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  1. Driven: 2018 Buick Regal Sportback Essence 2.0t (the original review is in this post. A revised review is further down, in this post) HIGHS: -Nice understated shape conceals a cleverly integrated hatchback design -'Decent' propulsion from 2.0t engine -Nicely shaped upper dash with touchsreen oriented slightly to driver. Interesting at least from a design standpoint. -Sporting driving position and good room in both rows, mostly, plus the biggest benefit being improved leg room over previous model -Really nice cargo space, with seats up, or seats down, the cargo area of this vehicle and the flexibility of it in a car like this IMO is a major draw -View outside of this vehicle is improved over its platform mate (Malibu, my daily driver) due to the rear door glass being longer and taller. View out the front and rear is essentially the same. -AWD availability is a nice plus, thanks Buick. LOWS: -I can't recall any of the GM vehicles I have driven with this ubiquitous 2.0t engine, where i have actually been wowed or impressed by it. It has decent thrust, but honestly you gotta spool it up a bit, the tranny doesn't respond instantly, it's not a five star smooth tranny, and it's kind of rough and noisy overall as a powertrain (AT LEAST FOR IT'S PRICE / CLASS). I was hoping the 2.0 would make the car match the near luxury description but I don't think it's overall a smooth enough powertrain to meet that claim. It's neither smooth, nor sporting or exciting. And this is with front wheel drive. I will reserve final judgment until i get in the GS with the v6, which is the engine I think most people will really end up liking in this car. -Heavier than it's Malibu platform mate. No doubt acceptable due to the larger engine, but the benefit of the extra weight doesn't manifest itself in any real tangible way anywhere in the ride and drive of the car. -Not really any quieter inside than my Malibu. Strange, because this Buick is supposed to have quiet tuning, and goo in the tires to help make it quieter. The ride isn't really any more plush, either. -Steering is sort of dead and mushy. That's not GERMANIC now, is it. -NEED TO BE ABLE TO TURN OFF THE AUTOSTOP WHEN YOU WANT TO. -Not really much nicer inside than in my Malibu. The lower dash is the same 'less expensive' plastic you see in cheap Chevy's. The door panels are a little nicer, but not that much more. Many switches and buttons are the same. The console is nicer (I don't like the shifter centered in the console now actually, it's quite a reach) I guess...except for cupholders in front of the climate controls. The upper dash material is an upgrade over the Malibu, but it's not a PREMIUM dash material either. -I can't really tell for sure if the seats are better. My Malibu seats are poor. The Regal seats seemed to hug me more, but they still felt thin and insubstantial. The leather quality was slightly better, but still nothing to write home about. -Rear head room suffers a bit with the hatch design. I don't mind the tradeoff personally, but the Malibu retains a bit more headroom, and the Regal TourX really has much more....so get the wagon if rear head room matters. -Sunroof was nice to have considering how bunkerlike the Malibu can feel....but again the hatch design limits the size of the sunroof here compared to the Malibu's BAMR. I can live with the compromise here myself, and again, the wagon will satisfy your urge for BAMR if you need it. I would encourage GM to develop a way to integrate a larger moonroof with the hatch design. I think it could be done, but would require time and money on a redesign effort. -Options / packages on this car are, simply put, stupid. But that merits its own post. At least in this car, the heated steering wheel and leather heated seats were both included. You can actually get this car with heated steering wheel but without heated seats. How f-cked up is that? In 2019, Fusion, Toyota, and others will have things like blind spot and cross path detection as standard equipment. And those are not 'premium' makes. -I'll let others decide if they think the styling is too tepid. I don't mind the understated styling but do admit that the color selections that are available on this car leave me wanting. I like the red on the GS, and the smoked pearl metallic is nice. And Buick seems to think they should charge extra for paint colors when they don't make the ride and drive anything special. -pricing. I think the average nature of this car would be easily forgiven if the pricing were in line with being an average car; not priced for a premium marque. Like the LaCrosse and Envision, it is best to wait out the model year if you are buying and wait for the inevitable 7,000-10,000 or more in discounts...which might bring the pricing in line with what the vehicle really is. You can't say this vehicle is appealing at the prices it is at now. SUMMARY: This probably seems like a negative review, but you should consider it more of underwhelmed and let down. This car as I drove it just doesn't have any kind of endearing personality to speak of! At the end of the day, it took Buick two extra years to bring to the US it's own Malibu clone, which doesn't have much more to show for it.... apart from the clever hatch and base 2.0 engine upgrade over the 1.5. I actually am very curious now to be among the first to try the 2019 Malibu 1.5t + CVT combo. But that's an aside for another discussion. The 2.0 that general motors puts in so many vehicles has never impressed me, and that's due more to it's character than anything. I had hopes this would be the ONE CAR that it would feel sporting in; one that would make the car feel at least a little, like a SPORTS SEDAN. Nope. I will wait with baited breath to someday find a v6 GS to test, as i think it will be the only Regal worth anything. At least worth anything more than just being another option in the midsize, genericar class. And I hope Buick is working on a twin turbo six option as well for the GS (GSX?). I tend to think this car won't move the needle in marketplace excitement until it has a tire shredder under the hood to brag about...The v6 will promise smoother revs and deeper lungs at least......... Still, as a replacement in the bottom end of the Buick lineup for the Verano, I am ok with this. Just please, sex it up!
  2. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com January 10, 2013 Yesterday, we introduced you to most of the 2014 Mercedes-Benz E-Class lineup. We didn't mention one model though, the new E63 AMG since Mercedes didn't release any information. Till today when Mercedes-Benz let loose the information and pictures of the new E63 AMG Sedan and Wagon. Outside, the E63 AMG sedan and wagon carry many of the changes seen on the new E-Class sedan and wagon. There is a set of full LED headlights, a twin-blade grille, 10-spoke, 19-inch titanium gray alloys, and what Mercedes-Benz calls 'A-Wing' air intakes under the bumpers. There's also a new S-Model which adds high-sheen rim flanges, red brake calipers, high-gloss treatment on the A-wing, and "S" badge on the trunk. Inside, there is black interior with contrasting gray stitching, silver seat belts, a flat-topped and flat-bottomed Nappa leather steering wheel with Alcantara inserts, and a 1,200-watt, 14-speaker Bang & Olufsen stereo. Under the hood lies a twin-turbocharged 5.5L V8 producing either 550 horsepower and 531 pound-feet of torque on the standard model, and 577 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of torque on the S. All of that power is sent to a seven-speed AMG Speedshift MCT dual-clutch transmission with four different drive modes (Comfort, Sport, Sport+, and Manual) and to a permanent "performance-oriented" all-wheel drive system that's biased 33/67 front-to-rear. The AWD system addsaround 154 pounds to the car's weight. There's also AMG adaptive sports suspension (front has steel, while the back uses an air suspension) and electronically controlled damping and Torque Vectoring Brake system. S-Model gets a limited-slip rear differential. Performance figures are staggering. 0-60 MPH takes 3.6 seconds on the standard E63 and 3.5 seconds with the S. Top speed is 155 MPH (electronically limited) or 186 MPH when equipped with the AMG Performance Package. The E63 AMG sedan and wagon arrives later in the summer. Source: Mercedes-Benz Album: 2014 Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG 12 images 0 comments William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 New benchmark for performance, dynamic purpose and efficiency The new E63 AMG 4MATIC and S-Model MONTVALE, NJ - Mercedes-AMG continues to emphasize performance, dynamic purpose and efficiency: The new 2014 E63 AMG 4MATIC now features a redesigned, performance-oriented AMG all-wheel-drive system as standard equipment and is also available as an especially powerful S Model with output of 577 hp and 590 lb-ft of torque. The 5.5-liter AMG V8 Biturbo continues to be the benchmark of efficiency: No other competitor in this segment offers this combination of maximum performance and low fuel consumption. Permanent all-wheel drive is standard on all U.S. models – which also feature a power increase from 518 hp to 550 hp with a peak torque of 531 lb-ft. With this step Mercedes-AMG now for the first time offers powerful passenger cars with an all-wheel-drive system designed for vehicle dynamics. The 2014 E63 AMG 4MATIC goes on-sale in the U.S. this summer. With the introduction of the new custom-tailored models, Mercedes-AMG offers its customers even more individuality than before. The 2014 E63 AMG 4MATIC is more powerful and sports a more dynamic outfit than all its predecessors: Even at first glance the new AMG design philosophy is immediately apparent. The new "twin blade" radiator grille and a new "A-wing" in the AMG front fascia define the exclusive appearance. As before, the top-of-the-line E-Class AMG model is available as a sedan and wagon. Also adding significantly to the new models' appeal is the marked improvement in the price-performance ratio: E63 AMG 4MATIC customers now get even more power, better vehicle dynamics and a more extensive list of standard equipment. The new product logic also benefits the CLS63 AMG: Like the E63 AMG 4MATIC, the CLS63 AMG is available as an S-Model and with the performance oriented AMG all-wheel-drive system 4MATIC as standard. The addition of the E63 AMG and the CLS63 AMG means there are now also two all-wheel-drive passenger car models available from Mercedes-AMG besides the successful ML63 AMG, GL63 AMG, and G63 AMG SUV's. Additional models equipped with the performance-oriented AMG all-wheel-drive system 4MATIC such as the CLA45 AMG will follow this year. Ola Källenius, CEO Mercedes-AMG GmbH: "The philosophy of Mercedes-AMG is driving performance. With the new model variants of the E63 AMG 4MATIC and CLS63 AMG 4MATIC it is also becoming clear that we offer our customers even more individuality than before. In particular the S-Models represent the most attractive offer in the competitive segment and score decisive points with a significant improvement in their price-performance ratio: The most power and the highest torque in the segment, the new performance-oriented AMG all wheel-drive system, the new design and a significantly more extensive standard-equipment package are among the outstanding strengths of the new high-performance automobiles from Affalterbach. With the innovative all wheel-drive S-Models we will reach new customers and markets." Tobias Moers, head of overall vehicle development and member of the management board of Mercedes-AMG GmbH: "We have significantly honed the dynamic profile of the 2014 E63 AMG 4MATIC and the CLS63 AMG 4MATIC with the exclusive S-Models. Only AMG offers customers power and torque figures of such magnitude. Our AMG 5.5-liter V8 engine is still the world's most efficient V8 built in series production. With the newly developed performance-oriented AMG all-wheel-drive system 4MATIC we not only deliver the best acceleration figures in the competitive segment, we also offer our customers markedly better vehicle dynamics than ever before." With an acceleration time of 3.5 seconds for the sprint from rest to 60 mph, the S-Model of the E63 AMG 4MATIC holds an undisputed top position in the competitive environment; the electronically limited top speed is 186 mph. In addition to the power increase, the performance-oriented AMG all-wheel-drive system 4MATIC with a power distribution of 33 to 67 percent (front/rear axle) is also a major factor. Perfect traction during acceleration effectively prevents any losses due to wheel slip. On the new S-Model the AMG 5.5-liter V8 Biturbo engine produces a peak power output of 577 hp and delivers a peak torque of 590 lb-ft – an increase by 27 hp over the previously available AMG Performance package option. The increase in performance and power is made possible by modifications to the engine management system, an increase in the peak injection pressure and a hike in maximum boost pressure from 13.0 to 14.5 psi. The base model also adds 32 hp and 15 lb􀀐ft and now produces 550 hp of power and a peak torque of 531 lb-ft. Despite the added power and improved performance all E63 AMG 4MATIC models deliver high efficiency, low fuel consumption and low emissions. The AMG 5.5-liter V8 Biturbo engine is still the most efficient series-production V8 engine in its performance segment – and that with significantly more displacement than the direct competitors. AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sports transmission for a personal setup Maximum individuality and custom-tailored dynamics are the strengths of the AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sports transmission. Four drive programs, "C" (Controlled Efficiency), "S" (Sport), "S+" (Sport plus) and "M" (Manual), provide each driver with a personal setup. In "C" mode the ECO start/stop function is active and shuts off the eight-cylinder