including 100% electric. This architecture also allows an ideal weight distribution, 50/50, which is not negligible with a scale that shows a total of 2,380 kg. The position of the rear electric motor also allows for more efficient energy recovery without intermediaries and more direct power delivery.
Affalterbach engineers have developed a small, high-density, liquid-cooled 6.1 kWh battery that weighs only 89 kg. She is designed for very fast loading and unloading cycles, with a constant performance whatever the demands. We do not know who is the supplier of its approximately 560 lithium-ion cells, capable of delivering 70 kW of rated power and 150 kW at maximum efficiency.
Visually, this version of the newly remodeled 4-door AMG GT Coupé can be recognized by its front end equipped with more aggressive air intakes, but also by its specific rear bumper, which integrates the cargo hold and four (false ) outlets. . In addition, the car sits firmly on 21-inch wheels and 315-inch tires on the back. With its more than 5 m long, the fastback sedan is stunning. And its sports car interior in our individual four-seater configuration immerses passengers in a world of performance that will soon be demonstrated on the road.
Mercedes-AMG GT 63 SE Performance price
With an entry ticket of 211,250 euros, this highly technological variation is a jump of … almost 75,000 euros compared to the AMG GT 53 4matic + model of 367 hp (+ 22 hp of its electric micromotor). A difference to put in perspective when compared to the old 63S version with 639 hp release, about € 170,000. Obviously the aim of this new PHEV version is to escape the maximum penalty of € 40,000, which weighs athletes of its caliber. But, with its electrical range limited to 12 km, our beauty of the day does not escape the taxes, the CO malus2 culminating in € 7,462 and the weight penalty in € 5,800.
We can imagine: in this price range, the standard equipment is more than complete, with the composite ceramic braking system, the massage bucket seats or the panoramic roof. It’s a shame you have to put your hands in your wallet to be entitled to the driving assistance pack with its effective semi-autonomous driving or even to charge your smartphone by induction.
The first laps behind the wheel are impressive … for the silence and comfort on board this 4-seater, 5-door coupe with a slightly distressing data sheet. As long as you do not turn the steering wheel that controls the driving modes until you reach the Sport + position, the soundtrack remains discreet, the reactions smooth and the atmosphere conducive to a comfortable journey. This allows you to take the time to familiarize yourself with the seven driving programs, to combine them four regeneration levels, four AMG Dynamics modes and Ride Control + active air suspension! It is enough to increase the pace little by little, with an eye on the indications of power distribution on the board to understand operation of this formidable electromechanical gas plant.
Easy and balanced, always comfortable, the great AMG-Mercedes coupe offers its features without shining but with a certain efficiency: the speedometer proves it! In Sport + mode, the V8’s hoarse sound, slightly more pronounced gear changes, hardened steering and more nervous reactions to the throttle sink into an atmosphere closer to what can be imagined of a model with these benefits, making it possible to raise the pace to a frankly unforgettable level …
Carbon-ceramic braking, with 420mm discs and six-piston calipers at the front, provides immense braking power. Unfortunately, the whole thing frankly lacking in pedal feel, with a systematic electrical attack that then gives way to frictional braking. Nothing to worry about. We would have simply appreciated better sensations at this level to accompany the dazzling performance of the car: from 0 to 100 km / h in 2.9 s, less than 10 s from 0 to 200 km / h and 316 km / h maximum!
On the outskirts of an Andalusian village, in the middle of a Sunday lunch, it is welcome to cross the main square in the silence of the fully electric EL mode. Activation of the heat engine does not occur before the hard part of the stroke of the haptic feedback pedal. 100% battery, we were able to cover 11 km. But there is no need to recharge in a terminal beforehand: the “battery” is self-powered regularly along the way, especially if it increases its level of regeneration by rotating the steering wheel. Our follow-up session will prove it to usin race mode maximum energy recovery during braking helps maintain an optimal electrical impulse for performance.
The very abrasive surface of the track of Monteblanco, near Seville (Spain), wears out at high speed the Michelin Pilot Sport 4 S. The 4.1 km of our track today, with nine bends and a straight line of almost 1 km, give us the opportunity to appreciate the balance of the car. We savor both its immense potential for pure efficiency and, depending on the configuration adopted, its playful side. Be careful, however, to consider the large mass of this large toy when you disconnect the aids because the back is very, very lively! The disconnected ESP in Sport mode already offers a good margin of movement and, completely deactivated, will only work again in extreme cases, to avoid a turn, for example. Enough to keep a good figure on the circuit, which however is not the preferred terrain for this heavy road coupe capable of adapting to all driving rhythms. Ask about consumption, but no miracle. Even in quiet driving, it will be difficult to get below 15 l / 100 km.
In the cabin
The four-door sedans or coupes that offer this level of performance and the ability to drive in zero-emission mode are not legions … The natural competitor of this AMG is to be found in Porsche and its Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid , presented from € 195,216. . With its V8 and its electric block that claims a total power of 700 hp, offers a very similar performance (315 km / h and 3.2 s from 0 to 100 km / h) in similar dimensions. True, its torque is much lower (870 Nm though!), But its electrical part has a different size with a larger battery of 17.9 kWh that benefits from a 7.2 kW charger and allows you to travel 50 km in zero emissions mode.
Find the test results, prices, equipment and data sheet on the next page …