Before Mercedes-Benz got lost in its quest to fill ever more niches and ever higher sales—an expedition that’s taken the brand further downmarket than it’s ever been—the three-pointed star was unquestionably the benchmark for luxury, engineering, and style. And in those days gone by, the S-class coupe reigned supreme. But those days are behind us. It just may do so again with the introduction of the all-new S-class coupe.
The S-class coupe replaces the CL-class, and Benz is hopeful its new
two-door S-class will reestablish the brand’s sex appeal among big-money
buyers who increasingly have flocked to Bentley dealers. Its shape and
styling was previewed by the the Concept S-class Coupé
at last fall’s Frankfurt auto show, we suspect the production version
will wow onlookers at the Geneva auto show next month. Long, low, wide,
and possessed of stunning proportions, the S-class coupe could be chief
designer Gorden Wagener’s masterpiece.
From its long hood to the most eloquently executed “dropping” character
lines in Benz’s lineup, and from the low-slung greenhouse to the wide
and horizontal taillights, it’s virtually impossible to find fault with
the S coupe’s design. Of course, Mercedes wasn’t burdened with any
packaging requirements in designing this large, rather impractical
coupe, what with a wheelbase of 116 inches and overall length stretching
to 198 inches—both numbers some eight inches shorter than the S-class sedan on which it’s based.
When it arrives on showroom floors this fall, the S-class coupe will be
powered by a twin-turbocharged 4.7-liter V-8 that produces 449
horsepower and 516 lb-ft of torque. Mercedes promises a sporty exhaust
sound, in marked contrast to the almost-eerie silence that prevails in
the four-door S-class.
One of the most fascinating aspects of the S-class coupe is its "curve
tilting function," which allows the car to lean into corners like a
downhill skier or a motorcyclist at angles of up to 2.5 degrees. This
technology isn’t new, however. In fact, it was tested on a Lotus Excel
in the mid-’80s and was most recently shown on a prototype Audi A5 three
years ago. But no one has put it into production yet, and Mercedes was
able to refine it by using input from the road-scanning camera that is
part of its Magic Body Control adaptive suspension. We’re very eager to try this function out for ourselves.
Thanks to: Car and Driver