engine when the car is at a standstill. In addition, the driver experiences smooth transmission characteristics with comfortable and early gearshifts. In "C" mode the car generally starts in second gear. In the "S", "S+" and "M" transmission modes the engine and transmission are significantly more agile and the ECO start/stop function is deactivated. Perfectly tailored to a spirited driving style is the partial suppression of the cylinders. A brief and precisely defined retardation of ignition and injection under open throttle results in even faster gearshifts and a more aggressive exhaust note. An automatic rev-matching function for downshifts and the RACE START function are also part of the standard features of the AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sports transmission. Performance-oriented all-wheel-drive system 4MATIC for maximum dynamics The performance-oriented all-wheel-drive system sends 33 percent of the engine torque to the front and 67 percent to the rear axle. The rear-biased torque split ensures the high level of vehicle dynamics typical of AMG and maximum driving pleasure. The three-stage ESP® system is specifically calibrated to the permanent all-wheel-drive system. In "Sport Handling" mode the Torque Vectoring Brake applies the brakes to selected wheels in the interest of supreme agility: As a result, unwelcome understeer is prevented. During cornering a targeted brief brake intervention on the inside rear wheel affects a defined turn-in of the vehicle. The standard AMG all-wheel-drive system 4MATIC improves road safety and traction on wet or wintery roads. Optimal traction is ensured by a multi-plate clutch with a locking force of 37 lb-ft, which increases road adhesion particularly on ice and snow. The technical basis is a transfer case for the additional power take-off to the driven front axle. It is integrated into the AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sports transmission with minimum additional space requirements. The torque is transferred by the power take-off to the front axle via a drive shaft. The power from the front differential is transferred to the left half shaft by an intermediate shaft that runs in a sealed shaft tunnel in the engine oil pan. This compact and weight-optimized design results in a comparatively low added weight of just 154 lbs for the all-wheel-drive components. E63 AMG S-Model 4MATIC with limited-slip rear differential Mercedes-AMG goes even one step further on the E63 AMG S-Model 4MATIC. In keeping with its philosophy of "Driving Performance" the most powerful E-Class is equipped with a limited-slip rear differential. This high-tech package increases traction even further. The effect: Even better vehicle dynamics and more driving pleasure, in particular on the racetrack. All 2014 E63 AMG 4MATIC models are equipped with the AMG Adaptive sports suspension with electronically controlled damping system. The front axle features a steel suspension, the rear axle an all-air suspension system. A push of the button with the shock absorber symbol in the AMG DRIVE UNIT is all it takes to switch the electronics from "Comfort" to "Sport" or "Sport plus." In conjunction with newly developed aluminum axle components this results in significantly more grip and agility while maintaining the vehicle's neutral handling during fast cornering. The S-Model's elastokinematics were perfectly tuned for performance and offer the driver optimal neutral handling at the limit as well as better feedback and grip. The E63 AMG 4MATIC's track on the front axle is 1.9 inches wider than the standard E-Class sedan and offers significantly better stability at high cornering speeds and better road feel. A more negative camber on both axles additionally improves lateral dynamics. The perfect complement is the electromechanical AMG sports speed-sensitive steering. In conjunction with the variable power assist dependent on the selected suspension mode, the direct steering ratio of 14 : 1 provides particularly agile cornering capabilities. The 2014 E63 AMG 4MATIC features high-sheen 10-spoke AMG alloys painted titanium gray as standard. The front axle features tires in size 255/35 R 19 (front) and 285/30 R 19 (rear) on AMG alloys in size 9.0 x 19 and 9.5 x 19. Only the powerful S-Model comes with 10-spoke alloys painted in matte titanium gray with high-sheen rim flanges. AMG carbon ceramic high-performance braking system available as an option As of course with all AMG cars, the 2014 E63 AMG 4MATIC also comes with an ultra-powerful AMG high-performance brake system. Vented and cross-drilled brake discs with a generous 14.2 in􀀑 diameter are fitted front and rear. Because of the special stresses they face, the front discs feature compound (two-piece) technology that has been tried and tested in motor racing. Brake calipers painted silver with white AMG lettering and six pistons (front) and four pistons (rear) provide responsive, fade-resistant deceleration and shortest stopping distances. The S-Model can be additionally identified by red brake calipers. AMG carbon ceramic high-performance brakes are available as an option exclusively on the S-Model – recognizable thanks to even bigger brake discs with a diameter of 15.8 in􀀑 and the "AMG Carbon Ceramic" logo on the specially painted brake calipers. Their advantages: The discs are 40 percent lighter, reducing the unsprung masses and improving vehicle dynamics, agility and ride comfort. The ceramic discs are also much harder, resulting in an extended service life and in increased resistance to extreme loads and heat. Unmistakable design with even more dynamic purpose and exclusivity Dynamic purpose and performance are not only the focus of the fascinating technology of the new E63 AMG 4MATIC; the design also consistently transports these defining characteristics. Visually the AMG high-performance automobile sets new trends as the first AMG model to show off the new AMG design philosophy. Dominating elements are the silver-chrome AMG "twin blade" radiator grille and the so-called "A-wing." The new three-dimensional air control element extends across the entire width of the AMG front fascia and sports the stylized "A" distinctive of AMG vehicles. The "A-wing" painted in body color with silver-chrome trim strip frames the three generously dimensioned cooling-air inlets. Black flics on the side air inlets ensure optimal airflow to the cooling modules; on the bottom a front splitter painted in body color contributes to increasing downforce. Convex and concave surfaces join the new, sculptured front end of the E63 AMG 4MATIC to the distinctive widened fenders, on which the "V8 BITURBO" lettering provides an indication of the superior engine power. The side air outlets, the black mesh and the two chrome-plated dual tailpipes of the AMG sports exhaust system emphasize the width of the vehicle in the rear. The black diffuser insert with pronounced fins lends the rear of the E63 AMG 4MATIC a strong touch of racetrack ambiance. S-Model with even more striking design features The 2014 E63 AMG S-Model 4MATIC differs from the base model in numerous restyled and even more striking design features. The "A-wing" in the front has a black high-gloss finish; the front splitter and the striking three-dimensional inserts of the side skirts sport a silver-chrome design. The silver-chrome trim strip and the two unmistakable dual tailpipes of the AMG sport exhaust system provide a powerful effect in the rear. The AMG separation edge painted in body color (sedan only) reduces lift at high speeds. The 10-spoke AMG alloys, painted matte titanium gray and featuring high sheen rim flanges, and the large tires in sizes 255/35 R 19 in front and 285/30 R 19 in the rear fill out the wheel wells perfectly. Red brake calipers and an AMG logo with contrasting black "S" on the trunk lid are further features of the S-Models. Interior with dynamic-exclusive interior The interior of the E63 AMG S-Model 4MATIC comes with – depending on customer preferences – gray contrasting seams on the AMG sports seats, the door center panels, the armrests of the doors and the center console. The interior also features silver-colored seat belts in conjunction with a black interior. The grip areas of the black Nappa leather steering wheel rim with flattened top and bottom is finished in Alcantara® with gray contrasting seams. The front head restraints of the AMG sports seats are embossed with AMG crests. The redesigned AMG instrument cluster carries an "S AMG" logo on the 200 mph speedometer with red needles. The standard equipment also includes AMG door sill panels backlit in white, power rear roller blinds (sedan only) in addition to many other details. Distinctive to all E63 AMG 4MATIC models are highest quality materials, excellent workmanship and the exclusive ambiance. The new AMG-specific analog clock in IWC design between the two central ventilation outlets serves as an appealing focal point. Highlights of standard equipment on all E63 AMG 4MATIC models also include: • AMG door sill panels • AMG sports pedals made from brushed stainless steel with rubber studs • ATTENTION ASSIST • COLLISION PREVENTION ASSIST • Metallic paintwork • All-LED headlights The following styling and trim options are available: • AMG Carbon-Fiber Exterior Styling package • AMG Night package (A-wing with trim strip, front splitter, inserts of the door sill panels, exterior mirror housings and rear fascia trim strips in high-gloss black, dual exhaust embellishers black chrome-plated) • AMG carbon-fiber engine cover • AMG high-sheen forged wheels with 5-twin-spoke wheel bolt cover, painted titanium gray • AMG trim elements carbon-fiber/piano lacquer finish • designo styling elements Bang & Olufsen BeoSound AMG high-end surround-sound system A particular highlight in the selection of optional equipment for the E-Class Sedan and Wagon is the Bang & Olufsen BeoSound AMG high-end surround sound system. Mercedes-Benz and Mercedes-AMG have created this high-end sound system together with renowned Danish audio specialist Bang & Olufsen. The sound system is of course capable of Dolby Digital 5.1 playback and provides an exclusive music experience with unparalleled sound. The basis for this is not only the 1,200 watt amplifier and the 14 high-end speakers with neodymium drivers, but also the distribution of the music signals that is precisely controlled by the sound processor. This integrated digital sound processor (DSP) provides drivers with the option of selecting a special B&O sound menu on the COMAND system. In True Image™ mode individual sound settings for the front, center and rear can be selected. The effect: A realistic sound experience at the selected listening position. The "Sound Mode" menu also has various preset sound modes that allow choosing between a high-end "Reference" studio sound and a spacious surround sound. While "Reference" puts the focus on the sound presentation of the artist, the special surround sound mode delivers a spacious surround-sound experience. In particular live recordings or concertos result in a unique panoramic sound in the vehicle without altering the naturalness of the recording. 50-watt illuminated tweeters with acoustic lens technology arranged in the mirror triangle add special highlights. High-end Bang & Olufsen aluminum speaker covers in silver chrome with Bang & Olufsen logo additionally signal the exceptional position of the Bang & Olufsen BeoSound AMG high-end surround-sound system. The U.S. market launch of the new all-wheel-drive E63 AMG 4MATIC and the E63 AMG S-Model 4MATIC will begin in the Summer of 2013. Quick Reference: Availability: Summer 2013 Models/Performance: • E63 AMG 4MATIC Sedan: AMG biturbo 5.5-liter V8 (550 hp, 531 lb-ft) • E63 AMG S-Model 4MATIC Sedan: AMG biturbo 5.5-liter V8 (577 hp, 590 lb-ft) • E63 AMG S-Model 4MATIC Wagon: AMG biturbo 5.5-liter V8 (577 hp, 590 lb-ft) New Standard Feature Highlights: • Performance-oriented 4MATIC all-wheel-drive (33/67 power distribution) • Power Increase (+32 hp, +15 lb-ft) • Redesigned exterior with integrated star and AMG twin-blade radiator grille • All-LED Headlights • COLLISION PREVENTION ASSIST • ATTENTION ASSIST 2.0 New Optional Feature Highlights: • S-Model Configuration • Power Increase (+27 hp, +59 lb-ft) • Limited slip rear differential • 10-Spoke AMG Matte Titanium Grey alloy wheels with high-sheen rim flanges • High-gloss black "A-wing" • Red Brake Calipers • Contrast stitching on seats, door trim, armrests and center console • Silver seat belts (black interior only) • Alcantara steering wheel grips • 'S' badging on trunk and speedometer • AMG Carbon Fiber Engine Cover • Carbon Fiber Exterior Styling Package • Forged twin 5-spoke 19" wheel • Bang & Olufsen BeoSound AMG High-End Surround-Sound System View full article
