2011 Mercedes Benz C63 AMG Brake Repair
Mark: Hi, it's Mark Bossert, producer of the Pawlik Automotive Podcast, here with Mr. Bernie Pawlik, Pawlik Automotive in Vancouver, Vancouver's best auto-service experience. How are you doing this morning, Bernie?
Bernie: Doing very well.
Mark: So, we're going to talk about a Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG. What was going on with this vehicle?
Bernie: This vehicle was in for a routine service, and we found that the brakes front and rear were worn out, pads and rotors, so we proceeded to do the brake repairs. And also a brake fluid flush.
Mark: So this is a pretty high performance vehicle. I imagine that the brakes were more robust than normal, like what you'd see on a normal vehicle. Is that right?
Bernie: Oh, yeah. Definitely. It's using very large rotors and pads. Well, let's get straight into some pictures right away. There's our 2011 C63, a C class, so it's a smaller sedan with a very large motor and high performance parts. Here's a view of the front brake rotor, the pads, new pads installed, the AMG six piston calipers on the front. It's a very large brake rotor. I don't have anything really here to compare it against. Again, this is the rotor sitting on the ground. It's over a foot in diameter. There's the old worn out pad. This is typical of what you find of an old, worn out rotor. You can kind of see the edges where the original metal thickness. They tend to wear down quite a lot in the middle, so by the time they're worn out, you basically have to replace them. They're not machinable as they wear. They wear pretty heavily. Again, there's the pad — about 3 mm left, so it's basically worn out. It has a pad wear sensor as well, which is common on all European cars. The pad wear sensor, while the light wasn't on, it was just starting to get worn so it would have been only a matter of time before the light came on. For our final photo, we have the rear brakes. Again, a four piston caliper, slotted and cross-drilled rotor. Again, maximum performance.
Mark: So just leave that up for a second, Bernie. So the front brakes typically are quite a bit larger than the back brakes?
Bernie: Oh, yeah. Substantially larger.
Mark: Is this the largest brake that they would put into this that you can get on this kind of vehicle?
Bernie: They don't, actually. While it says AMG, and this is a sort of AMG brake, this is not the largest brake package you can get on this car. Most AMGs come with a ... well, it's an upgraded brake package, and they certainly stop the car incredibly fast, but you can spend extra money and you can get the AMG brake package, which has even larger rotors. They're usually a composite type rotor and larger pads. It actually takes the cost of your brake job from say maybe ... I'm just going to say off the top of my head. I can't remember the cost on this one, but maybe $800 or $1,000 to maybe over $3,000 because the rotors jump in price. On a lot of these cars, the rotors will be $1,200 apiece for the front, and the rears are actually not so much more money, but they put a lot more on the front. Usually, the rotors are around $1,200 apiece with the AMG package rotors versus about, I think these are about $300, so that's a huge price jump.
Mark: So you can get more AMG in your AMG.
Bernie: Exactly. I have driven quite a few of these cars. These things will stop really fast, but I guess if you're out racing on the track, which few people do, you'll probably appreciate having the bigger brakes, but for the average person, you'd really never notice the difference.
Mark: So what was involved with this particular brake job? Anything different than a normal brake job for you?
Bernie: No, it's very straightforward. It's replace the pads, replace the rotors. We lubricate, clean and lubricate any sliding parts and those brake pad wear sensors that I mentioned — there's only two in this car, one in the front axle, one in the rear. And then a brake fluid flush. The brake fluid usually needs to be flushed about every two to three years on these cars, so that's a standard service item. Other than that, there's nothing complex about it.
Mark: So AMG is obviously Mercedes' performance division. Is this a quick and reliable car?
Bernie: I'd say yeah, it's both. That's the nice thing about the AMG. You get a lot of performance, and it's reliable, as reliable as any other Mercedes would be, assuming you don't run it to the red line every time you put the gas pedal down. You're running it on the track all the time. You'll probably wear the car out faster. But for an average driver, yeah, this car will last you for years and be very reliable. It's not like you know ... It's not a Lambo, but it gives you performance close to that without the hassles and problems. So yeah, good, reliable car.
Mark: So there you go. If you're looking for service for your Mercedes AMG or otherwise in Vancouver, the guys to see are Pawlik Automotive. You can reach them at 604-327-7112 to book your appointment. Book ahead. They're busy. Remember, they're 19-time winners of best auto repair in Vancouver as voted by their customers. Or check out their website, pawlikautomotive.com. We've got many articles and videos on there. Or YouTube, Pawlik Auto Repair. Check out hundreds of videos on there over the last five years, or hopefully you're listening on our wonderful new podcast. Thanks, Bernie.
Bernie: Thanks, Mark.