Life Lessons, Courtesy of Mercedes

Posted by: Matt Iasenzaniro onAugust 14th, 2014

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The E63S AMG has, according to the dyno, 540 all-wheel horsepower. We can extrapolate that out to about 630 at the crank, which is the same power as the C7 Corvette Z06. Regal company for a wagon. I haven’t driven a lot of ridiculously powerful cars in my life, but I can tell you that, as of writing this, the E63S is the quickest car I’ve ever driven in a straight line. Speaking of straight lines, the next assumption you might make is that the wagon is only capable of going quickly in one direction. Hopefully you’ve already gotten used to being wrong. This car does something strange, something I have trouble putting into words, in that it makes you forget it’s a wagon. You can’t ignore that it’s heavy, in fact you’re constantly reminded that it’s nearly 5,000lb, but it feels like a much smaller vehicle than it is. When I drove the E63S it felt like a heavy small car. It manages its weight extremely well – braking, turn-in, weight shift and body roll are all fantastic – but you’re always aware that it’s there. Conversely you forget that it’s a wagon until you look in the mirror or turn around to see the cabin. It probably sounds as weird as it felt. Not bad weird, just weird.

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Lemme tell you what else is weird: Active seat bolsters. Even on gentle turns, the side bolsters will automatically wrap around your ribs and prevent you from shifting out of your normal seating position. It sounds awesome, and you probably get used to it, but it kept distracting me during my drive. When I commented on this to Benyl, he suggested I try out Distronic Plus (sorry MB, I’m not capitalizing all of that) and allow the car to drive itself while I was distracted. So I flipped it on to 60 and putzed around for a bit behind somebody. The car automatically kept a nice distance to them and the whole scenario was quite comfortable. Until that person turned off. They slowed down to about 15km/h before their turn, and when the wagon noticed “Hey, there’s nobody in front of me and I’m doing 15 in a 60 zone”, it wanted to remedy the situation as quickly as possible. So quickly, in fact, that I got scared at how fast it was approaching the car in front and hit the brakes. It’s pretty depressing that I’m old enough to be scared by modern technology. Though I’ll claim it’s because I was driving somebody else’s car, haha.

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When he’s not busy writing about cars or travelling the auto show circuit, he’s reviewing apps and video games related to the automotive world. In his spare time, Matt is a motorcycle enthusiast, trying not to kill himself riding along with the crazy local drivers. He is also a weekly contributor in the Motor Mondays segment on News Talk 770.

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