  3. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com January 10, 2013 Yesterday, we introduced you to most of the 2014 Mercedes-Benz E-Class lineup. We didn't mention one model though, the new E63 AMG since Mercedes didn't release any information. Till today when Mercedes-Benz let loose the information and pictures of the new E63 AMG Sedan and Wagon. Outside, the E63 AMG sedan and wagon carry many of the changes seen on the new E-Class sedan and wagon. There is a set of full LED headlights, a twin-blade grille, 10-spoke, 19-inch titanium gray alloys, and what Mercedes-Benz calls 'A-Wing' air intakes under the bumpers. There's also a new S-Model which adds high-sheen rim flanges, red brake calipers, high-gloss treatment on the A-wing, and "S" badge on the trunk. Inside, there is black interior with contrasting gray stitching, silver seat belts, a flat-topped and flat-bottomed Nappa leather steering wheel with Alcantara inserts, and a 1,200-watt, 14-speaker Bang & Olufsen stereo. Under the hood lies a twin-turbocharged 5.5L V8 producing either 550 horsepower and 531 pound-feet of torque on the standard model, and 577 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of torque on the S. All of that power is sent to a seven-speed AMG Speedshift MCT dual-clutch transmission with four different drive modes (Comfort, Sport, Sport+, and Manual) and to a permanent "performance-oriented" all-wheel drive system that's biased 33/67 front-to-rear. The AWD system addsaround 154 pounds to the car's weight. There's also AMG adaptive sports suspension (front has steel, while the back uses an air suspension) and electronically controlled damping and Torque Vectoring Brake system. S-Model gets a limited-slip rear differential. Performance figures are staggering. 0-60 MPH takes 3.6 seconds on the standard E63 and 3.5 seconds with the S. Top speed is 155 MPH (electronically limited) or 186 MPH when equipped with the AMG Performance Package. The E63 AMG sedan and wagon arrives later in the summer. Source: Mercedes-Benz Album: 2014 Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG 12 images 0 comments William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 New benchmark for performance, dynamic purpose and efficiency The new E63 AMG 4MATIC and S-Model MONTVALE, NJ - Mercedes-AMG continues to emphasize performance, dynamic purpose and efficiency: The new 2014 E63 AMG 4MATIC now features a redesigned, performance-oriented AMG all-wheel-drive system as standard equipment and is also available as an especially powerful S Model with output of 577 hp and 590 lb-ft of torque. The 5.5-liter AMG V8 Biturbo continues to be the benchmark of efficiency: No other competitor in this segment offers this combination of maximum performance and low fuel consumption. Permanent all-wheel drive is standard on all U.S. models – which also feature a power increase from 518 hp to 550 hp with a peak torque of 531 lb-ft. With this step Mercedes-AMG now for the first time offers powerful passenger cars with an all-wheel-drive system designed for vehicle dynamics. The 2014 E63 AMG 4MATIC goes on-sale in the U.S. this summer. With the introduction of the new custom-tailored models, Mercedes-AMG offers its customers even more individuality than before. The 2014 E63 AMG 4MATIC is more powerful and sports a more dynamic outfit than all its predecessors: Even at first glance the new AMG design philosophy is immediately apparent. The new "twin blade" radiator grille and a new "A-wing" in the AMG front fascia define the exclusive appearance. As before, the top-of-the-line E-Class AMG model is available as a sedan and wagon. Also adding significantly to the new models' appeal is the marked improvement in the price-performance ratio: E63 AMG 4MATIC customers now get even more power, better vehicle dynamics and a more extensive list of standard equipment. The new product logic also benefits the CLS63 AMG: Like the E63 AMG 4MATIC, the CLS63 AMG is available as an S-Model and with the performance oriented AMG all-wheel-drive system 4MATIC as standard. The addition of the E63 AMG and the CLS63 AMG means there are now also two all-wheel-drive passenger car models available from Mercedes-AMG besides the successful ML63 AMG, GL63 AMG, and G63 AMG SUV's. Additional models equipped with the performance-oriented AMG all-wheel-drive system 4MATIC such as the CLA45 AMG will follow this year. Ola Källenius, CEO Mercedes-AMG GmbH: "The philosophy of Mercedes-AMG is driving performance. With the new model variants of the E63 AMG 4MATIC and CLS63 AMG 4MATIC it is also becoming clear that we offer our customers even more individuality than before. In particular the S-Models represent the most attractive offer in the competitive segment and score decisive points with a significant improvement in their price-performance ratio: The most power and the highest torque in the segment, the new performance-oriented AMG all wheel-drive system, the new design and a significantly more extensive standard-equipment package are among the outstanding strengths of the new high-performance automobiles from Affalterbach. With the innovative all wheel-drive S-Models we will reach new customers and markets." Tobias Moers, head of overall vehicle development and member of the management board of Mercedes-AMG GmbH: "We have significantly honed the dynamic profile of the 2014 E63 AMG 4MATIC and the CLS63 AMG 4MATIC with the exclusive S-Models. Only AMG offers customers power and torque figures of such magnitude. Our AMG 5.5-liter V8 engine is still the world's most efficient V8 built in series production. With the newly developed performance-oriented AMG all-wheel-drive system 4MATIC we not only deliver the best acceleration figures in the competitive segment, we also offer our customers markedly better vehicle dynamics than ever before." With an acceleration time of 3.5 seconds for the sprint from rest to 60 mph, the S-Model of the E63 AMG 4MATIC holds an undisputed top position in the competitive environment; the electronically limited top speed is 186 mph. In addition to the power increase, the performance-oriented AMG all-wheel-drive system 4MATIC with a power distribution of 33 to 67 percent (front/rear axle) is also a major factor. Perfect traction during acceleration effectively prevents any losses due to wheel slip. On the new S-Model the AMG 5.5-liter V8 Biturbo engine produces a peak power output of 577 hp and delivers a peak torque of 590 lb-ft – an increase by 27 hp over the previously available AMG Performance package option. The increase in performance and power is made possible by modifications to the engine management system, an increase in the peak injection pressure and a hike in maximum boost pressure from 13.0 to 14.5 psi. The base model also adds 32 hp and 15 lb􀀐ft and now produces 550 hp of power and a peak torque of 531 lb-ft. Despite the added power and improved performance all E63 AMG 4MATIC models deliver high efficiency, low fuel consumption and low emissions. The AMG 5.5-liter V8 Biturbo engine is still the most efficient series-production V8 engine in its performance segment – and that with significantly more displacement than the direct competitors. AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sports transmission for a personal setup Maximum individuality and custom-tailored dynamics are the strengths of the AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sports transmission. Four drive programs, "C" (Controlled Efficiency), "S" (Sport), "S+" (Sport plus) and "M" (Manual), provide each driver with a personal setup. In "C" mode the ECO start/stop function is active and shuts off the eight-cylinder engine when the car is at a standstill. In addition, the driver experiences smooth transmission characteristics with comfortable and early gearshifts. In "C" mode the car generally starts in second gear. In the "S", "S+" and "M" transmission modes the engine and transmission are significantly more agile and the ECO start/stop function is deactivated. Perfectly tailored to a spirited driving style is the partial suppression of the cylinders. A brief and precisely defined retardation of ignition and injection under open throttle results in even faster gearshifts and a more aggressive exhaust note. An automatic rev-matching function for downshifts and the RACE START function are also part of the standard features of the AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sports transmission. Performance-oriented all-wheel-drive system 4MATIC for maximum dynamics The performance-oriented all-wheel-drive system sends 33 percent of the engine torque to the front and 67 percent to the rear axle. The rear-biased torque split ensures the high level of vehicle dynamics typical of AMG and maximum driving pleasure. The three-stage ESP® system is specifically calibrated to the permanent all-wheel-drive system. In "Sport Handling" mode the Torque Vectoring Brake applies the brakes to selected wheels in the interest of supreme agility: As a result, unwelcome understeer is prevented. During cornering a targeted brief brake intervention on the inside rear wheel affects a defined turn-in of the vehicle. The standard AMG all-wheel-drive system 4MATIC improves road safety and traction on wet or wintery roads. Optimal traction is ensured by a multi-plate clutch with a locking force of 37 lb-ft, which increases road adhesion particularly on ice and snow. The technical basis is a transfer case for the additional power take-off to the driven front axle. It is integrated into the AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sports transmission with minimum additional space requirements. The torque is transferred by the power take-off to the front axle via a drive shaft. The power from the front differential is transferred to the left half shaft by an intermediate shaft that runs in a sealed shaft tunnel in the engine oil pan. This compact and weight-optimized design results in a comparatively low added weight of just 154 lbs for the all-wheel-drive components. E63 AMG S-Model 4MATIC with limited-slip rear differential Mercedes-AMG goes even one step further on the E63 AMG S-Model 4MATIC. In keeping with its philosophy of "Driving Performance" the most powerful E-Class is equipped with a limited-slip rear differential. This high-tech package increases traction even further. The effect: Even better vehicle dynamics and more driving pleasure, in particular on the racetrack. All 2014 E63 AMG 4MATIC models are equipped with the AMG Adaptive sports suspension with electronically controlled damping system. The front axle features a steel suspension, the rear axle an all-air suspension system. A push of the button with the shock absorber symbol in the AMG DRIVE UNIT is all it takes to switch the electronics from "Comfort" to "Sport" or "Sport plus." In conjunction with newly developed aluminum axle components this results in significantly more grip and agility while maintaining the vehicle's neutral handling during fast cornering. The S-Model's elastokinematics were perfectly tuned for performance and offer the driver optimal neutral handling at the limit as well as better feedback and grip. The E63 AMG 4MATIC's track on the front axle is 1.9 inches wider than the standard E-Class sedan and offers significantly better stability at high cornering speeds and better road feel. A more negative camber on both axles additionally improves lateral dynamics. The perfect complement is the electromechanical AMG sports speed-sensitive steering. In conjunction with the variable power assist dependent on the selected suspension mode, the direct steering ratio of 14 : 1 provides particularly agile cornering capabilities. The 2014 E63 AMG 4MATIC features high-sheen 10-spoke AMG alloys painted titanium gray as standard. The front axle features tires in size 255/35 R 19 (front) and 285/30 R 19 (rear) on AMG alloys in size 9.0 x 19 and 9.5 x 19. Only the powerful S-Model comes with 10-spoke alloys painted in matte titanium gray with high-sheen rim flanges. AMG carbon ceramic high-performance braking system available as an option As of course with all AMG cars, the 2014 E63 AMG 4MATIC also comes with an ultra-powerful AMG high-performance brake system. Vented and cross-drilled brake discs with a generous 14.2 in􀀑 diameter are fitted front and rear. Because of the special stresses they face, the front discs feature compound (two-piece) technology that has been tried and tested in motor racing. Brake calipers painted silver with white AMG lettering and six pistons (front) and four pistons (rear) provide responsive, fade-resistant deceleration and shortest stopping distances. The S-Model can be additionally identified by red brake calipers. AMG carbon ceramic high-performance brakes are available as an option exclusively on the S-Model – recognizable thanks to even bigger brake discs with a diameter of 15.8 in􀀑 and the "AMG Carbon Ceramic" logo on the specially painted brake calipers. Their advantages: The discs are 40 percent lighter, reducing the unsprung masses and improving vehicle dynamics, agility and ride comfort. The ceramic discs are also much harder, resulting in an extended service life and in increased resistance to extreme loads and heat. Unmistakable design with even more dynamic purpose and exclusivity Dynamic purpose and performance are not only the focus of the fascinating technology of the new E63 AMG 4MATIC; the design also consistently transports these defining characteristics. Visually the AMG high-performance automobile sets new trends as the first AMG model to show off the new AMG design philosophy. Dominating elements are the silver-chrome AMG "twin blade" radiator grille and the so-called "A-wing." The new three-dimensional air control element extends across the entire width of the AMG front fascia and sports the stylized "A" distinctive of AMG vehicles. The "A-wing" painted in body color with silver-chrome trim strip frames the three generously dimensioned cooling-air inlets. Black flics on the side air inlets ensure optimal airflow to the cooling modules; on the bottom a front splitter painted in body color contributes to increasing downforce. Convex and concave surfaces join the new, sculptured front end of the E63 AMG 4MATIC to the distinctive widened fenders, on which the "V8 BITURBO" lettering provides an indication of the superior engine power. The side air outlets, the black mesh and the two chrome-plated dual tailpipes of the AMG sports exhaust system emphasize the width of the vehicle in the rear. The black diffuser insert with pronounced fins lends the rear of the E63 AMG 4MATIC a strong touch of racetrack ambiance. S-Model with even more striking design features The 2014 E63 AMG S-Model 4MATIC differs from the base model in numerous restyled and even more striking design features. The "A-wing" in the front has a black high-gloss finish; the front splitter and the striking three-dimensional inserts of the side skirts sport a silver-chrome design. The silver-chrome trim strip and the two unmistakable dual tailpipes of the AMG sport exhaust system provide a powerful effect in the rear. The AMG separation edge painted in body color (sedan only) reduces lift at high speeds. The 