Mercedes ML63 AMG revealed

* High-performance M-Class * 5.5-litre V8 engine * On sale spring...

Mercedes ML63 AMG revealed

This is the ML63 AMG, the high-performance version of the new Mercedes-Benz M-Class.

It's powered by a 518bhp 5.5-litre twin-turbo V8 petrol engine, with 516lb ft of torque. An optional Performance package boosts that to 549bhp and 750lb ft.

Mercedes quotes a 0-62mph time of 4.8 seconds for the standard car and 4.7 seconds with the Performance package. Top speed is limited to 155mph, while average fuel economy and CO2 emissions are the same for both versions, at 23.9mpg and 276g/km.

The ML63 has a special four-wheel-drive system with a 40/60 front/rear torque split, for sportier handling. A seven-speed automatic gearbox, speed-sensitive power steering and AMG braking system are standard.

The AMG sports suspension system includes air suspension, automatic level control and an adaptive damping system. Theres also a new Active Curve System, which uses active anti-roll bars to counteract body lean through corners. The suspension has Comfort, Sport and Manual modes. It also automatically lowers the car at speed to reduce aerodynamic drag.

A range of visual upgrades include bespoke bumpers, grilles and spoilers, while the front wings are wider, to accommodate 20-inch alloy wheels.

Interior upgrades include:

• AMG sports seats
• AMG steering wheel
• Bespoke trim and materials
• Sports pedals
• Electric sliding glass roof
• Heated front seats

The ML63 AMG will go on sale at the same time as the rest of the all-new M-Class range in spring 2012. Prices are yet to be confirmed, but wed expect the entry point to be at least 80,000.