What is it?
Old name. New tricks. That is Mercedes-Benz’s brilliant new S 500 Coupé, which resurrects one of the German car maker’s most revered model nomenclatures and pioneers an advanced new tilting chassis that allows it to corner in similar fashion to a hard-charging motorcycle.
Set for UK sale from September at a price expected to rise to close to £95,000, the S 500 Coupé enters the Mercedes-Benz line-up as a replacement for the CL 500, which finally bows out after a lengthy eight years of production.
What's it like?
Stunningly styled with the sort of attention to design detail you expect on a car that forms the pinnacle of Mercedes-Benz’s line-up, the big two-door boasts a much more distinctive look than its predecessor. It now appears much less like a two-door version of the S-class saloon and more of an individual model in its own right.
These observations continue through to the new S 500 Coupé’s interior, which while sharing certainly elements with its highly-rated four-door sibling has been given its own uniquely styled dashboard facia and associated trims.
It is a superb driving environment, boasting tremendous levels of comfort, first rate quality and some useful options, including a new head-up display unit. Not that you’d expect anything less from at car at this end of the market. The rear seats gain added accommodation, too, but the boot drops 90 litres in capacity owing to the sloping rear end.
It is hard to fault the S 500 Coupé’s twin-turbocharged 4.7-litre V8 engine, which runs a slightly higher state of tune than that unit used in the old CL 500, endowing it with an added 19bhp at 448bhp.
It might lack the sheer low-end explosiveness of the S 63 AMG Coupé’s larger 5.5-litre V8 powerplant, but with a solid 516lb ft of torque on tap at just 1800rpm it delivers crisp responses, proves creamy smooth throughout the rev range and pulls hard to the redline.
The seven-speed automatic gearbox, which uses Mercedes-Benz’s column mounted shift lever and steering wheel mounted shift paddles to free up space on the centre console for a sizeable oddment bin, shifts decisively and smoothly through the ratios, providing the big coupé with both serene low-speed qualities and serious pace on a loaded throttle.