Mercedes-Benz AMG 5.5-litre V8 biturbo engine
Power output of up to 410 kW and consumption of 9.8 litres per 100 km
Maximum performance in all areas - this is the strength of the new Mercedes-Benz E 63 AMG.
And nowhere is this seen more than in the AMG 5.5-litre V8 biturbo engine: whether its torque and power delivery, engine sound, suitability for long journeys or renowned Mercedes -Benz reliability, the powerful 410 kW eight-cylinder engine is able to meet all of the demands which are made of it.
Future challenges also include being able to achieve optimum values when it comes to efficiency too, however. Here again the E 63 AMG is setting standards, as evidenced by its fuel consumption of 9.8 litres (Estate 10.0 litres) per 100 kilometres (NEDC combined).
As such the new E 63 AMG demonstrates that exciting dynamism and low fuel consumption are not necessarily mutually exclusive. The basis for this is a unique combination of innovative high-tech systems such as direct petrol injection, twin turbochargers, air/water intercooling and the stop/start function.
Mercedes-AMG is systematically following the trend towards increasing efficiency with its V8 biturbo engine: with a displacement of 5461 cubic centimetres, the eight-cylinder engine is precisely 747 cc below the 6208 cc of the naturally aspirated AMG 6.3-litre V8. It develops a peak output of 386 kW and maximum torque of 700 Nm. In conjunction with the AMG Performance Package these figures increase to 410 kW and 800 Nm.
Despite an increase in output and torque of compared with the naturally aspirated V8, which develops 386 kW and 630 Nm, the AMG engineers have been able to reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions considerably. With an NEDC combined fuel consumption of 9.8 litres per 100 kilometres (Estate 10.0 l/100 km), the new E 63 AMG betters its predecessor by 2.8 litres.
This fuel saving of more than 22 percent is not only considered a quantum leap by engine specialists. Equally impressive are CO2 emissions: at 230 grams per kilometre (estate 234 g/km), the figure is also 22 percent lower than for the previous model (295 and 299 g/km). And both engine variants achieve the same consumption and emission values either with or without the AMG Performance package.
The new E 63 AMG – the most efficient vehicle in its class
Casting an eye over the competition reveals the E 63 AMG to be the most efficient vehicle in its class. Thanks to the reduced consumption levels, it has been possible to reduce the fuel tank volume from 80 to 66 litres. An 80-litre tank is also available as an option, however.
The achievement of these efficiency and environmental aims has no negative effects whatsoever on dynamic performance. On the contrary, as the AMG 5.5 litre V8 biturbo fully lives up to AMG's brand commitment to "performance": the E 63 AMG accelerates from zero to 100 km/h in 4.3 seconds, and with the AMG Performance package the sedan reaches the 100 km/h mark in 4.2 seconds. The top speed of both engine variants is 250 km/h (electronically limited).
A quick glance at the technical data also shows the tremendous torque which the eight-cylinder biturbo engine has to offer. Together with the excellent performance, the accelerating power helps to determine the driving impression. Some 700 Nm of torque can be called upon across a broad engine speed range from 1750 to 5000 rpm - 70 Nm more than previously.
When combined with the AMG Performance package, the effect is even more impressive: now 800 Nm of torque becomes available between 2000 and 4500 rpm. The result is effortlessly superior power delivery, which can be enjoyed to the full in manual "M" transmission mode in particular.
Key data at a glance:
E 63 AMG
E 63 AMG Estate
Cylinder arrangement V8 V8
Valves per cylinder 4 4
5 461 cc 5 461 cc
Bore x stroke
98.0 x 90.5 mm 98.0 x 90.5 mm
106 mm 106 mm
Output 386 kW
at 5 250 – 5 750 r/min
at 5 250 – 5 750 r/min* 386 kW
at 5 250 – 5 750 r/min
at 5 250 – 5 750 r/min*
Output per litre 71 kW
75 kW * 71 kW
at 1 750 – 5 000 r/min
at 2 000 – 4 500 r/min* 700 Nm
at 1 750 – 5 000 r/min
at 2 000 – 4 500 r/min*
Torque per litre 128 Nm
146 Nm* 128 Nm
Maximum engine speed
6 400 r/min 6 400 r/min
20.8 bar* 18.5 bar
Engine weight (dry) 204 kg 204 kg
0.36 kg* 0.39 kg
NEDC combined 9.8 l per 100 km 10.0 l per 100 km
230 g/km 234 g/km
Acceleration 0 - 100 km/h 4.3 sec
4.2 sec* 4.4 sec
250 km/h* 250 km/h*
* with AMG Performance package; ** electronically limited
Combination of twin turbocharging and direct petrol injection
Mercedes-AMG is presenting an attractive high-tech power package with its combination of biturbo charging and direct petrol injection with spray-guided combustion. The innovative injection technology brings decisive advantages with respect to fuel consumption and exhaust emissions, thanks to higher thermodynamic efficiency.