10-spoke AMG alloys, painted matte titanium gray and featuring high sheen rim flanges, and the large tires in sizes 255/35 R 19 in front and 285/30 R 19 in the rear fill out the wheel wells perfectly. Red brake calipers and an AMG logo with contrasting black "S" on the trunk lid are further features of the S-Models. Interior with dynamic-exclusive interior The interior of the E63 AMG S-Model 4MATIC comes with – depending on customer preferences – gray contrasting seams on the AMG sports seats, the door center panels, the armrests of the doors and the center console. The interior also features silver-colored seat belts in conjunction with a black interior. The grip areas of the black Nappa leather steering wheel rim with flattened top and bottom is finished in Alcantara® with gray contrasting seams. The front head restraints of the AMG sports seats are embossed with AMG crests. The redesigned AMG instrument cluster carries an "S AMG" logo on the 200 mph speedometer with red needles. The standard equipment also includes AMG door sill panels backlit in white, power rear roller blinds (sedan only) in addition to many other details. Distinctive to all E63 AMG 4MATIC models are highest quality materials, excellent workmanship and the exclusive ambiance. The new AMG-specific analog clock in IWC design between the two central ventilation outlets serves as an appealing focal point. Highlights of standard equipment on all E63 AMG 4MATIC models also include: • AMG door sill panels • AMG sports pedals made from brushed stainless steel with rubber studs • ATTENTION ASSIST • COLLISION PREVENTION ASSIST • Metallic paintwork • All-LED headlights The following styling and trim options are available: • AMG Carbon-Fiber Exterior Styling package • AMG Night package (A-wing with trim strip, front splitter, inserts of the door sill panels, exterior mirror housings and rear fascia trim strips in high-gloss black, dual exhaust embellishers black chrome-plated) • AMG carbon-fiber engine cover • AMG high-sheen forged wheels with 5-twin-spoke wheel bolt cover, painted titanium gray • AMG trim elements carbon-fiber/piano lacquer finish • designo styling elements Bang & Olufsen BeoSound AMG high-end surround-sound system A particular highlight in the selection of optional equipment for the E-Class Sedan and Wagon is the Bang & Olufsen BeoSound AMG high-end surround sound system. Mercedes-Benz and Mercedes-AMG have created this high-end sound system together with renowned Danish audio specialist Bang & Olufsen. The sound system is of course capable of Dolby Digital 5.1 playback and provides an exclusive music experience with unparalleled sound. The basis for this is not only the 1,200 watt amplifier and the 14 high-end speakers with neodymium drivers, but also the distribution of the music signals that is precisely controlled by the sound processor. This integrated digital sound processor (DSP) provides drivers with the option of selecting a special B&O sound menu on the COMAND system. In True Image™ mode individual sound settings for the front, center and rear can be selected. The effect: A realistic sound experience at the selected listening position. The "Sound Mode" menu also has various preset sound modes that allow choosing between a high-end "Reference" studio sound and a spacious surround sound. While "Reference" puts the focus on the sound presentation of the artist, the special surround sound mode delivers a spacious surround-sound experience. In particular live recordings or concertos result in a unique panoramic sound in the vehicle without altering the naturalness of the recording. 50-watt illuminated tweeters with acoustic lens technology arranged in the mirror triangle add special highlights. High-end Bang & Olufsen aluminum speaker covers in silver chrome with Bang & Olufsen logo additionally signal the exceptional position of the Bang & Olufsen BeoSound AMG high-end surround-sound system. The U.S. market launch of the new all-wheel-drive E63 AMG 4MATIC and the E63 AMG S-Model 4MATIC will begin in the Summer of 2013. Quick Reference: Availability: Summer 2013 Models/Performance: • E63 AMG 4MATIC Sedan: AMG biturbo 5.5-liter V8 (550 hp, 531 lb-ft) • E63 AMG S-Model 4MATIC Sedan: AMG biturbo 5.5-liter V8 (577 hp, 590 lb-ft) • E63 AMG S-Model 4MATIC Wagon: AMG biturbo 5.5-liter V8 (577 hp, 590 lb-ft) New Standard Feature Highlights: • Performance-oriented 4MATIC all-wheel-drive (33/67 power distribution) • Power Increase (+32 hp, +15 lb-ft) • Redesigned exterior with integrated star and AMG twin-blade radiator grille • All-LED Headlights • COLLISION PREVENTION ASSIST • ATTENTION ASSIST 2.0 New Optional Feature Highlights: • S-Model Configuration • Power Increase (+27 hp, +59 lb-ft) • Limited slip rear differential • 10-Spoke AMG Matte Titanium Grey alloy wheels with high-sheen rim flanges • High-gloss black "A-wing" • Red Brake Calipers • Contrast stitching on seats, door trim, armrests and center console • Silver seat belts (black interior only) • Alcantara steering wheel grips • 'S' badging on trunk and speedometer • AMG Carbon Fiber Engine Cover • Carbon Fiber Exterior Styling Package • Forged twin 5-spoke 19" wheel • Bang & Olufsen BeoSound AMG High-End Surround-Sound System
  4. We're excited by the new Opel and Vauxhall Insignia, especially considering we'll be getting our hands on it as the Buick Regal. But we don't know what form the Regal will come in. Opel has shown off a five-door hatchback and wagon, and there is talk about a sedan for China. According to a report from Automotive News, Buick will be selling the Regal as a hatchback and wagon. This information comes from two auto forecast firms: LMC Automotive and AutoForecast Solutions. Dropping the Regal sedan may seem odd, but there is some method to this madness. Sales of midsize sedans has been falling for the past two years and the segment has seen a 20 percent drop in the first two months. Going a different route could give the Regal a possible chance in the U.S. As for the wagon, it is unclear if it will be the standard Insignia wagon or an off-road variant like the Audi A4 Allroad.bu Not surprisingly, Buick spokesman Stuart Fowle declined to comment. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
  5. We're excited by the new Opel and Vauxhall Insignia, especially considering we'll be getting our hands on it as the Buick Regal. But we don't know what form the Regal will come in. Opel has shown off a five-door hatchback and wagon, and there is talk about a sedan for China. According to a report from Automotive News, Buick will be selling the Regal as a hatchback and wagon. This information comes from two auto forecast firms: LMC Automotive and AutoForecast Solutions. Dropping the Regal sedan may seem odd, but there is some method to this madness. Sales of midsize sedans has been falling for the past two years and the segment has seen a 20 percent drop in the first two months. Going a different route could give the Regal a possible chance in the U.S. As for the wagon, it is unclear if it will be the standard Insignia wagon or an off-road variant like the Audi A4 Allroad.bu Not surprisingly, Buick spokesman Stuart Fowle declined to comment. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) View full article
  6. Alfa Romeo was planning to build out the Giulia lineup with a coupe, convertible, and wagon. But one of those variants has been canned. Alfa Romeo's manufacturing chief, Alfredo Altavilla tells Car Magazine that plans for the wagon have been canceled. "We decided not to do a Giulia Sportwagon. Do we really need it if the Stelvio SUV [below] drives that well? Maybe not. With our fine-tuning, the Stelvio can capture all the people who would otherwise have been interested in the SW." Alfa's reasons for canceling the wagon makes sense. More and more people are turning to the SUVs and crossovers. Why spend the money on developing a model that might not sell as well as an SUV? Source: Car Magazine View full article
  7. William Maley

    Alfa Romeo Scraps Plans For Giulia Wagon

    Alfa Romeo was planning to build out the Giulia lineup with a coupe, convertible, and wagon. But one of those variants has been canned. Alfa Romeo's manufacturing chief, Alfredo Altavilla tells Car Magazine that plans for the wagon have been canceled. "We decided not to do a Giulia Sportwagon. Do we really need it if the Stelvio SUV [below] drives that well? Maybe not. With our fine-tuning, the Stelvio can capture all the people who would otherwise have been interested in the SW." Alfa's reasons for canceling the wagon makes sense. More and more people are turning to the SUVs and crossovers. Why spend the money on developing a model that might not sell as well as an SUV? Source: Car Magazine
  8. We have known since last year that Porsche has been working on a Panamera shooting brake (wagon). Now we have an idea of when it will show up. Speaking with Car Magazine, Dr Stefan Utsch, director of sales and marketing for the Panamera revealed that the shooting brake will debut at the Geneva Motor Show in March and sales will kick off later in the year for Europe. We're expecting to see something similar to the Porsche Panamera Sport Turismo shown at the 2012 Paris Motor Show - the roofline extended a bit and larger tailgate. One item up in the air is whether or not the Panamera shooting brake will come to the U.S. "We have to have some patience for [the wagon] to arrive in the U.S. But we are confident that this car will be well received here, despite the fact that this country doesn't really like hatchbacks or wagons," said Porsche's U.S. chief, Klaus Zellmer last year to Automotive News. That could mean we might see the Panamera shooting brake as early as 2018. Source: Car Magazine View full article
  9. We have known since last year that Porsche has been working on a Panamera shooting brake (wagon). Now we have an idea of when it will show up. Speaking with Car Magazine, Dr Stefan Utsch, director of sales and marketing for the Panamera revealed that the shooting brake will debut at the Geneva Motor Show in March and sales will kick off later in the year for Europe. We're expecting to see something similar to the Porsche Panamera Sport Turismo shown at the 2012 Paris Motor Show - the roofline extended a bit and larger tailgate. One item up in the air is whether or not the Panamera shooting brake will come to the U.S. "We have to have some patience for [the wagon] to arrive in the U.S. But we are confident that this car will be well received here, despite the fact that this country doesn't really like hatchbacks or wagons," said Porsche's U.S. chief, Klaus Zellmer last year to Automotive News. That could mean we might see the Panamera shooting brake as early as 2018. Source: Car Magazine
  10. William Maley

    Rumorpile: Next Buick Regal To Feature V6, Wagon

    The Buick Regal is currently the oldest passenger sedan in Buick's lineup at the moment. But we do know that a next-generation model based on the next Opel/Vaxuhall Insignia. The Truth About Cars has learned some intriguing information about the next Regal. According to a source, Buick is planning to reveal the next Regal sometime in the second quarter, possibly at the New York Auto Show. Designers at Buick have added their own touches to the Regal's exterior to have it stand apart from the Insignia. The interior is said to be more spacious, especially in the back. The source goes on to say that the Regal will gain a V6, though it is unknown what V6 it would be (most likely a variant of the 3.6). There is internal talk about offering a diesel, but that is something down the road if given the green light. The Tourx nameplate we first learned about back in December will be used for a high-riding Regal wagon with all-wheel drive. That is expected to be revealed sometime next year. Finally, the GS is expected to stick around, though no one is sure what form it will take. Source: The Truth About Cars Pic Credit: William Maley for Cheers & Gears
  11. The Buick Regal is currently the oldest passenger sedan in Buick's lineup at the moment. But we do know that a next-generation model based on the next Opel/Vaxuhall Insignia. The Truth About Cars has learned some intriguing information about the next Regal. According to a source, Buick is planning to reveal the next Regal sometime in the second quarter, possibly at the New York Auto Show. Designers at Buick have added their own touches to the Regal's exterior to have it stand apart from the Insignia. The interior is said to be more spacious, especially in the back. The source goes on to say that the Regal will gain a V6, though it is unknown what V6 it would be (most likely a variant of the 3.6). There is internal talk about offering a diesel, but that is something down the road if given the green light. The Tourx nameplate we first learned about back in December will be used for a high-riding Regal wagon with all-wheel drive. That is expected to be revealed sometime next year. Finally, the GS is expected to stick around, though no one is sure what form it will take. Source: The Truth About Cars Pic Credit: William Maley for Cheers & Gears View full article
  12. It was back in April of this year that we reported Jaguar was getting out of wagon game citing shrinking sale. But fast forward to the Paris Motor Show and Jaguar has revealed an image of the next XF Sportbrake under some camouflage. Plus, news has come out that the Sportbrake is coming to the U.S. What happened? Let us go back to our story back in April. Those comments about Jaguar not doing another wagon came from the chief designer, Ian Callum. But Callum tweeted that he was misquoted, saying that they wouldn't do an XE wagon. In May, Auto Express reported that the second-generation XF Sportbrake had been given the green light. Now the picture Jaguar showed off of the new XF Sportbrake doesn't really tell us anything new. It looks like your standard XF with a longer roof. The XF Sportbrake is expected to debut sometime next year. Now for the U.S. bit. Motor Trend has learned from Joe Eberhardt, president and CEO of Jaguar Land Rover North America that the XF Sportbrake will be coming to the U.S. Unlike other wagons (aside from the new E-Class Wagon) that are lifted up and feature body cladding, Eberhardt said it would be a bonified wagon and share powertrains with the XF sedan. Source: Auto Express, Motor Trend View full article
