Having blitzed the market with a dozen new model launches this year, Mercedes-Benz Malaysia’s product offensive is set to continue in 2017 with the possible introduction of the intermediate AMG 43 performance models.
Speaking to the media during the launch of the Mercedes-AMG C63S Coupe at the Sepang International Circuit this morning, MBM Vice President of Passenger Cars, Mark Raine said that success of the MFA-based AMG 45 models gives Mercedes a platform to build on and introduce the AMG 43 range to bridge the gap between mainstream Mercedes-Benz products and the full-blooded AMG 63 range further up.
Available in four body variants of the W205 C-Class, sedan and estate form of the W213 E-Class, the GLC, the GLE, and SLC roadster, the AMG 43 models are all powered by a 3.0-litre V6 biturbo engine with 9-speed automatic transmission and 4Matic all-wheel drive.
Depending on model, the V6 engine is tuned to produce outputs of either 367 or 401hp. The 367hp setup powers the C43 sedan, estate and coupe; GLC 43 SUV and coupe; GLE 43 SUV and coupe; as well as the SLC 43 roadster. The more potent 401hp setup, meanwhile, is featured in the E43 sedan and estate.
Against rivals, the AMG 43 models are best described as foils to Audi’s S models and BMW’s M Performance models, both of which are one rung below the full-blooded RS and M models that compete against the AMG 63 models.
According to Mercedes-Benz Malaysia officials, despite shifting market tastes toward downsized four-cylinder turbocharged engines, there remains demand for bigger capacity six-cylinder models of the C-Class and E-Class from more affluent customers, and it is a demand that the company is looking at ways to satisfy in the not too distant future.
Recently, Mercedes-Benz unveiled a new generation of modular engines that include, for the first time in two decades, inline-six powertrains that will first go into the W222 S-Class next year and expected to migrate downward in the line-up.