Displaying items by tag: Mercedes

Mercedes E-Class is a technological tour de force, but from behind the wheel it suffers from a distinct lack of character. The plug-in hybrid powertrain really delivers in terms of efficiency, but that comes at the cost of practicality, which is a shame given this car’s otherwise spacious estate body. We expect emerging rivals from BMW and Audi will add some competitive spice to this sector once again.

The Mercedes E-Class needs to perform not only as a luxurious executive car, but also as a practical family offering. This is where the new Estate model comes in; with wagons losing favour against a surge of SUVs, is Mercedes launching a loss leader? We’re testing it here for the first time to see if it can repay the German firm’s faith.
Mercedes has gone big on technology with its latest models, and the E-Class Estate is no different. The first thing you’ll notice is the door handles – or lack of. Instead there’s an almost flush-fitting section which extends when you approach the car. Unlike some other rather flimsy flush-fitting door handles we’ve come across, the Mercedes opens with a solid “clack” sound. A good start, then.
Jump inside and just as in the E-Class saloon we tested recently, you’ll notice plenty of inspiration from the larger, more expensive S-Class. And although there is a lot of new and amazing technology on board, it feels like an evolution of the previous E’s interior’s design rather than something completely fresh. Our AMG Line Premium Plus model features the new Superscreen infotainment system; to the uninitiated it’d be hard to imagine a Mercedes fitted with the larger Hyperscreen layout available elsewhere in the maker’s line-up.

The Superscreen is made up of a 14.4-inch central display, and two 12.3-inch displays either side. It’s a little confusing to get your head around at first – such is the array of information offered – but give it a day or two and you’ll be whizzing through the functions on the move without issue. But with so much going on in the cabin, the interior can feel surprisingly compact.
Not what you’d necessarily expect of a car measuring almost five metres nose to tail. It’s the same length as its predecessor but with no replacement for the CLS Shooting Brake planned, Mercedes has gone with a sleeker, more coupe-like roofline to fill the void.
The result is rear-seat space that feels pleasant and airy, but as that roof drops down to the rear there’s an impact on boot space. The E 300 e Estate’s boot capacity with the rear seats up stands at just 460 litres thanks to the positioning of the battery – that’s 20 litres less than the old car. If you don’t want the plug-in tech, then you’ll be pleased to learn the mild-hybrid E-Class comes with a much larger 615-litre boot.

When we tried the E-Class saloon in E 220 d form, we were impressed by its 2.0-litre mild-hybrid diesel engine. The plug-in hybrid driven here uses a 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine mated to 25.kWh battery which Mercedes claims can provide an electric-only range of up 73 miles – dropping to 62 miles on the biggest wheels. We only managed 42 miles, but this was done in cold conditions. European cars get DC fast charging, but the feature isn’t expected to be offered in the UK.

There’s 312bhp and 550Nm of torque from the combined plug-in hybrid powertrain, sending power through a smooth nine-speed automatic transmission. The 0-62mph dash is dealt with in 6.5 seconds, and while that doesn’t sound too impressive given the power available, it makes more sense when you factor in the portly 2,275kg kerbweight; 370kg more than the mild-hybrid model.
That bulk means there’s not much joy to be had trying to throw the E 300 e around – especially in Estate form. The steering is light and there’s decent grip, but where the E-Class really shines is when it comes to refinement. Our car was fitted with the optional air suspension which smothers bumps and imperfections in the road brilliantly – combined with the Acoustic Comfort Package, the E-Class Estate is wonderfully quiet on a cruise.
Our car in AMG Line Premium form costs from £73,150 (Premium Plus is almost £6k more again) – a significant amount of money even in this day and age. Luckily for Mercedes, the Porsche Panamera Sport Turismo has just gone off sale and the BMW 5 Series Touring is between generations. The Audi A6 Avant is coming to the end of its life, though it’s hard to ignore the vastly cheaper Jaguar XF Sportbrake in this part of the market – even if it isn’t available with any fuel-saving PHEV tech.

But with an excellent range of engines, a comfortable, composed ride and plenty of trick features, the E-Class Estate will be a compelling choice in the upper echelons of the estate-car market.


Source: mercedesworld.com

Published in Mercedes

As expected, the visual changes compared to the current model are minimal.

Halfway through its life cycle, Mercedes refreshed the entire A-Class range, including the sedan version. Cosmetic changes are minor and include slightly revised headlights with optional LED lights along with a redesigned radiator grille with a texture made up of miniature three-pointed stars.

At the rear, the German premium brand has installed a new diffuser and standard LED stop lights. Four new wheel design options have also been added, and the dimensions of the alloy wheels go up to a maximum of 19 inches.

In the passenger cabin, the updated steering wheel is wrapped in Nappa leather as standard, while the center console has received some minor revisions.

The latest MBUX multimedia system continues to use two digital screens as standard. The smaller, 7-inch one is placed in front of the driver and serves as an instrument panel, while the right one, sensitive to touch, has a diagonal of 10.25 inches.

