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The AMG name was spawned over 50 years ago, thanks to two engineers that never gave up on their dreams. Hans Werner Aufrecht and Erhard Melcher were working on the 300 SE race engine in the 1960s when Daimler-Benz decided to discontinue the motorsports division altogether. The two engineers decided to continue building the engine at Aufrecht’s house in Grossasspach, hence the three-letter naming convention made from the engineer’s initials and the town they lived in.

The duo was determined to build powerful street cars on their own time, starting with the Mercedes-Benz 300 SEL sedan – the brand’s flagship model. It was powered by a 6.3-liter V8 engine, but AMG tore the whole thing apart and rebuilt it with new internals. The engine now displaced 6.8 liters and made 428 hp. They also adjusted the 300 SEL’s chassis and suspension to make the car handle better on the track.

It went on to place second in the 1971 24 Hours of Spa in Belgium and won a lot of street cred among enthusiasts and automakers alike. Mercedes ended up striking a deal with AMG in the 80s to build specialty cars on their platforms, and the rest is history.

Since then, Mercedes-AMG has churned out some of the fastest and most luxurious cars in the market. They have come a long way from that original 300 SEL, but which Mercedes-AMG vehicle has the most horsepower today?

The Mercedes-AMG car with the most horsepower doesn’t stray far from its roots

A silver 2024 Mercedes-Benz AMG S63 driving
2024 Mercedes-Benz AMG S63 | Mercedes-Benz

The original Mercedes 300 SEL sedan that AMG built was nicknamed “The Red Pig” because it was red and it was huge. Far larger and heavier than the racecars that it overtook on the track. Considering Mercedes-Benz has produced plenty of sports cars in the past few decades, you would think that the car with the most horsepower would be a GT63 or an SL63.

However, you would be wrong.

As of 2023, the forthcoming Mercedes-AMG S63 E Performance has the most horsepower in the lineup. The large sedan is powered by a twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 engine paired with a permanently excited synchronous electric motor to produce a massive 791 hp and 1,055 lb-ft of torque.

According to Car and Driver, that power can scoot the large sedan up to 60 mph from a stop in only 3.2 seconds and up to a top speed of 180 mph. Since it’s a hybrid with a 13.1-kWh battery pack, the car can be driven on electric power only for about 20 miles. There’s also a one-pedal driving mode, which aids in putting energy back into the battery when decelerating.

Mercedes hasn’t released information on recharge times yet. But the German automaker did say that it would have a new look with a modern grille, 21-inch wheels, and special AMG upholstery. Pricing has not been announced yet, but we’re sure it will cost over $150,000.

The second most powerful Mercedes-AMG car is electric

A white 2022 Mercedes EQS AMG
2022 Mercedes EQS AMG | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

Speaking of cars that cost $150,000, the second most powerful Mercedes-AMG model is the EQS AMG. This large all-electric sedan is powered by a dual-motor setup that provides all-wheel-drive traction. It also churns out 649 hp and 700 lb-ft of torque. However, when the Race Start mode is enabled, that power jumps to 751 hp and 752 lb-ft of torque for a short burst.

Mercedes-Benz says that power can rocket the car up to 60 mph from a stop in only 3.4 seconds. We have tested the EQS AMG, and in the real world, it truly is a fast car. Flooring the throttle leads to a rush of instant power that makes the scenery go by in a flash. Needless to say, the EQS AMG is one of the best driving experiences we have ever had. That’s why we gave the “Best Driving Experience” award last year.

The Mercedes-AMG ONE will take the cake for horsepower

A Mercedes-AMG ONE from above
Mercedes-AMG ONE | Mercedes-Benz

If having nearly 800 hp is not enough, the Mercedes-AMG ONE is sure to appease any race enthusiast. In short, the Mercedes-AMG ONE is a road-legal race car with a turbocharged V6 engine teamed with four independent electric motors – one for each front wheel, one linked to the crankcase, and one in the turbocharger itself.

This setup is good for over 1,000 hp, a 0 to 124 mph time of under six seconds, and a top speed of 217 mph. The ONE has the muscular looks, vents, and super sticky Michelin Cup 2 tires to put the power down.

All of this technology and power comes at a steep price of $2.72 million per car. It’s super rare too. Mercedes-AMG only plans to build 275 units, so the average buyer may not be able to get their hands on one.

Regardless, Mercedes-AMG builds plenty of high-horsepower models in the current 2023 lineup. Meaning, there’s a special-built car for most high-dollar budgets.