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Mercedes-AMG G 63 (W 463): The Beast. As much as it is a beast it is also a true icon or a statement on wheels.

Guest Feature: GTspirit Winter Experience 2017.

AMG wolf pack: The second edition of the GTspirit Winter Experience took place during a weekend in January.
Text: Des Sellmeijer
Photos: Michael Schoellhorn
  • Guest Feature: GTspirit Winter Experience 2017.


  • All statements in this article are personal opinions and impressions of the author and sometimes not of the Daimler AG.

    AMG supplied three different winter cars: the Mercedes-AMG GLS 63 4MATIC (X 166), the Mercedes-AMG G 63 Edition 463 (W 463) and the Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 S 4MATIC (W 166).

    Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 S 4MATIC: Fuel consumption combined: 11.8 l/100 km; combined CO₂ emissions: 276 g/km.*

    Mercedes-AMG G 63: Fuel consumption combined: 13.8 l/100 km; combined CO₂ emissions: 322 g/km.*

    Mercedes-AMG GLS 63 4MATIC: Fuel consumption combined: 12.3 l/100 km; combined CO₂ emissions: 288 g/km.*

    Weekend with AMG wolf pack.

    At a recent weekend in January, supercar owners and car enthusiasts from over nine different countries met up for the second GTspirit Winter Experience. Mercedes-Benz and Mercedes-AMG provided us with three all-wheel drive vehicles for the winter tour from the German city of Munich to Sölden in the Austrian Alps. The AMG wolf pack was complemented with several teams who joined the event with their own cars.

    AMG supplied three different winter cars to the GTspirit crew: the Mercedes-AMG GLS 63 4MATIC, the Mercedes-AMG G 63 Edition 463 and the Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 S 4MATIC. Although on paper they might look very similar – large SUVs all equipped with the famous 5.5 litre AMG V8 biturbo engine also known as M 157. But in reality each of the three cars has its own distinct character.

    Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 S – the sports car.

    The GLE 63 S 4MATIC is the sports car of the three. The 5.5 litre V8 produces a maximum of 585 hp and 760 Nm of torque, with a lower weight than the other two it rockets from 0–100 km/h in just 4.2 seconds and tops out at an incredible 280 km/h. To put that into perspective: the nil to 100 sprint is as quick as the former CLK 63 AMG Black Series. And it is not just fast in a straight line – thanks to some clever technology and AMG suspension setup it is incredibly quick through corners as well with body roll reduced to a minimum.

    The GLE 63 S 4MATIC (W 166) is the sports car of the three. The 5.5 liter V8 produces a maximum of 585 hp and 760 Nm of torque.
    The Mercedes-AMG GLS 63 4MATIC (X 166) is the ultimate travel car. It packs the perfect combination of comfort, practicality and performance. And it is easy to drift, too.

    Mercedes-AMG GLS 63 – the Gran Turismo.

    The GLS 63 4MATIC is the ultimate travel car of the three with space to fit up to 7 people plus luggage. The power output is the same as in the GLE 63 S, but due to its slightly higher weight it sprints from 0–100 km/h in 4.6 seconds and tops out at 270 km/h. The GLS is incredibly easy to drive and despite its sheer size it is a car easily to fall in love with. It packs the perfect combination of comfort, practicality and performance. And believe it or not but it is easy to drift, too.

    Mercedes-AMG GLS 63 – the Gran Turismo.

    The GLS 63 4MATIC is the ultimate travel car of the three with space to fit up to 7 people plus luggage. The power output is the same as in the GLE 63 S, but due to its slightly higher weight it sprints from 0–100 km/h in 4.6 seconds and tops out at 270 km/h. The GLS is incredibly easy to drive and despite its sheer size it is a car easily to fall in love with. It packs the perfect combination of comfort, practicality and performance. And believe it or not but it is easy to drift, too.

    The Mercedes-AMG GLS 63 4MATIC (X 166) is the ultimate travel car. It packs the perfect combination of comfort, practicality and performance. And it is easy to drift, too.

    Mercedes-AMG G 63 Edition 463 – the Beast.

    Last but not least we present the G 63 – as much as it is a beast it is also a true icon and a statement on wheels. The M 157 engine produces 571 hp and 760 Nm of torque in the G 63. This allows for a 0–100 km/h sprint in 5.4 seconds and a top speed of 230 km/h. That makes it the slowest of the three, but the G has some aces up its sleeve. How about true 4WD and three electric locking differentials making it unstoppable on any terrain.

    This G 63 is no ordinary G 63 – it is the special Edition 463. The Edition 463 references the internal model code for this generation G-Wagon W 463 which has been in production since 1990. Later this year Mercedes-Benz will unveil the new G-Class which will have a brand new chassis for the first time in 27 years.

