Few cars make more exciting family transport than a fast German estate, right? It’s hard to match the sheer performance, practicality and luxury the likes of BMW, Audi and Mercedes have delivered over the years.
Which of them does it best, though? Well, in the case of a straight-line race at least, we’re about to find out…
Representing BMW is the E61 M5 Touring from 2007. That’s the one with a 5.0-litre, naturally-aspirated V10 engine — good for 507hp and 520Nm of torque.
Its grunt is sent to the rear wheels through a 7-speed SMG automatic gearbox (no, not a submachine gun, rather a weird automated sequential manual) in a package that weighs 1,955kg.
What if you fancy your V10 with a couple of turbochargers, though? Well, fast forward a touch to 2009 for the C6 Audi RS6 Avant. Its 10-cylinder engine matches the capacity of the M5, though puts out more power at 579hp and 650Nm, and delivers it to all four wheels through a six-speed torque-converter automatic gearbox.
That should wipe the floor with the M5, surely? Not so fast — it weighs a fair bit more than its Bavarian competitor at 2,025kg.
Our third challenger, and flying the flag for Mercedes-AMG, is the E55 Estate from 2002. It’s powered by a 5.4-litre supercharged V8 that dumps 476hp and 700Nm to the rear axle through a five-speed torque converter gearbox. It weighs 1,990kg, making it today’s middleweight.
Which of these family-friendly ‘bahnstormers comes out on top in the usual ¼ mile drag race, rolling race and brake test? You’ll have to watch the video to find out…
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