This level of design and attention to every conceivable detail is truly the work of specialists and artisans. To give you an idea about what I mean, take for instance the headlamps, each unit alone features no less than 47 Swarovski crystals. This is what Mercedes-Benz engineers do when their only mission is to create one of the most breathtakingly beautiful machines on the road.
The fact is, this is the quietest production car in the world in terms of wind noise. Designers and engineers achieved this through studying something known, as aero-acoustics. The flowing shape, the door-seals, everything, was designed to offer the occupants the most luxurious escape from the outside world.
Within the cabin only the finest materials, leather surfaces and colour combinations have been used. The way you feel from the moment you enter tells you that this is going to be something exceptional. Double-layered glass has been used to separate you from the noisy outside world. Everything, from the massaging, ventilated seats to the fully surround Burmester audio system – which costs as much as a small car- and the smell of the leather and the touch of every button, all add to the luxurious appeal of the S-Class coupé.
The level of driver assist technology that you will find here is more an expression of luxury that is so utterly tasteful at every turn. A feature that I found captivating was the Lane Keep Assist. Cameras and sensors not only keep the vehicle in the centre of the lane but when linked to the Steering Assist function, the car will take bends and even bottle-necks by itself with no steering input from the driver. I let the steering wheel go through a bend and the car steered itself. After a few seconds it instructs you to place your hands on the wheel again for safety purposes. Autonomies driving? Not fully but pretty close.
Another standout feature is the fact that no other super coupé uses two, 12.3-inch side-by-side high definition displays; they are a window to a different world, giving you hundreds of choices at your fingertips. The interface is phenomenal and although it will take many hours to familiarise yourself with all the features, the overall experience of using the system is rewarding in itself.
One might think that this big, heavy and wide car handles like a blob of sweetened whipped cream, it doesn’t. Thanks to something known as Magic Body Control, which uses a combination of high tech stereo cameras in the windshield and in the wing mirrors as well as in the front bumper, to scan the road surface ahead and automatically adjust the Airmatic suspension to adapt to the oncoming surface. What’s more, the S-Class coupé uses another feature called, Curve Control. This builds on Magic Body Control and it uses various suspension components allowing the car to lean into corners, much like a motorcycle. This not only improves comfort but driving dynamics as well.
There is another beauty to the S-Class coupé, particularly this S63 AMG model, which remains somewhat disguised. Under the bonnet lives a bi-turbo 5.5-litre V8. Ignite this and you will unleash 430kW and 900Nm of glorious torque. You will hit 100km/h in about 4.2 seconds and if the limiter was to be removed, well let’s just say you’ll still be going after you’ve passed the 300km/h mark. This luxury yacht for the road delivers the driving dynamics and the exhaust note of a high performance sports car. Set the car up in its full AMG mode and the experience is unbelievable!
To find fault with a car that costs just shy of R3 million is difficult. I can’t complain about the 16l/100km average fuel usage figure because if you - as a potential customer - were to concern yourself with the fuel usage then you probably shouldn’t break the bank to buy this car. If I had to find fault with it, then it would have to be about the rear seats. However luxurious the rear seats are, leg space is somewhat limited.
After my time with the S-Class coupé I realized that to build a coupé wearing the S-Class badge is to set the very highest of expectations for design, luxury, performance safety and driving this car, I had every one of those expectations exceeded, on every level.