Particularly fast and precise piezo-electric injectors spray the fuel into the combustion chambers, ensuring a particularly fine distribution of the fuel droplets into the air in the combustion chamber. The result is highly effective combustion.
An electric low-pressure pump delivers the fuel from the tank to a high-pressure pump in the boot with a pressure of six bar.
The fuel pressure in the high-pressure rail is controlled between 100 and 200 bar on a fully variable and demand-related basis.
Two exhaust gas turbochargers and efficient air/water intercooling
Two exhaust gas turbochargers located next to the cylinder banks supply the eight cylinders with fresh air. At their maximum speed of 185 000 r/min under full load, the two turbochargers force 1750 kg of air into the combustion chambers per hour. The maximum charge pressure is 1.0 bar, and 1.3 bar with the AMG Performance package. Thanks to their specific, compact construction – the turbine housings are welded to the exhaust manifold –
there are significant space advantages and the catalytic converters also heat up more rapidly.
The AMG V8 is the first turbocharged engine to dispense with the usual blow-off valve. This neat solution enabled the compressor housing to be made extremely compact. To ensure agile responsiveness with no time lag, all the air ducts in the intake tract are as short as possible.
The wastegate valve, which reduces the pressure in the exhaust system during negative load changes, is vacuum-controlled via an electropneumatic converter. This allows dethrottling under partial loads, which in turn lowers the fuel consumption.
As was already the case in the AMG 6.0-litre V12 biturbo engine, the eight-cylinder direct-injection unit uses particularly efficient air/water intercooling.
The low-temperature cooler with its water circulation is space-savingly accommodated within the V of the cylinder banks. It effectively cools down the intake air compressed by the turbochargers before it enters the combustion chambers, and maintains a constantly low intake temperature under full load.
A large radiator at the car's front end ensures defined cooling of the water circulating in the low-temperature circuit. This guarantees a high output and torque yield in all ambient temperatures and operating conditions.
Extremely short charge air ducting makes for outstanding responsiveness. The stainless steel pressure pipes for the fresh and charge air are produced by the hydroforming process, have a wall thickness of only 0.8 millimetres and are designed for particularly low pressure loss.
Aluminium crankcase with Silitec cylinder liners
The crankcase of the AMG 5.5-litre V8 biturbo engine is of diecast aluminium. The low (dry) engine weight of just 204 kilograms is the result of uncompromising lightweight construction methods, and leads to the car's very balanced weight distribution. The bearing cover for the main crankshaft bearings is of grey cast iron, and is bolted to the crankcase for high rigidity. Cast-in Silitec cylinder liners ensure that the eight pistons operate with low friction.
Drilled ventilation holes in the crankcase lead to a higher output and fuel savings under partial load: above the bearing blocks there are longitudinally drilled holes which connect the adjacent crankcase cavities.
Normally the upward and downward movement of the pistons causes air to be forced into and extracted from the sump, which leads to increased internal friction losses and therefore a reduction in output. The ventilation holes prevent this by ensuring effective pressure compensation between the cavities.
The forged crankshaft of high-grade 38MnS6BY steel alloy rotates in five main bearings, has eight counterweights and has been optimised with respect to torsional rigidity, inertia, low rotating masses and a long operating life.
A two-mass viscous damper mounted at the front reliably eliminates vibrations. Each connecting rod journal on the crankshaft carries two forged, cracked connecting rods. In the interests of low mechanical friction and high wear resistance, the lightweight pistons have a metallic contact surface. Pressure-controlled oil-spray nozzles in the crankcase ensure that the highly stressed piston crowns are efficiently cooled.