In addition, a configuration with two 10.25-inch displays is available as an option.

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As for the engine, the petrols have received the "mild" hybrid treatment and are paired with a seven-speed or eight-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission as standard.

Electric 48-volt technology provides an additional 13 horsepower (10 kW) of power.

In the plug-in hybrid version, the electric motor now delivers an additional 7 hp (5 kW), so the total electric power is now 109 hp (80 kW).

Owners can charge the battery with alternating current on a charger of up to 11 kW or direct current up to 22 kW. In the case of the latter, it takes 25 minutes to charge the battery from 10 to 80 percent capacity.

Mercedes also presented the AMG A35 versions in hatchback and sedan formats, while the A45 S remains available only as a 5-door model.

The weaker of the two performance models gets stylish ones that visually bring it closer to the top range. In addition, the AMG A35 gets a "light" hybrid system and switches to an eight-speed DCT, instead of the previously used seven-speed automatic.

Power remains unchanged, 306 hp (225 kW), with 400 Nm of torque.

The Mercedes-AMG A45 S gets a Street Style edition with an assortment of visual enhancements. The Limited Edition is painted in Mountain Gray Magno and features an aero kit as well as new 19-inch matte black wheels with red brake calipers.

You'll also notice retro decals on the body, along with bright orange accents inside, along with aluminum trim.

The Mercedes A 45 S still has 422 hp (310 kW) and 500 Nm, but it is no longer the most powerful four-cylinder engine installed in a production car.

Placed longitudinally in the new AMG C63, the same M139 generates an incredible 476 hp (350 kW) and 545 Nm. The smaller version of the four-cylinder still allows the AMG A45 S to reach 100 km/h in 3.9 seconds and a top speed of 270 km/h.

It will be interesting to see if there are any plans to put a more powerful engine in the compact car, but one should not hope too much for that.

Published in Blog/News
Tagged under

Brabus has a new toy for the rich that can be admired by all those who see sense in such exaggeration.

The Mercedes G-Class is one of the most luxurious SUVs in the world in its own right, which is hard to fault. For many, it is just a dream car, and to a lesser extent, just the basis from which to create a real dream car.

It is "especially difficult" for the latter, so Brabus will help them in their plans. Mercedes' tuning experts are particularly imaginative on the G-Class, so now they present another special version, limited to only ten examples.

The name says it all, so the Brabus P 900 Rocket Edition offers 900 hp, which represents far more dynamic performance than the lifted 800 Adventure XLP. Although it is lowered and adapted to the road, this model is still over two meters tall.
The body is decorated with an abundance of carbon, and the novelty in the offer is a transparent panel on the engine cover and LED lighting for literally everything. It is mounted on huge 24-inch rims.

Inside, the same story, but with an abundance of the finest leather. Rear passengers also get screens, and in addition to the ambient lighting, the Brabus logos are also illuminated. As we said, there are no off-road portal axles here, instead Brabus has opted for adjustable suspension for greater comfort and even better roadholding.

4.5 V8 biturbo The V8 produces the aforementioned 900 hp with an imposed torque limit of 1050 Nm. It reaches 100 km/h in an incredible 3.7 seconds, while the maximum is 280 km/h. We are talking about a 2.7 ton monster! Disc brakes with a diameter of 400 mm ensure a safe stop.

The Brabus P 900 Rocket Edition One of Ten is about 170,000 euros more expensive than the shorter version without the rear bunker, i.e. the starting price is 649,638 euros without tax.

Published in Blog/News
Saturday, 24 September 2022 06:25

2024 Mercedes-AMG C63

The high-performance variant of Mercedes’s entry-luxury C-class sedan will return as the 2024 C63 S, but this time it will get a radically different engine. The previous generation was powered by a twin-turbo 4.0-liter V-8 with either 469 or 503 horsepower, but this new-generation C63 will be motivated by a gasoline engine half that size: a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that combines with an electric motor to making a whopping 671 horsepower in total. The new hybrid setup promises to improve upon the previous C63’s great performance, though the engine’s character will no doubt change radically. To help mitigate turbo lag, the downsized engine uses an electrically powered turbocharger system related to the one found in Mercedes-AMG’s Formula 1 race car. The rest of the package will be heavily based on the new C-class that debuted for the 2022 model year but with racier styling and a spruced-up interior. Mercedes-AMG has also confirmed that the junior C43 model will also return to the lineup, but we review that model separately.

What's New for 2024?

The C63 is all new for the 2024 model year and, unlike last year, it will be offered solely as a sedan. We expect to see the 2024 C63 roll into Mercedes dealerships in the middle of 2023.

Mercedes-AMG hasn’t released pricing yet but we expect the C63 to follow the new trim levels that launched with the 2022 C-class, starting with the Premium base trim at around $85,000 and going up from there.

Engine, Transmission, and Performance

Gone is the old twin-turbo V-8 engine from the last-generation C63 and in its place is a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder. But before you get disappointed at an engine half the size of the old one, you should know that this inline-four will be augmented by a 201-hp electric motor and uses an electric turbocharger to reduce turbo lag. The new high-performance hybrid propulsion system will pump out a massive 671 horsepower, giving it an edge over rival to performance sedans such as the BMW M3 and the Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing, at least on paper. This setup allows for some limited all-electric driving, but only about 8 miles or so; its purpose instead is to provide similar performance to the outgoing car with better overall fuel economy. When we get a chance to test drive the new C63—which we are eager to do—we’ll update this story with driving impressions and test results.

The EPA hasn't released fuel economy figures for the 2024 C63 sedan yet. But due to the introduction of the downsized engine, we're expecting to see some fuel efficiency improvements over the outgoing model which was rated at 17 mpg city and 26 mpg highway. When we get a chance, we'll take the new C63 sedan on our 75-mph highway fuel-economy test route and update this story with its results. For more information about the C63’s fuel economy, visit the EPA's website.

Interior, Comfort, and Cargo

The C63’s cabin looks much like the standard C-class and junior AMG C43 model, but it sports unique upholstery and stitching patterns as well as AMG-branded sport seats with openings cut out to help save weight. Mercedes hasn’t detailed every feature and option, but we expect to see plenty of luxury and convenience items available, including a panoramic sunroof, heated and cooled seats, four-zone automatic climate control, and more.

Infotainment and Connectivity

All models will likely come with the same large 11.9-inch infotainment touchscreen that is integrated into the center console and canted slightly toward the driver in the C43 model. A 12.3-inch digital gauge display will also likely be standard. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto should both be standard for wireless connectivity, and a high-end Burmester stereo system is expected to be available too.

Safety and Driver-Assistance Features

Like the C43, the C63 will likely offer a host of standard driver-assistance features but unfortunately, the car's coolest tech, which includes an adaptive cruise-control system that utilizes navigation data to adjust the vehicle's speed for upcoming curves and roundabouts, will probably remain an optional upgrade. For more information about the C43's crash-test results, visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) websites. Key safety features are likely to include:

Warranty and Maintenance Coverage

Although rivals such as BMW, Genesis, and Volvo offer three years of complimentary maintenance, Mercedes-AMG omits that benefit from its standard warranty offerings. Otherwise, all new AMGs come with an industry-standard plan that covers most things for up to four years or 50,000 miles.

Limited warranty covers four years or 50,000 miles
Powertrain warranty covers four years or 50,000 miles
No complimentary scheduled maintenance

Source: caranddriver.com

Published in Mercedes

German car manufacturers warn that there are more and more fake auto parts on the market. It harms them, and it can be very dangerous for road users.

When Lita Silje Jeniš talks about her job, she sounds like a police detective. A story about raids, hidden production facilities, about organized crime. A story about a network of counterfeiters, about people who organize it all, about seizures. However, Jeniš does not work in the police.

She is a lawyer and works for Mercedes-Benz. It deals with brand protection and tries to detect counterfeit Mercedes parts and remove them from the market.

"Counterfeit products pose a significant risk to customers," says Jenish.

For example, brake parts with less valuable components, which in practice means a longer braking distance. Or brake discs that contain toxic substances such as lead or arsenic. Windshields made of ordinary window glass. Air filters that are not made of fire resistant material. The list is long.

More and more fakes

According to data from car manufacturers, counterfeit parts are often discovered and withdrawn from sale. Volkswagen announced that counterfeit parts worth 14 million euros were seized last year for that brand of vehicle alone. That is almost twice as much as a year earlier (eight million).

More than 1.86 million counterfeit parts were discovered at Mercedes in 2021 as part of 650 raids by the German authorities. That is six percent more than in 2020.

"There is nothing that is not there," says lawyer Jeniš. The offer includes Mercedes stars, aluminum rims, airbags, windshield wipers, and even parts for brakes and spark plugs for the engine.

Engineer Thomas Schuster from the KÜS organization, in charge of the technical inspection of vehicles, says that this trend is increasing. Some parts, he says, are of such poor quality that they can endanger traffic safety. But there are also parts that are good enough, so to speak, faithful copies of the original - this in turn causes huge economic damage to the manufacturers.

Danger for road users

Counterfeit parts are often quickly detected during a technical inspection of the vehicle, at least those that are visible at first glance. Original parts or parts that have been "copied" with the express permission of the manufacturer have a control number on them. But what about the parts that aren't visible unless the car is taken apart?

"Air filters, spark plugs or brake discs are installed so we can't see if they're counterfeit," notes Schuster. In contrast, fake rims or lights are easy to see. The latter is dangerous in traffic because bad headlights can dazzle drivers from the opposite direction.

Often the drivers themselves can suspect that they are being tricked by a fake.

"Consumers should be aware that in the case of a large price difference compared to original parts, something is simply not right," says Schuster.

The automotive industry invests great efforts in the fight against counterfeit parts. The VW concern has strengthened its cooperation with the authorities in Germany and abroad. Mercedes, as lawyer Jeniš says, collects information, cooperates with customs, digs online stores and helps investigative authorities during raids.

Porsche did not provide specific data on counterfeits, but they said that they are carefully monitoring what is happening on large platforms such as eBay, Amazon or Alibaba.

Published in Blog/News
Tagged under

The verdict: The Mercedes-Benz GLE was already an excellent mid-size luxury SUV, so AMG treatment just adds equal parts speed, silliness and serious bucks.

Versus the competition: In the realm of expensive, overpowered, medium-sporty luxury SUVs, the GLE53 fits oddly between top luxury and top performance trim levels of competing SUVs in terms of both price and power.

I don’t know how the German luxury brands are doing it. Go into any of their dealerships or peruse their various websites and you’ll find a dozen SUVs of slightly different sizes. Some are tall-riding “coupe”-style SUVs and some are more traditional, but each has several trim levels that amp up the power, style, performance and bottom-line price in increasingly complicated trim stratifications and an alphabet soup of model names. Mercedes-Benz is no exception.

 This SUV is the 2022 Mercedes-AMG GLE53, a name that requires some deciphering (though not as much as do most BMWs). For starters, it’s Mercedes-AMG, not Mercedes-Benz, because it’s part of Mercedes’ sub-brand of AMG-branded performance models, and the GLE is the automaker’s mid-size luxury SUV. The number attached to those letters once denoted engine displacement, but now it’s just a number (53) that lets you know it slots between the lesser GLE450 and the more powerful, V-8-equipped Mercedes-AMG GLE63. Finally, note that the model discussed here is the GLE SUV, not the GLE Coupe. That model has a chopped roofline and less practical space — and it costs more money.

What’s confusing about the AMG GLE53 is that its competitors offer either more power for more money or less power for less money, but no model lines up all that directly with the GLE53. That said, we’ll talk about it here in a couple of ways: Is it any good on its own, and is there a better choice (either within Mercedes or from a competing manufacturer) instead?

Extra Flash

The GLE53 gets some visual changes versus the GLE450, and they do a good job making this a sportier-looking model. The requisite AMG-style grille is present, with chrome trim and an A-Wing design, and it’s accompanied by a deeper front splitter under the bumper. My test vehicle had 21-inch wheels with black accents to go along with black exterior paint, giving the whole SUV a menacing, murdered-out look that’s really quite appealing. It looks like it’ll be fun to drive — at least, as much as any five-seat family SUV could be — hitting all the right notes to amp up its presence without being gaudy or outrageous. As we used to say, it looks money.

Things get even more dramatic inside, with splashes of red Nappa leather upholstery amid somber black surroundings and optional brushed aluminum trim. Everything is of the benchmark quality for which Mercedes-Benz is known; from button actuation to the way the switches and covers move, everything is smooth, damped and upscale.

The regular GLE is a comfortable SUV, but the AMG modifications make it a little less so: The seats are more firmly bolstered, and the steering wheel is shapely but not heated. In short, opting for the GLE53 means giving up some of the convenience items you’d expect in a $90,000 luxury vehicle in exchange for a sportier attitude befitting the AMG label. Admittedly, some of those trades are pretty cool, such as AMG Drive Unit steering-wheel buttons that are part of an AMG Dynamic Plus Package. They let you adjust settings like sport exhaust and drive mode via a neat little rotary wheel on the steering wheel itself. There are also a couple of ancillary organic light-emitting diode buttons that control other features.

It is not, however, a perfect interior. We still think Mercedes-Benz overcomplicates its touch-sensitive steering-wheel controls, gauge cluster information and multimedia system. The automaker’s latest MBUX multimedia system is here, and while it does have a rather significant learning curve, it generally works well — aside from the voice controls, which are still a bit buggy;  you can’t say the word “Mercedes” at all, such as in conversation with passengers, without triggering the system.  But it does provide some fun gee-whiz features, like augmented reality navigation, that are pretty cool.


Extra Dash

Powering the AMG GLE53 is a turbocharged 3.0-liter inline-six-cylinder engine making a hefty 429 horsepower and 384 pounds-feet of torque, mated to a slick nine-speed automatic transmission that drives all four wheels through permanent all-wheel drive. It’s growly and responsive, and it can fling the SUV from 0-60 mph in 5.2 seconds, Mercedes says. That’s reasonably quick for a mid-size SUV, and the powertrain’s responsiveness is among the GLE53’s highlights.

Handling is another. Steering feel is excellent — nicely weighted, full of proper feedback and managed through a thick AMG-style steering wheel that feels good in your hands. The GLE53’s adjustable suspension does an admirable job keeping the SUV level in corners, but there’s no getting around the fact that you’re sitting high up with a high center of gravity. I’d happily trade one of this AMG’s sport modes for the Curve mode found in the GLE450, which is an adaptive suspension mode that tilts the SUV in corners like an airplane, minimizing lateral G-forces. The GLE53 is indeed sportier and more aggressive than a basic GLE450, and it brakes better and sounds better, but its level of “sport” adjustability borders on silly.

