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Freud would have a field day. Mercedes Benz’s bright, brand new star has just landed. Ladies and gentlemen, meet the new E63 AMG. It is shiny, and new, and fast. But it’s not the fastest, nor the most powerful E63 AMG.

No, that accolade now rests with the new E63 AMG’s brother, the, erm, new Mercedes Benz E63 AMG ‘S’, that has landed alongside it. Think you got sibling rivalry?

OK, so they’re facelifts, and both Benzinos pack stratospheric power, naturally, but it’s here where all E63s are not created equal. Yes, they’re fitted with Mercedes’ now well-proven 5.5-litre twin-turbo V8 sending power to the rear wheels - we won’t get the four-wheel-drive versions in the UK - producing 557bhp in the ‘standard’ E63 AMG (interestingly, 5bhp more than an M5).

But in the E63 AMG ‘S’ version, that power rises to a whopping 585bhp - that’s 28bhp more than the standard car and also 28bhp more than the old ‘Performance pack’ previously optionable. Not only that, the ‘S’ gets a differential lock on the rear axle that Mercedes claims helps increase traction, “especially on the race track”. There’s a gauntlet if Top Gear ever heard one…

The difference it makes is actually quite astonishing. 0-62mph in the standard E63 takes 4.2s (0.1s quicker than before). In the E63 AMG ‘S’, 0-62mph takes 3.6s, which is 0.1s faster than a Ferrari FF. Faster than a four-wheel-drive Ferrari!

You’ll find the AMG seven speed ‘Speedshift’ sports auto ‘box as standard, complete with four modes (manual, sport, sport + and controlled efficiency). Both E63 versions get steel springs up front, and three-way adjustable air suspension at the back, with components built from aluminium. As expected, cycle through the ‘Comfort’, ‘Sport’, and ‘Sport+’ modes, and you increase the likelihood of spontaneously combusting your passenger’s mid-afternoon snack.

Merc has fitted ventilated and perforated 360mm discs all round (six pistons up front, four pistons on the rear) for the standard E63 AMG, finished in silver with white AMG lettering. The ‘S’ gets the same, only with red calipers.

But, if you buy the E63 AMG ‘S’, you can option ceramic high-performance composite brakes. They’re 402mm in diameter, 40 per cent lighter than the standard ones and get a special paint finish. Press down too hard on these and you’ll create a black hole in the Milky Way. 402mm. Sheesh.

The new E63 presents the first iteration of AMG’s new design language too, featuring a ‘twin-blade’ radiator grille, a 3D air deflector spanning the front apron, black flics on the side air intakes, and a front splitter to reduce lift. Lift off, probably. There’s the trademark pair of twin exhaust pipes at the rear, a black grille and diffuser, and pronounced fins too. The ‘S’ model gets added chrome bits.

Inside you get AMG sports seats, contrast stitching, an AMG steering wheel and of course, a 1,200w sound system with Dolby Digital 5.1. Of course, you won’t need a sound system, what with this being an AMG. It’ll sound like the last ride of the Rohirrim set to Metallica. Loud. A quick word of caution: don’t take it to Knightsbridge to impress the locals with your powerrr…

Vijay Pattni

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