Yes, we know that by some observations, it’s a nearly extinct species. But the two-box station wagon – you know, a car, riding on a car platform, not an SUV – is still relevant to many of us. Full disclosure: I owned a couple of AWD Volvo wagons and liked them. It’s especially enjoyable for me to think of the motorway police in the United Kingdom patrolling in turbocharged Volvo station wagons, equipped with medical gear, for both nailing speeders and assisting the injured at accident scenes. Cars like these prove that wagons aren’t necessarily frumpy or jammed to bursting with screaming, unruly kids. And if you’re still not convinced that a conventional station wagon can exist as a rock-hard, scintillating performance automobile, we’ve got something you need to examine closely.
The vehicle in question here is the Mercedes-AMG E 63 S, which can assuredly, immediately, transform anybody’s opinion about what a station wagon is all about. With a lot of additional cargo space, this is the spiritual descendant of the fabled AMG-tuned Mercedes-Benz “Hammer,” one of the 1980s’ most legendary performance automobiles of any sort. Mercedes-AMG is now a full-borne corporate brand, rather than the earlier manufacturer-modifier alliance, and the E 63 S wagon is being refined with sheetmetal that allows it to explore a new horizon in performance tuning, that of aerodynamic front-to-rear balance, a parameter long associated only with racing cars. This is probably the first station wagon is automotive history to involve aerodynamics engineers so directly in its fundamental design. Even its alloy wheels have been reshaped for maximum aero efficiency. That’s just for openers. The package includes all-wheel drive, a nine-speed automatic transmission, active shock damping and the handbuilt AMG-spec 4.0-liter twin-turbo V-8 that’s rated at 603 horsepower, just the ticket to get you home before the Haagen-Dazs starts melting out back. Buy this, and nobody will ever ridicule your choice of a station wagon, anywhere. The MSRP is $111,750 and if you’re still not convinced, the E 63 S is also available as a sedan.