Four-valve technology with variable camshaft adjustment
Perfect charging of the combustion chambers is ensured by large intake and exhaust valves, of which there are four per cylinder. The exhaust valves, which are subject to high thermal loads, are hollow and sodium-filled.
Four overhead camshafts operate the 32 valves via low-maintenance, low-friction cam followers. The infinitely variable camshaft adjustment within a range of 40 degrees on the intake and exhaust sides depends on the engine load and engine speed, leading to outstanding output and torque values. This also results in consistent idling at a low speed.
Depending on the engine speed, valve overlap can be varied for the best possible fuel/air supply to the combustion chambers and efficient removal of the exhaust gases. The variable camshaft adjustment is carried out electromagnetically via four pivoting actuators, and is controlled by the engine control unit. The camshafts are driven by three high-performance silent chains, which have considerable advantages in noise comfort compared to cylinder roller chains.
Innovative oil supply and water cooling
Efficient oil delivery under all load and operating conditions is ensured by an oil pump with an electrically controlled compression stage. The oil pressure can be varied between 2 and 4 bar, which has advantages in terms of friction and fuel consumption. An extraction stage integrated into the oil pump for the two turbochargers prevents oil from being entrained into the charge air and exhaust gases, thereby helping to reduce emissions even further. Both the sump and the extraction point have been optimised for maximum lateral acceleration and efficient lubrication. The oil capacity is 10.5 litres.
The combined water/oil cooling system is a particularly clever solution: after a cold start, initially the engine oil is only cooled via the oil/water heat exchanger. If the cooling performance of the very compact cooler is insufficient, the flow is additionally directed through the external engine oil/air cooler by an oil thermostat. The advantage of this system is that the engine oil warms up more rapidly, as the engine coolant warms up faster and the oil is later cooled by the coolant. A selectable water thermostat ensures rapid warming of the coolant when starting the engine and driving off.
The engine coolant is cooled using the particularly effective crossflow principle. There is a transverse flow of coolant through both the crankcase and the cylinder heads. Additional cooling slots in the cylinder head ensure more efficient cooling of the combustion chambers, which has advantages during combustion: it enables earlier ignition timings to be chosen without incurring the risk of knocking.
Highly efficient engine electronics for every function
All the engine functions are executed and controlled by a particularly efficient Bosch MED 17.7.3. control unit. This state-of-the-art engine computer not only controls the direct petrol injection, charge pressure, camshaft adjustment and variable oil supply, but also communicates with all of the vehicle's other onboard control units, such as those of the AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sports transmission. The microprocessor has more than 30,000 different parameters and functions stored in its memory, and is able to perform up to 260 million individual operations per second. To reduce the load on the engine control unit, the eight individual ignition coils have an integral electronic module – an ignition amplifier – at each cylinder. These ensure a strong ignition spark at all engine speeds and under all load conditions. The highly precise fuel distribution of the piezo-electric injectors is handled by eight high-voltage output stages.
New catalytic converter housings for low exhaust emissions
Low exhaust emissions, compliance with country-specific standards, a characteristic AMG engine sound and a weight-optimized design – the requirements for the exhaust system of the new AMG 5.5-litre V8 biturbo engine were manifold and complex. The E 63 AMG complies with all the current EU-5 emission standards, as well as meeting all the requirements of the US market (LEV-II standard, On-Board Diagnosis II and lambda sensor diagnosis).
The turbochargers are welded to the exhaust manifolds, while air gap-insulated manifolds with an inner shell measuring only 1.0 millimetre in thickness ensure a rapid catalytic converter response. For efficiency and to save space, this concept has a tandem catalytic converter housing on each side of the vehicle: adjacent to the firewall, two thin-walled ceramic substrates are grouped into each housing. This solution makes the previous, additional underbody catalytic converters unnecessary. The two ceramic substrates differ to ensure rapid and efficient emissions control: the front one is coated with palladium, while the rear one has a bimetal coating of palladium and rhodium. One lambda sensor per row of cylinders is located in front of each catalytic converter housing, and there is a lambda diagnostic sensor between each of the two thin-walled substrates.
The on-demand lambda control guarantees optimum composition of the fuel/air mixture in all operating conditions, to avoid damaging the catalytic converters. This also benefits the fuel consumption under full load, as the mixture can be leaner than in engines without this control system.
