Normally, I’m not that much of a wagon kind of guy. The farther away you get from something like, say, a Lotus 7, the more I have a tendency to dislike it. But when I saw that some tuning outfit called Vath had done up a Mercedes wagon that was putting in excess of 500 HP to the ground, I decided to give it a look, if not change my mind right off the bat.
Look, I’m not totally opposed to station wagons (or estates, as Euros call them). Eventually you’re going to need something with hauling capacity, or you might own three huge dogs, or you might have a kid in jazz band … or you might be a drummer in a jazz band yourself, so sure, there could be plenty of reasons to be practical and get a station wagon.
So if you’re going to need a wagon, doesn’t it stand to reason that you should get one that’s as fun as possible (within your budget)? Makes sense to me.
Enter the Vath tuned Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG Estate. Vath is a German firm that has just released a new tuning package for the wagon that increases power and gives the car a more aggressive look. It would seem that in Europe (but not here, sadly) Merc wagons can get the full AMG treatment. In this case, that means a 6.3 liter V8 heavily massaged by MB’s in house tuners.
For Vath, that was just a jumping off point.
Vath (and there’s an umlaut over the “a”, which means they should be a heavy metal band, if you ask me) (Hell, who knows, maybe they are) has a go at the engine first, tweaking the “standard” 6.3 V8 to crank out 580 horsepower and 568 lb-ft of torque. They also thought it would be a good idea to remove the electronic speed limiter so the station wagon now tops out at a Ferrari-like 187 mph.
Going is nice, but stopping is also something to be considered too, and Vath has that covered with a new, high-performance brake system and chassis mods. You get 6-piston calipers, and they lowered air suspension by 35 mm and slapped on new 20-inch alloy wheels wrapped in 245 rubber in the front and 285 out back. They also saw fit to develop a new carbon fiber front lip spoiler that they say will add about 20 pounds of pressure on the front axle along with a specific rear diffuser at the back. Probably needed aero tweaks for a frickin’ wagon that can cruise at 160 MPH all day long. Inside the E63 AMG Estate’s interior, Vath offers a variety of carbon fiber accessories (natch) and Alcantara trim for the roof.
No, no word on if, or how to get one into the good ol’ U.S. of A … but if anyone does, let me know, it’d be fun to see just what this grocery getter can do.