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July 01, 2013
June may have been the wettest month in 50 years but things are about to seriously heat up in July. This month will witness the launch of three hardcore performance saloons – the Audi RS5, the new Audi S6 and the Mercedes E63 AMG. So, what’s the common factor among these three saloons? All three of these seemingly posh luxury cars pack punch enough to scare some everyday supercars.

Audi RS5
 
The new Audi RS5 is launching tomorrow. Of the three, the RS5 flaunts its performance oriented character the best. A large chain-link front grille, chin spoiler and the overall chiselled proportions clearly display its hardcore sporting intent. The go is provided by the same powerful 4.2-litre V-8 motor found in Audi’s eight cylinder version of the R8 supercar. This engine produces a big 444bhp at a dizzy 8250rpm, enough to propel this saloon to the 100kph mark in a claimed 4.6 seconds, making it capable of staying hot on the heels of some supercars. Also, the RS5 is expected to ride lower than its stable mates (A4 and A6) and will have much stiffer suspension to improve its handling. Internationally, the RS5 mainly competes with BMW’s M3 in terms of price and performance.
 
Audi S6
 
Audi will launch its S6, just 10 days after the RS5 on July 12th 2013. Based on the A6 saloon, the S6 is plonked with a 4.0-litre twin-turbo engine that will produce around 415bhp and a mammoth 56kgm of torque through a wide power band of 1400 to 5200rpm. Audi claims the S6 can reach 100kph from standstill in a blistering 4.6sec. The S6’s sedate styling doesn’t do much to reveal the car’s performance potential except for chrome and aluminum accents on the front grille and a small spoiler mounted on the truck at the rear. Compared to the A6, the S6 will also feature larger wheels wearing lower profile tyres and a stiffer suspension setup keeping in tune with the more powerful engine. We can expect the S6 to cost just a shade under Rs. 1 crore (ex-showroom).
 
Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG
 
Not to be left behind in the fray for luxury brand dominance, Mercedes-Benz will follow up its recent launches of the A-class hatch and B-class diesel with the E63 AMG on July 25th 2013. The E63 AMG is fundamentally an E-class that has been injected with a big dose of performance by Mercedes’s in-house tuning division-AMG. Aimed at Hamilton dressed in a suit, the E63 AMG is a seriously powerful machine. It is powered by AMG’s 5.5-litre twin-turbo engine that will produce a mammoth 557bhp and a train-like 73.4kgm of torque and more powerful brakes to handle the excess horsepower. On the styling front, the car will feature an AMG body kit with an aggressively styled front bumper, a splitter to help reduce lift, AMG sports exhaust with quad-pipes at the rear, AMG wheels and AMG badging. The E63 AMG will directly rival Audi’s S6, BMW’s M5 and Jaguar’s XF-R in terms of price and performance.  
 
With these high-performance saloons entering our market, consumers who share a passion for driving will be spoilt for choice in the luxury segment.