2018 MERCEDES-AMG E63 S
“Remember when AMG sedans were basically just sickeningly- fastin- a- straight- line luxury cars?” Morrison asked. “The AMG E63 S wouldn’t be recognizable to its older family members.”
To be fair, Mercedes sent us a car with nearly $40,000 in options, some that compromise the 603-horsepower sedan. Morrison’s point was well taken, though: Historically, the E63 has been a somewhat understated, massively powerful luxury four-door with a glorious V-8. The ultra-hard
$2,500 AMG Performance seats are the key issue here, but the matte black paint along with the garish exterior decals and yellow interior stitching accompanying the Edition Components package certainly don’t diminish the pure-performance character. The suspension setup fitted to all E63s is overly stiff at low speeds, forcing you to reach for a nonexistent “extra-comfort” mode for the adjustable air suspension, but the body control is exemplary. With the standard seats and a less gaudy cosmetic setup, the 186-mph fiveseater does maintain much of the E63 legacy—and pushes it to new heights.
The twin-turbo V-8 is an absolute peach. There’s massive low-end grunt, but it still rewards when revved, both aurally and physically. Plus, its output trumps Mercedes-AMG’s own GT R track monster by 26 horsepower and a rather crazy 111 lb-ft of torque. The E63’s nine-speed automatic is a big step up from the old seven-speed, and there’s a new all-wheel-drive system. Even though the car weighs more than 4,500 pounds, the AMG sedan can now dance. Traction is never an issue, and the E63 rotates impressively, especially when you remember that hefty mass.
We’ll soon have to compare the E63 to the new BMW M5, but it’s quite a world when there’s now a variety of 600-hp sedans available to us Yanks. And don’t forget MERCEDESAMG offers a second E63—the wagon. Either way, just make sure to stick with the standard seats.
— Marc Noordeloos
No More Straddling the Line
PRICE: $105,395/$145,160 (base/as tested) ENGINE:
4.0L DOHC 32-valve twin-turbo V-8/603 hp @ 5,750 rpm, 627 lb-ft @ 2,500 rpm TRANSMISSION: 9-speed automatic LAYOUT:
4-door, 5-passenger, front-engine, AWD sedan EPA MILEAGE:
15/22 mpg (city/hwy)
L x W x H:
196.4 x 75.1 x 56.6 in WHEELBASE: