The new Mercedes-AMG E 63 Estate is the world's quickest wagon, hitting 0-62mph in 3.5sec in range-topping S 4Matic+ guise, and costs from £81,130.
It is 0.1sec slower than its saloon equivalent, while the fastest Audi RS6 Avant can cover the 0-62mph sprint in 3.7sec.
Making its global debut at the Geneva motor show, the E 63 Estate will be sold in two versions: the E 63 4Matic+ Estate and the E 63 S 4Matic+ Estate, are expected to cost £81,130 and £90,490 respectively. An Edition 1, based on the E 63 S, costs £108,780, and adds 20in wheels, the AMG Night package, AMG sports seats and carbonfibre trim. Options across the range include a £1000 AMG performance exhaust, a carbonfibre package for £3,370 and, for S and Edition 1 cars, £6,995 AMG high-performance ceramic brakes.
Using the same twin-turbocharged 4.0-litre V8 engine as the saloon, the standard E 63 4Matic+ has 563bhp and 552lb ft of torque. The most popular model, however, is expected to be the range-topping E 63 S 4Matic+, which has added turbocharger boost pressure and other power-enhancing tweaks, allowing it to produce 603bhp and 626lb ft.
The engine also has a cylinder deactivation system fitted as standard that helps to improve efficiency, claims Mercedes-AMG. In city driving, four cylinders are deactivated between 1000 and 3250rpm when the engine is switched to Comfort mode.
Similarly to other recent AMG models including the E 63 saloon, the driver can pick from four driving modes: Comfort, Sport, Sport Plus and Individual. The S 4Matic+ version also comes with a fifth driving mode, Race, which is designed especially for driving on circuits.
The E 63 Estate gets a nine-speed Speedshift MCT automatic gearbox, featuring a so-called wet start-off clutch and steering wheel-mounted shift paddles. Further driveline developments include a mechanical differential lock for the E63 4Matic+ and faster-acting electronic differential lock on the E 63 S 4Matic+. Both models will be available only with AMG's Performance 4Matic+ four-wheel drive system, which offers fully variable distribution of drive between the front and rear wheels for the first time. The E 63 4Matic+ Estate hits 0-62mph in 3.6sec, while the S 4Matic+ achieves the sprint in 3.5sec.
Despite having four-wheel drive, AMG offers a so-called Drift mode on the S 4Matic+. Activated by shift paddles, it prompts the four-wheel drive system to deliver drive exclusively to the rear wheels, remaining engaged until the driver deactivates it.
Echoing the E 63 saloon, the model’s styling is intended to set it further apart from regular Mercedes-Benz E-Class Estate models than previous generations. It is also 27mm wider, with the wheel arches accommodating the greater track width and larger wheels on the front axle.