by Adrian Dorofte and Adrian Andronic
e-mail: mercedesbenzblog@gmail.com

The new Mercedes-Benz E 63 AMG: Chassis, suspension and brake system

Chassis, suspension and brake system: High-tech for maximum performance

High grip and exceptional agility are the defining characteristics of the AMG RIDE CONTROL sports suspension. The E 63 AMG features a steel suspension system at the front axle and a full air suspension system at the rear axle. This solution guarantees sensitive response by the front suspension, while automatic level control ensures that the vehicle height at the rear remains constant at all times – irrespective of the load. The electronically controlled damping system comes as standard. The three-link front suspension on the S-Model and the 4MATIC variants has been further optimised for superlative driving dynamics. Newly developed aluminium axle components result in markedly enhanced grip and agility during fast cornering, combined with a high degree of neutrality. The S-Model features elastokinematics which are geared even more emphatically to high cornering performance. This results in more direct feedback, further improved grip and maximum neutrality at the critical limits.

In the interests of enhanced lateral dynamics all E 63 AMG variants – rear-wheel and all-wheel-drive – are provided with independent front suspension geometry. In contrast to the other E-Class models, the three-link suspension on the E 63 AMG features a 48 mm wider track, independent wheel carriers, steering knuckles, wishbones, tension strut bearings and head bearings, plus increased negative camber. The combined effect of these measures is markedly greater stability at high cornering speeds and improved road feel. The AMG-specific rear axle also incorporates independent components: specific tie rods, tension struts and compressive members and the substantially more rigid carrier of the subframe on which the rear axle is mounted lead to higher cornering dynamics.

Selection of the suspension set-up on the AMG DRIVE UNIT

The AMG RIDE CONTROL sports suspension with electronically controlled damping system enables the driver to choose his personal suspension set-up in accordance with his individual driving needs. The button marked with a bumper is located on the AMG DRIVE UNIT to the left of the E-SELECT lever. The driver simply presses this button to switch the electronics from "Comfort" to "Sport" or "Sport plus". The currently active mode is indicated both on the lamp of the suspension button and in the AMG main menu.

"Comfort" delivers a sensitive response with soft damping characteristics, while the shock absorber response is an average 40 percent firmer in "Sport". "Sport plus" is ideal for challenging laps on a racetrack: in addition to the higher damping force, this mode comes with specific control algorithms that have been tailor-made for a decidedly sporty driving style on level road surfaces. The system also carries out instantaneous automatic adjustment of the damping characteristics and reduces the body roll angle according to the given driving situation, speed and vehicle load. This provides the driver with a means of infinitely variable adjustment between maximum agility and optimum ride comfort. For the E 63 AMG Saloon with rear-wheel drive an AMG RIDE CONTROL performance suspension is optionally available with more rigid spring/damper tuning.

Eleven sensors for electronic damper control

The electronic damper control utilises four sensors to permanently monitor the drive and brake torque along with steering angle and lateral acceleration. Four position sensors are also used to determine the ride height and to ascertain the direction of motion. Three acceleration sensors help identify the absolute body roll. Powerful control electronics that interact constantly with the engine and transmission control units instantly adjust the forces at the four shock absorbers.

Direct electromechanical AMG speed-sensitive steering

The electromechanical AMG speed-sensitive steering enables perfect control of the vehicle: the steering ratio is 20 percent more direct than on the other E-Class models (14 : 1), providing for extremely agile handling in bends in conjunction with the variable servo assistance geared to the given suspension mode. In suspension mode "C" the AMG speed-sensitive steering operates at a higher level of power assistance, with an emphasis on comfort. In "S" and "S+" modes the driver is provided with a lesser degree of steering assistance, which tends to result in improved road feel. The fixed characteristics programmed for the power assistance provide for enhanced feedback and steering precision.

In the electromechanical AMG speed-sensitive steering system the steering gear and the supporting servo-motor form a single compact unit and are mounted as previously on an extremely rigid and low-weight integral support frame made of high-strength steel which is positioned in front of the wheel's centre line. The high-performance control unit processes a variety of parameters captured by the sensors – including vehicle speed, steering angle, steering angle speed, lateral acceleration and also understeer/oversteer characteristics – and in a split second calculates the forces which the driver needs to input into the steering in different driving situations – from parking to high-speed motorway driving. Active damping enhances the feeling of safety when driving straight ahead at high speed.

Specific AMG light-allow wheels for each model variant

The E 63 AMG rolls off the assembly line with model-specific AMG light-alloy wheels. 10-spoke AMG light-alloy wheels painted in titanium grey with high-sheen finish come as standard, with front tyres in size 255/40 R 18 on 9.0 x 18 wheels and rear tyres in 285/35 R 18 on 9.5 x 18 wheels. The tyre/wheel combinations on all 4MATIC variants and the E 63 AMG S-Model are one size up: 255/35 R 19 (front) and 285/30 R 19 (rear) on AMG light-alloy wheels in 9.0 x 19 and 9.5 x 19 fit snugly in the wheel arches. Only the high-performance S-Model features exclusive 10-spoke light-alloy wheels painted in matt titanium grey with a high-sheen rim flange. A special option available from the AMG Performance Studio is particularly lightweight forged 5-spoke AMG light-alloy wheels with covered wheel bolts, painted in titanium grey with a high-sheen finish. Sizes: 9.0 x 19 with 255/35 R 19 tyres (front) and 9.5 x 19 with 285/30 R 19 tyres (rear).

A choice of two AMG high-performance composite braking systems
It goes without saying that all AMG high-performance automobiles guarantee spontaneous and fading-resistant deceleration and the shortest possible stopping distances. The front and rear axles on the E 63 AMG sport ventilated and perforated brake disks in 360 millimetre format. In view of the special stress to which they are exposed, the front discs feature composite technology that has been tried and tested in motor racing to help offset temperature peaks more effectively. The models rated at 410 kW (557 hp) are identifiable by brake callipers in silver painted finish with white AMG lettering featuring six-piston technology at the front and four-piston technology at the rear. The S-Model features red painted brake callipers.

AMG ceramic composite high-performance brakes are exclusively available as an option for the E 63 AMG S 4MATIC and are recognisable thanks to the "AMG Carbon Ceramic" logo on the brake callipers sporting the model-specific paint finish. Thanks to the special materials and production technology used to manufacture the discs from carbon-fibre-reinforced ceramic in a vacuum at 1700 degrees Celsius, the ceramic discs are much harder. This not only increases the service life many times over compared with a grey cast iron disc, but also enhances their resistance to extreme loads and heat. This results in extremely short stopping distances, an exact pressure point and much higher fade resistance even under extreme operating conditions. The larger ceramic discs – front: 402 x 39 millimetres; rear: 360 x 32 millimetres – feature a composite design all round and are connected with a floating radial mount to an aluminium bowl.

Compared with the conventional composite brake discs, the ceramic brake discs are around 40 percent lighter. The further reduction in unsprung masses not only boosts driving dynamics and agility but also improves steering response as well as ride comfort and contact characteristics. Six-piston fixed callipers are fitted at the front with a brake lining surface of 2 x 154 cm2; four-piston fixed callipers with a brake lining surface of 2 x 73 cm2 are used at the rear.


Overview of brake data:


~ Official photos and details courtesy of Mercedes-AMG GmbH ~

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