Car News:  Oversteer

Mercedes-Benz C36 and C43: The Forgotten AMGs

RELATED INVENTORY
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
Used 1995 Mercedes-Benz SL-Class
Used 1995 Mercedes-Benz SL-Class
$5,150
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
Used 1995 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Sedan
Used 1995 Mercedes-Benz C-Class
$3,877
RELATED READING
See all Mercedes-Benz C36 AMG articles
RESEARCH BY MAKE
Toyota cars, trucks and SUVs Ford cars, trucks and SUVs Honda cars, trucks and SUVs Chevrolet cars, trucks and SUVs Jeep cars, trucks and SUVs Nissan cars, trucks and SUVs Lexus cars, trucks and SUVs Volkswagen cars, trucks and SUVs Mercedes-Benz cars, trucks and SUVs
Acura cars, trucks and SUVs Alfa Romeo cars, trucks and SUVs AMC cars, trucks and SUVs Aston Martin cars, trucks and SUVs Audi cars, trucks and SUVs Bentley cars, trucks and SUVs BMW cars, trucks and SUVs Bugatti cars, trucks and SUVs Buick cars, trucks and SUVs Cadillac cars, trucks and SUVs Chevrolet cars, trucks and SUVs Chrysler cars, trucks and SUVs Daewoo cars, trucks and SUVs Datsun cars, trucks and SUVs DeLorean cars, trucks and SUVs Dodge cars, trucks and SUVs Eagle cars, trucks and SUVs Ferrari cars, trucks and SUVs FIAT cars, trucks and SUVs Fisker cars, trucks and SUVs Ford cars, trucks and SUVs Freightliner cars, trucks and SUVs Genesis cars, trucks and SUVs Geo cars, trucks and SUVs GMC cars, trucks and SUVs Honda cars, trucks and SUVs HUMMER cars, trucks and SUVs Hyundai cars, trucks and SUVs INFINITI cars, trucks and SUVs Isuzu cars, trucks and SUVs Jaguar cars, trucks and SUVs Jeep cars, trucks and SUVs Kia cars, trucks and SUVs Lamborghini cars, trucks and SUVs Land Rover cars, trucks and SUVs Lexus cars, trucks and SUVs Lincoln cars, trucks and SUVs Lotus cars, trucks and SUVs Maserati cars, trucks and SUVs Maybach cars, trucks and SUVs Mazda cars, trucks and SUVs McLaren cars, trucks and SUVs Mercedes-Benz cars, trucks and SUVs Mercury cars, trucks and SUVs MINI cars, trucks and SUVs Mitsubishi cars, trucks and SUVs Nissan cars, trucks and SUVs Oldsmobile cars, trucks and SUVs Plymouth cars, trucks and SUVs Pontiac cars, trucks and SUVs Porsche cars, trucks and SUVs RAM cars, trucks and SUVs Rolls-Royce cars, trucks and SUVs Saab cars, trucks and SUVs Saturn cars, trucks and SUVs Scion cars, trucks and SUVs smart cars, trucks and SUVs SRT cars, trucks and SUVs Subaru cars, trucks and SUVs Suzuki cars, trucks and SUVs Tesla cars, trucks and SUVs Toyota cars, trucks and SUVs Volkswagen cars, trucks and SUVs Volvo cars, trucks and SUVs Yugo cars, trucks and SUVs
RESEARCH BY STYLE
AWD/4WD
Commercial
Convertible
Coupe
Hatchback
Hybrid/Electric
Luxury
Sedan
SUV/Crossover
Truck
Van/Minivan
Wagon
ADDITIONAL MODEL INFORMATION

author photo by Doug DeMuro December 2016

I've decided to write today about two of my favorite -- and two of the most forgotten -- AMG cars: the C36 AMG, made from 1995 to 1997, and the C43 AMG, made from 1998 to 2000. They were AMG's first models ever to reach the United States.

I'll spare you the detailed AMG history lesson, but it basically goes like this: Throughout the 1980s, AMG was an aftermarket tuner that would modify Mercedes-Benz's vehicles. Eventually, Mercedes decided it wanted more performance vehicles coming out of its own factory, so it bought AMG and turned it into its own high-performance arm. The C36 AMG and the C43 AMG were the very first examples of that on the North American market.

I'll start with the C36 AMG. Based on the original C-Class, which was offered from 1994 to 2000, the C36 AMG debuted in 1995 to rival the E36 BMW M3. Although it was offered only as a sedan and only with an automatic transmission, the C36 used a 270-horsepower 3.6-liter inline 6-cylinder engine and a sport suspension. The result was 0 to 60 in a little over 6 seconds, which was impressive for the time.

Even more impressive was the C36's replacement, the C43 AMG, which debuted in 1998. Still using the same C-Class body style, the C43 AMG upgraded from the 6-cylinder to a 302-horsepower 4.3-liter V8 and a new 5-speed automatic in place of the C36's 4-speed. The result was now 0 to 60 in something like 5.7 seconds, which is still pretty quick by today's standards.

By then, it became clear the whole AMG thing was going to take off, and Mercedes started adding AMG models to other vehicles. The E55 AMG came out in 1999, and the S55 AMG, the CL55 AMG and the SL55 AMG soon followed.

Of course, in today's world, every single Mercedes-Benz has an AMG model -- from the base-level CLA all the way up to the G-Class, which actually has two (including a V12 version). And they can all trace their history back to the factory AMG cars that started it all: the C36 AMG and the C43 AMG, way back in the 1990s.

MORE FROM OVERSTEER:
Here's Why the Tesla Model X Is (Not) an Awful Car
Was the Jeep Liberty the Worst Redesign Ever?
The New Aston Martin DB11 Costs $250,000 -- and It's Amazing

RELATED INVENTORY
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
Used 1995 Mercedes-Benz SL-Class
Used 1995 Mercedes-Benz SL-Class
$5,150
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
Used 1995 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Sedan
Used 1995 Mercedes-Benz C-Class
$3,877
This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
Mercedes-Benz C36 and C43: The Forgotten AMGs - Autotrader