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AMG showcases their new 5.5-litre V8 in a "stripped" out S-Class

By Rigval on 13 Mar 2010

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This here folks is the AMG-Mercedes showcase S63 AMG Concept car. Why they still call it a 63 is beyond me as the new engine is a twin turbo 5.5-litre V8. But the Gurus of All Mighty Grunt, AMG has done it again. It has plastered an S-Class with racing livery, added a full roll cage and race seats to it. Imagine a 50 year old CEO of some large multi-national company driving a car decked out like this.

The supposedly stripped out racer like concept for the car together with all the stickers is because Mercedes wants to gather some nostalgic moments in which the car pays homage to the 1971 300SEL AMG racing car. That was the one of the first AMG powered Mercedes’ running a 6.8-litre V8 engine which made around 420ps. Quite a good job almost forty years ago.

Back to the newer car. The new engine replaces the earlier 6.2-litre V8 found in the S63. And why the 6.2-litre is called a 63 when Mercedes numbered the model is still unclear but I would think it is in honor of the old 300sel 6.3 of the 1970s. So a 6.2 is called a 63 for the sake of heritage. Now, with a 5.5 it is still called a 63 as in the world of TOP TRUMPS or affluent people with toys, they wouldn’t want to buy a newer AMG with a smaller model number. If they could, they’d want AMG-Mercedes to put S7550000 on their boot lid.

Anyway, despite the smaller engine capacity the new M157 unit is now a twin Garrett turbocharged engine making more power and much more torque than the earlier normally aspirated one. 537bhp is produced at 5500rpm (versus 518bhp at 6800rpm in the 6.2 V8) and 590lb ft of torque between 2000 and 4500rpm, which is considerably more than the 464lb ft at 5200rpm produced in the current engine. The engine weighs 204kg and will be coupled to Mercedes’ seven-speed MCT transmission, which is also found in the E63 AMG. Fuel consumption in the 5.5 V8 has been improved to 26.9mpg from 19.6mpg in the outgoing 6.2 V8.

A 563bhp, 664lb ft (900nm) version of the engine will also be available as part of a performance package upgrade on the S63 AMG. Of course, with that much torque, it would be electronically limited upon acceleration like on the S65 AMGs. On another note, the car also features wider arches which will be incorporated into the new S63 upon launching.

It somehow looks like AMG has decided that its customers like the old characteristics of the blown predecessor (the supercharged S55) and has reverted to having something forced induction again. We may see the E63 and the SL63 with this engine sometime soon.

The new unit is based on an upcoming Mercedes twin-turbo 4.6-litre V8 engine, which will find its way into the new CLS and S-class models later this year.
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- the original AMG 'Red Pig'. Aptly nicknamed by its creators if I may say so myself.

AMG, Mercedes, S63, E63, 300sel and 3 more...

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Written by Rigval
Born in 1972. Married with a kid. Loves B-road drives and have driven cars from the 1950s to date.

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