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The replacement for the CL grand tourer has some big boots to fill, but does it even come close?

Meet the Mercedes-AMG S 63 Coupé, the mid-range version of the S-Class coupé and convertible, and Mercedes’ replacement for the CL, which was the last two-door model to use the firm’s flagship saloon as its basis.

The adoption of the family name seems a little curious when you consider that the rest of the motor industry seems to be renaming closely related cars with unbridled enthusiasm.

The S coupé features Mercedes' Magic Ride Control suspension system, which scans the road ahead and tailors the suspension's responses to suit

In this case, though, the likely reasoning isn’t hard to fathom: despite a 20-year, three-generation run, the CL’s special status still felt like something that needed to be explained to the layman; the S-Class, a certified ‘Sonderklasse’ for six decades, does not.

With the S-Class Coupé and Cabriolet powered by three engines. The entry-level is a 4.7-litre V8 driven through a nine speed automatic gearbox and labelled a Mercedes-Benz S 500, the only version not to take the AMG name. The S 63 is the 5.5-litre V8-powered AMG which produces a teutonic 577bhp, while the S 65 houses a 6.0-litre V12 hiding under its elongated bonnet punching out 621bhp.

Just like its predecessor, the S 63 and S 65 are intended to charge headfirst at the customer base currently keeping Bentley’s bottom line black with Continental GT orders.

They have certainly been given the looks and powerplants for such a task; the question is, does the overall experience live up to them?

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