A facelifted version of the Mercedes-Benz E Class is set to make its debut next month at the 2013 Detroit Auto Show, and that means a new version of the E63 AMG performance variant too.

While we’ve previously told you the new E63 AMG would offer the option of all-wheel drive as part of AMG’s transition towards a full all-wheel-drive lineup, a new report claims the E63 AMG will be offered exclusively with all-wheel drive in the U.S. market.

Car and Driver reports that the new E63 AMG, which arrives as a 2014 model, will be offered exclusively with 4MATIC all-wheel drive in the U.S., while other markets will still be able to order a rear-drive version.

AMG’s all-wheel-drive system won’t be the same as Mercedes’ version, however. AMG’s system will be lighter and offer a permanent 67:33 rear torque bias.

Initial testing is said to have produced quicker track times than with a rear-wheel-drive model, not to mention improved acceleration. More output can also be safely handled, according to the report, with the new 2014 E63 AMG expected to deliver 550 horsepower and 531 pound-feet of torque in base trim.

This is said to be enough for a 0-60 mph time of 3.5 seconds and a quarter mile ET in the high 11s--not bad for a five-seat luxury sedan. An AMG Performance Package will add even more power, however.

While purists may shed a tear, the majority of those buying these high-performance sedans, particular those from the northern states, have made it clear that all-wheel drive is the way to go when it comes to performance luxury vehicles. Expect other brands to follow.

For more details on the 2014 Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG, be sure to check our previous spy shots report.