How does this transmission differ from the old one? Well, it does not have a torque converter. It uses a compact wet clutch setup with multiple clutches hence the name MCT (multi-clutch technology). It is a dual clutch transmission but not a true dual clutch. Confusing, yes, but really it is the automatic we all know with the torque converter replaced by wet clutch packs. This allows faster shifts of about 100 milliseconds.
This transmission is available already in the SL63 and E63 AMG. It is also used with the new twin turbo V8 motors and is featured in the CLS63 AMG which makes us think it can handle a bit of torque. It is also lighter than the previous automatic transmission weighing in at 80 kilograms.
There are multiple modes the user can choose to use with the transmission. There are four shifting modes the driver can choose from. There is also a completely manual function which will not up-shift automatically for the driver which is a huge plus and mitigates some of the driver interaction advantage BMW has had for some time. Additionally, a "race start" mode is features which is a fancy way of saying launch control.
Overall, this is a great development for the C63 as Mercedes continues to improve the model and make it far more of a drivers car. Mercedes continues to raise the bar and we applaud their efforts. What we are left wondering is if tuners will be able to crack the transmission software on this trans and just how much torque it can handle. Time will tell, but this makes things very interesting in the sport sedan segment as it appears Mercedes has surpassed the M3 by continually upgrading the C63 while the M3 has stayed stagnant.