  13. It was back in April of this year that we reported Jaguar was getting out of wagon game citing shrinking sale. But fast forward to the Paris Motor Show and Jaguar has revealed an image of the next XF Sportbrake under some camouflage. Plus, news has come out that the Sportbrake is coming to the U.S. What happened? Let us go back to our story back in April. Those comments about Jaguar not doing another wagon came from the chief designer, Ian Callum. But Callum tweeted that he was misquoted, saying that they wouldn't do an XE wagon. In May, Auto Express reported that the second-generation XF Sportbrake had been given the green light. Now the picture Jaguar showed off of the new XF Sportbrake doesn't really tell us anything new. It looks like your standard XF with a longer roof. The XF Sportbrake is expected to debut sometime next year. Now for the U.S. bit. Motor Trend has learned from Joe Eberhardt, president and CEO of Jaguar Land Rover North America that the XF Sportbrake will be coming to the U.S. Unlike other wagons (aside from the new E-Class Wagon) that are lifted up and feature body cladding, Eberhardt said it would be a bonified wagon and share powertrains with the XF sedan. Source: Auto Express, Motor Trend
  14. William Maley

    Jaguar Gets Out the Wagon Marketplace

    Another one bites the dust in terms of the wagon marketplace. According to Automotive News Europe, Jaguar's design chief Ian Callum said the company would not being doing any wagons. "The [wagon] market is massively shrinking. I'm very sad about it but it's a very difficult market to justify," said Callum told a group of journalists at an event for the F-Pace crossover. Europe is the only market in the world where automakers can make inroads with wagons. During the launch of the XF Sportbrake back in 2012, Jaguar said wagons made up about 30 percent of the large luxury car market. Germany is the top market followed by the United Kingdom. "The world's biggest wagon market is Germany. And what do Germans buy? They buy German cars," said Callum. Meanwhile, the UK isn't as interested as wagons as they once were. Not helping matters is the growing demand for crossovers not only in Europe, but around the world. Jaguar is putting more effort in this market with the launch of the F-Pace. There is also rumors flying around that a smaller model called the E-Pace will join later. "We will do things that will surprise you but it won't be wagons," said Callum. Source: Automotive News Europe (Subscription Required)
  15. William Maley

    Review: 2016 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen SE

    There is a running joke in the automotive world that the perfect vehicle for an enthusiast is a rear-drive station wagon with a diesel engine and manual transmission. The closest we ever got to this ’nirvana’ was the Volkswagen Jetta and Golf SportWagen. While not rear-wheel drive, the Jetta and Golf wagons did offer a diesel and manual transmission combination. Not only did they become one of the darlings of the automotive press, but consumers would soon jump on the diesel wagon bandwagon thanks to Volkswagen’s ‘clean diesel’ ad campaign. But we would learn this ‘clean diesel’ campaign was a fallacy as Volkswagen was found to be using illegal software that allowed their diesel vehicles to cheat emission tests. One of the key selling points for the Golf SportWagen was taken off the table and Volkswagen’s reputation would take a nose dive. This brings up an interesting question, is there more to the Golf SportWagen than the availability of a diesel engine? Describing the design of the Golf SportWagen is quite simple - take a standard Golf and add a foot to the overall length. Otherwise, the clean design of the Golf is still here with a narrow front grille and smooth side profile. Some will complain that the SportWagen is a bit boring to look at. We can’t disagree with this as it kind of exists with no real standout design trait. The interior follows the same ideals as the exterior with a plain jane look. The choice of black and sliver for the interior trim only reinforces this thought. But Volkswagen should be given some credit as the design does allow for a simple layout of controls and are within easy reach for driver and passenger. Also, a lot of the materials used throughout the interior are soft-touch and make the SportWagen feel quite premium. Finding a seating position in the SportWagen is simple thanks to the combination of manual and power adjustments for the front seats and a tilt-telescoping steering wheel. The seats earn top marks for comfort and support for long trips. The back seat offers plenty of head and legroom for most folks. This is impressive when you take into account our SE tester comes with a panoramic sunroof as standard. As for cargo space, the SportWagen offers 30.4 cubic feet behind the rear seats (7.6 cubic feet larger than the standard Golf) and 66.5 cubic feet when folded (13 cubic feet larger than the Golf). To give you some idea of the space on offer, I was able to fit a desk from Ikea that measured 53.5 inches long with no issues. On the technology front, all Golf SportWagens feature a 6.5-inch touchscreen with Volkswagen’s Car-Net infotainment system. This is one of our favorite systems thanks to an easy to understand interface, buttons around the screen to take you to the various parts, and fast performance. The only item we would like to see Volkswagen address is the screen. The matte finish on it sucks some of the color and brightness. Any 2016 Volkswagen fitted with the Car-Net infotainment system will feature Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration. Being an iPhone person, I tried out the CarPlay integration and find it to be one of the best implementations. It only takes a few seconds for the system to detect the phone before bringing up the CarPlay interface. Apps launched quickly and showed no signs of slowdown or crashing. At the present moment, the Golf SportWagen is only available with a turbocharged 1.8L four-cylinder producing 170 horsepower and 199 pound-feet of torque. This engine is paired with a five-speed manual (only available on the S) or a six-speed DSG dual-clutch transmission. The 2.0L TDI four-cylinder is currently on probation due to the diesel emission scandal. The 1.8T is one our favorite engines as you never feel wanting for power. Torque arrives at low 1,600 rpm which allows the Golf SportWagen to leap away from a stop. More impressive is engine responding with power in an instant if you need to make a pass or merge onto the freeway. We wish we could say the same of the DSG transmission. As we noted in our quick drive of the Passat V6, the DSG doesn’t like low-speed maneuvers as it exhibits signs of hesitation and lurching. At higher speeds, the transmission is lightning fast with shifts. EPA fuel economy figures for the Golf SportWagen stand at 25 City/35 Highway/29 Combined. Our average for the week landed around 28 mpg. Ride and handling characteristics for the Golf SportWagen can be described as balanced. The suspension provides a well-damped ride over rough roads. In the corners, body motions are kept in check and the wagon feels very agile. The steering provides a decent amount of weight and feel that will please most drivers. One area where the Golf SportWagen truly shines is in noise isolation. Barely any wind and road noise makes inside the cabin, making it a perfect long-distance companion. The 2016 Golf SportWagen kicks off at $21,625 for the base S. Our midlevel SE tester starts at $27,025 and comes with keyless entry, push-button start, leatherette upholstery, Fender audio system, and 17-inch alloy wheels. We had the optional driver assistance (adds adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning with autonomous braking, blind spot monitoring, lane departure warning, park distance control, and park assist) and lighting (bi-xenon headlights that can swivel when the steering wheel is turned and LED daytime running lights) packages that brings our as-tested price to $30,335. We think the SE with the driver assistance package is the sweet spot for Golf SportWagen as you get most everything you need. The dark cloud of the diesel emission scandal still lingers over Volkswagen. Whether or not the company can turn back their fortunes in the U.S. remains to be seen. But if I was Volkswagen, I would be putting the likes of the Golf SportWagen in the spotlight. Yes, it is one of the vehicles affected in the diesel emission mess. But take the diesel out of the equation for a moment and you still have a strong vehicle. From increased practicality for both passengers and cargo to the right balance of comfort and support in the ride, the Golf SportWagen is an interesting alternative to growing segment of compact crossovers. Disclaimer: Volkswagen Provided the Golf SportWagen, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas Year: 2016 Make: Volkswagen Model: Golf SportWagen Trim: SE Engine: Turbocharged 1.8L TSI DOHC Four-Cylinder Driveline: Six-Speed Dual-Clutch Automatic Horsepower @ RPM: 170 @ 4,500 Torque @ RPM: 199 @ 1,600 Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 25/35/29 Curb Weight: 3,120 lbs Location of Manufacture: Puebla, Mexico Base Price: $27,025 As Tested Price: $30,335 (Includes $820.00 Destination Charge) Options: Driver Assistance Package - $1,495.00 Lighting Package - $995.00
  16. There is a running joke in the automotive world that the perfect vehicle for an enthusiast is a rear-drive station wagon with a diesel engine and manual transmission. The closest we ever got to this ’nirvana’ was the Volkswagen Jetta and Golf SportWagen. While not rear-wheel drive, the Jetta and Golf wagons did offer a diesel and manual transmission combination. Not only did they become one of the darlings of the automotive press, but consumers would soon jump on the diesel wagon bandwagon thanks to Volkswagen’s ‘clean diesel’ ad campaign. But we would learn this ‘clean diesel’ campaign was a fallacy as Volkswagen was found to be using illegal software that allowed their diesel vehicles to cheat emission tests. One of the key selling points for the Golf SportWagen was taken off the table and Volkswagen’s reputation would take a nose dive. This brings up an interesting question, is there more to the Golf SportWagen than the availability of a diesel engine? Describing the design of the Golf SportWagen is quite simple - take a standard Golf and add a foot to the overall length. Otherwise, the clean design of the Golf is still here with a narrow front grille and smooth side profile. Some will complain that the SportWagen is a bit boring to look at. We can’t disagree with this as it kind of exists with no real standout design trait. The interior follows the same ideals as the exterior with a plain jane look. The choice of black and sliver for the interior trim only reinforces this thought. But Volkswagen should be given some credit as the design does allow for a simple layout of controls and are within easy reach for driver and passenger. Also, a lot of the materials used throughout the interior are soft-touch and make the SportWagen feel quite premium. Finding a seating position in the SportWagen is simple thanks to the combination of manual and power adjustments for the front seats and a tilt-telescoping steering wheel. The seats earn top marks for comfort and support for long trips. The back seat offers plenty of head and legroom for most folks. This is impressive when you take into account our SE tester comes with a panoramic sunroof as standard. As for cargo space, the SportWagen offers 30.4 cubic feet behind the rear seats (7.6 cubic feet larger than the standard Golf) and 66.5 cubic feet when folded (13 cubic feet larger than the Golf). To give you some idea of the space on offer, I was able to fit a desk from Ikea that measured 53.5 inches long with no issues. On the technology front, all Golf SportWagens feature a 6.5-inch touchscreen with Volkswagen’s Car-Net infotainment system. This is one of our favorite systems thanks to an easy to understand interface, buttons around the screen to take you to the various parts, and fast performance. The only item we would like to see Volkswagen address is the screen. The matte finish on it sucks some of the color and brightness. Any 2016 Volkswagen fitted with the Car-Net infotainment system will feature Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration. Being an iPhone person, I tried out the CarPlay integration and find it to be one of the best implementations. It only takes a few seconds for the system to detect the phone before bringing up the CarPlay interface. Apps launched quickly and showed no signs of slowdown or crashing. At the present moment, the Golf SportWagen is only available with a turbocharged 1.8L four-cylinder producing 170 horsepower and 199 pound-feet of torque. This engine is paired with a five-speed manual (only available on the S) or a six-speed DSG dual-clutch transmission. The 2.0L TDI four-cylinder is currently on probation due to the diesel emission scandal. The 1.8T is one our favorite engines as you never feel wanting for power. Torque arrives at low 1,600 rpm which allows the Golf SportWagen to leap away from a stop. More impressive is engine responding with power in an instant if you need to make a pass or merge onto the freeway. We wish we could say the same of the DSG transmission. As we noted in our quick drive of the Passat V6, the DSG doesn’t like low-speed maneuvers as it exhibits signs of hesitation and lurching. At higher speeds, the transmission is lightning fast