Lightweight AMG sports exhaust system for a characteristic sound signature
The twin-pipe AMG sports exhaust system has a pipe cross-section of 70 millimetres from the manifolds to the rear silencers. Thanks to a particularly intelligent lightweight design, it has been possible to save 4.3 kg of weight compared with the previous model. The AMG experts achieved this by reducing the wall thickness of all of the exhaust pipes as well as the centre and rear silencers to 1.2 millimetres.
When designing the sound, the aim was to create a perfect synthesis of perceived dynamism and the comfort on long journeys that is the hallmark of a Mercedes-Benz. The goal of the developers was to achieve an emotional experience when accelerating and double-declutching, but unobtrusiveness at constant speeds. Unpleasant frequencies or droning noises were effectively eliminated during a series of painstaking tests. The sports exhaust system emits a sonorous eight-cylinder sound that is typical of AMG from the striking chrome twin tailpipes.
Engine production – tradition of hand-built excellence
Like all other AMG engines, the new eight-cylinder biturbo is assembled by hand in the AMG engine shop taken into commission in 2002. Highly-qualified technicians assemble the M 157 according to the "one man, one engine" philosophy, maintaining the very strictest quality standards. This painstaking care is attested to by the signature on the characteristic AMG engine plate.
Long tradition of powerful AMG V8 engines
Powerful eight-cylinder engines are an inseparable part of AMG's corporate history. Established in 1967, the company immediately caused a stir with the 300 SEL 6.8 AMG which succeeded in taking second place at the 24-hour races at Spa-Francorchamps (Belgium) in 1971. The AMG racing saloon was technically based on the Mercedes-Benz 300 SEL 6.3. With an engine output of 184 kW at 4 000 r/min and a top speed of 220 km/h, this luxury V8 saloon with the M 100 V8 engine was Germany's fastest regular production car at the time. Classic tuning as well as an enlarged displacement from 6 330 to 6 835 cc resulted in an increase in output to 315 kW at 5 500 r/m and in torque from 500 to 608 Nm.
A further milestone in the AMG engine story was the M 117, the first eight-cylinder unit with four-valve technology. With a displacement of 5.6 litres, 265 kW and 510 Nm of torque, this V8 accelerated the Mercedes-Benz 300 CE 5.6 AMG to a top speed of 303 km/h in 1987. This made the coupé the fastest German car in series production, and American fans reverently christened it "The Hammer".
Another important engine in the history of AMG was the supercharged AMG 5.5 litre V8 introduced in 2001: the M 113 K developed an output of up to 428 kW and torque of 800 Nm. The supercharged AMG 5.5-litre V8 in the SLR McLaren of 2003 was even more powerful – the M 155 developed up to 478 kW and 820 Nm. 2005 saw the debut of the AMG 6.3-litre V8 engine; depending on the model, the naturally aspirated, high-revving M 156 developed up to 386 kW and 630 Nm. Since 2005 more than 68.000 M 156 engines have been produced – a record in the history of AMG.
Exclusively reserved for the SLS AMG, the likewise 6.3-litre M 159 has a maximum output of 420 kW and maximum torque of 650 Nm.
Numerous victories in the "International Engine of the Year Awards"
The supercharged AMG 5.5-litre V8, the AMG 6.3-litre V8 and the AMG 6.0 litre V12 biturbo were all able to win the Best Performance Engine category in the International Engine of the Year Awards. The AMG 6.3-litre V8 also won in 2009 and 2010 in the "Above 4 litres" class.
Maximum driving pleasure, reduced consumption
RACESTART, double-declutching function, seven gears, four transmission modes and stop/start function: the power transmission of the new E 63 AMG combines extreme emotional appeal, maximum driving pleasure and optimum economy. The AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sports transmission excites with a combination of unique options which no other automotive manufacturer is able to offer in this format.
The AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sports transmission is exclusive to Mercedes-AMG and combines the sporty, direct and agile responsiveness of a manual transmission with the maximum comfort of an automatic transmission. MCT stands for Multi-Clutch Technology and indicates that only clutch elements are employed to perform gearshifts. A compact wet start-up clutch, which runs in an oil bath, replaces the conventional torque converter. Thanks to its low rotational inertia, the transmission responds instantaneously and dynamically without the losses typical of a torque converter transmission – thereby helping to save fuel. The AMG sports transmission also impresses with its low weight of just 80 kilograms, which has been made possible through the use of lightweight magnesium for the transmission housing. Vibrations are effectively eliminated by a new, two-stage torsion damper, with resulting benefits in perceived passenger comfort.
Stop/start function fitted as standard
As featured in the CLS 63 AMG, S 63 AMG and CL 63 AMG, the Controlled Efficiency stop/start function is also fitted to the CLS 63 AMG as standard. This system is permanently active in the consumption-optimised "Controlled Efficiency" ("C") driving mode. Once the driver comes to a halt e.g. at a red traffic light or in a traffic jam, the engine is automatically switched off. Once the brake pedal is released or the accelerator is depressed, the engine is immediately restarted and the car is able to move off quickly. Intelligent technology guarantees a comfortable and immediate starting procedure: a crankshaft sensor which recognises the direction of rotation registers the resting position of all eight pistons. For an automatic engine start, the cylinder with the most favourable piston position receives an injection of fuel into its combustion chamber. The precise piezo-electric injectors greatly assist this process, as they make particularly fast starts possible.
The engine management ensures that the engine is only switched off if certain preconditions are met. The starter battery must have sufficient charge, for example, and the engine must be at the necessary operating temperature for efficient emissions control. The same applies to the interior temperature selected by the driver: if this has not yet been reached, the engine is not switched off when the car comes to a stop. The onboard network management system makes sure that active audio, telephone or video functions are not interrupted by the stop/start function. For maximum comfort, the heater and automatic climate control also continue to operate.
A green "ECO" symbol shows the driver when the stop/start function is active. Should one of the above criteria be preventing activation of the system, this is shown in the central display by the message "Start/stop inactive" and a yellow "ECO" symbol. In the more performance-oriented driving modes "S" (Sport), "S+" (Sport plus) and "M" (Manual), the start/stop function is always deactivated.
Consumption-optimised Controlled Efficiency ("C") drive mode
When adapting the MCT sports transmission to the AMG 5.5-litre V8 biturbo engine, the AMG engineers paid special attention to the new driving mode Controlled Efficiency ("C"). The emphasis was on delivering minimum engine speed in the highest possible gears in all driving situations. When moving off in "C", the transmission always selects second gear and shifts decidedly early to the next higher gears if the driving style permits. At 60 km/h for instance, sixth gear will already be engaged – not only improving fuel consumption but also noise levels. Thanks to its powerful, readily available torque even at low engine speeds, the AMG V8 biturbo unit is absolutely ideal for this style of driving. Controlled Efficiency also means convenient gearshifts and a "soft" accelerator response set-up for outstandingly smooth power transfer. The use of a new low-friction oil as well as the implementation of further detailed measures in the AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sports transmission enhance the efficiency and ensure an additional reduction in consumption.
The eight-cylinder biturbo engine also features a generator management system: whenever the engine is on the overrun or when braking, kinetic energy is used to charge the battery rather than being wasted as heat in the usual way. In all other operating modes a combination of onboard network and generator management enables the generator to be kept at a low voltage. This reduces the load on the engine and makes for fuel savings of around 0.15 litres per 100 kilometres according to the NEDC standard, and up to 0.2 litre per 100 km in city traffic with its frequent overrun and braking phases.
Drive modes "S", "S+" and "M" for even more driving pleasure and dynamism
In addition to Controlled Efficiency ("C"), three transmission modes are available to meet the demands of drivers looking for a more dynamic ride: in "S" (Sport) mode, the engine and transmission take on a much more agile character. Accelerator pedal movements trigger a more direct traction response, making the downshifts more spontaneous. The engine speed is allowed to reach a higher level in each gear, while the gearshifts in "S" are around 25 percent faster than in "C". Turning the rotary switch in the AMG DRIVE UNIT a notch further to the right activates "S+" mode. "Sport plus" shifts the gears another 25 percent faster than in "S". The same applies to the manual shift mode "M". In "S+" and "M" modes, gearshifts at full throttle take just 100 milliseconds. And for those who prefer manual shifting, the gears can be changed using the steering wheel shift paddles – irrespective of which of the four transmission modes is used.
The engine management system partially suppresses cylinders in "S", "S+" and "M" modes: precisely interrupting ignition and injection under full load for brief periods leads to even faster gearshifts than before. The highly emotional vocals when changing gear are an appealing side effect of this lightning-fast process.
