Fast new Merc E-Class
Mercedes has released the first details of an AMG high performance version of its new E-Class. And no, before you ask, it's not the new E 63...
The E 63, with its thermo-nuclear power outputs will be along any time now, but before we get to that, here's the E 43 AMG, a sort of mid-ranking hot E-Class with a new twin-turbo V6 petrol engine and plenty enough power for most of us.
How much power? A maximum of 401hp, backed up by 520Nm of torque thanks to new twin turbos and a clever low-friction cylinder liner material called Nanoslide (no, really), which has been developed by the Mercedes-AMG F1 racing team.
Power is delivered through an updated and uprated version of the relatively new 9G-Tronic nine-speed automatic gearbox, which Mercedes claims is lighter and has lower friction than the old seven-speed unit. As well as the usual Eco and Comfort modes, there's also Sport and Sport Plus, which not only allow the gearbox to skip gears on the way down, but also fire a volley of revs between changes as its blips the throttle. Mercedes calls this 'emotional gearchanging.'
Power goes, as standard, to all four wheels with 69 per cent going to the rear. The 0-100km/h dash is done with in just 4.6 seconds, with a limited top speed of 250km/h. Emissions are a surprisingly-not-bad 189g/km.
Also offering Comfort, Sport and Sport Plus settings is the air suspension system, which has been specially tweaked and re-worked by AMG. The suspension components are also more rigid and the steering has been specially set up, and now also has Comfort and Sport settings.
Brakes are by 360mm discs with four-piston callipers at the front, with single-piston callipers at the rear.
Outside, you get a deep, three-piece front airdam, chromed quad exhausts and a boot lid spoiler. The 19-inch AMG alloys are finished in gloss black, while 20-inch rims are on the options list. Inside, Artico man-made leather and Dinamica fake suede are standard, but you can have Nappa leather as an option. The rooflining is black, the seatbelts are red and the pedals are aluminium. Tasty.
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