The E43's engine sends its power to a rear-biased 4Matic all-wheel drive system that routes through a nine-speed automatic. Even if this isn't the ultimate AMG iteration of the latest E-Class, it's still pretty quick. The run to 60 miles per hour takes 4.5 seconds, which is a huge upgrade over the E300's 6.3-second sprint.
Mercedes matches the E43's extra power with subdued exterior upgrades. There's a new front bumper, 19-inch wheels, and dual exhausts at each rear corner. Inside, red accent stitching hints to occupants that this sedan is capable of greater performance than the stock model. You can get a fantastic look at the E43 in the gallery above, but they don't arrive at dealers in the US until early 2017.
First high-performance variant of the new E-Class
Affalterbach. Hot on the heels of the world premiere for the new Mercedes-Benz E-Class at the North American International Auto Show this January, the first high-performance variant of the new E-Class is already on the way from Mercedes-AMG. The Mercedes-AMG E43, boasting a 3.0-liter V6 Biturbo engine, will represent the most powerful variant of the luxury sedan when it hits dealerships by early 2017. This high-powered six-cylinder engine delivers an output of 396 hp and 384 lb-ft of torque. The AMG Performance 4MATIC four-wheel drive combines optimum traction with high agility on the AMG E43, thanks to rear-biased torque distribution with a front-to-rear ratio of 31:69 percent. The 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission with shorter shift times, AMG AIRMATIC Adaptive Sport Suspension and the more direct steering ratio also provide for signature AMG Driving Performance.
"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," notes Tobias Moers, CEO of Mercedes-AMG GmbH.
On the AMG E43, Mercedes-AMG has upgraded the six-cylinder engine's output by 34 hp to 396 hp with the aid of two larger turbochargers and sophisticated AMG software. The ample peak torque of 384 lb-ft is available from a low engine speed of 2,500 rpms all the way through 5,000 rpms.
This package guarantees performance on par with many a sports car: the new AMG E43 achieves a 0-60 time in just 4.5 seconds, while its top speed is electronically limited to 155 mph.
The data at a glance:
Engine Displacement: V6 Biturbo 2996 cc
Output: 396 hp at 6100 rpm
Peak torque: 384 lb-ft at 2500-5000 rpm
Curb Weight: 4,145 lbs
Acceleration 0-60 mph: 4.5 s
Top speed: 155 mph (electronically limited)
Sporty and distinctive: the exterior design
The looks of the AMG E43 render it immediately recognizable as a member of the AMG family. Apart from underscoring a powerful appearance, three large openings in the front bumper also ensure an optimum flow of air to the coolers. Two elegant cross fins on the outer cooling openings enhance the vehicle's visual presence. The diamond grille with chromed pins, a louver in high-gloss black and AMG lettering represent further hallmarks of the AMG 43 models.
The side view of the AMG E43 is dominated by high-sheen 19-inch AMG five-spoke light-alloy wheels painted in high-gloss black. The rear end features characteristic highlights including two chrome-plated quad-flow exhaust tailpipes conveying a particularly sporty aesthetic. The rear diffusor comes in silver chrome, while the standard-specification spoiler lip on the trunk lid is painted body color.
Sporty look with model-specific details: the interior design
The interior reinforces the dynamic caliber of the new AMG E43 with numerous individual details. The driver and front passenger find a secure position in the sport seats even when driving at top speed, thanks to the improved lateral support. The upholstery in MB-Tex/DINAMICA (optional: nappa leather) features a distinctive layout and red topstitching. To match the seat design, the door center panels and dashboard are finished in MB-Tex with red topstitching. Exclusive pedals, a black roof lining and red seat belts add further sporty highlights.
The multifunction sports steering wheel with Touch Control in black nappa leather with red contrasting topstitching and a flattened bottom section is ideally suited for sporty driving. The AMG instrument cluster delivers all relevant information in a clearly arranged layout optimized for a dynamic driving style on the available fully- digital, high-resolution 12.3" instrument screen.
High on power, low on consumption: the AMG 3.0-liter V6 Biturbo engine
The V6 Biturbo engine boasts a high power output combined with low fuel consumption and emissions. The high power output of 396 hp is attributable, among other things, to new, larger turbochargers and the higher charge-air pressure of 16 psi. Installed close to the engine, the two turbochargers provide near-instantaneous power.
The NANOSLIDE® coating on the cylinder liners has also undergone further development in the Formula 1 V6 hybrid turbo engines from Mercedes-Benz. Especially tough and wear-resistant, this coating reduces friction, thereby contributing to higher efficiency. The same applies to the spray-guided fuel injection, with up to 2900 psi of pressure.
The AMG powerplant can be identified by the red aluminum insert in the engine cover.
Short shift times and high efficiency: the 9G-TRONIC
The 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission is specially matched to the requirements of the new AMG E43. The multiple downshift function enables more spontaneous short bursts of speed, while the double-declutching function in "Sport" and "Sport Plus" transmission modes makes for an even more emotional driving experience. Defined ignition intervention additionally enables faster gear shifting than in "Eco" and "Comfort" modes.
"Manual" mode can be selected using a separate button in the center console. The gear changes are based on the selected transmission mode and the driver can now change gear using the paddles on the steering wheel. Moreover, the transmission stays in the selected gear and does not automatically shift up when the engine speed reaches the limit.
More agility: AMG AIRMATIC Adaptive Sport Suspension
For added agility, more neutral cornering behavior and higher traction even when driving at high speeds, engineers in Affalterbach have designed a dedicated sports suspension on the basis of the AIR BODY CONTROL multi-chamber air suspension system. The Adaptive Damping System offers a choice of three modes – "Comfort," "Sport" and "Sport Plus." This provides for broader scope between a high level of comfort for longer journeys and sporty driving dynamics.
The four-link front axle is fitted with special steering knuckles and load-bearing joints; all components have been optimized in terms of rigidity. A more negative camber on the front axle and on the multi-link rear axle enhances lateral dynamics. The elastokinematics of both axles have been designed to be more rigid in general. All these measures improve agility and boost the dynamics.
Rear-biased and agile: AMG Performance 4MATIC
The AMG Performance 4MATIC four-wheel drive system features rear-biased torque distribution with a front/rear axle split of 31 to 69 percent. This configuration provides for enhanced driving dynamics and higher lateral acceleration on the road as well as improved traction when accelerating.
In combining the permanent four-wheel drive with the 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission, the engineers have opted for a change of concept: the single-stage transfer case of the four-wheel drive is flange-mounted on the 9G-TRONIC as a separate system. On earlier generations of vehicles, the transfer case was integrated into the 7G-TRONIC PLUS. The new add-on solution makes it easier to modify torque distribution according to the model, thus enabling even more individual characteristics for the respective model series.
The new system is also more effective than the earlier concept by virtue of improved efficiency, reduced friction and lower weight. Its compact design does not restrict space for either passengers or luggage.
Characteristics at the tap of a finger: AMG DYNAMIC SELECT
With the five AMG DYNAMIC SELECT transmission modes "Eco," "Comfort," "Sport," "Sport Plus" and "Individual," the driver can tailor the characteristics of the AMG E43 to individual preferences at the tap of a finger. The available range extends from efficient and comfortable to extremely sporty and modifies key parameters, such as the response of the engine, transmission, suspension and steering. Independently of the AMG DYNAMIC SELECT transmission modes, the driver has the option of pressing the "M" button to switch directly to manual mode, in which gearshifts are executed exclusively using the shift paddles on the steering wheel. The suspension set-ups can also be selected as necessary.
The AMG DYNAMIC SELECT "Sport" and "Sport Plus" transmission modes are configured with a clear emphasis on driving dynamics on the new AMG E43. This results from an agile accelerator pedal characteristic with direct set-up and emotional gear shifting with reduced shift times and double declutching. The increased idling speed additionally enables the vehicle to move off quickly and provides for faster acceleration from a standing start.
In order to increase efficiency, in "Eco" mode the ECO start/stop function and the gliding function reduce fuel consumption: when the driver releases the accelerator in a speed range between 31 and 99 mph, the clutch is disengaged and the engine is decoupled from the powertrain. The electronics reduce the engine speed to idling level, and the driving resistance is reduced by the compression and frictional forces of the engine in overrun mode.
Direct and with clear feedback: speed-sensitive sports steering
The speed-sensitive sports steering features a variable ratio on the AMG E43. It stands out with its precise, highly authentic feedback. Steering power assistance is available in a choice of two modes – "Comfort" or "Sport." The relevant characteristics are automatically activated depending on the selected AMG DYNAMIC SELECT transmission mode or can be personalized in Individual mode. Manual torque is increased in "Sport" mode, providing more feedback on driving conditions.
The large braking system with internally ventilated compound brake discs ensures reliable and quick deceleration of the sedan.
Optional features with a sporty emphasis
The optionally available features also emphasize the sporty character of the AMG E43. These range from AMG seats with increased lateral support to nappa leather upholstery to 20-inch wheels. The new Mercedes-AMG E43 will have its world premiere at the New York International Auto Show in March 2016 and will be in US dealers by early 2017.