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      11-22-2010, 04:14 PM   #1
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M3 and C63 Thoughts

As my title says, here are some thoughts on my sunday drive with the 08 M3 e92 (mine) and a 09 MB C63 thru the twisty roads of Bear Mountain and other nice twisty roads of orange county NY.

Setup:
So I met up with my friend who just brought his 09 MB C63 in black. This is the M156 with the 6.3 V8 producing 451hp/443 lb of torque. I have a 08 M3 e92 with DCT. We live in north NJ, near the NJ/NY border and decided to go to some of our favorite roads by Monroe/Warwick area.

Roads:
We went on local roads in Monroe, and also up the mountains of Warwick, toward Greenwood Lake. To get there we hit rt. 17 local. Then we hit some twisties at Bear Mountain. Most of the roads were curvy, and except some stretches of highway.

Exterior:
The M3 is jet black with a few exterior modes including blacked out grille, reflectors, GP Thunders and it had the winter set of VMR VB3's with winter performance tires.

The C63 was pretty standard but just added a new Vorsteiner Diffuser in the back. Had its summer tire set still on.

Overall the M3 looks good and aggressive and the VB3 in gunmetals really add to the final look. C63 is very aggressive looking as well. Overall, its really subjective on what you will find as the better looking car - I think they both look great. Obviously the M3 was a coupe while the C63 is a 4-door.

The only negative I can say about the C63 is that the body is very similar to the regular c-class except for the front damper, hood and the back rear with the quad pipes and standard diffuser. The width seems to be the same as a regular c-class, while we all know the M3's e92 body panels are pretty much different from the regular e92 body (ie flared fenders, hood, rocket panels, CF roof, etc).

Interior:
Both had blacked out interiors. The M3's interior is a soup-ed up e90 interior but the added carbon fiber trim and better leather hide makes it 'richer' in feel compared to its e90 siblings. C63 has some serious bolstered seats and has all the timings that you will find in a full-loaded c-class. Both interiors aren't the classiest in its class (honor would go to Audi) but both are comfortable to be in. I did like the C63 for having a sunroof - while I do love the CF roof on the M3, I do miss a sunroof here and there.

Engine/Exhaust:
Its a great comparison in styles: the MB went the full Mike Tyson rout and that C63 6.3 v8 is just crazy. For them to put it into that c-class body was just plain ballsy - I would love to meet the engineer at MB that was able to sell that in to the MB board, he should run for president. Anytime you have the that much hp and torque in an engine, thats a good thing. Basically you step on the gas and you go. No hesitation, no drama. The engine sounded a bit more muted compared to the M3 V8 note, but the exhaust king is definitely the C63. That bark/howl from the C63 exhaust can be heard from all around. The engine is very linear in the C63 and goes to this revs quickly and easily. I was driving in 'Sport' mode and using the paddle shifters to upshift/downshift.

For the M3, the engine is much smaller at 4.0 liters, but its just as amazing. You get a better sound from the engine bay, but the standard exhaust definitely loses out to the C63. Its still good, and gets sexier in sound as you go higher revs on the engine, but still no-where as good as the C63 (you need to go the 3rd party exhaust route with the M3 to catch up). The interesting part on the M3 is that the engine is much more fun to play with when you are driving on curvy roads. In a full 0-60 or 0-100 blast, the MB's engine will win, its just to powerful - but on the twisty roads we were on, the M3's high-revving engine really was the winner here. You could use 3rd gear and basically use the whole rev band to drive thru the roads - and hence have more fun.

Steering/Suspension:
M3: full throttle, EDC: sport, DSC: on, steering: sport, D-logic: 6
C63: Sport mode

So both had great steering wheels, the MB leather wheel felt a bit better in your hands (M3's steering wheel is definitely thick). When it comes to steering, both are great handling cars but the win definitely goes to the M3. Probably because while both cars are heavy, the MB is still 350-400 lbs heavier and you feel it. Plus again, the engine on the M3 lives for the twisties and lets you play more with its rev band compared to the C63. During repeated drives up and around the mountain road to Greenwood lake from rt 17, the M3 gave the driver more confidence taking the roads up and down the mountain.

