V8 power and four-cylinder fuel economy, what’s not to love?
Even though the number 63 still graces the badges of many top-tier Mercedes-AMG models, the number is now more of a name than an indicator of what the cars actually pack under the hood. Mercedes used to give its most outrageous cars a 6.3-liter V8, but thanks to regulators looking out for the health of the environment, those had to shrink and give way to the brand’s current lineup. New AMG models like the S63 have a twin-turbo 5.5-liter engine that makes enough power to replace the 6.3-liter and V12 S65.
Still, according to the latest set of demands from American and European governments slated to kick in within the next few years, that simple downsizing treatment isn’t enough. To get ahead of the regulations, Mercedes has just unveiled a family of new engines that will serve to save fuel, make power, and introduce a new 48v electronics system. Three of the new engines are gasoline and one is a diesel unit. The gas-powered 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 engine, called the M176, is the biggest of the bunch. Inspired heavily by the 4.0-liter V8 in the AMG GT, this engine makes 476 horsepower, 27 more than its 4.7-liter twin-turbo predecessor that we saw in the S550 while using 10 percent less fuel.
Helping push that fuel rating higher is a cylinder deactivation feature that allows the V8 to become an inline-four when the driver is going easy on the throttle. The other two gasoline engines are a new turbocharged 3.0-liter inline-six making 408 hp and a 2.0-liter four-cylinder pushing 268 hp while retaining the ability to shut off when coasting, not just when stopped at a light. To make that happen, these engines use a 48v system to power things like the water pump and air conditioning compressor, reducing load on the starter when cranking the engine after a stop. Also being introduced is a 2.9-liter inline-six diesel engine being billed as the most powerful passenger car diesel ever built by Mercedes.
Both the V8 and inline-six gas engines will debut in the new S-Class midway through 2017 with the four-cylinder potentially being reserved for duty in a hybrid variant. This move is huge for Mercedes, marking the largest announcement of high-tech engines in the brand’s history. We first caught wind of the $3.3 million investment when a new four-cylinder diesel engine made it to the E 220d earlier this year. Mercedes claims that the the resulting engines are indicators that it hasn’t taken its focus off of the internal combustion engine. More proof is found in new engine technologies NANOSLIDE that helps cut down on the 25 percent of engine power that goes into overcoming friction from the moving components. The future looks bright for the Tri-Star.