by Morgan Carter
One would be hard-pressed to find a vehicle more indulgent than the Mercedes-Benz S-Class: t stands out even among similarly luxurious rivals like the BMW 8 Series or Bentley Continental GT. And the coupe variant is more sinfully glutinous still, even before you option on the AMG Line Package. One sin that certainly isn't applicable to this luxury coupe is sloth. With a potent bi-turbo V8 engine that develops 463 horsepower and 516 lb-ft of torque, the S-Class is able to sprint to 60 mph in under five seconds, although it doesn't have the athleticism of the 8 Series. The Merc also lacks the trunk capacity and better fuel economy of its rivals. But these are hardly concerns for those who can afford one. In terms of pure luxury, nothing comes quite as close to perfection, so it's no surprise that the S-Class ranks near the top, if not first, on the ranking of almost every critic's list of luxury sedans, and the coupe is no different.
Nothing changes mechanically for the S-Class Coupe in 2020. It remains just as aesthetically pleasing as it has in the past, too. For the new year, though, the Premium Package comes standard on the coupe model, including active multi-contour front seats with massage functions, heated seats PLUS, and a surround-view camera.
The S-Class Coupe remains one of the most stylish roadsters on the market, despite not being as flashy as some of its more ostentatious competitors. The S560 rides on 19-inch wheels as standard, with optional 20-inchers or AMG-style wheels available. The hood is sleek and long, subtly boasting the power of the V8 engine while drawing the eye to the cockpit, which features a pillarless design. The wide diamond-block grille is framed in chrome and placed low between the sharp LED headlights, while the rear OLED taillights sit atop the broad, powerful rear fascia. A panoramic sunroof comes standard, but it can be upgraded with Magic Sky Control functionality. The entire body design can be altered to look more aggressive by optioning the AMG style package.
The S-Class Coupe is as large as it is luxurious, measuring 198.1 inches long with a wide 115.9-inch wheelbase that accommodates the relatively spacious cabin. The sloping roofline gives the already sporty sedan a more sleek countenance while dropping the overall height to 55.6 inches. It's no slimmer than the standard S-Class, however, with a width of 74.8 inches when the mirrors are folded down. The coupe is also among the heaviest in the segment, weighing in at 4,740 lbs, whereas BMW's rivaling M850i xDrive weighs only 4,478 lbs.
Few luxury coupes can match the impressive performance of the S-Class thanks to its eminently capable 4.0-liter biturbo V8 engine, which pumps out 463 hp and 516 lb-ft. This engine comes mated to a nine-speed automatic transmission that rows the gears and distributes power to all four wheels simultaneously.
Despite the pretty high weight of the S-Class Coupe, its powertrain doesn't struggle to move it at all. In fact, the S560 4Matic is one of the quickest non-performance coupes on the market with a 0-60 mph sprint time of just 4.5 seconds. This is still a bit slower than the similarly V8-powered BMW 8 Series Coupe in its all-wheel-drive guise, which makes the same sprint in 3.5 seconds. Getting around town can be tedious as you'll need to keep a constant eye on the speedometer to ensure you stay within speed limits, but once on the open highway, the S-Class Coupe is a dream to drive, flying past the seemingly still-standing cars with little to no effort.
As capable as the S-Class Coupe is, it's still based on a car designed to be driven in rather than to drive. In two-door form, it's more driver-focused, but the focus is more on luxury than an involving experience. The interior is opulently luxurious, with an almost endless list of features focused on making the occupants as comfortable as possible. Coupes are slightly more driver-focused than traditional sedans, so it's no surprise that the S560 Coupe doesn't provide the same level of rear-seat comfort or utility. The standard air suspension delivers a ride that can't be beaten, swallowing road imperfections in its stride while still managing handle winding turns without a hint of instability.
The steering is less engaging, though, being a bit too light for a coupe with sporty aspirations. Nevertheless, it's precise and delivers excellent levels of control, even if it doesn't communicate much of what the wheels are doing. But if you really want the S-Class to deliver a thrill or two, it can do so without complaint.
If you really want to enjoy the S-Class Coupe, though, we suggest letting it do the hard work for you via its suite of advanced driver-assistance features while you simply enjoy the ride in the peerless interior.
