2018 Mercedes-Benz AMG S63 Coupe new car reviews

If you were truly a bad guy on Miami Vice, you drove an S-class Benz. And not just any S-class, but a coupe fitted with AMG goodies. Clean, simple, muscular. Pony tail optional.

The modern equivalent? The AMG S-Class Coupe.

Choose your driveline: a turbocharged 603-horsepower, 4.0-liter V8 (standard on the S63) or, for the true baller, a turbocharged 621-horsepower V12 (standard on the S65). We should mention torque, too: 664 lb.-ft. for the V8 and 738 lb.-ft. for the V12. Mercedes-Benz says that the V8 is good for a 3.4-second blast to 60 mph; the V12-powered car needs 4.0 seconds.

Our test car only had the V8, but it was still far from stripped. Options present included matte-finish Alanite Grey paint ($3950), red and black leather interior ($3250), carbon fiber interior and exterior trim ($3700), 20-inch forged wheels in black ($2200), red brake calipers ($700), Swarovski crystal headlamp accents ($1750), black headliner ($0), Night View Assist PLUS ($2260), Burmester 3D sound system ($6400), Warmth and Comfort package ($1900) and a Driver Assistance Package ($2250). Add in destination, and that brings the total from the $167,700 base price to $206,145.

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David S. Wallens David S. Wallens
Editorial Director

A wise man once told me that a good car does at least one thing well. It’s why we love the Miata: It’s an excellent, lightweight roadster. It handles great and is fun to drive.

Likewise, an F150 is great at carrying stuff. Minivans? Yep, they do their job well, too.

The AMG S 63 Coupe pretty much does nearly everything well. Yes, there’s a price to be paid for excellence across the board, but that’s also what makes this such an aspirational vehicle.

We’ll start with the obvious: The AMG Coupe pampers its occupants every way possible. Comfy? How about a massage? Yes, that’s on the menu. The seats never got uncomfortable. Getting in and out is easy. The doors are weighted just the right amount, while the cabin is nearly silent at speed. Despite the blistering performance, the car is composed and quiet around town. Someone spent a lot of time just engineering the glovebox door.

Controls: The steering wheel has just the right amount of meat. The transmission is controlled by the familiar Mercedes-Benz stalk to the right. The switches click with a vote of confidence. The interior isn’t awash with buttons, though. Clever little controls on the steering wheel allow the driver to quickly toggle through menus. It’s slick and clean.

Capacity: It’s a coupe but not a tiny one. There’s plenty of headroom, while the front seat occupants aren’t jammed against each other. Ed measures 5-foot-11, and we put him in the back seat. His findings: “Lots of leg room and very comfortable.”

Safety: Call me crazy, but I’m not a fan of cars that you can’t see out of. Those thick pillars might look cool, but sometimes they can hide a Buick. The Benz offers good outward vision in all directions. The lack of a B-pillar is much appreciated, too.

The Night View Assist PLUS is slick: When it’s dark and the car detects pedestrians, the dash display turns into a night vision scope. It works, instantly and unobtrusively identifying any potential hazards.

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Comments

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nderwater
nderwater UltimaDork
4/4/18 2:21 p.m.

That's a whole lot of car.  But $168K-$206K is a whoooole lot of money.

mazdeuce - Seth
mazdeuce - Seth Mod Squad
4/4/18 2:31 p.m.

Pretty sure I'd be ok with just the V8, but holy schmoly, $200k. I always wonder just how in shape I'd have to have my finances to think that was a good idea. 

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
4/4/18 2:46 p.m.

So the V12 is obviously massively heavier, barely makes anymore power, and is slower. LOL

STM317
STM317 SuperDork
4/4/18 2:51 p.m.

In reply to z31maniac :

On the SL AMGs, the v12 is a $70k option. Not sure if that's true with the S Class cars too, but that's a bunch of change for what you get in return.

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
4/4/18 3:40 p.m.
STM317 said:

In reply to z31maniac :

On the SL AMGs, the v12 is a $70k option. Not sure if that's true with the S Class cars too, but that's a bunch of change for what you get in return.

V12 sound and less performance. Net 0, no return. :)

Duke
Duke MegaDork
4/4/18 3:54 p.m.
STM317 said:

In reply to z31maniac :

On the SL AMGs, the v12 is a $70k option. Not sure if that's true with the S Class cars too, but that's a bunch of change for what you get in return.

