HOT ON the heels of the world premiere for the new Mercedes-Benz E-Class, its first performance variant is on the way from Mercedes-AMG.
The E 43 4MATIC with the 3.0-litre V6 biturbo engine on board represents the most powerful variant of the Mercedes-AMG 43 range. With two new turbochargers and corresponding software applications, the charged six-cylinder engine delivers an output of 295 kW.
As ever, the standard-specification AMG Performance 4MATIC four-wheel drive combines optimum traction with high agility on the E 43 4MATIC, 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, the retuned sports suspension based on the AIR BODY CONTROL air suspension and the more direct steering ratio also provide for signature AMG Driving Performance.
The looks of the E 43 4MATIC also render it immediately recognisable as a member of the AMG family. Apart from underscoring the powerful and self-assured appearance, three large openings in the front apron 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 louvre in high-gloss black and the AMG lettering represent further hallmarks of the AMG 43 models.
The side view is dominated by high-sheen 19-inch AMG five-spoke light-alloy wheels painted in high-gloss black. The rear end also features characteristic highlights, with two chrome-plated quad-flow exhaust tailpipes conveying a particularly sporty aesthetic. The rear apron trim in diffusor look comes in silver chrome, while the standard-specification spoiler lip on the boot lid is painted in the body colour.
The interior reinforces the dynamic calibre of the new E 43 4MATIC with numerous individual details. The driver and front passenger find a secure position in the sports seats even when driving at speed, thanks to the improved lateral support. The upholstery in ARTICO man-made leather/DINAMICA microfibre in black (optionally: nappa leather) features a distinctive layout and red topstitching. To match the seat design, the door centre panels and the dashboard are finished in ARTICO man-made leather with red topstitching. Exclusive pedals, a black roof lining and red seat belts add further sporty highlights.
The multifunction sports steering wheel in black nappa leather with red contrasting topstitching and featuring a flattened bottom section is ideally suited to an emphatic driving style. The AMG instrument cluster delivers all relevant information in a clearly arranged layout optimised for a dynamic driving style. Two tube-style round dials, the 11.4 cm (4.5-inch) multifunction colour display, the RACETIMER and the 280 km/h scale in chequered-flag design conjure up a sports car feel.
The V6 biturbo engine boasts a high power output combined with low fuel consumption and emissions. The high power output of 295 kW is attributable, among other things, to new, larger turbochargers and the higher charge-air pressure of 1.1 bar. Installed close to the engine, the two turbochargers are especially spontaneous in their response.
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, therefore, wear-resistant, this coating also reduces friction, thereby contributing to higher efficiency. The same applies to the spray-guided multiple injection with up to 200 bar fuel pressure. The AMG powerplant can be identified by the red aluminium insert in the engine cover.
The 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission is specially matched to the requirements of the new E 43 4MATIC. The AMG developers have managed to reduce the shift times of the 9-speed transmission by means of a dedicated software application. 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 centre 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.
For added agility, more neutral cornering behaviour and higher traction even when driving at speed, the developers 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 also features in a model-specific configuration and 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 optimised 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.
The standard-specification AMG Performance 4MATIC four-wheel drive 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 developers 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 a lower weight. Its compact design additionally means that it does not entail any space restrictions for passengers or luggage.
With the five DYNAMIC SELECT transmission modes “Eco”, “Comfort”, “Sport”, “Sport Plus” and “Individual”, the driver can tailor the characteristics of the E 43 4MATIC to individual preferences at the tap of a finger. The available range extends from efficient and comfortable to extremely sporty. This modifies key parameters, such as the response of the engine, transmission, suspension and steering. Independently of the 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 DYNAMIC SELECT “Sport” and “Sport Plus” transmission modes are configured with a clear emphasis on driving dynamics on the new E 43 4MATIC. This results from an agile accelerator pedal characteristic with direct set-up and emotional gear shifting with reduced shift times, double declutching and deactivation of certain cylinders. 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 60 and 160 km/h, 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.
The speed-sensitive sports steering features a variable ratio on the E 43 4MATIC. 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 DYNAMIC SELECT transmission mode or can be personalised 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 saloon. Perforated discs in size 360 x 36 mm with 4-piston fixed callipers and AMG lettering are fitted on the front axle, while discs in size 360 x 26 mm with 1-piston fixed callipers feature at the rear.
The optionally available features also emphasize the sporty character of the E 43 4MATIC. These range from AMG seats with increased lateral support through nappa leather upholstery to 20-inch bichromatic wheels.
The Remote Online (free to use for the first three years) allows drivers to connect to their vehicle from anywhere and at any time via “mercedes.me” to retrieve vehicle data and remotely activate various vehicle functions. With the new Mercedes me app, this also works with iOS and Android.
The standard Remote Online services include:
- Parked Vehicle Locator – allows the vehicle position to be determined, for example, if the vehicle was parked in an unfamiliar city. This makes it possible to conveniently find the vehicle within a range of 1.5 kilometres with the help of a smartphone.
- Vehicle Tracker – enables the latest position of a moving vehicle to be pinpointed via GPS. The driver has a display in the vehicle and can deactivate the service at any time with a toll-free call to the Customer Assistance Centre.
- Geofencing – shows where the vehicle is in an area previously defined on the map and informs the owner if the car leaves or enters this area. Like the Vehicle Tracker.
- Remote door locking and unlocking – allows opening or closing the vehicle doors remotely, for example, if the driver forgets to lock the vehicle. Remote Retrieval of Vehicle Status – vehicle data such as fuel level, range and more can be accessed from home or while on the road.
A stipulation in the terms and conditions when purchasing a new Mercedes-Benz passenger car is that customers need to register for Mercedes me connect to activate the class-leading PremiumDrive 6-years/100,000 km maintenance contract, a value-add at no additional cost.
Mercedes-AMG E 43 4MATIC R1,165,800