We drive the Mercedes-AMG C43

Every day driving meets power and performance…

Today’s high performance cars are getting faster, more powerful and more refined than ever, and the Mercedes-AMG C43 is no exception. However despite it being one heck of a machine, this AMG model is one of the more ‘easier-to’handle’ daily drivers and has a lot to offer when off the track. 

It offers a tonne of all-new safety and driver assistance technology. There is an automatic notification if the vehicle suffers an impact caused by another vehicle when parked, is towed away or there is a break-in attempt. The highly sensitive sensors of the standard “Anti-theft alarm system (ATA)” can detect such situations and immediately send a “push notification” message to the Mercedes me App. The optional feature includes the new sensors and the corresponding software.

So what’s it like to live with?

We drove the C43 4MATIC, which boasts a V6 biturbo engine that combines powerful output with low consumption and emissions. For the new C-Class, the AMG development engineers have increased the output of the 3.0-litre V6 engine by 17 kW to 287 kW. The peak torque of 520 Nm is available from 2500 to 5000 rpm.

That’s a lot of power when you want it. But I love that it isn’t too much to handle in every day driving environments. The difference in driving dynamics between its Comfort mode and Sport + mode, for example, is significant. Sport + mode awakens the beast within instantly, and everyone around you will know about it, but switch back to Comfort mode and the C43 suddenly tones down to an elegant cruiser. In total, there are five driving modes to choose from, including ‘Individual’ mode which lets you customise and save your preferences.


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In terms of design, from the outside the new C43 AMG is a striking sedan that boasts elegant curves and lines while the AMG body kit gives it new wheels, side skirts and a subtle boot spoiler to enhance its sporty AMG image. I like that it’s not too ‘in-your’face’ but some might miss a more dramatic appearance.

Inside, storage space is EVERYWHERE with loads of fold away cup holders and trays. The practicality of the C43’s boot stands out with loads of capacity ( 480-litres) and netted pockets to store things you don’t want flying around everywhere when you’re having a fun drive.

The cabin, as you’d expect from Mercedes, is brilliantly refined with loads of soft touch finishes and comfortable adjustable seating. Although the C43 might be a maniac on the road in Sports + mode, inside you’ll still feel like its in Comfort Mode. You don’t get thrown around and the supportive bucket seats are incredibly comfortable. The bright red seat belts give its cabin that AMG personality and the new AMG steering wheel is as nice to touch as it is functional.

A trivial observation perhaps, but I love that the C43’s STOP START function is deactivated if you have the aircon on – which in the 36 degree Cape Town climate we had over the week, was a real pleasure. There’s nothing more annoying than sitting in traffic, and as the engine switches off, so does the aircon – not ideal in the sweltering heat!

I really enjoyed the time I had with this luxury sedan, and while reading over the spec sheet I was glad to see an array of equipment and features as standard: heated seats, a luxury sunroof and push start button to name a few. It also ticks so many other boxes to accredit the perception that it does well as an every day car, without compromising on its fun factor. Those in the market for a spacious, luxury, every-day sedan but that offers fun and speed too, the C43 AMG is a great consideration in the C-Class lineup.


Mercedes-AMG C43 Vehicle Pricing:

Sedan                       Coupe                                  Cabriolet

R948,500                  R983,500                             R1,100,000