After selling only 18,168 samples of their R-Class in 2007, even after dropping the base price by $5,000, Mercedes will try taking the uber-wagon downmarket in 2008.

For starters, the cheapest R-Class you can get next year will be the 268hp R350, which has a V6 and does without all wheel drive to come in under $43,000. Originally, the cheapest R350 started at around $48,000. Other R models will retain standard AWD.

In the past, spotting a 500 HP AMG R63 has been difficult, probably due to its $80,000 price tag. Spotting one now will be even harder. All 2008 R-Class models will get the body cladding of the 2007 AMG (pictured above) and 18" wheels, but not the performance mods. No AMG R-Class will be offered in 2008.

The most expensive R next year will be the 221hp R320 CDI at just over $46,000.

[Source: Automotive News - Sub. Req.]