Piggyback-Tuned AMG C43 Runs 12s, Makes Impressive Power

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Mercedes-AMG C43 Piggyback-Tuned

If you have a Mercedes-AMG C43, adding a $400 ‘piggyback’ tuning device can get you well into the low-12s.

The Mercedes-Benz C43 AMG sedan is an impressive performance machine, with the twin-turbocharged 3.0L V6 providing 362 horsepower and 384 lb-ft of torque. When that power is funneled through the 9-speed automatic transmission and the advanced all-wheel-drive system, this sleek sedan is capable of scooting down the quarter mile in the high 12-second range.

Those are great numbers, but forum member “18bora” found that with nothing more than a “piggyback” tuning device, the AMG C43 can get down into the low 12-second range.

Tuning the C43

The OP who owns the AMG shown above has shared quite a few threads on the forum as he has made his AMG progressively quicker over the past few months. The car is completely stock except for the addition of a “piggyback” tuning device. After spending some time working with the canned tune that came with the piggyback, the OP wanted to get more out of it, so he began tinkering with the tuning parameters of the device.

As a result, he was able to work his best quarter mile time down to a 12.081 at 116 miles per hour. Again, that is a tuned C43 with no other modifications tickling the 11-second range. In this thread in the W205 section, he explains all of his tuning methods, along with providing some short launch videos and a dyno sheet.

Tuned C43 on the Dyno

Speaking of the dyno sheet, that might be the most impressive aspect of this tuning thread, as this C43 laid down 352 horsepower and 376 lb-ft of torque at all four wheels. The OP provides stock dyno numbers of 222 and 274, but those are unreasonably low for a stock C43. However, the tuned numbers of 352 and 376 look like solid figures for one of these AMG sedans with a tune. Based on an 18 percent drivetrain loss factor, 352 all-wheel horsepower leads to roughly 430 horsepower at the crankshaft. That represents a gain of nearly 70 horsepower from the $400 tuning device.

The  bottom line here is that if you are looking to get more performance out of your Mercedes-Benz C43 AMG sedan, a custom tune applied via a piggyback can make a big difference.

"Before I was old enough to walk, my dad was taking me to various types of racing events, from local drag racing to the Daytona 500," says Patrick Rall, a lifetime automotive expert, diehard Dodge fan, and respected auto journalist for over 10 years. "He owned a repair shop and had a variety of performance cars when I was young, but by the time I was 16, he was ready to build me my first drag car – a 1983 Dodge Mirada that ran low 12s. I spent 10 years traveling around the country, racing with my dad by my side. While we live in different areas of the country, my dad still drag races at 80 years old in the car that he built when I was 16 while I race other vehicles, including my 2017 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat and my 1972 Dodge Demon 340.

"Although I went to college for accounting, my time in my dad’s shop growing up allowed me the knowledge to spend time working as a mechanic before getting my accounting degree, at which point I worked in the office of a dealership group. While I was working in the accounting world, I continued racing and taking pictures of cars at the track. Over time, I began showing off those pictures online and that led to my writing.

"Ten years ago, I left the accounting world to become a full-time automotive writer and I am living proof that if you love what you do, you will never “work” a day in your life," adds Rall, who has clocked in time as an auto mechanic, longtime drag racer and now automotive journalist who contributes to nearly a dozen popular auto websites dedicated to fellow enthusiasts.

"I love covering the automotive industry and everything involved with the job. I was fortunate to turn my love of the automotive world into a hobby that led to an exciting career, with my past of working as a mechanic and as an accountant in the automotive world provides me with a unique perspective of the industry.

"My experience drag racing for more than 20 years coupled with a newfound interest in road racing over the past decade allows me to push performance cars to their limit, while my role as a horse stable manager gives me vast experience towing and hauling with all of the newest trucks on the market today.

"Being based on Detroit," says Rall, "I never miss the North American International Auto Show, the Woodward Dream Cruise and Roadkill Nights, along with spending plenty of time raising hell on Detroit's Woodward Avenue with the best muscle car crowd in the world.

Rall can be contacted at [email protected]

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