Another item was the suspension. The C63's felt like it has a stiffer suspension (even compared to the M3 in EDC: sport). It may also be due to the tires, where the C63 was still on its summer performance tires, but the M3 was on winter performance. But the C63 definitely gave more shock to the lower back over imperfection on the roads, compared to the M3. The other big thing you noticed was the weight shift, the M3 was much more toss-able in the turns compared to the C63. The C63 was just a bit more slower in shifting its weight from quick turns. Overall we weren't as confident taking the C63 at its fullest on the roads as compared to the M3.

Overall Summary:
Not much of a surprise here. As read in many articles and posts on this topic, the M3 is the better car in turns and curvy roads, while for full blasts on straights the C63 is the king. My personal preference after this Sunday drive would still be the M3, only because I get more kicks in taking curvy, twisty roads then going full blast 0-60 on the roads. The MB did feel like the better everyday car/commuting car - which is a high compliment since the M3 does that job very well also.

Probably the best takeaway is that the C63 felts a bit more cartoon-ish then the M3. Meaning the C63 felt like a exaggeration of what a super-sport sedan should be: big engine, loud exhaust, very visual body gear. The M3 is now sort of the mature sport sedan, especially after the E46 M3 - more reserved in exterior look, smoother and silkier, much soften on its edges. This can be a positive or negative depending on people's view on the current M3 compared to the E46 M3.

Either way, again, you can't go wrong with either car.

Now here are the pix:









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      11-22-2010, 06:17 PM   #2
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nice interview. for me personally coupe - m3. sedan - c63 amg.
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      11-22-2010, 10:49 PM   #3
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I've seen white C63's, I'm waiting to see a red one. I've seen pics and omgggggg
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      11-23-2010, 05:27 AM   #4
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For me, the gearbox in the Merc, being an auto, is way behind the M3s DCT, just too slow, but i believe that they are putting a Twin Clutch box in the C63 Coupe thats coming shortly. Also, i couldnt find a good seating position in the Merc, as good as the seats are, they are just set too high. Cracking exhaust note though, probably one of the best out there. Will try the new coupe, with the proper box, it should be a cracker, regards, SIMON.
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      11-23-2010, 09:23 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SehrSchnell View Post
Nice write up! I totally agree, can't go wrong with either car. The C63 is such a monster - amazing exhaust note, and insane pull from low rpms... fucking sick!
I was thinking the same! The C63 just sounds amazing to me! Why not just have both?
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      11-23-2010, 10:47 AM   #6
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Nice choice with the "fun roads". Hit up 218!
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      11-23-2010, 11:04 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SwiftM3 View Post
I was thinking the same! The C63 just sounds amazing to me! Why not just have both?
Thats was my exact thinking
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      12-06-2010, 01:17 PM   #8
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nice info
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      12-06-2010, 01:47 PM   #9
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ive had the old bull.. now i want the young calf..
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      12-06-2010, 11:56 PM   #10
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there was a top gear episode on this a while back on this, and the M3 won on the track on handling.
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      12-31-2010, 04:11 AM   #11
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never liked black on black grills
nice rear diffuser on the amg
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      01-01-2011, 03:09 PM   #12
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The C63, just on looks alone beats the M3 hands down. It's got a more sportier/aggressive rear and the side profile has it sitting more aggressive than the M3.
The exhaust note on the C63 is sick as well, you'd think BMW would figure out a way to make that V8 sing with a stock exhaust.
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      01-01-2011, 04:05 PM   #13
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Yeah I like the looks of the C63 too. Stock for stock, it's definitely more aggressive.
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      01-01-2011, 09:03 PM   #14
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I am currently going through this delema as I can coming out of my 335 lease soon and want to purchase a used e90 M3, M5, or C63... I think it is going to come down to which one I can get at the best deal!

Love both these cars... but I bleed Blue and White so I am sure I will end up with the e90 M3
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      01-06-2011, 06:00 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by warzilla View Post
As my title says, here are some thoughts on my sunday drive with the 08 M3 e92 (mine) and a 09 MB C63 thru the twisty roads of Bear Mountain and other nice twisty roads of orange county NY.