The powerful engine under the hood of the Merc coupe is one of the thirstier powertrains in the segment, but buyers shopping for such a high-performance luxury vehicle won't be discouraged by this. With only one engine and drivetrain available, the S-Class Coupe gets 17/26/20 mpg across the city/highway/combined cycles. Similarly powered rivals like the all-wheel-drive BMW M850i xDrive get 18/25/20 mpg. Burning premium unleaded gasoline, the Merc can cover up to 422 miles with its 21.1-gallon fuel tank.
While not as spacious as in the S-Class sedan, the interior of the coupe is just as opulent with premium Nappa leather coming standard. The sloping roof cuts a little into the overall headroom, but even taller adults should still be comfortable in the front seats. The rear seats offer a little less headroom, but it should be enough for the average adult. Legroom is a bit less consistent, with the front seats offering excellent legroom while the rear seats are cramped for anyone but the smallest of adults. The active multi-contour front seats offer 12 directions of power-adjustability along with heating, ventilation, and massage functions. This makes finding an optimal driving pretty easy, and comfort is never a concern. Getting in and out can be a little tricky with the low placement of the seats, but all-round visibility is good thanks to the pillarless design of the coupe's canopy.
Coupes generally sacrifice quite a bit of trunk space in the name of stylishness, and the S-Class is no exception to this rule. The trunk lid is power-operated and offers hands-free accessibility. As the rear seats do not fold down, the 10.4 cubic feet of space within the trunk is all the cargo space you're going to get inside the couple. This is tight even for the segment, with the BMW 8 Series Coupe providing a larger 14.8 cubic feet. Still, the trunk can accommodate a handful of grocery bags or several carry-ons, but if you want to squeeze anything substantial in there, good luck getting the lid to close.
Small-item storage is pretty limited, too, with only the center armrest cubby offering any real degree of space. The glove compartment is below average-sized, and the door pockets are almost non-existent. There are a couple of cupholders in the front and rear for your loose items, but that's about all they can hold.
As a luxury vehicle with an imposing price tag, the S-Class Coupe certainly doesn't skimp on standard features. The interior comes upholstered in premium Nappa leather, while dual-zone climate control and a panorama sunroof keep the cabin at optimum temperature for comfort. The sunroof can be upgraded with Magic Sky Control, while designo Exclusive Nappa leather is available. The 12-way active multi-contour heated and ventilated power front seats come standard with massage and memory functions, while Keyless-Go and soft-close doors making getting in and out a quick and painless endeavor. Plenty of advanced driver-assistance features come standard, such as blind-spot assist, rear cross-traffic alert, Pre-safe forward collision avoidance, attention assist, lane keeping assist, and active parking assist, complemented by an attractive 12.3-inch digital information cluster. The coupe also gets Mercedes' patented Car-to-X communication technology and can be upgraded with heated rear seats and a head-up display.
The infotainment suite on the S-Class centers around a large 12.3-inch high-resolution display that offers voice control and touchpad interaction. The standard software includes Bluetooth functionality, navigation, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, HD Radio, and SiriusXM. In-car Wi-Fi can be added as a standalone upgrade. Dual USB audio ports are provided to charge smart devices along with a wireless charging pad. All sound is channeled through the 13-speaker Burmester Surround Sound system, which can be upgraded to a Burmester High-End 3D Surround sound system for an additional $6,400.
As Mercedes-Benz's most high-tech and luxurious coupe, the S-Class boasts a high dependability rating of 80 out of 100 from J.D. Power. The new year has yet to see any recalls issued for the coupe, but several of the S-Class recalls for 2019 did affect the model, including possible leakage from the turbocharger oil feed line, lack of engagement from the brake assist, and inability of the active driving system to detect when the driver's hands were not on the steering wheel. The S560 Coupe is covered by Mercedes' standard warranty, which includes 50,000 miles/48 months of bumper-to-bumper and powertrain coverage, as well as roadside assistance for 48 months. Several years of maintenance can be included at additional cost.
As a low-volume top-tier luxury vehicle, the S-Class doesn't undergo extensive crash-testing. As such, neither the NHTSA nor the IIHS has any recorded safety ratings for the luxury coupe. However, the German manufacturer equips every vehicle with a wide array of safety features to keep both you and your prized luxury coupe in pristine condition. The most basic of these features are ABS, EBD, stability and traction control, as well as ten airbags: front, front knee, front side, rear side, and side curtain. The standard advanced safety features include blind-spot assist, rear cross-traffic alert, Pre-safe forward collision avoidance, active parking assist, and lane keeping assist. This suite can be further enhanced with a variety of active safety features available as part of the Driver Assistance Package.