The AMG treatment is meant to make you think this is a track-capable sports machine, complete with special lap timers, gauges, super sport modes and more. But that concept is ridiculous; a tall-riding, five-occupant, family SUV is simply not what you drive on a track, it’s the thing you drive to the track — perhaps towing your sports car on a trailer behind you.

All the effort put into trying to create a “sports-car SUV” just seems wasted to me. It’s all about image; these AMG SUVs are far more likely to clog the valet stand at Spago than carve corners at Spa-Francorchamps. I’ve yet to see a driver take their “performance” SUV to a track day or autocross. A vehicle like this is at its best traversing the high-speed Autobahn between two European cities — or at least looking to other American “affluencers” as if that’s something you do.

The performance goodies and styling improvements on the AMG GLE53 look and sound great, but it’s hard to match it up against a proper competitor. BMW offers the less expensive and less powerful X5 xDrive40i (335 hp and 5.3 seconds from 0-60 mph) for nearly $10,000 less, and the more expensive, more powerful X5 M50i (523 hp, 4.1 seconds) for about $10,000 more. Audi has the much less expensive SQ5 (349 hp, 4.7 seconds), but not a more powerful (or expensive) version of the Q5. The even less expensive Alfa Romeo Stelvio Veloce comes only with a 280-hp turbo four-cylinder or in a fire-breathing 505-hp Quadrifoglio trim for a lot more money than the GLE53. A Jaguar F-Pace R-Dynamic is less powerful, less expensive and slower, while an F-Pace SVR is more powerful, more expensive and quicker. Mercedes-Benz is either being clever, finding a niche nobody else has explored, or it has misplaced and mispriced this trim level in an area nobody else finds worthy of the investment.

The AMG GLE53 SUV starts at $74,600 (including destination). The version I drove had some choice options, including a $2,990 red leather interior, 21-inch wheels, performance exhaust, heated and ventilated multicontour seats, and multiple option packages (Driver Assistance, Acoustic Comfort and AMG Performance), bringing the grand total up to $90,550.

So back to our original question: Is the GLE53 any good on its own? Yes, it really is. It provides a more engaging driving experience than a standard GLE, though it comes at the cost of that SUV’s stellar comfort and a few luxury amenities. It’s quick, it’s quiet and it’s certainly a better idea than the truly daft AMG GLE53 Coupe, which eliminates the standard GLE’s useful cargo area and backseat headroom in favor of questionable styling.

Comparing the AMG GLE53 SUV against competitors, however, makes the question more challenging. It really is in a class of one; competitor SUVs are either cheaper and less powerful (but sometimes quicker) or more expensive and a lot more powerful. But if the GLE53 can find a sweet spot, it’ll be as a more budget-friendly alternative to those models (if a $90,000 SUV can really be referred to as a “value” option) and a strong SUV on its own.


Published in Mercedes

The AMG gang in Affalterbach desperately wants you to know a few things about the 2022 Mercedes-AMG SL-Class. One, they designed it. From scratch and with little help from the Benz mothership. Two, it barely shares a screw or rivet with the AMG GT Roadster they also designed. Three, despite the new SL having grown a pair of vestigial back seats and adding a few inches in length, it promises to be the sportiest SL roadster since the racing-derived 300SL from 1957. And four, thanks to miracles of modern science, this new R232 SL also promises to deliver comfort on par with—if not exceeding—that of its Mercedes-developed R231 predecessor.

Three months of engineering roundtable Zoom calls and even a low-speed ridealong event have sufficiently satisfied us on the first two points; it's the last two that we've been itching to verify. At long last we had the opportunity to flog both the SL55 and SL63 variants on a variety of highways and twisting roads. So, has AMG managed to channel the speed-record-setting, Mille Miglia-winning verve of the original W196 while making the car even more cosseting and comfy than the outgoing roadsters?

Mercedes-AMG SL Performance In A Straight Line

The 2022 Mercedes-AMG SL63 will undoubtedly go down in our record books as the quickest SL we've tested. Mercedes claims this 577-hp, 590-lb-ft beast will dash from 0 to 60 mph in just 3.5 seconds, thanks in large part to newly standard all-wheel-drive traction that guarantees none of those ponies or pound-feet gets squandered generating tire smoke or brake heat from traction-control intervention. Converting those estimates to account for MotorTrend launch-control test conditions and a 1-foot rollout will probably boil that number down to something much closer to 3.0 seconds flat. (The last two SL models we tested each beat Mercedes' conservative estimates by exactly half a second.) The SL55, running the exact same engine but with smaller turbos and slightly less aggressive tuning produces "just" 469 horsepower and 517 lb-ft. The AMG team reckons it'll give up three-tenths to the SL63.

2022 Mercedes AMG SL Class 192022 Mercedes AMG SL Class 19

For some perspective, that performance should rank the SL models somewhere about even with the Porsche 911 Carrera 4S and GTS cabriolets, which is to say, ahead of the BMW M850i xDrive cab (3.9 seconds to 60 mph) and way out in front Lexus LC500 (4.7 seconds) in the bucks-up 2+2 cabrio set.

