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Mercedes-Benz CLS63 AMG wagon revealed ahead of Paris motor show debut

Mon, 09 Jul 2012

Mercedes-Benz has followed the public debut of the standard CLS Shooting Brake wagon at the recent Goodwood Festival of Speed with the unveiling of a potent 518-hp AMG version.

But like the CLS wagon, the CLS63 AMG wagon won't be coming to the United States.

Set to reach European showrooms in October after a formal reveal at the Paris motor show, the CLS63 AMG Shooting Brake is powered by the same turbocharged 5.5-liter V8 gasoline engine as the CLS63 AMG sedan. The 90-degree V8 sends its 518 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque though AMG's seven-speed MCT automatic gearbox to the rear wheels.

Official performance claims put the latest AMG model's 0-to-62-mph time at 4.4 seconds. Top speed is limited to 155 mph.

The MCT gearbox forgoes a traditional torque converter for an automatically operated wet clutch. The car uses shift paddles and the transmission has four modes: control efficiency, sport, sport-plus and manual.

A limited-production Edition 1 model will be offered to mark the CL63 AMG Shooting Brake's introduction. It receives the otherwise optional Performance package, lifting output to 549 hp and 590 lb-ft of torque. That shaves 0.1 second off the 0-to-62-mph time and extends the top speed to 186 mph.

The chassis uses a combination of conventional coil springs up front and air springs at the rear. The car also has standard 19-inch wheels with 255/35 (front) and 285/30 (rear) tires, automatic leveling for a constant ride height and electronically controlled damping with three individual modes: comfort, sport and sport-plus.

As with the CLS63 AMG sedan, the CLS63 AMG Shooting Brake adopts a wider front track and more direct electromechanical steering than standard CLS models. Among the wagon's options is an uprated braking package that uses 14.2-inch carbon-ceramic discs and adds a differential lock for the rear axle.

While not yet officially confirmed, Mercedes-Benz is planning to introduce a four-wheel-drive CLS63 AMG Shooting Brake 4Matic in 2013.

The CLS63 AMG Shooting Brake is set apart from the standard CLS Shooting Brake by a deeper front bumper, revised grille and restyled hood. It also receives wider front fenders with "V8 Biturbo" badges, wider sills and a reprofiled rear bumper with diffuser and twin chrome tailpipes.

The interior is decked out in napa leather upholstery and black piano-lacquer trim elements. It also gets unique instruments, an AMG steering wheel and various changes to the switchgear. Extras include a cherry wood floor for the cargo area.

By Greg Kable