Mercedes-Benz is seldom shy about adding some muscle to its more mainstream offerings, and the AMG badge on the back of the third-generation ML line suggests that this sport-utility vehicle isn’t meant for crawling all over boulder-strewn trails.
Then again, neither are any of the other members of the ML line-up, which is more likely to win over soccer moms and commuter dads than rugged outdoorsmen. In the case of the Mercedes-Benz ML63 AMG, the pitch is to those who want a reasonable degree of functionality and flexibility but still hope to find something with the soul of a sports car.
There’s no question that the fast-beating heart of the 2012 ML63 can impress, the updated 5.5-liter biturbo V8 making518 horsepower and 516 lb-ft of torque – up 15 hp and 44 lb-ft, respectively, over the old model. For those who need to press things to the limit, you’ll also find the AMG Performance Package bumps that up to 550 hp and 560 lb-ft. Power is channeled through the Mercedes Speedshift Plus-7 automatic gearbox.