Shortly after the world premiere of the new Mercedes-Benz E-Class at the Detroit auto show this January, the German luxury carmaker revealed the high-performance variant. At this year’s New York International Auto Show (NAIAS), the 2017 Mercedes-AMG E43 made its world debut.
This new model from Mercedes’ tuning division, AMG, features a new engine that continues to stray from the historic trend of the German performance division. No longer will the performance E-Class feature a fire-breathing twin — sorry — Biturbo V8. No, the Germans have taken a page out of the GT-R’s book and now the E43 has a smaller, more fuel efficient, 3.0 liter Biturbo V6 which makes 396 horsepower and 384 lb-ft of torque, a 2.5L difference which results in 181 less horsepower and 206 less lb-ft of torque.
Some will likely see this as a huge disappointment, while others may welcome the shift towards fuel economy and eco-friendliness. Regardless, the 2017 model will come exclusively with Mercedes’ 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission, AMG AIRMATIC Adaptive Sport Suspension and the more direct steering ratio. Altogether, this drivetrain, which is paired with AMG Performance rear biased (31:69 percent) 4MATIC four-wheel drive system, is said to hit 60 mph in 4.5 seconds and continue on to an electronically limited top speed of 155 MPH.
Tobias Moers, CEO of Mercedes-AMG GmbH says, “The new AMG E43 offers impressive driving dynamics coupled with cutting-edge efficiency. Twin-turbocharging, features adopted from motorsport and characteristic AMG design immediately indicate to our customers that the new E-Class from AMG offers pure Driving Performance coupled with cutting-edge technology and intense emotion.”
While some may worry about the switch to a smaller engine, it should be said that Mercedes has seen great success in Formula 1 with a similar platform (1.6L twin-turbo V6), and that the E43’s engine takes some technology from the F1 Car. NANOSLIDE® coating on the cylinder liners has undergone further development in the Formula 1 V6 hybrid turbo engines from Mercedes-Benz. This coating reduces friction, thereby contributing to higher efficiency in the motor. The same testing applies to the spray-guided fuel injection, with up to 2,900 psi of pressure. While Mercedes have dropped power, they have made technological improvements to help the car’s performance and fuel economy.
As with all AMG models, the E43 has many distictive styling features, aside from the badges, to tell you that this is no ordinary E-Class. Also on the new E43 are a set of high-sheen 19-inch AMG five-spoke light-alloy wheels painted in high-gloss black.
How this 2017 Mercedes-AMG E43 sedan will drive is unclear. We will have to wait until early 2017, when the E43 is set to hit US dealers, to find out whether or not AMG’s relatively conservative power plant can truly honor the AMG badge.
To fully understand the platform on which AMG have built up the E43 AMG, here is everything you ever wanted to know about the 2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class: