By on December 2, 2019

Everyone has had that one neighbor with an impressively loud car that shook you out of bed every time they booted it up. Even if you absolutely loved their ride, you might not have appreciated it frightening you at sunrise. Fortunately, automakers have begun implementing features like Ford’s “Good Neighbor Mode,” to make this less of a problem on their more-raucous products. The Germans have had a similar idea, but they’re implementing it backwards.

Rather than having a way to select/schedule the times you want your loud vehicle to run quiet, Mercedes-AMG has all of its models automatically kicking over with the exhaust flaps closed. If you want their signature burble you have to select it using a loudness button typically located on the central console after startup — or activate the new “Emotion Start” feature. 

Presumably named after the phrase German engineers utter to themselves when attempting to get psyched up for the birth of a child, wedding day, or some other major life event, the system requires AMG owners to yank on the paddle shifters to activate. From there, the car knows to open up the pipes and rev it up a tad higher when you push the ignition button.

Then it immediately goes back into the default quiet mode, forcing you to flip the aforementioned loudness toggle if you want more sound. While similar to other quiet/loud settings found on modern automobiles in theory, the precise way in which Daimler’s performance arm is handling this has left us scratching our heads. Why not just leave it loud at that point? Is it just for bothering the neighbors and having an easy way of denying it?

Car and Driver posted a video of Emotion Start in action on a 2020 Mercedes-AMG GLC63 the day before Thanksgiving, claiming similar befuddlement regarding how the newly standard equipment operates. It also complained about Mercedes limiting free revs to 4,000 rpm — meaning you can’t go ape shit on the throttle to impress everyone in the high school parking lot. Granted, that’s not the kind of place you’d see many AMGs. But it’d still be nice to have the option for dads enduring a particularly brutal midlife crisis.

Obviously, we are not the target market Mercedes-AMG has in mind. Other media outlets will undoubtedly call this “charmingly German” while praising its quirkiness. This is a matter of taste and probably won’t be hurting the brand’s overall sales volume. Your author just found it odd and were wondering if you felt similarly.


[Image: Daimler]

Get the latest TTAC e-Newsletter!

44 Comments on “Mercedes-AMG Delivers ‘Emotion Start’ for the Intentionally Inconsiderate...”

  • avatar

    Yep, it’s official, we’ve run out of new ideas for options on cars

  • avatar

    I think a lot of cars limit revs to 4k when not under load. I thought it was bad for the engine, oil starvation and piston ring damage? I thought it was even more problematic for turbos.

    • 0 avatar
      Matt Posky

      This is true and I definitely wouldn’t recommend anyone cold start their vehicle and begin stomping on the gas pedal. But you’d think AMG would embrace the danger since they’re supposed to be manufacturing performance vehicles with swell-sounding exhaust systems.

    • 0 avatar

      Yeah Neutral Rev limiters are often set in the 3-4000 rpm.

  • avatar

    I was next to a new Roush Mustang at the gas pump and when that thing cranked up it was like a NHRA drag car. Sounded awesome but I’d hate to be that guy’s next door neighbor.

  • avatar

    “Emotion Start”: for generating negative emotions in neighbors and nearby pedestrians.

  • avatar
    Big Smoke

    Dusche start, in Germany. Unsure of the translation here.


  • avatar
    R Henry

    Humorous how the manufacturer can express opinion with how it configures default settings, etc. If I were a builder of VERY expensive toys, I would let my affluent clients set their own defaults any which way they wanted to.

  • avatar

    So the backlit 3-pointed star on the grill isn’t enough to signify you’re a douche-bag? (Edit: Matt beat me to it.)

    Take a drive through high-school parking lots in Potomac, MD and you’ll find AMGs.

  • avatar

    “Presumably named after the phrase German engineers utter to themselves when attempting to get psyched up for the birth of a child, wedding day, or some other major life event, the system requires AMG owners to yank on the paddle shifters to activate. From there, the car knows to open up the pipes and rev it up a tad higher when you push the ignition button.”

    This paragraph made me glad I clicked.

  • avatar

    More Cowbell.

  • avatar

    Men who have loud vehicles, most commonly Harley Davidsons, have serious anxiety issues that they are trying to compensate for. One way to bring it to the fore is to suggest to them that they could try Viagra.

    • 0 avatar

      My vehicles are quiet, with stock exhaust systems.

      That being said, that’s a rather obnoxious trope that gets rolled out when someone can’t just say “some people like something that I don’t like”. It’s almost as if you are compensating for something by suggesting there’s something wrong with people who like things that you don’t like.

      But maybe I’m wrong.

      Would you care to expound on what physical traits women have based upon their choice of vehicles? I’m sure we’d love to hear what generalizations that you would come up with.

      • 0 avatar

        That’s going to leave a mark.

      • 0 avatar

        My vehicles have all been modified, usually with loud(er) performance exhausts. I do it because its fun and sounds awesome, period end of story. The reactions I get are always thumbs up from like minded people who appreciate interesting vehicles. The only negative reactions are from killjoys who would NEVER confront me to my face or are online where one can be a keyboard hero to the other killjoys. But like in every other aspect of their pathetic lives, they remain irrelevant, ineffectual, and invisible. Said types usually have an unhealthy preoccupation with the state of other men’s’ ‘equipment’ which would raise questions…if we actually cared.

  • avatar

    “Emotion Start”…reminds me of the boyfriend of my one-time neighbor from hell, who used to make a point of revving up his Harley in his driveway every Saturday night at 11:30 pm on the dot. Given his routine BAL of well over .10, I’m amazed he wasn’t too blind to tell time to begin with, but you could pretty much set your clock by it.

    The fun ended one Saturday night with him crashing said Harley. He lost a leg. Then he totaled out his old 4Runner, which he backed into the driveway to better show off the stoved-in front end. Apparently the wreck caused a fuel leak, a problem he solved by putting a piece of Tupperware underneath to store the leaking gas. The container was dumped into the rain gutter every day. His classic quote when I asked him politely when he’d get the car out of his driveway: “f**k you, Jew-boy.” How pleasant!

    Eventually his girlfriend, who owned the house (and had a full-size tattoo of Yosemite Sam on her thigh), kicked him out. She soon became bored, and began verbally abusing my kids when they played in the backyard. At one point, she went to a HOA meeting and accused me of tunneling under her house to steal her cable, and concocting a virus to kill her four (!) Rottweilers, who were naturally left in her backyard 24/7 so they could bark incessantly.

    Amazingly enough, she snared another man, and the first time we met, he said he heard my (then) wife had some Oxy, and asked me if he could buy some off us. He routinely drove around drunk with his grade-schooler kid in the back seat.

    If she ever wins the lottery, she’ll be first in line for this d-bag AMG.

    • 0 avatar
      Menar Fromarz

      This comment wins the d bag neighbor of the year award. Well done you didn’t resort to an accident as they say.

    • 0 avatar

      “and had a full-size tattoo of Yosemite Sam on her thigh”

      So not all bad then.

    • 0 avatar
      Arthur Dailey

      Demonstrating yet again why according to a number of current studies, the 2nd most reliable indicator of who well your children will do in life is the quality of the neighbourhood that they grew up in.

      More important than their parents income or education level.

      • 0 avatar

        What are the metrics of neighborhood quality?

      • 0 avatar

        ” the 2nd most reliable indicator of who well your children will do in life is the quality of the neighbourhood that they grew up in.”

        I don’t know about that. That’s pretty far fetched, IMO.

        I’ve known kids from ritzy upper-class neighborhoods who had an Ivy League education that completely self-destructed on drugs and alcohol.

        And I’ve known kids who grew up dirt poor and clawed their way out of poverty to live a pretty comfortable life today.

        Hey, one of those kids from dirt-poor LEGAL and DOCUMENTED immigrants was……..ME! Oui, Moi!

        • 0 avatar

          The number one indicator is whether or not you grew up in a household with a mother and father who remained married to one another. They’re still just indicators though. That one has a higher correlation with success than local school quality, ethnicity, or family finances do. People are still individuals though. I know many successful people who have siblings that are basket cases if they’re still around at all.

    • 0 avatar

      FreedMike, have you considered perhaps a better neighborhood? That’s awful.

      You could start a Go Fund Me to help you move with a story like that

      • 0 avatar

        I ended up divorcing my wife and moved out (it’ll be 10 years this coming May). Problem solved. But the neighborhood wasn’t the issue – it’s an educated, affluent subdivision where houses go for half a mil these days. We just happened to draw this particular freekshow neighbor.

        I did see her a couple of years ago at the grocery store. I’d lost about 120 pounds in the intervening years, and she’d put on about 120. She told me I looked great. I smiled and asked her whether she’d graduated from Jack Daniels to meth. #NoF*cksGiven

    • 0 avatar

      How colorful.

  • avatar
    Menar Fromarz

    More proof positive that Mercedes ain’t what it used to be. Hard for me to say, as I drive one, but this type of thinking just kills the brand for me.

  • avatar

    Going all electric will solve that problem. It is about time Daimler to lay off seasoned ICE engineers and hire recent college graduates with fresh green mobility ideas. Say NO to AMG!

  • avatar

    This fart on start exhaust feature is only on the V8 powered “63” vehicles. Any Performance Exhaust AMG have a switch on the console. I only bought the Performance Exhaust option because, at least on the 43 models, is a proper dual exhaust with H connector, whereas the standard exhaust is a two into one back into two. If you leave it off, it’s normal, turning it on brings out a tuned resonance.

    The options between the 6 and 8 powered cars are minimal in AMG land, they really have to Gild the Lily by the time they get to the 63 cars….Personally, I leave mine off unless passing someone who needs to hear it….

  • avatar

    Pathetic automatic scum.

    • 0 avatar

      I’d have bought a stick shift if it was offered…but I have to admit that the 9 speed autobox is excellent and bangs off shifts, depending on mode, like a good firearm, or like grandpa’s old school Turbohydromatic….

Read all comments

Recent Comments

  • Astigmatism: For anyone who uses their car primarily as a commuter in an urban or suburban area, having an EV that...
  • FreedMike: Sure, but the only way ANYONE gets voted out in a non-“safe” district or state is huge...
  • zipper69: quote: “…convince more prospective buyers to ditch the $19,995 (before taxes, destination fees,...
  • 285exp: If their constituents don’t agree with them, they can vote them out, regardless of who you think is buying...
  • slavuta: Luke42 Intercourse is obsolete. It was needed to advance the specie. Then it was needed to create helping...

New Car Research

Get a Free Dealer Quote

Who We Are

  • Adam Tonge
  • Bozi Tatarevic
  • Corey Lewis
  • Jo Borras
  • Mark Baruth
  • Ronnie Schreiber