Mercedes-Benz has officially revealed its new 577bhp S63 AMG ahead of a planned public debut for the rapid luxury saloon at the Frankfurt motor show in September.
Distinguished from other recently introduced new S-class models by a number of traditional AMG styling tweaks, including a deep new front bumper, heavily chromed blade grille, 'twin-turbo V8' badges along its flanks and beefed up sills among other changes, the new S63 AMG is planned to go on sale globally in rear-wheel drive guise only next year.
Building on initiatives taken with the standard S-class, the performance variant of the big Mercedes-Benz saloon benefits from a further range of weight saving measures, including the adoption of a 78Ah lithium-ion battery and a spare wheel recess made of carbonfibre.
In long wheelbase guise, the new rear-wheel drive S63 AMG is said to weigh 1995kg – 100kg less than its predecessor, despite a moderate increase in dimensions and greater level of standard equipment. Significantly, Mercedes-Benz claims the four-wheel drive S63 AMG hits the scales at the very same figure of 1995kg, owing in part to a more straightforward suspension design.
Power comes from a reworked version of AMG’s twin-turbocharged 5.5-litre V8 engine that in a departure to recent AMG practice is planned to be offered in just a single state of tune. It develops an added 14bhp over the old S63 AMG with performance package at 577bhp, providing the new car with a power-to-weight ratio of 289bhp per tonne mated to the AMG’s seven-speed MCT (multi clutch transmission) with three driving modes: Controlled Efficiency, Sport and Manual – the former of which brings an automatic stop/start function for added fuel savings.
Despite the various weight-saving measures and added power, Mercedes-Benz’s official performance claims for the new rear-wheel-drive S63 AMG put its 0-100kph acceleration at the same level as its predecessor at 4.4sec, while top speed remains limited to 250kph in standard guise and 300kph in combination with an optional driver’s package.
Following moves with other recent new AMG models, a new four-wheel-drive S63 AMG 4Matic model will join the line-up in selected left-hand-drive markets. However, Mercedes-Benz’s continued inability to provide right-hand-drive compatibility with its four-wheel drive system in many models means it will not be sold in the 83 right-hand-drive markets worldwide. With added off-the-line traction, the S63 AMG 4Matic is claimed to storm to 100kph from standstill in just 4.0sec – an improvement of 0.5sec on the old model.
The new S63 AMG is underpinned by a retuned version of the standard S500’s air suspension complete with Mercedes-Benz’s innovative new Magic Body Control system. It employs a camera mounted within the windscreen to scan the road and alter the settings of the air springs, according to the conditions for maximum levels of comfort or sportiness, depending on the chosen mode.
Mercedes' S63 AMG 4Matic boasts a more sporting suspension set-up with conventional steel springs and Mercedes-Benz’s new ADS Plus adaptive damping system, providing continuous adjustment of the dampers in two modes: Comfort and Sport. It also receives revised geometry, with added camber and a larger anti-roll bar up front along with a stiffer sub-frame at the rear.
The standard 19-inch forged aluminium wheels on both the rear- and four-wheel drive mode measure 8.5 inches in width up front and 9.5 inches at the rear and comes shod with 255/45 and 285/40 profile tyres respectively. Optional 20-inch wheels will be available in the same width with 255/40 and 285/35 profile rubber.
Further options for S63 AMG also include carbon ceramic brakes for the first time among an extensive list of other high-end extras.