Remember when optional sixth and seventh seats in the boot were fairly common? Children would often be seen facing rearwards in the back of the family estate, seemingly content with not having to interact with the others all that much. Well, unless you count following motorists...
With the advent of clever folding seats, the temporary rear bench is seen less frequently. However, it could still be seen as having a few advantages. Many seven-seat MPVs or crossovers don't have all that much boot space even with the third row folded down, let alone with all seven seats raised. Place a couple of occasional pews in a massive estate though and the cargo area is not impacted on as severely. As more and more cars cater for rear passengers better than ever, to have a couple of seats that are worse than the rest could work well as punishment. Misbehave on the trip to Legoland and it's in the boot with you on the way home! Moreover, it offers the opportunity to take grown up friends out and relive childhoods spent in a Montego Countryman.
But as you may have noticed, this is not a Montego Countryman - it's an E63 AMG. Better still it's one with the 514hp, 6.2-litre M156 V8. That glorious, ginormous lump that has beguiled damn near everyone who has experienced it, whether that be in an E63, C63 or tweaked to M159 spec in an SLS. It's still being used in the AMG GT3 in fact, so it must be alright.
This generation of E63 is very rare too, having only been available for a couple of years after the old supercharged E55 and before the W211 generation of E-Class ended production. It actually had less torque than its predecessor (465lb ft against 516), but countered with more power and the new seven-speed transmission. It's easy to see, in fact, how the torquier supercharged car could suit those after a fast estate, particularly with its greater tuning potential. That being said the facelifted E-Class is believed to be much more reliable, and AMG bills aren't exactly going to be cheap...
This particular car looks fantastic for one approaching its 10th birthday, the mileage low and the condition seemingly pristine. The spec is appealing and there are some useful options beyond the seven seats. It's probably due a service but other than that it looks ready for whatever adventures you have planned with six others.
Is £29K a lot? Perhaps it looks that way initially, but an M5 Touring is £25K
with another 30,000 miles, and this RS6 is £30,000
with the lowest mileage of the three. The joy of choosing between them is that each boasts a USP - the BMW has that engine and the Audi is the fastest - without a duff car amongst them.
The Mercedes has to hold special appeal here though for the seven seats. While some seven-seaters are eventually made faster, this is a genuine performance car hero that optionally has additional practicality. And that has to be a better way around of doing it, doesn't it? Go on, your family and friends will love you for it; just don't forget to ask for fuel contributions.
MERCEDES E63 AMG ESTATE
Engine: 6,208cc, V8
Transmission: 7G-Tronic automatic, rear-wheel drive
Power (hp): 514@6,800rpm
Torque (lb ft): 465@5,200rpm
Recorded mileage: 46,000 miles
Year registered: 2008
Price new: N/A
Price now: £28,595
See the original advert here