Setup:
So I met up with my friend who just brought his 09 MB C63 in black. This is the M156 with the 6.3 V8 producing 451hp/443 lb of torque. I have a 08 M3 e92 with DCT. We live in north NJ, near the NJ/NY border and decided to go to some of our favorite roads by Monroe/Warwick area.

Roads:
We went on local roads in Monroe, and also up the mountains of Warwick, toward Greenwood Lake. To get there we hit rt. 17 local. Then we hit some twisties at Bear Mountain. Most of the roads were curvy, and except some stretches of highway.

Exterior:
The M3 is jet black with a few exterior modes including blacked out grille, reflectors, GP Thunders and it had the winter set of VMR VB3's with winter performance tires.

The C63 was pretty standard but just added a new Vorsteiner Diffuser in the back. Had its summer tire set still on.

Overall the M3 looks good and aggressive and the VB3 in gunmetals really add to the final look. C63 is very aggressive looking as well. Overall, its really subjective on what you will find as the better looking car - I think they both look great. Obviously the M3 was a coupe while the C63 is a 4-door.

The only negative I can say about the C63 is that the body is very similar to the regular c-class except for the front damper, hood and the back rear with the quad pipes and standard diffuser. The width seems to be the same as a regular c-class, while we all know the M3's e92 body panels are pretty much different from the regular e92 body (ie flared fenders, hood, rocket panels, CF roof, etc).

Interior:
Both had blacked out interiors. The M3's interior is a soup-ed up e90 interior but the added carbon fiber trim and better leather hide makes it 'richer' in feel compared to its e90 siblings. C63 has some serious bolstered seats and has all the timings that you will find in a full-loaded c-class. Both interiors aren't the classiest in its class (honor would go to Audi) but both are comfortable to be in. I did like the C63 for having a sunroof - while I do love the CF roof on the M3, I do miss a sunroof here and there.

Engine/Exhaust:
Its a great comparison in styles: the MB went the full Mike Tyson rout and that C63 6.3 v8 is just crazy. For them to put it into that c-class body was just plain ballsy - I would love to meet the engineer at MB that was able to sell that in to the MB board, he should run for president. Anytime you have the that much hp and torque in an engine, thats a good thing. Basically you step on the gas and you go. No hesitation, no drama. The engine sounded a bit more muted compared to the M3 V8 note, but the exhaust king is definitely the C63. That bark/howl from the C63 exhaust can be heard from all around. The engine is very linear in the C63 and goes to this revs quickly and easily. I was driving in 'Sport' mode and using the paddle shifters to upshift/downshift.

For the M3, the engine is much smaller at 4.0 liters, but its just as amazing. You get a better sound from the engine bay, but the standard exhaust definitely loses out to the C63. Its still good, and gets sexier in sound as you go higher revs on the engine, but still no-where as good as the C63 (you need to go the 3rd party exhaust route with the M3 to catch up). The interesting part on the M3 is that the engine is much more fun to play with when you are driving on curvy roads. In a full 0-60 or 0-100 blast, the MB's engine will win, its just to powerful - but on the twisty roads we were on, the M3's high-revving engine really was the winner here. You could use 3rd gear and basically use the whole rev band to drive thru the roads - and hence have more fun.

Steering/Suspension:
M3: full throttle, EDC: sport, DSC: on, steering: sport, D-logic: 6
C63: Sport mode

So both had great steering wheels, the MB leather wheel felt a bit better in your hands (M3's steering wheel is definitely thick). When it comes to steering, both are great handling cars but the win definitely goes to the M3. Probably because while both cars are heavy, the MB is still 350-400 lbs heavier and you feel it. Plus again, the engine on the M3 lives for the twisties and lets you play more with its rev band compared to the C63. During repeated drives up and around the mountain road to Greenwood lake from rt 17, the M3 gave the driver more confidence taking the roads up and down the mountain.

