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Mercedes CLK 55 AMG, CLK 63 AMG, C 63 AMG Coupé in the used car check

Dino Eisele
Mercedes CLK 55 AMG, CLK 63 AMG and C 63 AMG Coupé
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F ür what is the abbreviation AMG? Medicines Act? Sure, that's also true, but we don't want to mess around with regulations and paragraphs. Much more important for all petrolheads, full guests and gas sufferers: AMG stands for Aufrecht, Melcher (the two founders) and Großaspach (the little town in which Hans Werner Aufrecht was born in 1938). AMG has existed since 1967, and in 1999 the former tuner turned into an official Daimler subsidiary. 48 years old and fully integrated, so to speak. Our three V8 coupes are from 2003, 2007 and 2012. And they should cost 14,000, 29,900 and 46,900 euros. Really only 14,000 euros for a real AMG?

Mercedes CLK 55 AMG for the price of a new Dacia Duster

A Mercedes CLK 55 AMG for the price of a new Dacia Duster? No problem. By the way: You can even find something like this for four-digit amounts, but then it is usually the older predecessor with the abbreviation C208. The C209 came out in the fall of 2002, incredible how time flies. Dietmar Jung's Mercedes CLK 55 AMG is from 2003, is second-hand and has 164,000 kilometers down.

The 32-year-old bought the tektite-gray two-door in Switzerland in 2011 when he was once employed there. 'I didn't even drive the AMG in winter, nor did the previous owner,' says Jung. So no rust? Exactly, the body is free of ugly bubbles. Unlike many cars with the star from this era, the 209s built in Bremen and Osnabrück are laudable exceptions. The twelve-year-old used car looks fresh on the inside as well.

In the neat interior, only a few marks on the driver's seat are noticeable. “Quite thin leather compared to before. Probably comes from the rivets of jeans, 'says Jung wrinkles his nose.

5.5-liter V8 with 367 hp

He covered only six thousand kilometers with the Mercedes CLK 55 AMG in four years. “The car had been deregistered for two years, and I didn't get a full appraisal until the summer. The AMG is my fair-weather car. ”The key is turned around and the warm AMG rumble can be heard immediately. Selector lever to D and go. The 5.5-liter comes from the three-valve era and develops its 367 hp on civilian 5,750 tours. The five-speed automatic already has three drive programs, but even in level M it still shifts down with kick-down. This peculiarity only became apparent to her with the “Mopf” in summer 2004weaned.

Full throttle, the V8 roars, and the coupé races across the wet country road. The winter tires briefly struggle to get all 510 Newtons on the cold track. A few bends later you can feel: the engine is pushing and sounds nice, but the chassis and steering are only rated three minus. The steering wheel is too big, the steering too indirect, and the suspension elements are too soft. Only with the facelift was the driving behavior turned in the direction of sport and a more stable composite brake was installed. The coupé also got a four-pipe exhaust system.

Jung wants 14,000 euros for the V8 cruiser. Any room for negotiation? “There have been a few dubious calls with the typical babble like: 'colleague, what's the last price?', But I don't play along. The rear brakes are due, I would still replace them, ”said the 32-year-old, who has already taken a lot of small things into his own hands. “The oil and filter are new, I changed the crankshaft sensor myself. I also repaired the left rear window regulator. Only a small plastic part broke off, but that was a lot of effort. ”

Mercedes CLK 63 AMG for less than 30,000 euros

We still have the left seat heating (cold) and the speedometer lighting (darkly) up, but Dietmar Jung signals a willingness to talk and act on these points too. The bottom line is that the gray coupe is pleasing with its untampered original condition. Another plus point is the good technical maintenance condition.

Does this also apply to the Mercedes CLK 63 AMG in Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen? Tightly packed between residential buildings, a gas station and a traffic light intersection, the black AMG is parked in a narrow space with 30 other, but much more common, models. In addition to a tuned Focus ST in orange, the fast CLK enjoys absolute exotic status here.

The Stuttgart Auto Forum is selling the nine-year-old two-door for 29,990 euros. 112,000 kilometers, second hand, absolutely full equipment, guarantee, full service history and a Vmax increase to 280 km /h are sound arguments. Even at second glance, the V8 Coupé looks good: The clean interior is just as reassuring as the decent brakes and tires. The famous fly in the ointment? Damage to the paintwork on the rear wheel arch would be an appropriate topic for the subsequent price negotiation.

