Mercedes-AMG 53 revealed with inline 6cyl; CLS 53 and E 53

As previously reported, Mercedes-Benz has been planning a new sub-performance AMG 53 badge, and it has just confirmed it will be available with the CLS, and the E-Class coupe and cabriolet.

The new 53-series models sport Mercedes’s new M256 inline six engine as suspected. It’s a 3.0-litre twin-turbo unit producing 320kW and 520Nm, featuring a 48V electric system. Behind the engine is a nine-speed automatic. Speaking about the new variant, Tobias Moers, Mercedes-AMG GmbH boss, said:

“With the new 53-series models we are extending our portfolio in a first step towards a hybridised future with a leading-edge combination of sporty design, performance and efficiency. The basis for this is a contemporary drive configuration in the form of a six-cylinder in-line engine with electric auxiliary compressor, EQ Boost starter-alternator and 48 V on-board electrical system.”

In the case of the new CLS 53 4Matic all-wheel drive, the new engine is able to clock a 0-100km/h time in just 4.5 seconds. With the Driver’s package the top speed is 270km/h. In the E 53 coupe however, the time drops to 4.4 seconds. Fuel economy is rated at 8.4L/100km on the combined cycle, except jumps to 8.5 for the cabriolet.

Being a product of AMG, the new variants come with a range of performance components, including 370mm front discs and 360mm on the rear, along with variable ratio sports steering, and AMG Ride Control sports suspension with adjustable damping.

For the exterior the AMG 53 models get a discreet bodykit with a twin-blade front grille, silver chrome highlights around the front end, AMG-specific side sills, and an optional rear lip spoiler made from carbon fibre. The side mirrors are also unique, being mounted on the doors like on the AMG GT, and the interior gets a thorough AMG makeover.

The new models make their international debut at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit this week. Sales are set to commence this year.

Brett is the editor and founder of PerformanceDrive. He's obsessed with driving, having played with Matchbox cars until he was tall enough to drive a real one. After initially working as a mechanic, Brett earned a degree in journalism and entered media as an editorial assistant at Top Gear Australia magazine. He then worked at CarAdvice.com.au. His dream is to live next door to the Nurburgring in Germany.

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