with shifts. EPA fuel economy figures for the Golf SportWagen stand at 25 City/35 Highway/29 Combined. Our average for the week landed around 28 mpg. Ride and handling characteristics for the Golf SportWagen can be described as balanced. The suspension provides a well-damped ride over rough roads. In the corners, body motions are kept in check and the wagon feels very agile. The steering provides a decent amount of weight and feel that will please most drivers. One area where the Golf SportWagen truly shines is in noise isolation. Barely any wind and road noise makes inside the cabin, making it a perfect long-distance companion. The 2016 Golf SportWagen kicks off at $21,625 for the base S. Our midlevel SE tester starts at $27,025 and comes with keyless entry, push-button start, leatherette upholstery, Fender audio system, and 17-inch alloy wheels. We had the optional driver assistance (adds adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning with autonomous braking, blind spot monitoring, lane departure warning, park distance control, and park assist) and lighting (bi-xenon headlights that can swivel when the steering wheel is turned and LED daytime running lights) packages that brings our as-tested price to $30,335. We think the SE with the driver assistance package is the sweet spot for Golf SportWagen as you get most everything you need. The dark cloud of the diesel emission scandal still lingers over Volkswagen. Whether or not the company can turn back their fortunes in the U.S. remains to be seen. But if I was Volkswagen, I would be putting the likes of the Golf SportWagen in the spotlight. Yes, it is one of the vehicles affected in the diesel emission mess. But take the diesel out of the equation for a moment and you still have a strong vehicle. From increased practicality for both passengers and cargo to the right balance of comfort and support in the ride, the Golf SportWagen is an interesting alternative to growing segment of compact crossovers. Disclaimer: Volkswagen Provided the Golf SportWagen, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas Year: 2016 Make: Volkswagen Model: Golf SportWagen Trim: SE Engine: Turbocharged 1.8L TSI DOHC Four-Cylinder Driveline: Six-Speed Dual-Clutch Automatic Horsepower @ RPM: 170 @ 4,500 Torque @ RPM: 199 @ 1,600 Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 25/35/29 Curb Weight: 3,120 lbs Location of Manufacture: Puebla, Mexico Base Price: $27,025 As Tested Price: $30,335 (Includes $820.00 Destination Charge) Options: Driver Assistance Package - $1,495.00 Lighting Package - $995.00 View full article
  17. Rumors of Buick doing a wagon variant of the Regal have been floating around a for few years and it has either fallen into one of two categories: GM is considering it or they have passed on it. A new rumor has the Regal Wagon coming. Automotive News reports that a recent national dealer meeting, Buick revealed images of the next-generation Regal. According to people that attending the meeting, the images included the next-generation Regal GS and a wagon. Unfortunately, the people didn't give any specific details on what the wagon looked like. Buick possibly doing a wagon seems like an odd decision. Data from IHS Automotive shows wagons only make up one percent of the total U.S. market. Buyers prefer crossovers and SUVs. But Buick has a mostly successful track record with entering segments where there isn't much competition. A key example is the Encore subcompact crossover which beat a number of competitors to market and has become the brand's volume model. Another example is the Cascada convertible which has done very well in sales. Not all of them have been hits. The Verano which was Buick's entrant the premium compact class will be leaving the lineup this fall due to faltering sales. The big question aside if Buick will go forward with a wagon variant is will it be a standard wagon or something akin to the Subaru Outback/Audi A4 Allroad. As we reported back in December, GM trademarked 'Tourx' and 'Regal Tourx'. This lead some to believe that Buick could be doing a Regal wagon, but we took it in another direction by saying it could be a light off-road variant of the wagon. Automotive News says the Regal wagon could arrive in 2018. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
  18. Rumors of Buick doing a wagon variant of the Regal have been floating around a for few years and it has either fallen into one of two categories: GM is considering it or they have passed on it. A new rumor has the Regal Wagon coming. Automotive News reports that a recent national dealer meeting, Buick revealed images of the next-generation Regal. According to people that attending the meeting, the images included the next-generation Regal GS and a wagon. Unfortunately, the people didn't give any specific details on what the wagon looked like. Buick possibly doing a wagon seems like an odd decision. Data from IHS Automotive shows wagons only make up one percent of the total U.S. market. Buyers prefer crossovers and SUVs. But Buick has a mostly successful track record with entering segments where there isn't much competition. A key example is the Encore subcompact crossover which beat a number of competitors to market and has become the brand's volume model. Another example is the Cascada convertible which has done very well in sales. Not all of them have been hits. The Verano which was Buick's entrant the premium compact class will be leaving the lineup this fall due to faltering sales. The big question aside if Buick will go forward with a wagon variant is will it be a standard wagon or something akin to the Subaru Outback/Audi A4 Allroad. As we reported back in December, GM trademarked 'Tourx' and 'Regal Tourx'. This lead some to believe that Buick could be doing a Regal wagon, but we took it in another direction by saying it could be a light off-road variant of the wagon. Automotive News says the Regal wagon could arrive in 2018. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) View full article
  19. It may seem odd for an automaker to launch a new wagon in the U.S. considering how crazy we are for crossovers. But Mercedes-Benz knows there is a small subset of luxury buyers who prefer the looks and practicality of a wagon. For those, Mercedes has announced a new E-Class wagon. The 2017 E-Class wagon takes the shape found on the sedan and adds a longer roof and rear tailgate. Using the same 115.7-inch wheelbase as the sedan, the wagon will offer more interior space. As to how much, Mercedes doesn't provide that information. But considering the current wagon offers 57.4 cubic feet of cargo space, we expect it to be about the same or slightly more. Like the current E-Class wagon, Mercedes-Benz will only offer the 2017 model in one configuration: A Biturbo 3.0L V6 with 329 horsepower and 354 pound-feet of torque (known as the E400). This will come paired with a nine-speed automatic and 4Matic all-wheel drive. The interior is handsome with high-quality materials and a design that is reminiscent of the S-Class. There is seating for seven thanks to a rear-facing third row (best reserved for small kids). Mercedes says the 2017 E400 wagon will arrive in the U.S. early next year. Pricing will be announced at a later time. Source: Mercedes-Benz Press Release is on Page 2 2017 E-Class Wagon: Peerless in German Luxury The all-new MY2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Wagon is expected to be on sale at U.S. dealers by early 2017: June 06, 2016 - Stuttgart. Innovative engineering and a compelling conception of space make it the most intelligent wagon that Mercedes-Benz has ever built. In terms of the space, the all-new model year 2017 E400 Wagon will launch by early 2017 and will continue to be the only German luxury wagon available in its segment. Its cargo volume and, in spite of a much sportier roof line, headroom and elbowroom in the rear are best in class. The E400 Wagon will once again will offer a third row folding bench seat as standard equipment in the USA. "The new Wagon is as dynamic as the Mercedes-Benz brand and as spacious as our customers expect. Intelligent features such as the cargo position for the rear seat backrest with its 40:20:40 split as standard allow even better use to be made of the generous load-carrying capacity," says Ola Källenius, member of the Board of Management at Daimler AG and responsible for Mercedes-Benz Cars Marketing and Sales. "And what is more, the Wagon obviously has all the innovations of the new E-Class – the most intelligent executive sedan in the world." For the market launch in the USA, the new E400 4MATIC Wagon will be available with a six-cylinder Biturbo engine that generates 329 hp and 354 lb-ft of torque. The E400 4MATIC Wagon is equipped as standard with the new 9G-TRONIC nine-speed automatic transmission. Intelligent load compartment: large, versatile and easy to access The E-Class Wagon's load compartment is one of the biggest in the segment globally. As standard, the rear bench seat has new cargo-related functionality: it is possible to position the backrest at an approximately 10-degree steeper angle, creating an additional space for cargo while continuing to enable full use to be made of five seats. As with the all-new MY2017 E-Class sedan, the rear seat backrest folds down in a 40:20:40 split as standard, opening up plenty of potential configurations between transport capacity and seats. To release the backrests, there are electric switches located in the load compartment and to the right and left next to the backrests. Developers paid particular attention to practical dimensions and innovative management of the load space. With a minimum load compartment width between the wheel arches of 43.3 inches, it was possible to retain the preceding model's already-impressive measurements. The proven combined cargo cover and net is back, offering both security from prying eyes and safety. Thanks to an electric motor, the load compartment cover moves upwards automatically when the tailgate is opened. The EASY-PACK tailgate provided as part of the standard equipment can be opened and closed very easily at the touch of a button for comfortable loading and unloading. Operation is electromechanical. To prevent the tailgate making contact with the garage roof, for example, it can be halted in any position. Optional KEYLESS-GO with HANDS-FREE ACCESS makes loading cargo even more convenient: to open the trunk, all that is required is to make a kicking motion with one's foot underneath the rear bumper and the trunk lid will be opened and closed automatically. A self-levelling rear air suspension continues to be equipped as standard. This ensures that the Wagon remains level, even when fully loaded with cargo or when towing. With AIR BODY CONTROL, all-round air suspension is available as an option. Exterior design: dynamic proportions, powerful-looking at the rear The new E-Class Wagon appears modern, confidently stylish and dynamic, and looks like the E-Class Sedan through to the B-pillar. From the long hood, a silhouette emerges that flows across the long roof with its sporty curve into the powerful rear of the wagon with its steeply tapering rear window. Short overhangs, a long wheelbase and large wheels make for dynamic proportions. In conjunction with the high beltline, the low, stretched side windows make the vehicle seem longer. Flowing into the greenhouse, the sidewall's positively exaggerated lines extend powerfully towards the rear. Completing the exterior form, the rear has broad shoulders over the rear wheel arches for a sensual look. A roof spoiler with a third brake light (LED) defines how high the broad, functional tailgate can open. From a visual perspective, horizontal lines at the tail end and the rear window both emphasize width, as do the horizontally aligned, two-piece LED tail lights with integral chrome trim. Complementing the form, LED reflectors underscore the vehicle's character by creating a design highlight by day and night. On the tailgate, the wide, chrome-plated handle acts as the visual centerpiece. As on the Sedan, the powerful front will vary depending on the chosen design and equipment line. The Luxury model features the classic Mercedes radiator grille with the star on the hood, and the Sport model can be recognized by the central star on the sports radiator grille. Each variant of radiator grille gives the E-Class a distinctive character, be that elegant or sporty. Interior design: a synthesis of emotion and intelligence Inside, too, the Wagon utilizes the Sedan's award-winning design. The instrument panel can be adorned with two optional wide, high-resolution displays, each with a 12.3-inch screen. Located under a shared glass cover, they merge to form a widescreen cockpit. The driver may configure the fully digital display to show the information and views that are relevant for them. There are three different styles to choose from: "Classic," "Sport" and "Progressive." Touch Control Buttons on the steering wheel allow the instrument cluster and multimedia system to be controlled at the swipe of a finger and have made their debut in the new E-Class. Further controls are provided in the form of a touchpad with controller in the center console, which can also recognize handwriting, plus the voice- operated control system. There are also direct-access buttons for controlling the air conditioning and for convenient activation and deactivation of certain driving assistance systems. High-quality materials define the interior style. They include natural grain wood, and wood in a yachting look with flowing lines as a contemporary interpretation of inlaid wood. The use of authentic materials is continued in the optionally leather-covered doors and the beltline. Another Mercedes hallmark is the high-quality look and feel created by meticulous attention to detail and craftsmanship. Just as carefully composed is the material and color concept with various shades of brown, including attractive color