New models - Mercedes-Benz - E-class - E63 AMG range
Pricing holds firm on Mercedes E63 AMG
Now with twin-turbo V8, Mercedes E63 sedan remains at $240,985 as wagon also arrives
20 Oct 2011
By TERRY MARTIN
MERCEDES-BENZ Australia/Pacific has announced that its upgraded E63 AMG sedan will be priced from the same $240,985 as the current model when it reaches showrooms in the coming weeks, despite featuring a smaller 5.5-litre twin-turbocharged V8 that makes the high-performance four-door quicker and more fuel efficient than the 6.2 bent-eight it replaces.
An E63 AMG Estate also makes a return to the Australian marketplace, requiring an additional $3515 over the sedan to start from $244,500 (plus on-road costs), while an optional AMG Performance package that increases maximum turbo boost pressure from 1.0 to 1.3 bar – sending peak power from 386kW to 410Nm and torque from 700Nm to 800Nm – is available on both the sedan (for $17,900) and wagon ($16,900).
Already in service in other models in the Mercedes-Benz line-up, the all-new ‘M157’ twin-turbo 5461cc V8 delivers its maximum power between 5250 and 5750rpm with or without the Performance pack, while peak torque is available between 1750rpm and 5000rpm (2000-4500rpm with the extra boost).
Continuing with a seven-speed AMG Speedshift MCT transmission (which features a wet start-up clutch instead of a conventional torque converter), E63 acceleration from zero to 100km/h is now achieved in 4.2 seconds for the Performance-pack sedan, while the regular sedan adds a tenth of a second to be two-tenths quicker than its 386kW/630Nm 6.2-litre predecessor.
The wagon is close behind, at 4.4 seconds from 0-100km/h for the regular version, or at the same mark as the sedan (4.3) with the Performance enhancements.
Maximum speed for both E63 models remains at an electronically limited 250km/h.
Combined-cycle fuel consumption is rated at 10.0 litres per 100km for the sedan with or without the Performance pack (10.1L/100km for the wagon), while CO2 emissions are 234g/km (wagon: 236).
The outgoing E63 sedan returns 12.7L/100km and 298g/km.
Mercedes-Benz claims that some of the extra efficiency is attributable to AMG’s new electromechanical speed-sensitive sports steering system, which offers a more direct 14:1 ratio and only draws power when the vehicle is actually being steered.
However, as GoAuto has reported, the key factor behind the 21 per cent fall in consumption is the oversquare all-aluminium DOHC V8 itself, which features spray-guided direct petrol injection with piezo injectors, variable valve timing, air/water intercooling, generator management and a switchable idle-stop system.
New 19-inch AMG wheels are fitted as standard to both models, remaining the same size as before but with light-alloy construction and a 10-spoke design, fitted with 255/R35 R19 tyres on the front and 285/30-section rubber at the rear.
An AMG high-performance braking system, with weight-saving composite front discs, is also fitted standard, along with three-mode selectable damping and electronic stability control systems.
AMG Ride Control sports suspension also features on the latest E63, comprising rear air suspension and revised front steel-spring suspension. The front track has been widened by 56mm and includes independent wheel carriers, for increased negative camber at the front and, according to Mercedes, clear benefits in terms of grip when driving through fast corners.
As well as the new alloy wheels, the upgraded E63 is readily identified by the ‘V8 BITURBO’ front-quarter badging rather than the ‘6.3 V8’ lettering of the outgoing model. There are also slight modifications to the AMG bodykit, while the AMG sports exhaust system has twin chrome-plated tailpipes.
Chief among the minor cabin changes is the adoption of a three-dimensional full-colour TFT display in the centre of the speedo, as seen on the CLS63 AMG.
As well as the turbo modifications, Performance versions pick up a genuine carbon-fibre engine cover, AMG Performance steering wheel with black Alcantara grips, red brake callipers and, in the sedan’s case, an electric rear window blind and genuine carbon-fibre AMG bootlid spoiler.
The upgraded ES63 AMG will go head-to-head with BMW’s all-new fifth-generation M5 sedan due here early next year, complete with a similarly downsized engine – from V10 to twin-turbocharged 4.4-litre V8 – that nonetheless packs a considerable punch in the form of 412kW/680Nm and 0-100km/h acceleration in just 4.4 seconds.
Also coming in the first half of next year will be another formidable rival in the form of Audi’s new S6 sedan, which likewise drops a V10 in favour of a 309kW/550Nm twin-turbo 4.0-litre V8, and – with standard AWD and a new seven-speed S-tronic gearbox (replacing the current six-speed unit) – can hit 100km/h from standstill in 4.8 seconds.
The S6 Avant is, like the ES63 AMG Estate, one-tenth behind at 4.9 seconds.
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