Take Mercedes’ brand new S-Class, stuff AMG’s monstrous twin turbo V8 engine under the bonnet and go very, very fast in utter luxury. Welcome, to the new S63 AMG!
This, people of the Interwebs, is the new Mercedes-Benz S63 AMG, perhaps the most bi-polar car on the planet. Here’s why; the S-Class is Mercedes’ luxury limousine, it focuses on comfort, impeccable refinement, absolute luxury, technology and being too big and heavy – although this new S63 is 100kg lighter than the previous generation but it’s still a big ‘ol lump. The AMG version then has to be all of these things, as well as the complete opposite of them. If reading that sentence gives you a headache just imagine the excruciating pain the AMG boffins must’ve experienced while trying to keep the S63 very S-Classy but also very AMG-y. It has to be very soft and comfortable, yet very hard and edgy, very refined and quiet, yet very aggressive and loud, it has to feel very big and solid, yet small and nimble. Impossible? Not quite.
The S63 uses the familiar 5.5liter twin turbo V8 found in the E63 and CLS63 and G63 and pretty much every AMG vehicle except for the A45 and the CLA45 and the C63 and the SLK55 and the SLS AMG, but that’s it. In the S63 that thumping engine develops 585hp and 664lb ft of torque, which is a lot. And enough to get this massive luxo-barge from 0-62mph in just 4.4 seconds, that’s quick enough to worry cars like the Audi R8 V8 and Porsche 911 Carrera S! If you keep the throttle pinned the speedo will head but the electronic speed limiter at 155mph with all the brute force of a rhino, probably. It really is faster than a car this big and luxurious has any right to be.
But the raw speed doesn’t stop there because Mercedes will also offer the S63 AMG with their 4Matic all-wheel-drive system which makes this S-Class alarmingly quick, 0-62mph in 4.0 seconds. Wowsers. So, as you’d imagine, the brakes are rather large, the front carbon ceramic discs are a whopping 420mm in diameter, that’s bigger than the entire rim fitted to my car.
So it’s certainly fast, but what about the being quiet and comfortable bit? Well, the S63’s 7-speed dual clutch transmission is paired with an exhaust system featuring special flaps which mute the V8’s roar if you’ve selected the gearbox’s ‘Controlled Efficiency’ mode. Choose Sport or Manual modes then the V8 awakens with the typical AMG orchestra of dirty crackles and pops.
The S63 features Mercs Magic Body Control suspension setup with Road Surface Scan which searches for bumps in the road via a forward looking camera then adjusts the suspension dampening accordingly to make those pesky road imperfections just about imperceptible, it’s very clever. The chassis and steering have both sport and comfort modes, which adjust suspension stiffness and steering weight to put the car in a different mood at just the flick of a button.
Visually, the S63 AMG differentiates itself from lesser S-Class’ with 19in alloys (20’s are an option), an aggressive front bumper with integrated splitter, side sill panels with 3D chrome inserts and a black rear diffuser housing quad pipes. Oh, there are also some showy AMG badges. Inside you get some body hugging but armchair like sports seats, some carbon fiber, quite a lot of cow, and a sports steering wheel with not enough spokes – it only has two, and that looks weird.
Naturally, the option list is even longer than the S63’s bonnet and includes things like er, the Chauffer Pack, there’s even a variety of different layouts for the rear ‘suite’, plus some special AMG options like carbon fiber exterior trim accessories and the bigger carbon brakes.
Pricing for the big Benz is yet to be announced, but the previous generation S63 retailed at £114,000 before you went berserk with the options so expect it to be priced closely to its predecessor.
I just have one more question; if the S63 is this alarmingly fast, what’s the twin turbo V12 powered S65 AMG going to be like!?
By Aiden Taylor (@AidenT_RD)