The 395bhp Mercedes-AMG E43 4Matic is powered by a twin-turbo V6, sits below the E63 and is pitched against the Audi S6 and Jaguar XF S
24 March 2016

Mercedes-Benz has revealed the first of two planned AMG variants of the new fifth-generation E-Class: the twin-turbocharged V6-powered E43 4Matic saloon.

The E 45 made its official debut at the New York motor show before a scheduled UK sales launch in September, the 395bhp four-door is the fourth in what Mercedes-Benz says will be an extended range of second tier AMG models to rival similarly conceived offerings from Audi’s S and BMW’s M Performance line-ups.

Like the recently revealed SLC 43, C43 Coupe 4Matic and C43 Convertible 4Matic, the new E43 4Matic saloon is powered by a reworked version of Mercedes-Benz’s twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre V6 petrol engine with added turbocharger boost pressure, revised software mapping and a two-stage exhaust.

Yet, while the AMG-fettled engine delivers 362bhp at 5500rpm in the SLC 43, C43 Coupe 4Matic and C43 Convertible 4Matic, the 2996cc unit receives a further series of power enhancing changes, including larger turbochargers running 1.1bar of boost pressure, for use in the E43 4Matic.

As a result, power has increased a further 33bhp beyond the base unit, providing the E43 4Matic with a sturdy 395bhp at a higher 6100rpm. Significantly, the revised engine delivers a higher specific output than the 502bhp version of AMG’s dedicated twin-turbocharged 4.0-litre V8 at 132bhp/litre versus 126bhp/litre.

With an official 1765kg kerb weight, this endows AMG's latest model with a power-to-weight ratio of 224bhp/tonne. Torque, meanwhile, remains the same as other new AMG models fitted with the V6 engine, peaking at 383lb ft between 2500rpm and 5000rpm. 

In comparison, the Audi S6 saloon’s twin-turbocharged 4.0-litre V8 delivers 444bhp and 406lb ft of torque.

As on the C43 Coupe 4Matic and C43 Convertible 4Matic revealed at the Geneva motor show earlier this month, the E43 4Matic channels its reserves through a standard nine-speed automatic gearbox with a column mounted shift lever and a specially developed version of Mercedes-Benz’s 4Matic four-wheel drive system with a nominal 31:69 front-to-rear drive split.

The gearbox has been given AMG-specific software mapping, providing it with a claimed reduction in shift time over the standard unit used by other new E-Class models, as well as the ability to hold gears at the redline rather than shifting up. It also provides a multiple downshifting and a double declutching function in Sport and Sport Plus modes – two of a total of six modes that also include Eco, Comfort, Individual and Manual.

Official performance claims put the E43 4Matic’s 0-62mph time at 4.6sec – the same figure Audi quotes for the S6. As with its closest four-door rival, top speed is limited to 155mph. The official combined cycle fuel consumption is 34.0mpg and average CO2 emissions are 189g/km.

The E43 4Matic is underpinned by a re-tuned version of the new E-Class’s Air Body Control suspension. It uses multi-chamber air springs that provide adaptive damping properties in three modes: Comfort, Sport and Sport Plus. Among the changes to the standard geometry are new steering knuckles and load bearing joints for the four-link front suspension, greater negative camber on both the front and rear wheels and stiffer spring and damper rates.

The variable ratio electro-mechanical steering system has also been retuned and, in combination with the adaptive damping, it offers the choice of two modes: Comfort and Sport.  

Reining in the added performance potential brought on by the new engine is an upgraded brake package featuring 360mm steel discs with four-pot calipers up front and similar dimensioned 360mm steel discs with single pot calipers at the rear.

An AMG styling package helps to distinguish the E43 4Matic from other new E-Class models. Included in the visual makeover is a more heavily structured front bumper with larger air ducts, a diamond themed grille insert, wider sills, a revised rear bumper with integrated diffuser element and quad trapezoidal shaped tail pipes and standard 19-inch wheels.

Inside, the initial range topping E-Class model has sports seats, a flat bottom multi-function steering wheel and AMG-specific instruments.