Another item was the suspension. The C63's felt like it has a stiffer suspension (even compared to the M3 in EDC: sport). It may also be due to the tires, where the C63 was still on its summer performance tires, but the M3 was on winter performance. But the C63 definitely gave more shock to the lower back over imperfection on the roads, compared to the M3. The other big thing you noticed was the weight shift, the M3 was much more toss-able in the turns compared to the C63. The C63 was just a bit more slower in shifting its weight from quick turns. Overall we weren't as confident taking the C63 at its fullest on the roads as compared to the M3.

Overall Summary:
Not much of a surprise here. As read in many articles and posts on this topic, the M3 is the better car in turns and curvy roads, while for full blasts on straights the C63 is the king. My personal preference after this Sunday drive would still be the M3, only because I get more kicks in taking curvy, twisty roads then going full blast 0-60 on the roads. The MB did feel like the better everyday car/commuting car - which is a high compliment since the M3 does that job very well also.

Probably the best takeaway is that the C63 felts a bit more cartoon-ish then the M3. Meaning the C63 felt like a exaggeration of what a super-sport sedan should be: big engine, loud exhaust, very visual body gear. The M3 is now sort of the mature sport sedan, especially after the E46 M3 - more reserved in exterior look, smoother and silkier, much soften on its edges. This can be a positive or negative depending on people's view on the current M3 compared to the E46 M3.

Either way, again, you can't go wrong with either car.

Now here are the pix:









MB has horrible top end. large motors with big displacement have massive 0-60 low end torque, no top end. the m3 is such a better engineered car in both low end response and high end power. the low end is a bit laggy, but once it gets going its gone. dont forget, MB is way more expensive, and all your paying for is low end torque. 2.2L on the M and only 40hp more. nothing impressive with the merc. and plus, it has a standard torque converter so the tranny isnt anything special. to prove the fact that the c63 has shitty top end, there are many vids of stock vs stock m3 v c63, on the highway they are neck n neck. not to say that the m3 has shitty top end, but for a 460hp engine with 6.2L of displacement vs a 4.0L with 414hp, the benz doesnt live up to what it should do on paper. IMO. M3 all the way
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      01-06-2011, 08:01 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UNNATRAL View Post
MB has horrible top end. large motors with big displacement have massive 0-60 low end torque, no top end. the m3 is such a better engineered car in both low end response and high end power. the low end is a bit laggy, but once it gets going its gone. dont forget, MB is way more expensive, and all your paying for is low end torque. 2.2L on the M and only 40hp more. nothing impressive with the merc. and plus, it has a standard torque converter so the tranny isnt anything special. to prove the fact that the c63 has shitty top end, there are many vids of stock vs stock m3 v c63, on the highway they are neck n neck. not to say that the m3 has shitty top end, but for a 460hp engine with 6.2L of displacement vs a 4.0L with 414hp, the benz doesnt live up to what it should do on paper. IMO. M3 all the way
Well, it is no surprise right? That engine doesn't/can't rev as high as the M3 engine. It could if it was a V12. But with V8, each cylinder has almost 0.8lt displacement. It's just too much.
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      01-06-2011, 09:57 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UNNATRAL View Post
MB has horrible top end. large motors with big displacement have massive 0-60 low end torque, no top end. the m3 is such a better engineered car in both low end response and high end power. the low end is a bit laggy, but once it gets going its gone. dont forget, MB is way more expensive, and all your paying for is low end torque. 2.2L on the M and only 40hp more. nothing impressive with the merc. and plus, it has a standard torque converter so the tranny isnt anything special. to prove the fact that the c63 has shitty top end, there are many vids of stock vs stock m3 v c63, on the highway they are neck n neck. not to say that the m3 has shitty top end, but for a 460hp engine with 6.2L of displacement vs a 4.0L with 414hp, the benz doesnt live up to what it should do on paper. IMO. M3 all the way
Wtf are you talking about that the C63 is more expensive?

The C63 well equipped was $78K and the M3 was $88K similarily equipped when I was looking.

Edit: Currently the C63 bases at $63 900 and essentially fully loaded...including Performance Pack and Premium pack it tops out at $78 990.

The M3 sedan bases at $70 300. With the same equipment the M3 is $85 200.

