After presenting a Coupé concept-car based on its new flagship, the S-Class, at the 2013 IAA Motorshow in Frankfurt, Mercedes-Benz just revealed the final version, which has been officially presented at the 2014 Geneva Motorshow. Inheriting the big luxury coupes from the Stuttgart brand, like the 560 SEC, this brand new S-Class version is the first coupé since two generations. Text : Mickaël B. Images : Mercedes-Benz © All Rights Reserved ©
It all started in October 1951, when Mercedes presented the 300 S Coupé W188 at the Paris Motorshow. Although having a much higher price tag than the standard 300, it used the same 3 litre straight six engine, with a four speed synchromesh manual gearbox, but with a a higher compression rate of 7.8 to 1 raising the power of the S to 150 horsepower at 5000 rpm. 216 Coupés were produced during the three years production run.
The design of the original concept-car we had the opportunity to admire in Frankfurt hasn’t been changed. It is still a blend of sensual purity throughout modern luxury, as Mercedes-Benz’s new philosophy for design. It looks very big though, much more massive than a Bentley Continental GT for instance, but it stands out more agressively as well. This very massive front grille is a very nice reminder of one of my favorites Mercedes luxury coupes of all time, the 1989 560 SEC. But let’s have a look at the big Mercedes-Benz Coupés that made Stuttgart’s brand legend.
The Stuttgart brand had very little choice though concerning the size, as this car had necessarily to be bigger than its baby sister the E-Class Coupé, which is already very massive. Measuring over 5 meters long, and nearly 1.9 meters wide, the S Class wouldn’t be called a ballerina. The rear looks more elegant and simple than the front, not very Mercedes-ish, almost reminding the old Renault Laguna Coupé, in a much wider manner of course. But we really have to salute again Mercedes-Benz for their amazing leap forward in terms of design since the last ten years, with a real volunteer to explore the unknown.
Whilst looking at the car itself the contrast between the front and the rear cannot be ignored, but still the global design seems coherent, although a more agressive rear would have given this car a more savage look. Looking at the profile, it looks somehow a bit strange, yet very beautiful. This contrast is reinforced especially by the lights, as the front one, composed of 47 Swarovski crystals in extra, give the impression the headlights are ice sculptures inside the car, where as the rear ones are simple LED lights.
There is for the moment only two engines available : the S500 version, which is a 4.7 liter V8 twin-turbocharged that develops at its peak 455 horsepower and 700 Nm of torque, and the S400 Hybrid with the 3.5 liter V6 coupled with an electric motor, which develops 330 horsepower. Fitted with the new exhaust system, there are two flaps to ensure its passengers a quiet ride when they want, and a more sporty feeling when they ask for, by simply opening the flaps. The flaps open at earlier regimes than on the E class Coupé, providing the occupants with more melodious noise from the engine.
The aluminium surroundings around the lateral windows do create an amazing atmosphere but they increase the impression that the glass surfaces of the S -Class Coupé are very small. Interestingly though the 1.3 square meter transparent glass roof compensate this lack of lateral, front and rear visibility by ensuring passengers of a high luminosity inside the cabin. The quality and the finition are the same as in the saloon S-Class, which of course means one of the best in the market, with the same large TFT widescreen, a new Super Sport steering wheel, and newly designed seats with heated armrests. As this car was designed as a 2+2 there are two real seats at the back, in which two adults will fit very comfortably, even for long journey. To ensure its passengers with maximum comfort and luxury, the interior can be equipped in extra with front massage seats, and a high-end audio system from Burmeister®.
Using all the latest technology from the latest Stuttgart flagship, the S Class Coupe provides one of the safest driving environment ever. The Magic Body Control suspension system, presented in the S class, is available here with curve tilting function on option. This means the vehicle leans into bends, like a motorcylist, bringing more driving pleasure and ride comfort at the same time. The Pre-safe collision system is now available in a PLUS version which can detect when the car is going to get rear-ended. In this case it activates both the parking brake and the warning lights to warn other vehicles from the danger.