Trust us, if you never drive an SL63, that SL55 will seem like it has more than enough power. However, we might counsel those prepared to settle for the SL55 to consider opting for its AMG Dynamic Plus package, which brings with it a Race mode. We don't typically prefer Race modes because they usually disable all the stability controls, increasing amateurs' risk considerably. This one does not.

What it mostly does, in addition to heightening all the car's responses, is switch to a perfectly linear throttle response map. There's more gain earlier in the pedal travel in the Sport and Sport+ modes, which may make the car seem more eager and powerful, but at some cost to the predictability serious drivers prefer. The computer programming in Sport+ and Race modes devotes a bit of extra fuel to generating delightful pops and snorts on overrun. That feature is fun, but this mode also tends to deliver some harsher downshifts when slowing, which can feel like grabbing brakes (this never happened in Comfort mode).

We only got the SL63 up to triple-digit speeds briefly, but with the optional AMG Aerodynamics package, an air dam in front of the engine lowers 1.6 inches at speeds above 50 mph to help induce a venturi effect that helps suck the car down to the ground and reduce front-axle lift.


2022 Mercedes AMG SL Class 52022 Mercedes AMG SL Class 5

SL-Class Handling Behavior

These are heavy cars, pushing two-and-a-quarter tons. But AMG Active Ride Control, which connects opposite corners of the car hydraulically to limit body roll (as on various McLaren cars and now Rivian trucks), truly makes them feel as agile as cars weighing a half-ton less. This is another feature that's standard on the SL63, and available to help make your SL55 cost almost as much as a 63.

Clicking the steering-wheel-mounted drive mode selector clockwise relaxes the stability nannies somewhat, making the cars progressively more neutral in their handling demeanor, but there's no "drift mode," no option to bar torque from reaching the front axle. (That's right—unlike the AMG GT family, the SLs are all-wheel drive.) And hence, even an aggressive drive up Mount Palomar on a cool morning with slightly dewy road surface, we never once sensed Race mode allowing the tail to run wide. More than a little credit here is due the Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tires—265/40 front, 295/35 rear on the standard 20-inch rims, or 275/35 front and 305/30 on the optional 21s we mostly ran.

The carbon-composite brakes deserve honorable mention for being equally adept at shedding heroic speeds upon approach to a tightening-radius corner—corner after corner—as they are at executing a limousine stop in town. Both models share this standard six-piston front, single-piston rear brake system.

Steering feel changes as you switch modes, and we generally found the comfort mode to be a bit too light. The other modes don't heighten the driver's feel for the road, per se, but the firmer helm feels better. We were blissfully unaware of the four-wheel steering (standard on both models) doing its thing, except when executing exceptionally tight U-turns.

2022 Mercedes AMG SL Class 82022 Mercedes AMG SL Class 8

The California roads between Newport Beach and Palm Springs are relatively smooth, but we aimed for the bumpiest patches we could find and were impressed by the suspension compliance afforded in Comfort mode. The Sport and Race modes firm things up noticeably enough that we took the time to program the Individual mode with everything set to its raciest option and the suspension set to Comfort. This was our Goldilocks "just right" setting, but we also appreciated that individual characteristics (steering, ride, exhaust noise, etc.) can be easily adjusted on the fly using the round selector and twin toggle switches at the lower left side of the wheel, just opposite the main mode-selector switch. The super-rigid multi-material structure never seemed to twist or jiggle in response to bumps.

What's The Mercedes-AMG SL-Class Like To Live With?

Mostly wonderful. The cabin seems as quiet with the soft top up as the previous model did with its folding hard top raised. The Z-fold fabric roof lowers in 15 seconds at the touch of a button, and a switch allows all four windows to be lowered simultaneously. Happily, the sun visors swivel out, unlike on some convertibles. Raise the windows and pull up the mesh-screen wind blocker that covers the rear "seat" to keep the cabin remarkably calm and quiet even at highway speeds. In cooler weather, switch on the Airscarf neck-warmer to extend the top-down season (the cockpit isn't long enough to need the E-Class convertible's Air Cap windshield header air-management screen).

The center info screen adjusts between 12 and 32 degrees to prevent sun from reflecting directly into the driver's eyes, though the buttons for adjusting this (and for raising and lowering the top) can be hard to see when that glare prompts you to fix the screen. We're also not completely sold on a lot of the capacitive switchgear in use here. The mirror switch, for example, didn't seem to respond as expected. We have yet to experience capacitive switches we love.

As with all new Mercedes products, the all-digital instrument cluster can be set to display any of several different themes and tons of information, the most pertinent of which is redundantly shown on the head-up display (standard on 63, optional on 55). Track Pace screens will help folks monitor and improve their performance on their car country club track, and the additional stowage space behind the front seats and in the trunk should make the new SL much more useful as a daily driver.


2022 Mercedes AMG SL Class 562022 Mercedes AMG SL Class 56

We reckon the new car is comfortable enough to retain the SL faithful and sporty enough to pull some customers out of 911s, the BMW 8 Series, and Lexus LCs. Of those, the BMW's nearly 5 inches of added wheelbase gives it a slightly more usable rear seat (the SL's is only rated for passengers shorter than 5 feet tall). A lighter Porsche will always feel nimbler, and the Lexus design may turn more heads, but this Mercedes-AMG enjoys nearly seven decades of heritage, and this R232 pays legitimate homage to its very best SL progenitors.

When And How Much?

The 2022 Mercedes-AMG SL-Class will go on sale in the second quarter of 2022. Mercedes isn't talking pricing just yet, but it seems a safe bet to assume that since the new 2+2-seat SL is effectively replacing both the four-seat S-Class cabriolet and two-seat R231 Mercedes-Benz SL-Class, pricing should represent an average of these models. Let's figure $132K for the SL55 and $175K for the SL63. That prices the new SL right in the thick of the 2+2-passenger convertible crowd.

Looks good! More details?

2022 Mercedes-AMG SL-Class Specifications  
BASE PRICE $132,000-$175,000 (est)
LAYOUT Front-engine, AWD, 2+2-pass, 2-door convertible
ENGINE 4.0L/469-577-hp/516-590-lb-ft twin-turbo direct-injected DOHC 32-valve V-8



Published in Mercedes
Wednesday, 12 January 2022 07:31

New Mercedes SL 2022 review


AMG’s involvement with this fresh model has elevated the SL to new heights. It’s still a great roadster, but one that now offers more driving fun than ever before. Its engine might be outdated compared with Mercedes’ modern EVs, but while the SL boasts some superb advanced tech, even this can’t cover the delightfully appealing old-school charm at its heart.  

The Mercedes SL has consistently cut it visually, but dynamically it’s always been more of a cruiser than a car to carve up corners in. If you wanted a convertible car that handled sharply, that was the Porsche 911 Cabriolet’s job – until now.

For this new SL, Mercedes has enlisted the help of AMG to develop a new rigid aluminium platform – called Modular Sports Architecture – which will also underpin the next AMG GT. It aims to put agility and driving enjoyment right at the heart of the experience, and from our first taste of the range-topping SL 63 4MATIC+ variant we’re driving here, it has succeeded.

Despite the new SL’s still-significant weight of around two tonnes, its super-sharp steering gives it plenty of agility for such a big car. Sometimes the steering feels a little over-sensitive on the motorway, but on twisty roads it makes sense, pointing the long nose into turns with millimetric precision, helped by its rear-wheel-steering set-up.

In long, fast corners the SL feels superbly stable and locked onto your chosen line, helped by active roll stabilisation that keeps the body level; only out of a tight hairpin on wet tarmac will the rear wheels break traction (an electronically controlled limited-slip differential is standard) – but it’s only a twitch and the four-wheel-drive tech steps in immediately to help regulate the SL’s angle and deploy its considerable firepower from under the bonnet.

With 577bhp and 800Nm of torque from a familiar 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8, the SL has straight-line performance covered, while all-wheel drive gives incredible traction for a 3.6-second 0-62mph sprint. It thrusts you back in your seat, although sometimes there’s a very slight delay in the response from the powertrain while the nine-speed automatic gearbox sorts itself out.

The noise delivers the kind of AMG thunder we expect, enhancing the SL’s sharp character, but in the more relaxed driving modes refinement is still strong. That’s despite its predecessor’s folding hard-top being replaced by a soft-top hood, which is actually 21kg lighter than the previous arrangement.

It’s comfortable and well insulated with the hood up, and the set-up takes 15 seconds to lower electronically at speeds of up to 37 mph. There are myriad driving modes, so the SL can be tailored to your preferences, but even in Comfort there’s a better connection to the road than in any previous edition.  

The new car is a 2+2, with two small rear seats. They’re compact and maybe best suited to children, but they add useful extra luggage space, because the boot capacity is only 213 litres with the roof folded down.

Thanks to some big changes inside, there’s much more space in the front of this new SL than in past models. A pair of sports seats with Mercedes’ trademark Airscarf ventilation system that blows warm air onto your neck are fitted as standard.

Prices have still to be confirmed, but the SL 63 could start from around £140,000 when it goes on sale. And you’ll need a big budget to run one, with claimed efficiency of 23.9mpg and CO2 emissions of 268g/km.
Model: Mercedes-AMG SL 63 4Matic+
Price: £140,000 (est)
Engine: 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8
Power/torque: 577bhp/800Nm
Transmission: Nine-speed dual-clutch automatic, four-wheel drive
0-62mph: 3.6 seconds
Top speed: 195mph
Economy: 23.9mpg
CO2: 268g/km
On sale: Spring


Published in Mercedes
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Brabus builds the most powerful superlux suv in the world. Based on the Mercedes-Maybach GLS 600, the Brabus 800 develops 800 HP and 950 Nm from the 4-liter twin-turbo V8 engine.

The Brabus tuner builds the most powerful and luxurious Mercedes models in the world. Now, their attention has shifted to the Mercedes-Maybach GLS 600 superlux SUV, for which the 4-liter V8 engine has been substantially modified. It now develops 800 HP and 950 Nm, with 243 HP and 220 Nm more than the production model.

