The 2023 Mercedes-AMG S 63 E Performance arrives as the latest plug-in hybrid sports sedan from the German brand. The result is the most powerful S-Class ever available from the automaker.
Plug-in hybrid power supply
The heart of the S 63 E Performance is a 4.0-liter biturbo V8 and an electric motor mounted on the rear axle. Total output is 791 horsepower (590 kilowatts) and 1,055 pound-feet (1,430 Newton-meters). That takes the sedan to 60 miles per hour (96 kilometers per hour) in about 3.2 seconds. In the United States, the AMG Driver’s Package is a standard feature to provide a top speed of 180 mph (290 km/h). In Europe, this upgrade is an option, and the car falters at 155 mph (250 km/h) without it.
The twin-turbo V8 alone peaks at 603 hp (450 kW) from 5,500 to 6,500 rpm. Maximum torque of 664 lb-ft (900 Nm) is available between 2,500 and 4,500 rpm.
The electric motor has a continuous output of 94 hp (70 kW). A peak of 188 hp (140 kW) is available for the 10-second internals. Maximum torque is 236 lb-ft (320 Nm). There’s a two-speed transmission that shifts into second gear at around 87 mph (140 kph).
A 13.1 kilowatt-hour battery powers the motor. It mounts at the rear above the rear axle. Mercedes does not specify the range reserved for electric vehicles, but indicates that the setting prioritizes fast power over long electric driving distances. The pack has a 3.7 kW AC charger.
The driving experience
The powertrain for the ICE portion of the powertrain consists of a nine-speed automatic transmission that sends output to an all-wheel-drive system. The rear axle has 2.5 degrees of steering.
The S 63 E Performance rides on an adaptive air suspension that has the ability to lower the sedan by 0.4 inches (1.02 centimeters) at speeds above 75 mph (121 km/h). It also has active roll stabilization which reduces body roll when cornering. Active engine mounts can soften or stiffen the connection between the V8 and the body, depending on driving conditions.
AMG stiffens the sports sedan’s structure by adding an aluminum stabilizer under the V8 and a crossmember for the suspension mounting points. Diagonal aluminum struts at the rear perform the same function.
Braking duties are handled by 15.7-inch discs with six-piston calipers up front and 15-inch rotors with single-piston thrust bearings in the rear. Composite ceramic parts are an optional upgrade.
What does it look like
The S 63 E Performance has a slightly more aggressive appearance than a standard S-Class. The grille features a set of vertical louvers. The AMG emblem is in a mix of chrome and black on the nose tip. The lower fascia has large openings at the outer ends. At the rear there are four trapezoidal tailpipes with a diffuser between them.
Inside, there are four seats. The MBUX infotainment system benefits from specific displays for AMG features and the hybrid powertrain. A head-up display is also standard. Steering wheel switches include the ability to select from four brake regenerative modes.