combinations such as macchiato beige/espresso brown or macchiato beige/saddle brown. The design and equipment lines include enhanced ambient lighting featuring 64 colors, offering plenty of opportunities for personalized adjustment. When it comes to the seats, their ergonomic, sculptural form combines Mercedes-Benz's hallmark suitability for long journeys with a refined, sporty look, featuring a unique design for each line. Other new features in this segment are Warmth and Comfort package, which includes heated steering wheel, heated armrests in the doors and on the center console, and the quickly responding heated front seats Plus. Relieved of much noise and vibration: one of the quietest wagons In the interior, the new E-Class Wagon is one of the quietest vehicles in its class – even though an wagon is at a disadvantage by design compared to a sedan due to the large resonating body. Quiet running and low vibration make a significant contribution to the level of energizing comfort, particularly on long journeys. A whole raft of measures help to reduce vibrations and noise. As on a cabriolet, struts strengthen the main floor and front end of the body shell. For that reason, the vehicle body is very rigid and transmits less noise. Special insulation on the bodywork (including on the bulkhead, sidewalls and main floor), as well as sound absorbers under the rear seats and on the wheel arches, keep noise out of the vehicle interior. The kinematic design of the chassis, axles and steering system reduces disturbances that can be caused by road surfaces, the wheels being out-of-balance or when braking. Engine and transmission mounts have also been optimized in terms of noise levels. Various aeroacoustic measures have been taken. These include sealed door handles, seals on the door joints and optimizing details associated with the geometry of the sealing sections for the side windows. Improvements have also been made to the formed parts for the inside sealing rails so that these are connected to the window run channel without any gaps by positive locking. As on the E-Class Sedan, the exterior mirrors and A-pillar have been optimized in terms of aeroacoustics. The roof structure and the tilt/sliding sunroof module have been aeroacoustically improved to benefit noise comfort in these areas too. In the case of the panoramic sliding sunroof, multiple wind-deflection measures (wind deflector, covers and seals with the appropriate geometry) ensure the same high level of noise comfort as in the preceding model, despite the larger aperture. The Acoustic & Comfort package is available for US customers on both the sedan and wagon models. A special acoustic film in the windscreen and side windows ensures low levels of background noise in the vehicle interior. The Acoustic Comfort package contains further sound- insulating measures such as additional insulation in the rear footwell and on the center tunnel. To provide excellent heat insulation in the interior, the windscreen, side windows and rear windows are made of laminated safety glass with another layer of film that absorbs infrared. Surfaces in the interior like the armrests, steering wheel and seats get less hot from solar radiation as a result. Intelligent Drive: all the E-Class innovations are on-board As the most intelligent executive sedan, the E-Class sets new benchmarks in terms of safety, comfort and reducing the driver's workload. These innovations are, of course, also available on the wagon. Active Brake Assist is fitted as standard. It is able to warn the driver of impending collisions, provide optimum support with emergency braking and, if necessary, also autonomously apply the brakes. In addition to slower-moving, stopping or stationary vehicles, it can also detect pedestrians crossing the danger zone ahead of the vehicle. Other highlights include DRIVE PILOT: this system represents Mercedes- Benz's next step along the road to autonomous driving. Distance Pilot DISTRONIC is not only able to automatically keep the car the correct distance behind vehicles in front on all types of road, it can also follow them at a speed of up to 130 mph.
  20. It may seem odd for an automaker to launch a new wagon in the U.S. considering how crazy we are for crossovers. But Mercedes-Benz knows there is a small subset of luxury buyers who prefer the looks and practicality of a wagon. For those, Mercedes has announced a new E-Class wagon. The 2017 E-Class wagon takes the shape found on the sedan and adds a longer roof and rear tailgate. Using the same 115.7-inch wheelbase as the sedan, the wagon will offer more interior space. As to how much, Mercedes doesn't provide that information. But considering the current wagon offers 57.4 cubic feet of cargo space, we expect it to be about the same or slightly more. Like the current E-Class wagon, Mercedes-Benz will only offer the 2017 model in one configuration: A Biturbo 3.0L V6 with 329 horsepower and 354 pound-feet of torque (known as the E400). This will come paired with a nine-speed automatic and 4Matic all-wheel drive. The interior is handsome with high-quality materials and a design that is reminiscent of the S-Class. There is seating for seven thanks to a rear-facing third row (best reserved for small kids). Mercedes says the 2017 E400 wagon will arrive in the U.S. early next year. Pricing will be announced at a later time. Source: Mercedes-Benz Press Release is on Page 2 2017 E-Class Wagon: Peerless in German Luxury The all-new MY2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Wagon is expected to be on sale at U.S. dealers by early 2017: June 06, 2016 - Stuttgart. Innovative engineering and a compelling conception of space make it the most intelligent wagon that Mercedes-Benz has ever built. In terms of the space, the all-new model year 2017 E400 Wagon will launch by early 2017 and will continue to be the only German luxury wagon available in its segment. Its cargo volume and, in spite of a much sportier roof line, headroom and elbowroom in the rear are best in class. The E400 Wagon will once again will offer a third row folding bench seat as standard equipment in the USA. "The new Wagon is as dynamic as the Mercedes-Benz brand and as spacious as our customers expect. Intelligent features such as the cargo position for the rear seat backrest with its 40:20:40 split as standard allow even better use to be made of the generous load-carrying capacity," says Ola Källenius, member of the Board of Management at Daimler AG and responsible for Mercedes-Benz Cars Marketing and Sales. "And what is more, the Wagon obviously has all the innovations of the new E-Class – the most intelligent executive sedan in the world." For the market launch in the USA, the new E400 4MATIC Wagon will be available with a six-cylinder Biturbo engine that generates 329 hp and 354 lb-ft of torque. The E400 4MATIC Wagon is equipped as standard with the new 9G-TRONIC nine-speed automatic transmission. Intelligent load compartment: large, versatile and easy to access The E-Class Wagon's load compartment is one of the biggest in the segment globally. As standard, the rear bench seat has new cargo-related functionality: it is possible to position the backrest at an approximately 10-degree steeper angle, creating an additional space for cargo while continuing to enable full use to be made of five seats. As with the all-new MY2017 E-Class sedan, the rear seat backrest folds down in a 40:20:40 split as standard, opening up plenty of potential configurations between transport capacity and seats. To release the backrests, there are electric switches located in the load compartment and to the right and left next to the backrests. Developers paid particular attention to practical dimensions and innovative management of the load space. With a minimum load compartment width between the wheel arches of 43.3 inches, it was possible to retain the preceding model's already-impressive measurements. The proven combined cargo cover and net is back, offering both security from prying eyes and safety. Thanks to an electric motor, the load compartment cover moves upwards automatically when the tailgate is opened. The EASY-PACK tailgate provided as part of the standard equipment can be opened and closed very easily at the touch of a button for comfortable loading and unloading. Operation is electromechanical. To prevent the tailgate making contact with the garage roof, for example, it can be halted in any position. Optional KEYLESS-GO with HANDS-FREE ACCESS makes loading cargo even more convenient: to open the trunk, all that is required is to make a kicking motion with one's foot underneath the rear bumper and the trunk lid will be opened and closed automatically. A self-levelling rear air suspension continues to be equipped as standard. This ensures that the Wagon remains level, even when fully loaded with cargo or when towing. With AIR BODY CONTROL, all-round air suspension is available as an option. Exterior design: dynamic proportions, powerful-looking at the rear The new E-Class Wagon appears modern, confidently stylish and dynamic, and looks like the E-Class Sedan through to the B-pillar. From the long hood, a silhouette emerges that flows across the long roof with its sporty curve into the powerful rear of the wagon with its steeply tapering rear window. Short overhangs, a long wheelbase and large wheels make for dynamic proportions. In conjunction with the high beltline, the low, stretched side windows make the vehicle seem longer. Flowing into the greenhouse, the sidewall's positively exaggerated lines extend powerfully towards the rear. Completing the exterior form, the rear has broad shoulders over the rear wheel arches for a sensual look. A roof spoiler with a third brake light (LED) defines how high the broad, functional tailgate can open. From a visual perspective, horizontal lines at the tail end and the rear window both emphasize width, as do the horizontally aligned, two-piece LED tail lights with integral chrome trim. Complementing the form, LED reflectors underscore the vehicle's character by creating a design highlight by day and night. On the tailgate, the wide, chrome-plated handle acts as the visual centerpiece. As on the Sedan, the powerful front will vary depending on the chosen design and equipment line. The Luxury model features the classic Mercedes radiator grille with the star on the hood, and the Sport model can be recognized by the central star on the sports radiator grille. Each variant of radiator grille gives the E-Class a distinctive character, be that elegant or sporty. Interior design: a synthesis of emotion and intelligence Inside, too, the Wagon utilizes the Sedan's award-winning design. The instrument panel can be adorned with two optional wide, high-resolution displays, each with a 12.3-inch screen. Located under a shared glass cover, they merge to form a widescreen cockpit. The driver may configure the fully digital display to show the information and views that are relevant for them. There are three different styles to choose from: "Classic," "Sport" and "Progressive." Touch Control Buttons on the steering wheel allow the instrument cluster and multimedia system to be controlled at the swipe of a finger and have made their debut in the new E-Class. Further controls are provided in the form of a touchpad with controller in the center console, which can also recognize handwriting, plus the voice- operated control system. There are also direct-access buttons for controlling the air conditioning and for convenient activation and deactivation of certain driving assistance systems. High-quality materials define the interior style. They include natural grain wood, and wood in a yachting look with flowing lines as a contemporary interpretation of inlaid wood. The use of authentic materials is continued in the optionally leather-covered doors and the beltline. Another Mercedes hallmark is the high-quality look and feel created by meticulous attention to detail and craftsmanship. Just as carefully composed is the material and color concept with various shades of brown, including attractive color combinations such as macchiato beige/espresso brown or macchiato beige/saddle brown. The design and equipment lines include enhanced ambient lighting featuring 64 colors, offering plenty of opportunities for personalized adjustment. When it comes to the seats, their ergonomic, sculptural form combines Mercedes-Benz's hallmark suitability for long journeys with a refined, sporty look, featuring a unique design for each line. Other new features in this segment are Warmth and Comfort package, which includes heated steering wheel, heated armrests in the doors and on the center console, and the quickly responding heated front seats Plus. Relieved of much noise and vibration: one of the quietest wagons In the interior, the new E-Class Wagon is one of the quietest vehicles in its class – even though an wagon is at a disadvantage by design compared to a sedan due to the large resonating body. Quiet running and low vibration make a significant contribution to the level of energizing comfort, particularly on long journeys. A whole raft of measures help to reduce vibrations and noise. As on a cabriolet, struts strengthen the main floor and front end of the body shell. For that reason, the vehicle body is very rigid and transmits less noise. Special insulation on the bodywork (including on the bulkhead, sidewalls and main floor), as well as sound absorbers under the rear seats and on the wheel arches, keep noise out of the vehicle interior. The kinematic design of the chassis, axles and steering system reduces disturbances that can be caused by road surfaces, the wheels being out-of-balance or when braking. Engine and transmission mounts have also been optimized in terms of noise levels. Various aeroacoustic measures have been taken. These include sealed door handles, seals on the door joints and optimizing details associated with the geometry of the sealing sections for the side windows. Improvements