by Karl Furlong
The current Mercedes-AMG S63 Coupe marks the end of an era. This posh two-door grand tourer won't be receiving a direct successor, and what a pity that is. Blending timeless coupe styling with a fabulously luxurious interior and effortlessly powerful engines, those qualities aren't enough to keep it alive in a segment that has lost ground in recent years. Even BMW decided to stop selling the M8 Coupe for the 2021 model year, although we now know that it will return for 2022. But, if you represent the small percentage of customers who still want a car like this, the S63 is one of the best. Its 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 produces 603 horsepower to send this lounge on wheels to 60 mph in only 3.4 seconds. It is a smooth and utterly refined cross-country cruiser, and there's loads of technology on board; you'll need deep pockets, of course. Still, we lament the imminent departure of the S63 Coupe, which will no doubt exit the market as gracefully as it wafted in.
For 2021, the S63 Coupe now comes with the standard Premium package that includes luxuries like front massaging seats and a surround-view camera system. The only other change is that Cirrus Silver has been added to the color palette.
The 2021 Mercedes-AMG S63 Sports Coupe is almost $2,000 pricier than it was last year, with an MSRP that now stands at $173,100. That excludes tax, licensing, registration, and a destination charge of $1,050. This makes it one of the priciest coupes on sale in the US, and if that's not close enough to a Bentley Continental GT for your liking, you can always tack on every available option. Doing so will increase the price of the Mercedes-AMG S63 Coupe to over $215,000.
See trim levels and configurations:
|AMG S63 4MATIC Coupe||
4.0L Twin-Turbo V8 Gas
The S63 may have an AMG badge on the back and a true AMG power plant in front, but there is only so much that can be done to contain over 4,500 pounds when blasting through a series of curves. It's far from a needlessly floaty boat to drive, though. Grip from the AWD system is good and the steering is accurate, if not bristling with feel. However, cornering is not this car's forte. As we found in our last AMG S63 Coupe review, it's much more at home munching up the miles with devastating ease, a task that is only interrupted by frequent visits to the pumps. The AMG adaptive sport Airmatic suspension does a wonderful job of ironing out bumps in Comfort mode, while Sport mode is adept at resisting body roll, but firms up the ride to a level that an S-Class Sedan driver would find unwelcome. But there is enough variability in the settings to find a balance that suits you, and overall, Mercedes-AMG has come up with a dynamic balance that suits the car's character.
It's easier to appreciate something when the end is in sight, but even if we knew that a new-generation S63 Coupe was on the way, that wouldn't take away from what a superb grand tourer the current model still is. Inside and out, there are no wrinkles; this is still an absolutely gorgeous luxury coupe. There's real substance to go along with its A-list appearance, though. The powertrain is potent and emits a nice growl, even if it's wrapped in a refined veneer that accompanies every S-Class model. For extended road trips, we can't easily think of a better vehicle to drive this side of a Bentley or a Rolls-Royce, so comfortable and effortless is this Merc. It's lavishly equipped and can be laden with even more features if your budget allows. If you have the money for one, the S63 is worth buying even if just to place it in storage and look back in 20 years at what a high-performance, V8-engined grand tourer was all about in 2021, before electrification took over.
As there is only one trim to choose from, Mercedes has already made the decision for you. However, assuming you can afford a new S63 Coupe, a few options wouldn't hurt. We'd have ours in the stunning designo Cashmere White Magno matte paint along with the 20-inch AMG forged 10-spoke wheels. Inside, the designo Porcelain/Titian Red exclusive Nappa leather interior is something special, and we'd also tick the box for the Driver Assistance Package to get adaptive cruise control. Including destination, our total comes to $185,300.
Surprisingly, these two super luxurious competitors aren't as far in price as you may expect considering the positioning of the Bentley brand. The Continental GT begins at just over $200,000, and perhaps the biggest factor in its favor is that illustrious badge. Your neighbor's A-Class may share a three-pointed star with the S63, but there is no such comparison to compact models if you own a Bentley. The "entry-level", V8-powered Continental GT isn't quite as rapid as the S63, but it's not terribly far behind. As much as the S63's interior delivers quality and style in spades, the Bentley is another cut above with its unrivaled craftsmanship. Both coupes are heavy but with enough 'sport' dialed in to make them feel surprisingly confident on a twisty road. The Mercedes has more features as standard and can be equipped with even more tech, but the Bentley's array of available materials and the customization potential are astonishing. At this level, it's all about making a statement, so we'll side with the Continental GT.
For the 2021 model year, BMW elected to stop selling the M8 Coupe and M8 Competition Coupe in the USA. That's unfortunate, as its sportier feel offered an interesting alternative to the more sumptuous Mercedes. However, you can still order the M8 Gran Coupe. It offers two extra doors so is more practical than the S63, and at $130,000, it's much cheaper. The BMW's specs are impressive; with 600 hp as standard, the M8 Gran Coupe will hit 60 mph in three seconds dead, an exceptional time. It's not as isolating as the S63 but is more engaging to drive. The BMW also comes with four-zone climate control, heated front armrests, and more widely adjustable front seats. However, the Mercedes feels grander from behind the wheel, with a much more welcoming cabin than the M8's conservative design. These two are different enough to make a direct comparison challenging, but we're going to choose the classier S63.
The most popular competitors of 2021 Mercedes-AMG S63 Coupe: