Nice Article on the E55, its old but a nice read.... - Mercedes-Benz Forum
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post #1 of 1 (permalink) Old 11-07-2003, 09:59 PM Thread Starter
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Nice Article on the E55, its old but a nice read....

From the Road and Track 0-100-0 Shoot Out.

Power Trip

Take your pick between the Audi RS 6 and the Mercedes-Benz E55 AMG. Then pull alongside a BMW M3, M5, a Chevrolet Corvette, a Ford SVT Mustang Cobra, or even a Porsche 911 Carrera at a stoplight. The next thing you'll notice is that these other high-performance machines next to you are left behind, their drivers wondering how a 4-door family sedan can out-accelerate them from a standing start.

The truth is that the Audi and the Mercedes-Benz are both sleeper muscle cars disguised as people-movers. The RS 6 comes with a twin-turbocharged V-8 capable of delivering 450 bhp at 5700 rpm and 415 lb.-ft. of torque at 1950 rpm, mated to a 5-speed automatic transmission propelling all four wheels. The driver and the passengers are not only treated to the Audi's addictive, extreme acceleration ability, but they are also being indulged in amenities befitting a luxury sedan.

The Audi RS 6 is fast, but the Mercedes-Benz E55 AMG is even faster. It is really unfair to invite the Audi to match up against the Mercedes. Armed with a supercharged 5.4-liter V-8, cranking out an impressive 469 bhp at 6100 rpm, and producing a whopping 516 lb.-ft. of torque between 2650 and 4500 rpm, the Merc is a luxury rocket ship. Based on our previous road test, the E55 AMG can almost keep up with the Dodge Viper SRT-10, and for sure can outrun a Corvette Z06 without breaking a sweat.

Without the full control of a manual transmission, getting all of the Audi RS 6's tires to spin from a standing start is nearly impossible. So I turn off the traction control, power-brake until the tachometer reads 2500, then immediately apply full throttle. Only a slight chirp of the tires can be induced. Once on its way, the RS 6 punches forward with fervor. The twin turbos hit strongly at the beginning, but as the speed builds past 60 mph, the urgency felt at lower speeds decreases (also apparent from the acceleration curve plot). As expected, the automatic transmission shifts smoothly and quickly.

When it is time for the Mercedes' turn on the start line, the traction control is also turned off following our standard procedures. Based on our experience, disabling the traction control allows the engine to get to its powerband sooner, albeit sacrificing some initial wheelspin for a better overall acceleration time. However, in the case of the E55 AMG, the tremendous torque available on tap proved to be difficult to control without electronic assistance. Not helping is the lack of direct control over the engine torque output via the automatic transmission. Apply too little throttle and the Merc hesitates off the line. Just a smidgen deeper into the gas, the rear wheels light up instantly and leave a trail of tire marks.

Turn on the traction control. The E55 happily scoots off the line with just the right amount of tire squeal every time. There is no need to worry about throttle control. With that silky-smooth 5-speed automatic transmission, there is plenty of time to enjoy the guttural sound emanating from the engine as the car surges toward 100 mph. This is definitely a 4-door muscle car ready for amateur night at the drag strip.

Equipped with slightly larger brakes, the Audi's full ABS stop from 100 mph takes only one foot less than that of Mercedes' 316 ft. The 0.1 second gained from this does not come close to overcoming the 1.2-sec. advantage of the E55 AMG's acceleration to 100 mph.

Winner: Mercedes-Benz E55 AMG.
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