So get into the 63 and start the engine. Doesn't work, instead of V8 thugs we only hear a subtle click, click. There is probably no more juice in the electricity dispenser. Owner Erhan Öztürk is immediately on the spot with a booster, and less than ten seconds later the eight-cylinder belches out of its four tailpipes. Yeah, that's just the sound of the 6.2-liter from the Affalterbach engine manufacturer.

The M156 was AMG's first independent V8, developed by the then engine guru Wolf Zimmermann. An expensive pleasure for the Swabians under the heading'Unique luxury' falls. That's not true, you say, because the V8 biturbo in the new C 63 and GT is also an exclusive AMG engine? Well, almost, it is already available in the G 500 off-roader and will soon also be available in other series-produced vehicles. Greetings from the controllers ...

The CLK 63 AMG is firmer and more direct

No matter, nothing like away and onto the country road. Immediately noticeable: the almost four years younger CLK feels tighter and more direct across the board than the 55er. And of course it also has more smoke on the chain: The thick, 630 Newton-meter-strong V8 monster under the chic hood pushes like an ox and turns up to seven and two. 481 instead of the previous 367 hp is one word. Grandpas will tell their grandchildren about the mighty sound of the German muscle car.

Unfortunately, the Affalterbach application engineers forgot to implant the double-declutching function in the control unit for their 481 hp baby - this is how every ambitious downshift works as intended, but not skillful.

The steering wheel has not become smaller, but it is better shaped in the grip area. The large shift paddles make manual shifting through the seven gears much more pleasant. A clear step forward compared to the steering wheel buttons on the CLK 55 AMG, which only had five gears. Öztürk's AMG impresses with good quality: nothing rattles, rattles or chirps. The coupé deserves a clear buy recommendation, especially since the last inspection was just 2,000 kilometers ago.

Deficiencies: Here, too, worn leather, this time on the cheeks of the driver's seat, that is common with sports seats. The hanging rear windows come from the dead battery. “We'll fix that, the windows just have to be taught in again,” says Öztürk. The fact that the navigation DVD is missing and the ashtray lid is slightly stuck - a gift.

From the CLK 63 to the C 63

One wonders why the Mercedes CLK 63 AMG has not yet changed hands . Öztürk: “Strong cars like the AMG generally stand a little longer than an E 350 CDI. We have been offering the CLK for 51 days. But I'm pretty sure that it will also go away at some point. ”

The red Mercedes C 63 AMG Coupé is parked for a similar time at Isidi Automobile in the outlet stronghold of Metzingen. “Red, but not a Ferrari”, grins salesman Artur Rotfuß. “The AMG would have been sold in white, black or gray long ago.” In addition to the five-car BMW, Audi and large SUV, the eye-catching C 63 also plays the role of the high-horsepower outlaw here. At just under 47,000 euros, the two-door model built in 2012 ranks around 5,000 euros above the cheapest vehicles on the German market.

Previous owner with a heavy accelerator

On the other hand, the car has less than 30,000 kilometers on the clock and, according to sales colleague Mohammed Moka, “was driven by a woman from Munich, she was the previous owner. Before that, the AMG was a demonstration car. ”The lady obviously had onequite heavy gas foot, because the front section is decorated with numerous stone chips.

That seems to be the only criticism of the C 63. Tires and brakes still look good, and the inside of the two-door looks like a leak. Special feature: The four-seater, which is painted in the rare fire opal color, is not covered with leather upholstery as usual, but has the rare leather-Alcantara combination. Almost even more important from a driving dynamics and visual point of view: The Coupé is on matt black 19-inch models. The composite brake is not on board, however, it would be recognizable with red brake calipers.

In general: To keep track of all the differences requires at least a bachelor's degree. The individual C-63 variants Limo and T-Model appeared in autumn 2007 with 457 hp at 6,800 rpm and the well-known seven-speed automatic, but with double-declutching. The Performance Package Plus came two years later and delivered 30 extra horsepower, the Nm remained at 600, incidentally 30 less than the older CLK.

A composite brake at the front, a carbon lip at the rear and Alcantara for the This included the grip area of ​​the steering wheel. July 2011: Time for the facelift with a new front, the MCT transmission adopted from the SL 63 AMG, reduced consumption and a modified chassis. The coupé also made its debut at the same time.

Countless variants of the C 63 to choose from

Also on offer: The performance Package, now without the additional plus, but still with 487 hp. The Black Series Coupé rolled out to dealers in January 2012. Fat, wide, powerful and with 517 hp and 620 Newton meters a real announcement. New price back then: 115,000 euros. The last special C-63 is called Edition 507, was again available with all bodies and had 507 hp and 610 Nm under the bonnet taken over from the Black Series. To forget something? That's right, Edition 1 for the Coupé, only available in matt black.

Enough further training, now put red numbers on and off. Even when maneuvering, you can feel that this is a different world than in the two CLK before. The transmission lacks the inertia of the converter, here the clutch works in an oil bath. The steering also seems to be twice as direct as it used to be.

A few minutes later you catch yourself aiming for the ideal line on a wonderfully deserted country road with its crests, depressions and curves. The front axle hooks up with confidence-inspiring grip, the rear pushes slightly, and the corners of the mouth point clearly upwards. Boy is that fun! The Mercedes C 63 AMG is at least one class more manageable, on the other hand both CLKs fall significantly.

Double-declutching? Oh yes, and how!

The three-stage ESP is also a clear step forward. The transmission is equipped with four driving programs and Race Start, not bad for a machine. OneAMG never had a manual switch ex works. Those who let the red two-door fly are really cheered on by the snotty V8 roar from the four thick tailpipes. Double-declutching? Oh yes, and how: Now the downshift is 100 percent correct. The Isidi Automobile Coupé is also impressive in other respects: a few kilometers, a complete checkbook and a guarantee give confidence.

Review: The C 63 AMG was a real turning point in the AMG model range. Not only the longitudinal dynamics, finally also the transverse dynamics matched their own requirements. In sport auto 10/2011, the 487 hp coupé with performance package achieved a lap time of 1.13.6 minutes on the Hockenheim short circuit.

With this, it not only distanced the two CLKs by lengths of just 1.18 , 4 (CLK 63) and 1.18.6 (CLK 55) managed. A BMW M3 with DKG and M-Performance package was also a little slower: 1.14.2 min.

Frequent trips to the racetrack are not only a burden the credit card at the gas station overcharged - consumption of more than 20 liters is not uncommon in everyday life. Even if something breaks or wearing parts such as tires and brakes go over the Jordan, you shouldn't be kinky. In terms of liability, the two CLKs are more expensive than the C 63, which in turn exceeds them in terms of comprehensive insurance and vehicle tax.

Other possible cost drivers: The CLK's electrical system is considered vulnerable. The hydraulic bearings of the lower wishbones on the front axle, the tie rod ends and the steering play usually cause problems with old age. With the 6.3-liter, the camshaft adjusters, the crankshaft sensor, the hydraulic valve lifters and broken valve springs can cause concern. A used car guarantee is therefore a good thing, regardless of whether it is the CLK 63 or the C 63 AMG.

Question of trust

Three AMGs, three fundamentally different characters: The 13-year-old CLK 55 is the fast cruiser with a violently rumbling V8 sound, the CLK 63 the muscle car with power, but only the C 63 Coupé is a real sports car. Anyone who drives the three Affalterbacher Coupés in direct comparison will feel the changes the company with the three distinctive letters has experienced over the years.

The 'old AMG' from the past millennium can still be felt in the CLK 55. The successor with the 63 engine represents the upheaval when AMG wanted and had to position itself more and more independently. But it was only with the C 63, which is based on a completely new chassis, that the company succeeded in becoming a serious sports car manufacturer. 16 years have passed since the company's transformation from tuner to OEM.

By the way, if the three Coupés with their naturally aspirated V8 engines should be too weak for you: There was still the legendary CLK DTM AMG. The Brachialo was first launched as a coupé, and due to surprisingly high demand, the convertible was then added. Exactly 100 vehicles were made by eachBody variant. The supercharged eight-cylinder attracts with 582 hp and 800 Nm - and it sounds damned like a racetrack. The catch: Hardly anyone wants to part with this collector's item, which drives prices to astronomical heights. An original CLK DTM AMG is hard to come by for less than 300,000 euros. Beware of converted CLK 200 ...


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