“It was the day before Thanksgiving, and I was given a long list of items that needed to be picked up ASAP. Well, in all reality, everything still needed to be picked up, and I only had 6 hours to do so”
The clock was ticking and most stores had already been open for at least a couple of hours, and since most of our Thanksgiving preparations were purchased from small and local businesses, most of them were only working half a day anyway, which meant I had to prioritize. But first, my weapon of choice…
Say hello to the insane turkey wagon; the 2015 Mercedes Benz AMG E63 S Wagon. This isn’t your Grandma’s station wagon, and it isn’t even your Dad’s Mercedes, this is on a completely different level. For starters, this Benz hasn’t given in to the new small-displacement, turbo engine fad—this beast packs a 5.5-liter, biturbo V8 engine hand-built by one man in Affalterbach, Germany.
Why did I not mention the horsepower? Because the moment most people hear such astronomical figure, they stop seeing it as a utilitarian wagon, and instead view it as German muscle, and start salivating and having dirty, dirty thoughts. It’s so much more than that…
I was up earlier than usual on Wednesday morning, and I admit I was also a bit more excited. It’s not everyday that I got to pilot this kind of machinery, plus it’s the day before Thanksgiving! How could I not be excited?
It was nearly 11am by the time I finished a few work items at home, so I quickly threw on my Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 hoodie (cliché, I know), sunglasses, grabbed my wallet and headed out the door.
Settling for the first time behind the wheel of the E63 was rather tantalizing. The race-inspired steering wheel, the heavily bolstered but extremely comfortable leather and alcantara seats, it’s a truly special place to be. But I had no time to waste, so I pushed the Start Engine button, and off I went.
First stop, The liquor store. It’s close to the house, plus they were closing early; but primarily because I can haul around a bottle of Champagne all day without worrying much about it. I was in-and-out in a couple of minutes, and I used one of the neat cargo nets in the back to hold it in place. Score!
The Bakery. My next stop sat about 11 miles away from the liquor store, so I fine tuned my seat, steering wheel, and I hit the road again.
I chose to remain off the highway for this stint, and I’m glad I did. Little by little I became more intimate with the E63, its driving modes, suspension settings, and how it all equates to the wagon’s polarizing behaviors.
First thing I noticed was how quiet, refined and surprisingly civil this German-rocket feels on the road. On Comfort mode, the E63 behaves like most non-AMG Mercedes vehicles—tamed, smooth, and a bit clinical. But don’t be fooled, these are just the electronics allowing it to be civil.
As I racked up the miles and grew more familiar with its behavior and overall balance, I reached down and set the dial to Sport. Now things became a bit more lively, yet still very smooth. I noticed the rpm slightly increase on the tachometer, and I might be imagining things, but I’m pretty sure the exhaust note grew a little louder as well—specially when shifting gears via paddle shifters.
I really enjoyed the sprightly and less-dormant feel of the “Sport” mode, but I had finally reached my destination, so it was time to run in and get the goods!
I sneaked a freshly-baked roll from the box before placing it in the mega-spacious trunk (57.4-cu ft.), and that’s when I realized it was nearly 2pm and I was pretty hungry.
By now I felt quite confident with my turkey wagon, so I switched the driving mode to Sport +. I called Missi and told her I’d be home in 20 minutes to pick them up for lunch. Let’s just say I made it in about, half the time…
Not only did I select Sport +, but I also pushed the AMG button and chose the Adaptive Sport Suspension mode, which translated to English means “OMG mode”. Once activated; the self-leveling air springs tightened up and the transmission shifts went from buttery smooth to a punch in the chest. But more importantly, all 577-horsepower were unleashed and ready to play. Yes, I said it — 577-horses…
I’ve driven an AMG GT-S on track, and that was a blast. But this, this has room for 5 people, and an entire month of worth of groceries, yet it goes from zero to 60mph in 3.6 seconds!
I arrived home a changed man.
Lunch, but first — can it baby?
Of course it can — it has a massive rear seat and trunk! In fact, if someone were crazy enough to buy an AMG E63 S Wagon instead of a home, they could comfortably live in it… But who would ever think of that… right?
This Benz is all about family, and I love the small details that makes a Mercedes a Mercedes. Take for example the LATCH/Isofix anchors — in most cars the anchors are hidden in crevices of cloth or leather, but not in a Mercedes. They are neatly hidden under properly labeled and convenient plastic flip-covers, so you never have to hunt them down, but even better — they’re always clean and accessible. No more surprise Cheerios and spoiled milk.
Finally we were en route to our lunch destination, but there was one problem — my 4-year old Josephine repeatedly screamed: “Faster, Daddy, Faster” from the backseat.
Thou shall not disappoint children, correct?
After a quick Creole-style lunch, Missi, Josephine and I were ready to pick up the protagonist of our Thanksgiving dinner — the turkey.
While getting back in the turkey wagon, I noticed something interesting—Josephine could open the rear door, climb in, and shut her door on her own. Which is relevant for a few reasons: friendly ride-height, and relatively lightweight materials.
Once strapped in we opted to let the outside in, as the chilly 50-degree weather graced us with blue skies and gorgeous sunlight. So we cranked up the heated seats and opened the double pane sunroofs, and from that moment on it was all about soaking up the luxury and comfort only Mercedes can offer.
In what seemed to be a trend, we opted for the scenic route to the outskirts of Indianapolis, were the butcher shop is located. Once we arrived to our destination, we popped the hatch with a simple push of the key fob , and placed our bird and other items in the trunk. Now we had just enough time to run one more errand before Mr.Gobbles needed to be refrigerated.
Sixth And Final Stop
We try our best to stay away from big box retail stores, but some things are easier and faster at Walmart some times. So we stopped by our local store to pick up some disposable utensils amongst other stuff…
This time it was Missi that hopped out for a quick run, while Josephine and I waited in the wagon. I certainly didn’t mind getting a few “quiet” minutes in the cabin, as it allowed me appreciate even more the fine details around the E63’s interior, with the added benefit of being ogled by every passer by. At least until the purple Bentley Continental GT Convertible pulled up a few spots away. Sigh…
I eventually cranked up the Harman Kardon LOGIC7 sound system, and Josephine and I started groovin’ to Earth, Wind & Fire. This cabin is such a great place to be.
At the end of the day, we completed our mission by picking up everything we needed to pick up, on time and in-style!
All in all the E63 S Wagon is by far the best of both worlds; not only is it a convenient station wagon, family car and luxury vehicle, but it’s also a beast that’s capable of smoking nearly every sports car you can encounter on the road.
- Massive amounts of power.
- Convenient, versatile and capable.
- Rear AC vents and power outlets.
- Safe and reliable, just like every other Mercedes.
The Not So Great:
- Exorbitant price tag.
- The center screen looks and feels below par, for a vehicle of this caliber.
- It can land you in jail for hyper-speeding.
- COMAND infotainment system feels outdated compared to other systems.
- Starts at: $104,300
- Price as tested: $110,050
Disclaimer: The turkey wagon is actually for sale, and was kindly provided by Gator Motorsport of Indianapolis for the purpose of having fun, as well as this write-up. Gator Motorsport specializes in unique, luxury and sports cars of all brands, and is also an official Lotus, Zenos, Magnum and Rossion dealer. Trust me when I say that, their inventory as well as their team is of the highest quality, and professionalism I’ve ever seen and experienced. Thank you, Brian and Young.