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Mercedes-AMG C 43: Formula 1 tech in a luxe sedan

If you like that high-end-executive vibe with a world-class racing edge, the new 402-hp Mercedes-AMG SL 43 could be your sweet ride. Borrowing from Formula 1, it's the world's first series-production car to use an electric exhaust-gas turbocharger for instant boosting, and its adaptive damping system and standard rear-axle steering will keep your travels controlled and silky smooth too.

At the heart of the new C 43 is the AMG 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine, which is built by hand under Mercedes' "One Man, One Engine" principle. It produces 402 hp at 6,750 rpm. The maximum torque of 369 lb-ft is available at 5,000 rpm. The sedan accelerates from a standstill to 60 mph in approximately 4.6 sec. It sports the AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 9G transmission (9-speed automatic), in which a wet start-off clutch replaces the torque converter. The top speed is electronically limited to 155 mph, but by adding optional 19- or 20-in. wheels it can be raised to 165 mph. It is fitted with AMG light-alloy wheels and 18-in. tires as standard.

This car sports the world's first series-production engine to be turbocharged with an electric exhaust-gas turbocharger. The innovative system is a direct derivative of the technology that the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team has been using so successfully in the premiere class of motorsport for many years. The new form of turbocharging guarantees a particularly spontaneous response across the entire rev range. The turbocharger is operated via the 48-V electrical system.

A slim electric motor, measuring about 1.6-in., is integrated directly on the turbocharger shaft between the turbine wheel on the exhaust side and the compressor wheel on the intake side. Electronically controlled, this drives the shaft of the turbocharger directly, accelerating the compressor wheel before the exhaust gas flow takes over the drive in a conventional manner. This significantly improves the response directly from idle and across the entire rev range. Even when the driver takes their foot off the accelerator or brakes, the technology is able to maintain boost pressure at all times to ensure a continuously direct response.

The electric exhaust-gas turbocharger operates at speeds of up to 175,000 rpm, which enables a very high air-flow rate. The turbocharger, electric motor, and power electronics are connected to the combustion engine's cooling circuit to create an optimal temperature environment at all times.

Note: This video says 2021 at the top, but it is the latest C-class model range.

The 48-V system also feeds the belt-driven starter-generator (RSG). Depending on the situation, the system also briefly provides an additional boost of 13 hp through the RSG. The second-generation RSG acts as a mild hybrid, providing this temporary power boost. It also supports gliding and recuperation functions for maximum efficiency.

Another notable feature is the two-stage gasoline injection. In the first stage, particularly fast and precise piezo injectors deliver the fuel into the combustion chambers at pressures of up to 2,900 psi. The second stage adds intake manifold duct injection with solenoid valves, which is needed to achieve the engine's high power output.

This high output also necessitates a sophisticated cooling system that can cool the cylinder head and crankcase to different temperature levels. This measure makes it possible to maintain a cold cylinder head for maximum power with efficient ignition timing, along with a warm crankcase to reduce internal engine friction. The cylinder head is cooled by a mechanical high-performance water pump, and the crankcase is cooled by a second, electrically driven water pump. After a cold start, this pump remains passive until the engine has warmed up. In operation, it is regulated by the engine control unit so that the crankcase is always cooled according to need.

The AMG Performance 4MATIC permanent all-wheel drive features an AMG-specific torque distribution between the front and rear axles of 31 and 69%. The rear-biased configuration provides for enhanced handling, including higher lateral acceleration and improved traction when accelerating. The five AMG DYNAMIC SELECT drive programs (Slippery, Comfort, Sport, Sport +, and Individual) permit a wide range of vehicle characteristics, from comfortable to dynamic.

The Mercedes-AMG C 43 also features the integrated AMG DYNAMICS control system as a component of the AMG DYNAMIC SELECT drive programs. This enhances the stabilizing functions of the Electronic Stability Program ESP with interventions to add agility to the steering characteristics and additional ESP functions. When cornering at speed, for example, brief braking intervention at the inner rear wheel generates a defined yawing moment around the vertical axis for responsive and precise turn-in.

The AMG RIDE CONTROL steel-spring suspension with Adaptive Damping System, which is standard on the AMG C 43, combines decidedly sporty driving dynamics with long-distance driving comfort. The basis for this is provided by the front axle, with specially developed steering knuckles and suspension joints on the spring control arm, and by the rear axle, which also features elastokinematics designed for driving dynamics. Complementing this, the Adaptive Damping System continuously adapts the damping at each individual wheel to the current demand -- always taking into account the preselected suspension level, the driving style, and the condition of the road surface.

Note: This video says 2021 at the top, but it is the latest C-class model range.

The new AMG C 43 also brings rear-axle steering to the best-selling model series from Mercedes as standard. It operates with a maximum steering angle of 2.5 degrees. Up to this point, the rear wheels turn in the opposite direction to the front wheels at speeds of up to 37 mph (variable depending on the AMG DYNAMICS setting). At speeds above 37 mph, the rear wheels turn in parallel to the front wheels up to a maximum of 0.7 degrees.

The AMG sport braking system with silver-painted brake calipers and black "AMG" lettering guarantees outstanding deceleration values and optimum control. On the AMG C 43, internally ventilated and perforated brake discs measuring 370 x 36 mm with 4-piston fixed calipers are fitted at the front axle, and discs measuring 320 x 24 mm with single-piston floating calipers at the rear.

On the exterior, numerous AMG-specific details underscore both the dynamic and the luxurious character of the AMG C 43. These include the AMG-specific radiator grille with vertical struts in chrome, AMG front bumper with air flics, sporty air intakes and chrome-plated trim element, matching side sill panels, the diffuser-look rear bumper, and two round twin-tailpipe trim elements.

In the interior, features such as AMG seats with a distinct upholstery layout and seat covers in black MB-Tex/Microfiber with red contrasting stitching and red seat belts provide a particularly sporty touch. There's a flat-bottom AMG Performance steering wheel in Nappa leather, and the dashboard and upper door trim are upholstered in leather with red topstitching too. The sporty, luxurious atmosphere is rounded off by AMG sport pedals, AMG floor mats, and illuminated door sills with AMG lettering.

The MBUX infotainment system features various AMG-specific displays and functions. These include special displays in the 12.3-in. digital instrument cluster, 11.9-in. LCD center touchscreen, and an optional Head-Up Display. AMG TRACK PACE, the optional data logger for use on the race track, is also integrated.

Pricing for this new 2023 model has not been announced, but expect it to start over $60,000.

Learn more at

Source: Mercedes

Published May 2022

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