have also been made to the formed parts for the inside sealing rails so that these are connected to the window run channel without any gaps by positive locking. As on the E-Class Sedan, the exterior mirrors and A-pillar have been optimized in terms of aeroacoustics. The roof structure and the tilt/sliding sunroof module have been aeroacoustically improved to benefit noise comfort in these areas too. In the case of the panoramic sliding sunroof, multiple wind-deflection measures (wind deflector, covers and seals with the appropriate geometry) ensure the same high level of noise comfort as in the preceding model, despite the larger aperture. The Acoustic & Comfort package is available for US customers on both the sedan and wagon models. A special acoustic film in the windscreen and side windows ensures low levels of background noise in the vehicle interior. The Acoustic Comfort package contains further sound- insulating measures such as additional insulation in the rear footwell and on the center tunnel. To provide excellent heat insulation in the interior, the windscreen, side windows and rear windows are made of laminated safety glass with another layer of film that absorbs infrared. Surfaces in the interior like the armrests, steering wheel and seats get less hot from solar radiation as a result. Intelligent Drive: all the E-Class innovations are on-board As the most intelligent executive sedan, the E-Class sets new benchmarks in terms of safety, comfort and reducing the driver's workload. These innovations are, of course, also available on the wagon. Active Brake Assist is fitted as standard. It is able to warn the driver of impending collisions, provide optimum support with emergency braking and, if necessary, also autonomously apply the brakes. In addition to slower-moving, stopping or stationary vehicles, it can also detect pedestrians crossing the danger zone ahead of the vehicle. Other highlights include DRIVE PILOT: this system represents Mercedes- Benz's next step along the road to autonomous driving. Distance Pilot DISTRONIC is not only able to automatically keep the car the correct distance behind vehicles in front on all types of road, it can also follow them at a speed of up to 130 mph. View full article
  21. Porsche seems to have wagons on the mind with the Panamera Sport Turismo concept shown at the 2012 Paris Motor Show and recent spy shots showing off a prototype version undergoing testing. Could it be that Porsche is working on a Panamera wagon? They are and it is coming to the U.S. Automotive News recently sat down with Porsche's U.S. chief, Klaus Zellmer who revealed that Porsche is working on a wagon for the second-generation Panamera and that it would be sold in the U.S. "We have to have some patience for [the wagon] to arrive in the U.S. But we are confident that this car will be well received here, despite the fact that this country doesn't really like hatchbacks or wagons," said Zeller. Porsche is expected to reveal the second-generation Panamera this September at the Paris Motor Show, with sales beginning in Europe shortly thereafter. The wagon will follow in 2017. The U.S. will get the new Panamera next year, with Automotive News thinking the wagon will come out in 2018. Zeller also revealed that a five-seat version of the next-generation Panamera is under consideration. Dealers want this as they lose a number of buyers to other brands as the Panamera only offers seating up to four. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
  22. Porsche seems to have wagons on the mind with the Panamera Sport Turismo concept shown at the 2012 Paris Motor Show and recent spy shots showing off a prototype version undergoing testing. Could it be that Porsche is working on a Panamera wagon? They are and it is coming to the U.S. Automotive News recently sat down with Porsche's U.S. chief, Klaus Zellmer who revealed that Porsche is working on a wagon for the second-generation Panamera and that it would be sold in the U.S. "We have to have some patience for [the wagon] to arrive in the U.S. But we are confident that this car will be well received here, despite the fact that this country doesn't really like hatchbacks or wagons," said Zeller. Porsche is expected to reveal the second-generation Panamera this September at the Paris Motor Show, with sales beginning in Europe shortly thereafter. The wagon will follow in 2017. The U.S. will get the new Panamera next year, with Automotive News thinking the wagon will come out in 2018. Zeller also revealed that a five-seat version of the next-generation Panamera is under consideration. Dealers want this as they lose a number of buyers to other brands as the Panamera only offers seating up to four. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) View full article
  23. Another one bites the dust in terms of the wagon marketplace. According to Automotive News Europe, Jaguar's design chief Ian Callum said the company would not being doing any wagons. "The [wagon] market is massively shrinking. I'm very sad about it but it's a very difficult market to justify," said Callum told a group of journalists at an event for the F-Pace crossover. Europe is the only market in the world where automakers can make inroads with wagons. During the launch of the XF Sportbrake back in 2012, Jaguar said wagons made up about 30 percent of the large luxury car market. Germany is the top market followed by the United Kingdom. "The world's biggest wagon market is Germany. And what do Germans buy? They buy German cars," said Callum. Meanwhile, the UK isn't as interested as wagons as they once were. Not helping matters is the growing demand for crossovers not only in Europe, but around the world. Jaguar is putting more effort in this market with the launch of the F-Pace. There is also rumors flying around that a smaller model called the E-Pace will join later. "We will do things that will surprise you but it won't be wagons," said Callum. Source: Automotive News Europe (Subscription Required) View full article
  24. Is there anything that better describes Volvo than a wagon? The Swedish automaker has a long history of building wagons and a number of them have gone on to become icons for the brand. Volvo hopes the new V90, introduced at an event Stockholm today continues that trend. As we saw in leaked photos last month, the V90 looks nearly identical to the recently-introduced S90 from the front to the b-pillar. Where it splits off from the S90 is towards the back with a longer roofline, sharply styled tailgate, and longer taillights. The interior is the same as you'll find in the S90 with an understated design and seating for five. Volvo hasn't released details on the V90's cargo capacity, but we would expect it to be quite large. Under the hood, the V90 will match the S90's engine lineup. That will mean a T5 (turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder) engine with 250 horsepower, a T6 (turbo and supercharged 2.0L four-cylinder) engine with 316 horsepower, and the T8 plug-in hybrid with 410 horsepower. Europe will get a selection of diesel engines as well. “In many people’s minds we are known as the definitive estate [wagon] brand. While the Volvo brand today stands for more than estates, we are proud to carry forward this rich heritage with the V90,” Volvo president Hakan Samuelsson said in a statement. Volvo will be showing off the V90 next month at the Geneva Motor Show where we hope to learn when the wagon will arrive. Source: Volvo Press Release is on Page 2 Volvo Cars reveals stylish and versatile new V90 estate The eagerly-awaited Volvo V90 was revealed today in Stockholm, Sweden. The stylish and versatile V90 is the latest in the premium car maker’s top-of-the-line 90 series sitting alongside the award winning XC90 SUV and the recently-launched S90 premium sedan. Building on Volvo Cars’ indisputable heritage in the estate segment, that began over 60 years ago with the Volvo Duett, the new V90 takes the premium estate a clear step forward in terms of aesthetics, materials and finish, while living up to the ultimately practical nature of any true estate “We have a very strong position in the estate segment,” said Håkan Samuelsson, president and chief executive of Volvo Cars. “In many people’s minds we are known as the definitive estate brand. While the Volvo brand today stands for more than estates, we are proud to carry forward this rich heritage with the V90.” The new V90 is the third car unveiled in Volvo’s top-of-the-line 90 series, all of which are built on the company’s specially-designed and fully modular Scalable Product Architecture (SPA), which has opened up a range of new opportunities in terms of how Volvos can be designed, built and equipped. “The modern premium estate is all about the intriguing combination of a luxurious experience with the functional origins of the estates silhouette. The sophisticated ambience of our new Volvo Interiors is combined with a great cargo space, providing the right kind of functionality – whether through connectivity or cargo and storage solutions,” said Thomas Ingenlath senior vice president for design at Volvo Cars. The new V90 delivers cutting-edge Pilot Assist semi-autonomous drive technology, the most advanced standard safety package on the market, with large animal detection and run-off road mitigation, and class-leading connectivity including smartphone integration with Apple CarPlay. Volvo Cars has also worked tirelessly on driving dynamics in the new model delivering a totally new and refined driving experience characterised by a sense of engaging control and predictability. “We have a very strong offer in the V90. Our PowerPulse technology is designed to deliver a distinct performance boost to our diesel engine, while the T8 Twin Engine petrol plug-in hybrid will deliver around 410 hp and a pure electric range of around 50 km,” said Dr Peter Mertens, Senior Vice President Research & Development at Volvo Cars. View full article
  25. William Maley

    Geneva Motor Show: Volvo V90

    Is there anything that better describes Volvo than a wagon? The Swedish automaker has a long history of building wagons and a number of them have gone on to become icons for the brand. Volvo hopes the new V90, introduced at an event Stockholm today continues that trend. As we saw in leaked photos last month, the V90 looks nearly identical to the recently-introduced S90 from the front to the b-pillar. Where it splits off from the S90 is towards the back with a longer roofline, sharply styled tailgate, and longer taillights. The interior is the same as you'll find in the S90 with an understated design and seating for five. Volvo hasn't released details on the V90's cargo capacity, but we would expect it to be quite large. Under the hood, the V90 will match the S90's engine lineup. That will mean a T5 (turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder) engine with 250 horsepower, a T6 (turbo and supercharged 2.0L four-cylinder) engine with 316 horsepower, and the T8 plug-in hybrid with 410 horsepower. Europe will get a selection of diesel engines as well. “In many people’s minds we are known as the definitive estate [wagon] brand. While the Volvo brand today stands for more than estates, we are proud to carry forward this rich heritage with the V90,” Volvo president Hakan Samuelsson said in a statement. Volvo will be showing off the V90 next month at the Geneva Motor Show where we hope to learn when the wagon will arrive. Source: Volvo Press Release is on Page 2 Volvo Cars reveals stylish and versatile new V90 estate The eagerly-awaited Volvo V90 was revealed today in Stockholm, Sweden. The stylish and versatile V90 is the latest in the premium car maker’s top-of-the-line 90 series sitting alongside the award winning XC90 SUV and the recently-launched S90 premium sedan. Building on Volvo Cars’ indisputable heritage in the estate segment, that began over 60 years ago with the Volvo Duett, the new V90 takes the premium estate a clear step forward in terms of aesthetics, materials and finish, while living up to the ultimately practical nature of any true estate “We have a very strong position in the estate segment,” said Håkan Samuelsson, president and chief executive of Volvo Cars. “In many people’s minds we are known as the definitive estate brand. While the Volvo brand today stands for more than estates, we are proud to carry forward this rich heritage with the V90.” The new V90 is the third car unveiled in Volvo’s top-of-the-line 90 series, all of which are built on the company’s specially-designed and fully modular Scalable Product Architecture (SPA), which has opened up a range of new opportunities in terms of how Volvos can be designed, built and equipped. “The modern premium estate is all about the intriguing combination of a luxurious experience with the functional origins of the estates silhouette. The sophisticated ambience of our new Volvo Interiors is combined with a great cargo space, providing the right kind of functionality – whether through connectivity or cargo and storage solutions,” said Thomas Ingenlath senior vice president for design at Volvo Cars. The new V90 delivers cutting-edge Pilot Assist semi-autonomous drive technology, the most advanced standard safety package on the market, with large animal detection and run-off road mitigation, and class-leading connectivity including smartphone integration with Apple CarPlay. Volvo Cars has also worked tirelessly on driving dynamics in the new model delivering a totally new and refined driving experience characterised by a sense of engaging control and predictability. “We have a very strong offer in the V90. Our PowerPulse technology is designed to deliver a distinct performance boost to our diesel engine, while the T8 Twin Engine petrol plug-in hybrid will deliver around 410 hp and a pure electric range of around 50 km,” said Dr Peter Mertens, Senior Vice President Research & Development at Volvo Cars.

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