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New 430kW E 63 AMG wins power war

At this point it seems unlikely that there will ever be a peace treaty in the long-fought super-saloon (and wagon) power war.

To some of us it would make more sense to embark on radical weight-saving measures to procure world-beating performance, but the Germans - and one Brit - seem intent on packing on the killer-watts.

The point of all this is that the segment has a new leader. Mercedes-Benz has just officially announced its new E 63 AMG, which has an 'S' model option that thumps out 430kW and 800Nm of brute twisting force.

This gives it more ammo than the new 412kW/700Nm Audi RS 6 Avant, 412kW/680Nm BMW M5 and 405kW/680Nm Jaguar XFR-S.

To keep its style game alive, the new E 63 been given a bolder rendition of the latest E-Class facelift, complete with AMG's 'twin-blade' grille and 'A-wing' front apron.

TWIN-TURBO V8

But it's the powerhouse under the bonnet that's really going to grab the attention. It uses a version of AMG's new 5.5-litre twin-turbo V8 engine - which also claims to be the most efficient series-production V8 in the world.

But we're sure you're more interested in the other numbers. The standard E 63 pushes 410kW at 5500rpm and 720Nm from 1750 and its creator says it'll dart from 0-100km/h in 4.2 seconds.

As mentioned, the S-Model (which has an increased turbo boost) is good for 430kW at 5500rpm and 800Nm from 1750, allowing a 3.6-second joyride to 100. Both are limited to 250km/h.

These outputs will also apply to the upgraded CLS 63 AMG models.

ALL-WHEEL DRIVE

For the first time, an AMG-tuned 4-Matic all-wheel drive system is available as an option on the standard E 63. Otherwise drive is through the rear wheels via a seven-speed MCT Speedshift transmission, which comes with four selectable modes, a Race Start launch control function and a mechanism that allows for automatic double-declutching while downshifting.

This ain't your granddad's wheels.

Furthermore, the E 63 S-Model caters for track day fanatics with a diff lock on the rear axle.

For those more civilised driving conditions, the sports suspension system on both E 63 derivatives has an electronically controlled damping system. And while the front end has conventional steel springs (and further minor enhancements for the S), the rear axle on both models houses a fully load-bearing air suspension system.

Bringing you to a stop is an AMG high-performance braking system, but if that doesn't sound good enough, a ceramic high-performance compound brake system is available as an option on the S.

The international roll-out of the new E 63 (sedan and wagon) starts in April this year, so with a little luck we may see it on local shores by year-end.

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