Hey, what’s that? Well, it could be the upcoming Mercedes-AMG C63 in camouflage during some on-road testing. This particular camouflaged C-Class has some very large fender flares that hint that this could be the upcoming hybrid AMG C63 saloon. During the silent drive by it confirms that there’s is no chance a Mercedes-AMG-built V8 is under the bonnet of this stealthy sports saloon.

If you haven’t heard the rumours surrounding the upcoming Mercedes-AMG C63, let me break things down for you. Mercedes-AMG is moving into a new hybridized era where it will offer hybrid versions of its 2.0-litre turbocharged inline-4 and 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8. The big hybrid V8 is reserved for top-tier Mercedes-AMG products like the Mercedes-AMG GT coupe and saloon. The smaller turbocharged inline-4 hybrid will find its home in mid-tier Mercedes-AMG products like the AMG C63 while base level AMGs will skip the hybrid components and just offer a boosted inline-4.

This is a massive departure from Mercedes-AMG’s past as a V8-centric brand known for building some of the best-sounding cars on the road. What we are losing in theater we are gaining in performance and sustainability. Mercedes-AMG has learned a great deal from its dominant F1 team and seven constructor titles prove they know a thing or two about building a quick hybrid.

This massive change for the AMG C63 is certainly a shock, however, it is a sign of the times. Sports saloons as we know them will need to evolve to survive and there’s simply no easy way to offer a high-performance V8 without hybrid assistance. Thankfully regulations surrounding emissions have lead car companies to build even faster products and we look forward to seeing just how quick the new Mercedes-AMG lineup is.