Ultra-fast, spontaneous multiple downshifts are another forte of the AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sports transmission. For instance, kickdown allows gearshifts straight from seventh down to fourth gear, or from fifth to second. In the "S", "S+" and "M" driving modes the automatic double-declutching function is active. Every manual or automatic downshift is accompanied by precisely metered double-declutching – with increasing intensity from "S" through "S+" to "M". And this not only adds to the driver's emotional experience: the load-free downshift minimises load-change reactions, which pays particular dividends when braking into bends – and also enhances safety in the wet or on ice.
No automatic downshifts in manual "M" mode
In manual “M” mode the driver also benefits from the high torque of the V8 biturbo engine. The MCT transmission does not downshift automatically under full load or kickdown, and remains steadfastly in the selected gear. Moreover, the sports transmission does not perform an automatic upshift in manual mode when the rev limit is reached - perfect for fast laps around the race track. In “M” mode the AMG instrument cluster displays the current gear and alerts the driver to the need for an upshift just before the needle reaches the red zone with the aid of a visual indication. The display colour changes to "red", and the message "Up" is displayed. This means that a particularly sporty driver can use the superior performance potential to its fullest extent. When approaching the lower rev limit, e.g. when braking the vehicle, there is an automatic downshift to the next lower gear.
The powerful electronic transmission control unit with integrated 80 MHz processor controls spontaneous downshifts – say when the driver suddenly needs power for dynamic acceleration.
AMG DRIVE UNIT with RACE START function
The AMG DRIVE UNIT is the central control unit for the AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sports transmission and all driving dynamics functions. On the left next to the E-SELECT selector lever is the electronic rotary switch to select the four drive modes including activation of the RACE START function. Underneath are three buttons for additional functions: the first controls the 3 stage ESP®, the second the AMG RIDE CONTROL sports suspension.
The third, bearing AMG lettering, is used to store the personal set-up. Briefly pressing the AMG button brings up the configuration options, whilst holding down the button allows you to program the required set-up - this is confirmed by an audible signal. The current settings may be viewed in the AMG instrument cluster by pressing the AMG button at any time.
The Race Start function delivers maximum dynamism: while the vehicle is at
a standstill, the driver is able to activate the ESP® SPORT handling mode and press the brake pedal with their left foot. Having preselected the Race Start program using the rotary switch, a confirmation message comes up on the AMG central display. The driver then simply needs to confirm the Race Start function by pulling the “Up” shift paddle once, fully depressing the accelerator and taking his foot off the brake. The optimum start-up engine speed is set fully automatically and the E 63 AMG accelerates away with flawless traction – all the way up to top speed, if so required. The driver does not need to shift gear manually; the AMG MCT transmission changes gear in lightning-fast shift times.
Chassis and braking system
Agile, dynamic, exclusive
High levels of driving dynamics and inspirational agility combined with the comfort on long journeys typical of Mercedes – these are the strengths of the E 63 AMG. They owe their origins to the exclusive combination of the AMG RIDE CONTROL sports suspension, electromechanical steering and AMG high-performance braking system.
Compared with the series production models of the E-Class, the E 63 AMG features the highly-variable AMG RIDE CONTROL sports suspension with electronically controlled damping system. A steel suspension is used at the front, and an all-air suspension system at the rear. This solution guarantees a sensitive response from the front springs while the vehicle is kept at a constant height thanks to the automatic level control system – irrespective of the load. The independent three-link front suspension has a 56 mm wider track. In conjunction with new hub carriers for more negative camber at the front, this provides much more grip when taking bends at high speed.
New axle components and more direct steering
The high-grade axle components, produced for the most part from lightweight aluminium, are further evidence of the painstakingly redesigned AMG RIDE CONTROL sports suspension. New steering knuckles, wishbones, torque strut bearings and head bearings at the front provide extra stability and improved road contact. A weight-optimised, thicker tubular stabiliser reduces body roll on fast S-shaped bends. The rear suspension has also been substantially reworked in the interests of enhanced handling stability: new track rods,
push-pull rods, more negative camber and far more rigid mountings for the subframe – on which the rear axle is mounted – translate into enhanced lateral dynamics. The AMG-specific kinematics and the new elastokinematics on both axles also noticeably increase precision during cornering.