Together with the saloon variant of the E43, AMG also plans an estate of its latest V6-powered model. Pricing is yet to be announced, though officials suggest the new four-door will pitch in above £50,000.

The E43 4Matic precedes a successor to the E63, set to be unveiled later this year. In keeping with other recent first tier AMG models, it eschews the twin-turbocharged 5.5-litre V8 petrol engine of its predecessor for the Mercedes-Benz performance car division’s newer twin-turbocharged 4.0-litre V8 petrol powerplant. 

Our Verdict

Mercedes-Benz E-Class
The E-class more than lives up to traditional Mercedes values

The E-Class is a refined and relaxing return to old Mercedes qualities

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Comments
13

11 March 2016

I've come to the conclusion that this design isn't nearly as strong and germanatic as it should be. Nothing flows so it looks out of proportion. The leds at the front looks messy. Its more like a Korean design than anything

11 March 2016
Sam_notts wrote:

Its more like a Korean design than anything

You mean the cars of Kia and Hyundai which are designed by the original Audi TT designer, and German, Peter Schreyer, right?

jer

11 March 2016

But this is a sweet spot car. Must be the engine.

12 March 2016
jer wrote:

But this is a sweet spot car. Must be the engine.

The saloon is good but as mentioned has shades of new Korean direction. The Estate would be the better bet in appearance. That said - must say the Merc are steadily getting their mojo back. Last Merc I had was in the mid 70's and was 2nd hand 350 se - a bloody tank with three speed auto - but held the road like glue. If anyone ever went to Athens and to the Casino on Mount Parnas the road to which has something like 25 hairpins and a huge climb. That old tank held the record for some years!

what's life without imagination

11 March 2016

I must say every time I see the rear end of a C or this new E it does remind me of the story about Jaguar in the 80's or 90's using the wrong styling prototype/buck for actual production leading to a droopy arsed look which had to be amended on the face lift !

11 March 2016

Pretty tasty but I wish it had proper dials instead of a screen. I've got an iPhone but I don't want an Apple Watch thanks.

11 March 2016

And the awful screen...
Is it a Mercedes ?

11 March 2016

The comments the new E-Class continues to receive are ridiculous. For one I don't want each model to look like they come from an entirely different marque, Daweoo were quite good at that. The S,M,L is fine.

It sports a fantastic design with a modern interior, that is clearly German yet imposing and confident and with the AMG spec body-kit and alloy wheels combo it manages to look even more impressive (SE trims never look right do they?).

Considering the austerity focused world we all now live in a turbocharged v6 sounds like a very logical approach to take for those who want performance yet practicality.. certainly makes more sense than any performance tuned diesel.

You know that the Merc has had millions thrown at it in terms of R&D and engineering… to me anything with a Jaguar or Land-Rover badge slapped on it always strikes me as cheap. Like a Chinese built passenger plane- impressive from a distance but we’d all rather be getting to our destination on the Airbus.

Also fail to see what's wrong with having LCD dials, sticking with the plane analogy- if it's good enough for an Airbus A380's flight deck then it's certainly good enough for a passenger car.

TS7

11 March 2016

No aviator I know, and in 21 years of flying in the Royal Air Force I've met a few, 'prefers' digidials to analogue ones. They're there because they are cheaper to maintain, nothing more, nothing less. But when they do go wrong when it counts (airborne) you're stuffed. That's why analogue reversionary instruments are still tucked away on the 'dashboard'.

NY_69 wrote:

Also fail to see what's wrong with having LCD dials, sticking with the plane analogy- if it's good enough for an Airbus A380's flight deck then it's certainly good enough for a passenger car.

11 March 2016

Glass cockpits were introduced to increase better situational awareness in-flight, if there's a problem it's important to be able to quickly and accurately interpret the information you're presented with...hence their introduction. Your comment about their use being based on 'cheaper to maintain' is nonsensical- if anything I would imagine they cost far more to maintain given their complexiity. Both glass cockpits and steam guages like you'd find in a Cessna 172 or any other 1950's aircraft have their uses...however in the context of the E-Class I personally think it's a welcomed addition.

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