Mercedes-Benz has revamped the E-Class for the 2014 model year, and as part of the changes, they’ve also given the much-loved-around-these-parts E63 AMG an upgrade. In addition to the big styling changes, the E63 AMG receives a pair of power upgrades—and most controversially, a standard all-wheel-drive system.
That’s right—the E63 AMG, that German stuntin’ champion, the four-door renowed for its ability to lay down rubber like Kobe lays down jumpers, has switched to all-wheel-drive. In Europe, buyers can choose between RWD and AWD, but here in the States, every E63 from this summer on will come standard with all four wheels directing power to the pavement. Most Mercedes-Benzes sold these days here the United States are AWD, so it’s a smart choice, business-wise—but we’ll miss doin’ those burnouts.
The E63 AMG’s AWD system is tuned to be extra-sporty, though, with a 33/67 percent front/rear power split that means oversteer should still be there for the takin’. For 2014, the E63 is also gettin’ a nice power bump—stock output goes from 518 horses and 516 lb.-ft. to 550 horses and 531 lb.ft. Instead of the old AMG Performance Package, there’s a new E63 AMG S-Model, which scores a 577 horsepower, 590 lb.-ft. version of the twin-turbo 5.5 liter V8, different rims, the optional adjustable suspension as standard, and slightly different trim details (like added black finish accents across the front and rear of the car).
Between the added power and the new AWD, acceleration is nicely improved—Mercedes-Benz says the base E63 AMG does the 0-60 mph sprint in 3.6 seconds, while the E63 AMG S-Model does it in 3.5. The E63 wagon returns, exclusively as an S-Model; it does the dash in 3.6 seconds. Top speed remains 155 mph for the regular E63, 186 for the spicier version.
While we’re sad to see the RWD E63 go, progress is progress, and we’re looking forward to getting our hands on the newest version. Something tells us it’ll still be plenty fun to drive. [Shout-out to Mercedes-Benz!]
Note: If you wanna check the press release, click here and scroll to the bottom.