2015 Mercedes-Benz S63 Coupe turns into corners with far more
aggression and grace than any cruiser-size vehicle should
possess, leaning slightly but clinging to curves with
formidable all-wheel-drive grip.
me a sunny 30-room villa in the Hollywood hills filled with perfect
people who canít remember my name.
itís Tommy or Tiny or something, but he parties like Gatsby."
Out back, I
want a marble-lined Pacific-blue pool, flanked by gushing tequila
fountains ó with a couple of shiny personal assistants to
occasionally pluck me and my pretty guests from the pool.
Or you could
just let me keep the 2015 Mercedes-Benz S63 AMG Coupe I had recently
and declare me the king of wretched excess.
It may be all
I need. As I discovered, the world sort of steps aside when youíre
plying its cobbled streets in a dazzling tank of a coupe awash in
horsepower and white leather.
of high-end brands offer cars far more expensive than the $172,000
S63. But few so capably hit all the right high-end chords: big,
fast, flashy and beautifully brazen.
S-class Coupe succeeds the finely crafted CL Coupe, blowing by it
with even more large-scale style and slinkiness.
of the dark blue S63 I had seemed to ooze opulence.
Up front, a
large, blunt, satin-finish grille featured a giant Mercedes-Benz
star in its center ó ready to leave its three-point imprint on
slow-moving Sentras and Civics if necessary.
long, broad hood extended like a banquet table to its raked-back
windshield, while scowling twin-projector headlamps anchored
muscular front fenders.
Though kind of
thick, the S63ís sides wore prominent character lines up high and
down low above the rocker panels that gave them a chiseled look,
aided by slightly flared wheel openings.
But the big
coupeís best element might be its low, sloping top, which looks a
bit like a rakish beret on a pinstriped bankerís head.
high-performance AMG model, the big coupe crouched on 20-inch alloy
wheels wrapped with massive 255/40 tires up front and 285/35s in
And did I
mention that itís a true two-door hardtop with no B-pillar between
the front and rear side windows, making it as open and inviting as a
Like all S63
models in the U.S., the car sported all-wheel drive, theoretically
meaning you could zip downtown even on an icy day or romp around
sand dunes in the Sahara.
Iím not sure
I would recommend that, though. Powered by a turbocharged 5.5-liter
V-8, the S63 can summon 577 horsepower and ó more important ó
664 pound-feet of torque.
If you drive
it like an adult and stay under 3,000 rpm, youíll wonder where all
that power hides. In fact, the S63 is rated at a not-terrible 15
miles per gallon in town and 23 on the highway.
The car has
one of those long-travel accelerator pedals and feels a bit soft and
lazy at low speeds, probably suffering from a touch of turbo lag.
deeply on that pedal. When the tach swings past 3,000, all hell in a
tuxedo breaks loose with a muted roar and a huge, slightly startling
S63 is in Autobahn mode, ripping to 60 in an astounding 3.7 seconds,
according to Car and Driver, its seven-speed automatic clicking off
blazing bang-bang shifts like a Formula 1 racer.
It sure makes
pulling into the fast lane on the expressway an interesting
as big as some work trucks, the S63 has an unusual steel-aluminum
body that helps keep its weight to a fairly reasonable 4,700 pounds.
As a result,
the big coupe turns into corners with far more aggression and grace
than any cruiser-size vehicle should possess, leaning slightly but
clinging to curves with formidable all-wheel-drive grip.
In sport mode,
the Benz rides firmly but remains compliant enough that small,
well-dressed passengers in back could sip champagne without sloshing
steering felt quick and a little on the light side, as if it was
bolted to something smaller.
life also looks pretty good from inside the S63, though I found more
irritations there than the outside.
stitched mostly in off-white Nappa leather embellished by off-white
carpeting and headliner.
It felt like
one of Sam Barrisí hallowed old California customs when I slid
behind the Benzís wheel.
A sleek upper
dashboard in dark brown leather curved around the base of the carís
windshield, shading the instrument panel and display screen. It
dropped onto a curved middle dash in off-white, which matched the
leather wrapped around the steering wheel.
door panels and padded armrests were covered in off-white leather.
German luxury cars these days, the S63 had no center stack, relying
instead on a mouse and dial on the console for many of its controls.
every time I tried to rest my elbow on the console, I managed to
knock the stereo off Outlaw Country and probably sent an email to
Hungary or somewhere in the process.
gorgeous off-white seats squeeze you ó literally.
seats with their form-fitting bolsters squeeze the driver on one
side or the other depending on the curve, presumably to provide
support in serious corners.
thought I might just be experiencing a minor stroke. After a while,
though, it got pretty irritating.
loves electronics, and the S63 bristled with features like active
cruise control that will slow the car if needed, lane assist,
steering assist and braking assist. For all I know, it may be able
to toast waffles as well.
over 5-foot-6 will struggle to get comfortable in the tight back
seat, which struck me as odd given the carís size.
But thatís a
minor flaw in what may be one of the best personal luxury coupes on
the planet ó a car that offers styling, performance and features
usually found in super-luxury vehicles costing $100,000 more.
Maybe all the
good stuff really is trickling down.
AT A GLANCE:
2015 Mercedes-Benz S63 AMG 4Matic Coupe
vehicle: All-wheel-drive, four-passenger luxury coupe
15 miles per gallon city, 23 highway
Turbocharged, direct-injected 5.5-liter V-8 with 577 horsepower and
664 pound-feet of torque
to 60 mph in 3.7 seconds
Mercedes-Benz USA; Car and Driver