Dynamism: V6 and V8 engines with up to 510 Nm of torque
Engine outputs range from 224 hp up to 306 hp, clearly signalling just what the new R-Class is capable of in terms of dynamic performance and motoring enjoyment. The powerful V8 powerplant under the bonnet of the R 500 propels it from standstill to 62.5 mph in just 7.0 seconds and on to a top speed of 152 mph.
Also to be found in the engine line-up is a new six-cylinder power unit with third-generation common-rail, direct-injection technology, whose credentials include improved fuel consumption, even lower exhaust emissions and an audible improvement in refinement. The V6 engine places itS-Class-beating peak torque of 510 Nm on tap from as low down as 1600 rpm. The combined fuel consumption of the R 320 CDI is 30.4 mpg.
Powered by the new 272 hp V6 petrol engine, the R 350 accelerates from 0-62.5 mph in just 8.3 seconds and goes on to reach a top speed of 143 mph.
All engine models are partnered as standard by the 7G-TRONIC seven-speed automatic transmission, which itself comes with a noteworthy new feature in the form of DIRECT SELECT. This electronic transmission control system has allowed Mercedes engineers to dispense with the conventional automatic selector lever in the centre console and to replace it instead with a lever on the steering column. Additional gearshift buttons on the steering wheel enable drivers to manually pre-select the seven forwards gears, just like in a Formula One racing car. This allows the power reserves of the six and eight-cylinder engines to be harnessed to optimum effect in any driving situation.
Permanent all-wheel drive, the electronically controlled 4ETS traction system and ESP team up to offer top-notch driving safety and keep the new R-Class safely on course, even in very bad road conditions. These systems all make up part of the vehicle's standard specification, as does air suspension for the rear wheels. Mercedes customers also have the option of AIRMATIC all-round air suspension. This is interlinked with the ADS Adaptive Damping System, offering motorists the facility of raising the body by up to 50 mm when driving along rough roads. At high speeds above 75 mph, the body is automatically lowered by 20 mm to reduce wind resistance.