The luxury coupe market is not for the faint of heart, or the light of wallet. It's a segment that oozes opulence and status, and while some models on the market do so in a gaudy display, Mercedes-Benz is nothing if not refined and elegant at all times. The S-Class Coupe is the perfect example of this ethos, with handsome good looks that belie the sinfully hedonistic interior.
Few can afford a vehicle of this caliber, but those that can certainly won't be disappointed with the S560 Coupe, even if there are more impressive status icons out there. However, Mercedes has an answer to those rivals, too, in the form of the AMG S63 and S65 Coupes. At a slightly more reasonable price, the S-Class coupe still delivers a top-notch interior and ride quality that might leave you wondering if the almost 500 hp under the hood is actually hurtling you down the highway at well over 100 mph.
It's true that there are more agile coupes on the market, like the BMW 8 Series, but as luxurious as they are inside, they can't match the Merc. You're also unlikely to care that the S-Class provides several cubic feet less cargo space, or that the rear seats are pretty cramped. The coupe design is focused on those up front, and the S560 doesn't disappoint in that regard. If you have the cash to spare, the S-Class Coupe is one of the best options on the market.
There is no such thing as a cheap S-Class, and the Coupe ups the price even more. With only one model offered, the S560 Coupe starts the bidding at $130,150, but it doesn't stop there. If you want the best the S-Class has to offer, you can opt for the AMG styling package, which adds $5,900 to the bill. The top-of-the-range driver assistance features are locked behind the $2,250 Driver Assistance Package, while the best audio and tech features will add up to $10k. Keeping your prized coupe in tip-top shape will also require optioning the $2,850 Premier Service offering. At the end of the day, you will likely be looking at a final quote in the area of $150k, before tax, registration, licensing, or Mercedes-Benz' $995 destination fee.
|S560 4MATIC Coupe||
4.0-liter Twin-Turbo V8 Gas
The Coupe variant of the S-Class is only offered in a single non-AMG trim level, the S560 4Matic Coupe. As well-appointed as it is, with its 12.3-inch infotainment suite with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and HD Radio, as well as blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, and forward collision avoidance, the S-Class can be accessorized to reach even higher levels of premium appeal. While it may hike the price quite a bit, we suggest opting for the available Driver Assistance Package, which adds a host of active safety features like lane keeping assist and adaptive cruise control, as well as the Burmester 3D Surround Sound system. The high-tech head-up display is a nice addition, and who wouldn't want Mercedes-Benz's patented Magic Sky Control?
BMW and Mercedes have always pushed one another to up their game to new levels - something we should be grateful for. If not, we would not have these exemplary coupes to compare. Each boasts a capable powertrain, although the V8 on the M850i is a little more capable at 523 hp and 553 lb-ft. This isn't surprising, as BMW has always put more emphasis on performance. Mercedes-Benz leans the other way, with the S-Class offering an interior that can't be matched and a ride quality that makes driving feel like a day at the spa rather than a high-concentration feat of daring. It is a bit disappointing that the S-Class Coupe can't quite match the 8 Series' in cargo capacity, but these are not practical vehicles, so buyers are unlikely to fuss over such foibles. Both cars are excellent in every regard, but the S-Class just feels a touch more refined as a luxury coupe.
At almost $30k cheaper than the S-Class Coupe, the Lexus LC Coupe has a hard time matching its rival in terms of sheer luxury. It also can't boast the same performance figures, with only 471 hp and 398 lb-ft supplied by its naturally aspirated V8 engine. Nevertheless, it manages to match the Merc in a straight sprint, reaching 60 mph in just 4.4 seconds. The interior can't match the opulence of the S-Class, though, even if it comes with many of the same features and gadgets. The Lexus also supplies a laughably small trunk, with only 5.4 cubic feet on offer, utterly undermining any semblance of practicality. And while the LC may provide better handling characteristics, it's the coupe's striking exterior design that is likely to catch a buyer's eye. If all you care about is looking good and enjoying the drive, then the Lexus LC Coupe will almost certainly make your shortlist. But if you want to feel luxurious, too, then it will be hard to place the LC above the Merc S-Class Coupe.