Mercedes-Benz has always been a leader in automotive engineering and design, especially when it comes to the S-Class, the pinnacle of its lineup. The latest addition to the family comes from AMG, their high-powered vehicle division, in the form of the all-new S 63 E Performance.
And, if you think hybrid after seeing that nameplate, you are definitely right. This sumptuous sedan offers unparalleled performance and comfort, making it the perfect choice for those who want a luxurious driving experience, but sprinkled with the AMG magic touch. Under the hood is a powerful 4.0-liter Twin Turbo V8 combined with the AMG-specific hybrid powertrain and a new expansion stage for its high-performance battery (HPB).
Dubbed the HPB 150, this all-new unit builds upon the high-performance architecture and design of the already-established HPB 80, which features direct cooling for its cells. From a 6.1 kWh capacity in the HPB 80 to 13.1 kWh in the case of the HPB 150, the amount of stored energy increases significantly, also increasing the all-electric driving range up to 21 miles (33 km).
However, we should all know by now that the powertrain emphasis of an AMG-badged PHEV model is based primarily on delivering state-of-art performance at the instant tap of the accelerator pedal rather than maximizing the electric range.
Thus, the total system power sits around the 791 hp (802 PS) mark, producing an even more mind-boggling torque figure of 1,055 lb-ft (1430 Nm), raising the bar high up in the luxury performance saloon segment. The superlative stats are backed up by the 0 to 62 mph (100 kph) acceleration times of 3.3 seconds and a limited top speed of 155 mph (250 kph), or 180 mph (290 kph) if optioned with the AMG Driver’s Pack.
Even more, there is a wide range of driving systems that help maintain peak driving dynamics and comfort in any road conditions, such as the AMG RIDE CONTROL+ suspension setup and ACTIVE RIDE CONTROL roll stabilization, coupled with standard rear-axle steering and many other bells and whistles. High-performance composite brakes, electromechanical speed-sensitive power steering, variable steering ratio, and variable power assistance are further enhancements that surely help put a smile on your face when behind the wheel of the mighty S 63 E Performance.
Positioned at the rear axle, the 188 hp (190 PS) electric motor is combined with a dedicated two-speed gearbox and an electronically controlled limited-slip rear differential, forming together the so-called electric drive unit (EDU). This design can also be found on the other E Performance offerings from the Affalterbach-based company, often referred to as the P3 hybrid architecture by its technicians.
Also a critical component to the aforementioned framework, the HPB is housed towards the back of the vehicle, just above the rear axle assembly. The AMG high-performance battery boosts the car’s total performance by combining lightweight construction with a high-density energy capacity that can be called up, drawn, and replenished quickly and effortlessly.
Bypassing the 9-speed gearbox, which flanges to the V8 engine, is a clear benefit of the EDU arrangement. In other words, as it is placed behind the car’s transmission, the unit can completely use the torque of both drive units, resulting in a class-leading total system torque record.
On the outside, the all-new Mercedes-AMG S 63 E PERFORMANCE impresses the beholder with an expressive silhouette that alludes to its remarkable performance. The vehicle boasts for the first time the AMG-specific radiator grille with vertical louvers and a sizable three-pointed star right in the center.
The front view also grabs your attention with a front apron that follows a jet-wing shape, immense side air inlets, and aerodynamically-functional air curtains. The up to 21-inch AMG forged wheels and side sill panels, exclusive to AMG, are particularly noticeable when looking at the daunting saloon from the side. The giant rear diffuser with longitudinal fins and the trapezoidal fluted twin tailpipes finish off the appearance of the vehicle, standing out as the distinctive elements of any ’63 AMG-badged model.
On the inside, the AMG-specific elements are mixed together with the top-notch S-Class interior furnishings that Mercedes-Benz is widely known for. The seats’ exquisite stitching and unique AMG upholstery pattern highlight a prosperous appeal together with the exclusive shades and diverse Nappa leather upholstery.
Engraved AMG logos in the front head restraints and the AMG Performance steering wheel with AMG steering wheel buttons and specific trim components further compliment the S 63 E PERFORMANCE’s sporty and wealthy essence. Additionally, the First-Class experience of the rear compartment with its multi-contoured seats illustrates the vehicle’s ambitions to become the market leader in its segment.
The vehicle is expected to go on sale within the next year, but the exact pricing and availability date have not yet been announced. Future buyers should expect the S 63 E Performance to take the crown as the most expensive model in the range. As a reference, the current S 500 starts at $115,550, so anticipate the S 63 E Performance to near or even exceed the $200,000 mark.