(All prices are for Canada in CDN dollars)

The C63 is no joke with PP and one heck of a good bang for the buck. Handling isn't up to the M3, but the sound and power is nuts.
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      01-07-2011, 12:29 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UNNATRAL View Post
MB has horrible top end. large motors with big displacement have massive 0-60 low end torque, no top end. the m3 is such a better engineered car in both low end response and high end power. the low end is a bit laggy, but once it gets going its gone. dont forget, MB is way more expensive, and all your paying for is low end torque. 2.2L on the M and only 40hp more. nothing impressive with the merc. and plus, it has a standard torque converter so the tranny isnt anything special. to prove the fact that the c63 has shitty top end, there are many vids of stock vs stock m3 v c63, on the highway they are neck n neck. not to say that the m3 has shitty top end, but for a 460hp engine with 6.2L of displacement vs a 4.0L with 414hp, the benz doesnt live up to what it should do on paper. IMO. M3 all the way
Quote:
Originally Posted by erhanh View Post
Well, it is no surprise right? That engine doesn't/can't rev as high as the M3 engine. It could if it was a V12. But with V8, each cylinder has almost 0.8lt displacement. It's just too much.
Although these two posts are incorrect as to what makes cars go, it occured to me that maybe, just maybe, the M3 really does have the advantage at the top end. After all, it has a slightly better power-to-weight ratio, at least against the standard 451 hp C63, and not very far off the 481 HP model. In addition, the C63 loses some of its power via running the oil pump in the auto, and its gear steps at the top end are farther apart than the M3, meaning it falls a bit further off-peak with each shift.

Hmmm.

OK, so I consult Car & Driver. They zero their results against Standard Day weather conditions, so meteorological evidence from differing track days is at least accounted for.

The quickest and fastest M3 they ever tested, against the quickest and fastest 451 HP C63 they ever tested, as follows:

M3
0-60 3.9 seconds
0-100 9.4 "
quarter mile 12.4 @ 114 mph

C63 (451 HP)
0-60 3.9 seconds
0-100 9.2 "
quarter mile 12.3 @ 116 mph

The latest test of the Merc:

C63 (481 HP)
0-60 3.9 seconds
0-100 9.1 seconds
quarter mile 12.3 @ 117 mph

Furthermore, the best time I've seen for the M3 to 150 mph is 24.3 seconds, while the best time I've seen for the C63 is at 22.9.

All this suggests that the cars tend to run fairly even at the low end, but as the speeds increase, the C63 tends to have a slight advantage, right up to 150 mph. When you combine this with the fact that the C63 has a comfortable speed advantage at the quarter mile point, you can't help figuring the C63 can hold its own with the M3 at pretty much any speed.

Granted, the numbers are very close, which leads me to believe that at highway speeds, the velocity at the beginning of the race is very important, because the car that is closer to its power peak at the time will tend to have the advantage. With the M3 having closer gear spacing at speed, I'd be very careful in the C63 to be at a start speed that had me pretty close to the power peak at the beginning of the battle.

BTW, the idea that large engines are only good for low end torque is ridiculous. The restricted C63 makes more power than the M3, period. The rpm at which peak power is developed is absolutely immaterial. Power is power, and power to weight tends to rule. The reason the C63 tends to be a little (a very little) quicker is that it tends to make more power than the M3 does after each shift, due to the torque bulge.

Last edited by bruce.augenstein@comcast.; 01-07-2011 at 12:37 PM.
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      01-08-2011, 04:11 AM   #19
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i think m3 looks way better than c63 just cuz the c63 looked like some hamann shit. which i hate...
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      01-08-2011, 11:16 AM   #20
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Personally I am a Mercedes guy, but that still hasn't stopped me from getting an E92. I love the C63, but I want to see my self getting into track days and the M3 is just the better car. Plus I got an amazing deal, but the C63 to me is 99.9% as good, but it is still missing that 0.1%
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      06-07-2011, 09:06 PM   #21
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two amazing machines
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      06-07-2011, 10:30 PM   #22
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I like the C63, but it wasn't really a DD the way the M3 is, it kills gas, tires and doesn't really have the support network that the M3 does (warranty, services, etc.) I just don't get the DD feel from the c63 the way I feel it in my M3.
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