What I, personally, would get in return is a 2-year-old Cayman S and a bunch of track tires in addition to a quicker, lighter Mercedes that's cheaper and easier to maintain.

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
4/4/18 3:58 p.m.

Not sure if you toggled through all of the photos but, yes, I did drive it to Waffle House. Always good times at Waffle House. 

Schmidlap
Schmidlap HalfDork
4/5/18 5:52 p.m.
z31maniac said:

So the V12 is obviously massively heavier, barely makes anymore power, and is slower. LOL

A big reason for the V8 being so much quicker to 60 is that the V8s are only available in the US with all wheel drive,  while the V12s are only available with rear wheel drive.  With 600+ hp and 700+ lb-ft of torque, I wonder what speed you can actually start putting all that power down through two 275/35R20 tires without the traction control kicking in.  

mtn
mtn MegaDork
4/18/18 2:15 p.m.

That is the fanciest looking Waffle House I've ever seen. 

 

Opinion on the Merc is irrelevant. 

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
4/18/18 2:38 p.m.
mtn said:

That is the fanciest looking Waffle House I've ever seen. 

 

Opinion on the Merc is irrelevant. 

I think it's a new one (the Waffle House). Service was friendly. 

A 401 CJ
A 401 CJ Dork
4/20/18 4:02 a.m.
Duke said:
STM317 said:

In reply to z31maniac :

On the SL AMGs, the v12 is a $70k option. Not sure if that's true with the S Class cars too, but that's a bunch of change for what you get in return.

What I, personally, would get in return is a 2-year-old Cayman S and a bunch of track tires in addition to a quicker, lighter Mercedes that's cheaper and easier to maintain.

What I, personally, would get is a 2003 ish Toureg V10 TDI with some tuning and $hit.  I think I too could get under 4.0 seconds to 60 all while rolling coal.

Cotton
Cotton PowerDork
4/20/18 10:01 a.m.
Schmidlap said:
z31maniac said:

So the V12 is obviously massively heavier, barely makes anymore power, and is slower. LOL

A big reason for the V8 being so much quicker to 60 is that the V8s are only available in the US with all wheel drive,  while the V12s are only available with rear wheel drive.  With 600+ hp and 700+ lb-ft of torque, I wonder what speed you can actually start putting all that power down through two 275/35R20 tires without the traction control kicking in.  

That’s correct.  Even my lowly 500hp/600tq 2003 cl600 is impossible to hook up on street tires.

 

A lot of people like to pick on the v12s,  but you really need to drive one.  So smooth and all that torque.  A spec sheet just doesn’t tell the full story.

edwardh80
edwardh80 Reader
4/20/18 11:02 a.m.

Seems to me that, with the new 4.0 turbo, the thing should be called an S40 AMG or S40T AMG...

Sonic
Sonic UltraDork
4/20/18 11:51 a.m.

The 63 thing has historical significance to Mercedes, the original big hot rod euro car the 300sel 6.3.  My CLS63 has a 6.2 V8, but it has 6.3 badges, supposedly for the historical reason.  When they went to the turbo motors they kept the number as the equivalent displacement that an NA motor would be for the power it makes.  Also see BMW, the 335i is a 3.0 turbo, etc. 

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
4/20/18 11:51 a.m.
edwardh80 said:

Seems to me that, with the new 4.0 turbo, the thing should be called an S40 AMG or S40T AMG...

It's the new math. 

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
4/20/18 12:01 p.m.
Schmidlap said:
z31maniac said:

So the V12 is obviously massively heavier, barely makes anymore power, and is slower. LOL

A big reason for the V8 being so much quicker to 60 is that the V8s are only available in the US with all wheel drive,  while the V12s are only available with rear wheel drive.  With 600+ hp and 700+ lb-ft of torque, I wonder what speed you can actually start putting all that power down through two 275/35R20 tires without the traction control kicking in.  

A contest from say 40 to 180 mph would be interesting. The turbo V8 felt amazing. I'd love to sample the V12. Plus, yeah, the noise. 

Jay_W
Jay_W Dork
4/20/18 11:04 p.m.

In reply to Cotton :

True dat. They way that engine does the 50-130 passing maneuver in a 5000 lb brick has to be experienced to be believed.

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