The huge torque is transmitted to all four wheels via the 9-speed automatic transmission and the gears can be changed manually or automatically. Top speed is limited to 300 km/h and acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h takes only 4.5 seconds.

The exhaust system has active flaps that allow you to change the engine sound from a throaty V8 in ‘Sport’ mode and a subtle whisper in ‘Coming Home’ mode at the touch of a button.

Compared to the standard model running on 22-inch wheels, the Brabus 800 has huge 24-inch forged BRABUS Monoblock M “PLATINUM EDITION” rims. Although it runs on larger wheels, the ground clearance is 25 mm lower due to the air suspension modified by Brabus.
The Brabus 800 is equipped as standard with two individual multi-contour seats in the rear, electrically adjustable, with memory, ventilated and heated. Also, the interior is decorated with carbon fiber inserts, aluminum pedals, stainless-steel scuff plates complete with backlit Brabus logo, which changes color in sync with the ambient lighting.


Published in Mercedes
Monday, 20 December 2021 06:21

New Mercedes-AMG EQS 53 2022 review

The new Mercedes-AMG EQS 53 is AMG's first attempt at an all-electric car, and it packs a serious punch with 649bhp


The EQS 53 is a strong first effort from AMG when it comes to series production all-electric machines. Performance takes another step on compared with the standard EQS, but it’s actually the car’s ride and handling that are more impressive than the straight-line shove, given its hefty kerbweight. This bodes well for AMG’s electric future, and even more powerful and more focused models beyond the EQS 53.

After unveiling its first all-electric AMG model at the 2021 Munich Motor Show we’re now able to sample Mercedes’ performance future with its EQS 53 4MATIC+, a tuned and honed version from Affalterbach, AMG’s base, that offers more power, optimised aerodynamics and revised styling that’s more in keeping with the EQS AMG’s intent.

Let’s start with power. The car’s twin-motor set-up is supplied by a 108kWh battery as offered in the regular EQS, but the motors feature new windings and control software, so here the output is up to 649bhp and 950Nm of torque - or an incredible 751bhp and 1,020Nm of torque if you opt for the AMG Dynamic Plus package. For now, only the former is available in the UK.

The 0-62mph sprint is dispatched in 3.8 seconds (or 3.4 for the Dynamic Plus model) if you, but its straight-line performance isn’t even the EQS 53’s strongest point. Up to about 125mph, in most conditions performance is actually relatively similar to the regular EQS, in that both cars deliver their thump (the AMG a good chunk more) in a linear fashion, which means there are fewer differentiating characteristics that come from the powertrains.

Instead, it’s the 53’s tuned chassis that is more noticeable. Air suspension and rear-wheel steering both feature as standard, and as good as the regular EQS is, it weighs more than 2.5 tonnes, so the tweaks for this AMG model help keep that significant kerbweight in check.

AMG’s alterations to the set-up mean the EQS 53 feels lighter and more agile, as if the car has lost a few hundred kilos. It corners with more assurance, as you’d expect, and holds its line better; in fact, it feels more like a regular E-Class in how it handles than an all-electric limousine.

Albeit an E-Class with plenty of space, because the 5.2-metre long EQS 53 boasts a 610-litre boot and a big interior with lots of legroom in the back and plenty of bespoke AMG touches, include sports seats and a sports steering wheel, as well as a rotary controller for the driving modes.

You can choose from five settings that tweak the throttle and steering response, amongst other features - even the accompanying soundtrack changes - while the infotainment gives a read-out on performance data. Of course, the huge Hyperscreen panel is still present and works as well as we’ve come to expect from Mercedes.

In the default setting the EQS 53 wafts along in near-silence, offering impressive refinement. It’s comfortable too. Step things up and the soundtrack takes on a new personality, with a futuristic sound designed to reflect the performance on offer. 

It’s not comparable with a six, eight or twelve-cylinder AMG combustion engine when it comes to authenticity, but then this is a quality that the EQS 53 doesn’t struggle with overall anyway. If AMG continues like this, performance fans need not be worried about its future when it comes to electric mobility.

A few points remain unchanged anyway, as the EQS 53 commands a typically high AMG-style price, starting from £154,995. But at least a claimed range of up to 377 miles on a full charge, and 200kW rapid charging capability to match its regular EQS cousin give good flexibility. You’ll be able to top up the battery from 10 to 80 per cent in 31 minutes, while a 7kW home wallbox will take 15 hours and 30 minutes to fully replenish the battery.

Model: Mercedes-AMG EQS 53 4MATIC+
Price:  £154,995
Battery/motor:  108kWh/2x e-motors
Power/torque:  649bhp/950Nm
0-62mph:  3.8 seconds
Top speed:  155mph
Transmission:  Single-speed automatic, four-wheel drive
Range:  377 miles (WLTP)
Charging:  200kW (10-80% in 31 mins)
On sale: Now


Published in Mercedes
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