A synthesis of maximum agility and optimum ride comfort
Another feature of the AMG RIDE CONTROL sports suspension is the electronically controlled damping system: the system varies the damping characteristics instantly according to the driving situation, road speed and load status, automatically reducing the roll angle of the body. For the driver this means instant, continuously variable adjustment between the greatest possible agility and optimum ride comfort – depending on the driving style and route. The damping can also be individually adjusted by pressing the appropriate button in the AMG DRIVE UNIT. A push of the button labelled with a shock absorber is all it takes for the electronics to switch from "Comfort" to "Sport" or "Sport plus." The selected mode is displayed in the AMG instrument cluster.
"Comfort" delivers a sensitive response with soft damping characteristics, while the shock absorber response is an average 40 percent firmer in "Sport". "Sport plus" is ideal for challenging laps on a racetrack: in addition to the higher damping force, this mode comes with specific control algorithms that have been tailor-made for a decidedly sporty driving style on level road surfaces.
Eleven sensors for electronic damper control
The electronic damper control utilises four sensors to permanently monitor the drive and brake torque along with steering angle and lateral acceleration. Four position sensors are also used to determine the ride height and to ascertain the direction of motion. Three acceleration sensors help identify the absolute body roll. Powerful control electronics that interact constantly with the engine and transmission control units instantly adjust the forces at the four shock absorbers. The driving dynamics of the E 63 AMG can even be enhanced further ex works: available from the AMG Performance Studio as an exclusive optional extra is the AMG RIDE CONTROL Performance suspension, which features even stiffer damping.
New, more direct electromechanical steering ratio
This is complemented by the newly developed electromechanical AMG sports parameter steering: with a steering ratio (14:1) which is 22 percent more direct than that of other E-Class models, and in conjunction with the variable power assistance which adapts according to the suspension mode, it provides for decidedly agile handling when cornering. In addition, the electromechanical AMG sports parameter steering also makes an important contribution to efficiency, since the steering assist function only requires power when the driver actually steers. Compared with the previous model with regular hydraulic power steering, this enables further potential fuel savings to be achieved.
In the new steering system the steering gear and the supporting servo-motor form a single compact unit and are mounted as previously on an extremely rigid and low-weight integral support frame, made of high-strength steel, which is positioned in front of the wheel's centre line. The high-performance control unit processes a variety of parameters captured by the sensors – including vehicle speed, steering angle, steering angle speed, lateral acceleration and also understeer/oversteer characteristics – and in a split second calculates the forces which the driver needs to input into the steering in different driving situations – from parking to high-speed motorway driving. Active damping enhances the feeling of safety when driving straight ahead at high speed.
AMG-specific solutions for enhanced steering precision and driving dynamics
An AMG-specific solution has been implemented in the form of the fixed, programmed power assistance characteristics. In suspension mode "C", the AMG sports parameter steering has a comfortable feel, providing a higher level of steering assistance. In "S+" mode, on the other hand, the driver will discern reduced steering assistance – which tends to result in a better road feel. This in turn results in enhanced response and steering precision. Another AMG exclusive is the interaction between the new steering and the 3-stage ESP®: the driver will feel if the vehicle starts to understeer thanks to a defined superposition of the steering moment earlier than with a regular power steering system. In "SPORT" handling mode and "ESP OFF", the special control algorithm helps the driver to achieve a cleaner side-slip angle.
In addition to more precise steering and a more comfortable feel at the wheel, the new electric power steering offers a range of additional advantages. Power assistance remains available when the engine is stationary, for example – whereby an algorithm ensures that the combustion engine is not prompted to start up in ECO start/stop mode when the driver is merely moving the steering wheel while the vehicle is at a standstill. In addition, the electromechanical steering compensates for road distortions, thereby providing the driver with a more comfortable driving experience by balancing the steering moments when on a road which slopes off to one side, for example.
3-stage ESP® system with "SPORT" handling mode
The 3-stage ESP® is also consistently tailored to the superb dynamic qualities of the E 63 AMG: the Electronic Stability Program supports three individual control strategies at the push of a button: the ESP® button in the AMG DRIVE UNIT allows the driver to choose between "ESP ON", "SPORT" handling mode, and "ESP OFF" – with the currently active mode shown in the display of the AMG instrument cluster. In "ESP ON", the onset of handling instability leads to braking intervention at one or more of the wheels, accompanied by a reduction in engine torque.
Briefly pressing the ESP® button activates "SPORT" handling mode. In this mode the braking intervention to counter oversteer or understeer, as well as the accompanying reduction in engine torque, allows a higher dynamic threshold and, for instance, corresponding drift angles – the result for the driver is significantly enhanced driving enjoyment. Operating the brake pedal restores all the normal ESP® functions. Prolonged pressure on the ESP® button activates "ESP OFF". With this, the engine torque is no longer reduced to control the driving dynamics – and driving enjoyment is therefore increased even further. "ESP OFF" should only be used by experienced drivers on dedicated racetracks. In this mode too, ESP® is available by operating the brake pedal.
The system's traction logic is active in all three ESP® modes. If one of the drive wheels starts to spin, specific brake pressure is applied to virtually create the effect of a mechanical differential lock. This means that the engine power is transferred to the road even more effectively. To improve traction, particularly when on the race track, a rear axle locking differential with 40 percent locking action is available as an option from the AMG Performance Studio.
AMG high-performance braking system
As of course with all AMG high-performance cars, the new E 63 AMG also comes with an ultra-powerful braking system. Ventilated and perforated brake discs with a generous 360-millimetre diameter are fitted front and rear. Because of the special stresses they face, the front discs feature composite technology that has been tried and tested in motor racing to help offset the temperature peaks more effectively. Grey-painted brake callipers with white AMG lettering and six-piston (front) and four-piston technology (rear) provide responsive, fade-resistant deceleration and extremely short stopping distances.
Compared with the conventional composite brake discs, the ceramic brake discs are around 40 percent lighter. The further reduction in unsprung masses not only boosts driving dynamics and agility but also improves steering response as well as ride comfort and contact characteristics. Six-piston fixed callipers are fitted at the front with a brake lining surface of 2 x 154 cm2; four-piston fixed callipers with a brake lining surface of 2 x 73 cm2 are used at the rear.
Overview of brake data:
AMG high-performance braking system
Weight* 6-piston aluminium fixed calliper
composite technology, ventilated, perforated
Weight* 4-piston fixed calliper
solid, ventilated, perforated
* weight of the brake disc
Numerous functions of the high-performance braking system enhance comfort and safety. Take the practical HOLD function: if the E 63 AMG has come to a stop, the driver simply needs to press the brake pedal a little bit firmer. The vehicle is now held by the brake – even if the driver takes their foot off the brake pedal. This prevents the vehicle from unintentionally rolling forward in stop-and-go traffic or inadvertently rolling back on an uphill slope.
The HOLD function is automatically disengaged once the vehicle is driven forward. Another useful feature comes in the shape of the hill-start assist. If the sensor technology detects that the driver has stopped on an incline, the brake pressure is automatically maintained constant for a short period. This means the vehicle will not roll back and the driver has sufficient time to switch from the brake to the accelerator pedal without having to use the parking brake.
When the driver suddenly switches from the accelerator to the brake pedal prior to emergency braking, the braking system increases the pressure in the brake lines and applies the pads to the brake discs, so that they can grip instantly with full force when the brake pedal is pressed.
The system supports the standard Brake Assist by means of this 'priming'. Further standard features include the brake-drying function, which uses brief braking impulses to ensure that the film of water on the brake discs is removed in the wet, thus considerably improving the responsiveness of the brakes.
Weight-optimised "Flow Forming" AMG light-alloy wheels
The newly developed AMG 10-spoke light-alloy wheels make a significant contribution to the dynamic handling of the E 63 AMG. As on the SLS AMG, they are produced by the new "flow forming" process. During this production process, hot forming in the area of the rim base makes for a denser material structure, thereby improving long-term durability. This also means that lower wall thicknesses can be achieved.
The weight saving of up to 0.8 kg per wheel compared to conventional light-alloy wheels reduces the unsprung masses, further improving the handling dynamics and suspension comfort.
As standard the E 63 AMG comes with titanium grey-painted, high-sheen wheels featuring a new 10-spoke design. The 9.0 x 18 format front wheels are fitted with 255/40 R 18-size tyres, while the 9.5 x 18 format rear wheels come with 285/35 R 18-size tyres.