Mercedes-AMG’s test drivers were at the Nürburgring recently to put the next E63 through its paces and make all the necessary adjustments.

The standard E-Class W213 is just about ready to go official as the latest spy images have showed prototypes that were almost undisguised. We can’t say the same thing about the range-topping E63 as this one is still covered in camouflage, but we all know it’s going to look pretty much like a larger C63. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but many people would appreciate some variation between the two models.

Lurking underneath the hood is a twin-turbo V8 4.0-liter taken from the C63 and AMG GT, but further tuned to squeeze more power. The strongest iteration of the motor available right now has 510 PS (375 kW), but sources close to Affalterbach have indicated output will be bumped to somewhere in the region of 600 PS (441 kW). That might be a bit too much as 550 PS (404 kW) seems more probable for the standard model and around 580 PS (426 kW) for the beefier E63 S.

Don’t be too surprised if the new E63 will be available exclusively with a 4MATIC all-wheel drive system, since AMG boss Tobias Moers said a while back the RWD model could be phased out since not a lot of people buy it nowadays. He went on to specify internal testing has proved the new model will be quicker in AWD guise than its rear-wheel drive sibling.

It will ride on the same MRA platform as the C63, so it will be lighter than today’s model even though it will be a tad bigger. The E63 is likely going to adopt a nine-speed automatic transmission which when combined with the downsized turbo motor and the lighter body will ensure superior fuel efficiency without affecting performance.

Taking into account the new standard E-Class will be unveiled in January 2016 in Detroit, the AMG version should debut in 2017 in sedan form followed shortly by the wagon. There also might be a coupe and a convertible as Mercedes-Benz executives admitted a couple of years ago they made a mistake by not launching these two body styles in AMG flavor for the W212.

Gallery: Camouflaged Mercedes-AMG E63 arrives at the Nurburgring for more tests [video]

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