    This G 63 is no ordinary G 63 – it is the special Edition 463. It references the internal model code for this generation G-Wagon W 463 which has been in production since 1990.
    Mercedes-AMG G 63 (W 463) – The Beast. As much as it is a beast it is also a true icon or a statement on wheels.

    First checkpoint: Kochel am See.

    The unique winter experience starts at Munich Airport where some of the participants arrive from very diverse countries like the United Arab Emirates and Malaysia. The first part of the tour leads the pack through Munich and south towards Garmisch on the German Autobahn. The area has been blessed with the first proper snow fall of the year and arctic temperatures so the surroundings look like a true winter wonderland. After a dash on the legendary Autobahn we exit to reach our first checkpoint: Kochel am See. This little village is located at a small alpine lake at the foot of the Alps and the scenery is nothing short of breathtaking. And to make it even better the snow clouds make way for blue sky and sunshine.

    First checkpoint: Kochel am See.

    The unique winter experience starts at Munich Airport where some of the participants arrive from very diverse countries like the United Arab Emirates and Malaysia. The first part of the tour leads the pack through Munich and south towards Garmisch on the German Autobahn. The area has been blessed with the first proper snow fall of the year and arctic temperatures so the surroundings look like a true winter wonderland. After a dash on the legendary Autobahn we exit to reach our first checkpoint: Kochel am See. This little village is located at a small alpine lake at the foot of the Alps and the scenery is nothing short of breathtaking. And to make it even better the snow clouds make way for blue sky and sunshine.

    Mercedes-AMG G 63 (W 463) – The Beast. As much as it is a beast it is also a true icon or a statement on wheels.

    Over the Kesselberg, past the Walchensee.

    From Kochel am See we continue south on the scenic B 11 over the Kesselberg past the Walchensee towards the Austrian border. At Mittenwald we exit the main road and take the narrow L14 up towards Leutasch. For the first time the road is snow covered and we can test the capabilities of our cars’ all-wheel drive systems. Equipped with winter tires, the GLE 63 S, GLS 63 and G 63 have no problem making it up the twisty mountain road.

    Drifting the Mercedes-AMG GLS 63 4MATIC (X 166) in the snow. Equipped with winter tires there is no problem for the GLS 63 to make it up the twisty mountain road.
    Mercedes-Benz Lifestyle: The GTspirit Winter Experience 2017 in Austria.

    On to Sölden.

    Meanwhile we have crossed the border between Germany and Austria and there is nothing more than a sign to indicate we switched countries. As we pull up to our rustic lunch restaurant Ropferhof we have a scenic view down into the Inn valley. After a few selfies we get back into the cars to head to our final destination: Sölden!

    Our convoy of cars turns heads in every village we pass and the brawny V8 sounds echo between the traditional Austrian houses. Especially the G 63 is not a car for the shy – it puts itself in the centre of attention time and time again.

    GTspirit Winter Experience 2017. Outside the spectacular glass building of the ice Q skiers slide by while non-skiers travel down with the gondola like James Bond in “Spectre”.

    Like James Bond in “Spectre”.

    The next morning we wake up to crisp mountain air, the thermometer outside shows -12 degrees Celsius – at 1,368 metres above sea level. Better put on some warm clothes as we are going to the top of the mountain at 3,048 metres today. With a spectacular 360 degree panorama and blue skies as far as the eye can see, the ice Q on the Gaislachkogl is there to match the view. Outside the spectacular glass building skiers slide by covered top to bottom to protect them from the double digit minus temperatures, but inside it is warm and cozy. After lunch the skiers and snowboarders slide down the Gaislachkogl while some of the non-skiers travel down in the gondola like James Bond in “Spectre”.

    300 kilometres back to Munich.

    After four action-packed days it is time to head home again – the 300 kilometres back to Munich allow one last time to drive the three AMGs back to back. The G 63 is a very unique car that has no match in terms of style and off road capabilities. On the road the G 63 is no match for the performance and handling of the GLE 63 S and GLS 63. Especially the GLS is a very pleasant car for long journeys with the air suspension and the long wheel base.

    Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 S 4MATIC (W 166): thanks to some clever technology and AMG suspension setup it is incredibly quick through corners as well with body roll reduced to a minimum.
    Mercedes-Benz Lifestyle: The GTspirit Winter Experience 2017 in Austria.

    Common passion for cars.

    Four days after we started at Munich Airport we return to a very cold international airport. What an epic weekend it was – the perfect mix of driving, skiing, sledging and other winter activities but best of all was the international group of participants that all shared a common passion for cars and wintersports.

    Common passion for cars.

    Four days after we started at Munich Airport we return to a very cold international airport. What an epic weekend it was – the perfect mix of driving, skiing, sledging and other winter activities but best of all was the international group of participants that all shared a common passion for cars and wintersports.

    Mercedes-Benz Lifestyle: The GTspirit Winter Experience 2017 in Austria.

    Image gallery.

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