Even Mercedes-Benz’s high-performance division is ready to embrace electrification.
The German automaker has just unveiled the first plug-in hybrid that will be released under the AMG banner—the GT 63 S E Performance. It may not be fully electric like the Audi e-tron GT, but it represents a big step forward for the division, and is, at least temporarily, its most powerful road car.
The four-door coupé is the first of a series of E Performance plug-in hybrids that Mercedes-AMG announced earlier this spring. Just like the AMG GT 63 it’s based on, the hybrid has a twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V-8 mated to a nine-speed automatic transmission that’s capable of generating 630 horses and 664 ft lbs of twist. But unlike its gas-powered sibling, the hybrid pairs that mill with a permanent-magnet synchronous AC motor on the rear axle.
The motor, which gets its juice from a 4.8-kWh battery pack and has its own two-speed transmission, can generate 201 hp on its own for up to 10 seconds, and 94 hp continuously, according to a press release. Combined, the engine and electric motor are capable of generating a maximum of 831 hp and 1,082 ft lbs of torque, which is delivered to each wheel via AMG’s 4Matic+ all-wheel-drive system. The brand says the car can rocket from zero to 62 mph in 2.9 seconds and from zero to 124 mph in less than 10 seconds, though there’s some thought it may be even faster.
Running only on electricity, the motor is good for about 7 miles of range, according to AMG. That’s nothing to write home about—in fact, it’s downright paltry—but that’s because the hybrid powertrain was designed for fast power delivery, like an F1 car. Still, those extra miles might come in handy when you’re driving in the city. The motor should also charge pretty quickly, thanks to a 3.7-kW on-board AC charger and four levels of regenerative braking.
Other features include a world’s first direct-cooling system to keep the battery at the optimal temperature, AMG’s air springs and electronically controlled adaptive dampers, as well as carbon-ceramic brakes on all four wheels. There are also seven different driving modes to choose from: Electric, Comfort, Sport, Sport Plus, Race, Slippery and the fully customizable Individual.
AMG’s electrified speed machine looks nearly identical to its gas-powered sibling, with elegant lines traveling from front to back, a sloping roof and a pop-up rear spoiler that gives it real attitude. The differences include a sportier front bumper just like that on the two-door AMG GT, special badging, including “V8 BiTurbo E Performance” across both front fenders, and a charging port in the rear. There are also seven new finishes to choose from, as well your choice of 20- and 21-inch light alloy wheels. The interior looks identical to the standard GT 63, though its MBUX infotainment system has been optimized with hybrid-specific data, like electric driving range, charging level information and battery temperature.
The AMG GT 63 S E Performance is scheduled to arrive in the US next year, as part of the division’s 2023 model year. Pricing has yet to be announced, but its seems likely to exceed the standard’s $161,900 base price.
More AMG plug-in hybrids will follow in the years to come, including one based on the C-Class. The One hybrid hypercar is also on the way. You can safely expect that plug-in—which will an F1-inspired powertrain able to generate over 1,000 hp—to almost certainly supplant the GT 63 S as the division’s fastest road car.
Check out more photos of the AMG GT 63 S E Performance below: