Mercedes-AMG has introduced its all-new range-topping E-Class, the 2017 E63 and E63 S performance sedans, with the latter being the most powerful E-Class of all time.
As expected, the new models have dropped the outgoing models’ 5.5-litre twin-turbocharged V8 for a smaller, yet more powerful 4.0-litre twin-turbo, direct injected V8.
It makes 420kW (571hp) at 5,750-6,500rpm and 750Nm at 2,250-5,000rpm in the E63, and 450kW (612hp) at 5,750-6,500rpm and 850Nm at 2,500-4,500rpm in the E63 S, delivering 0-100km/h in 3.5 seconds and 3.4 seconds with launch control, respectively. Top speed is electronically limited to 250km/h (155mph), although ticking the AMG Driver’s Package box raises the limit to 300km/h (186mph).
Fuel consumption is rated at 8.9-9.2L/100km for both variants. To improve economy even further, the new AMG V8 can shut down four-cylinders in ‘Comfort’ mode if the driver is judicious in his/her throttle application and keeps the rpm between 1,000 to 3,250rpm.
Both E63 and E63 S drive through a 9-speed twin-clutch transmission and AMG Performance 4MATIC+ permanent all-wheel drive with variable torque distribution. No rear drive model will be on offer.
The E63 S also gets a ‘Drift Mode’ that delivers power exclusively to the rear wheels, which is activated using the shift paddles in the ‘Race’ drive programme with the ESP deactivated and the transmission is in manual mode.
As expected, the E63’s chassis has been beefed up to handle the extra power, including a specially tuned Air Body Control system, new front and rear sports suspension, a mechanical rear differential lock, three-stage ESP and an electromechanical speed-sensitive sports steering.
Uniquely in the segment, the E63 S is also fitted with dynamic engine mounts to balance the needs for comfort and optimum vehicle dynamics. The dynamic mounts are instantly and variably able to adapt their stiffness to the driving conditions and requirements.
Stopping power comes courtesy of a high-performance braking system with 360 x 36 mm discs at the front clamped by six piston calipers and 360 x 24 mm discs with single-piston floating calipers at the back. The E63 S gains even larger compound front disc brakes measuring 390 x 24 mm. Predictably, a set of AMG Carbon Ceramic brakes are available as an option. They measure 402 x 39 mm on the front and 360 x 32mm at the back.
Aesthetically, the E63 is defined by its muscular body kit with 17mm wider front wheel arches to accommodate the greater track width and larger 19-inch wheels (20-inch on the ‘S’), while at the back, there are four exhaust pipes, diffuser-look inserts and a discreet rear spoiler.
Inside, the interior gets a flat-bottomed sports steering wheel with 12 o’clock marking, front sports seats wrapped in black nappa leather and microfiber and AMG-specific instrument cluster.
The 2017 Mercedes-AMG E63 will make its official debut at the LA Motor Show before going on sale next March in Europe. Expect the car to arrive in Australian showrooms in the second half of 2017. An estate version will also follow next year.