x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 23 January 2018

A review of the 2014 Mercedes-Benz E 63 AMG.

Mercedes-Benz E 63 AMG S-Model 4Matic Wagon. Courtesy of Mercedes-Benz
Mercedes-Benz E 63 AMG S-Model 4Matic Wagon. Courtesy of Mercedes-Benz

Occasionally, in the perusal of press material, you happen upon a statistic so outrageous that it jumps right off the page. Indeed, as I down-arrowed my way through Mercedes-Benz Canada’s seemingly endless 221-page PDF of all that is AMG, my eye somehow caught the fact that the new S version of AMG’s E 63 4Matic Wagon had exactly the same acceleration time as the SLS GT (the lesser model of the Black that is also tested on this page). Sure that I had misread, I checked no less than three times, only to find that, indeed, the boxy 2014 Mercedes-Benz E 63 S Wagon and the lithe SLS GT accelerate to 100kph in the same 3.7 seconds (the hyped-up Black version is just 0.1 seconds quicker).

And it turns out that the S Wagon does indeed generate the warp-factor acceleration expected, the twice-turbocharged, 5.5L V8’s 577 horses working in tandem with an even more impressive 800Nm of torque. That all that power is directed through all four wheels – with a sporty 33/67 front-to-rear-torque split – means that the big E 63 gets phenomenal traction that helps mitigate its 2,045kg kerb weight.

Less expected was that it handles a treat, as well. Hooning around the small and tight Streets of Willow course – all tight hairpins and S-turns – at Willow Springs Raceway, any car as heavy as the big Mercedes should have understeered its way deep into the desert. Yet the E 63 Wagon had noticeably less front-end “push” and significantly more grip than the much lighter CLA 45 AMG, which, by the way, could probably fit in its gigantic boot.

Indeed, what makes the E 63 S Wagon so impressive is that its alter ego is a perfectly civilized family hauler with room for five and 695 litres – 1,950 when the rear seats are folded – of luggage-swallowing cargo space. Indeed, just about the only fault that I can find with the new 2014 E 63 AMG S-Model Wagon is that it costs US$102,370 (Dh376,005) in the US; it also has to be special-ordered here, with a UAE price on request.

weekend@thenational.ae

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