Mercedes-AMG S 63 Cabriolet
For the first time in its 48-year history, Mercedes‑Benz’s sports car and high-performance brand is offering a four-seater Cabriolet in the S-Class segment
by Jim Davis | 25 July 2016
Mercedes-Benz is presenting a superlative dream car in the guise of the S 63 4MATIC Cabriolet. For the first time in its 48-year history, Mercedes‑Benz’s sports car and high-performance brand is offering a four-seater Cabriolet in the S-Class segment, adding to its product portfolio an attractive alternative for automobile enthusiasts with a penchant for performance and luxury. The new model also offers its driver and up to three passengers space to travel in style. Its high-calibre statistics: 5.5-litre V8 biturbo engine with an output of 430 kW (585 hp) and peak torque of 900 Nm, AMG Performance 4MATIC all-wheel drive with rear-biased torque split as standard, acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h in 3.9 seconds and a high-performance composite brake system for optimum deceleration.
High-performance technology coupled with expressive exterior and interior design: It is immediately apparent that the new S 63 4MATIC Cabriolet is built by car enthusiasts for car enthusiasts. “The new S 63 Cabriolet is another fascinating AMG dream car from Affalterbach”, says Tobias Moers, Chairman of the Board of Management of Mercedes-AMG GmbH. “The new model demonstrates in impressive style that we are keeping our foot firmly on the gas in 2015. We are continuing our model initiative with a vengeance – in all market segments.”
AMG Lightweight Performance
The basis for the vehicle’s superior and dynamic character is provided by the particularly rigid bodyshell structure featuring innovative solutions such as the luggage compartment bulkhead made of magnesium.
The increase in weight which is inherent to the design of a convertible has been limited by the use of a lightweight lithium-ion battery, AMG light-alloy wheels produced by means of a sophisticated forging process and the weight-optimised AMG high-performance composite brake system. In addition, large parts of the shell and the front section are made of aluminium, as is the vehicle’s rear end.
AMG 5.5-litre V8 biturbo engine: superior and efficient
In terms of maximum output, torque and fuel consumption, the AMG 5.5-litre V8 biturbo engine remains one of the most efficient series-produced V8 engines in the world. With an output of 430 kW (585 hp) and 900 Newton metres of torque, the AMG eight-cylinder engine meets the very highest standards. And the same goes for its performance: the S 63 Cabriolet accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in 3.9 seconds and has a top speed of 250 km/h (electronically limited).
NEDC fuel consumption of 10.4 litres per 100 kilometres makes the two-door model the most fuel-efficient model in its competitive segment. This just goes to show that performance, efficiency and environmental compatibility need not be mutually exclusive aims.
The data at a glance:
Mercedes-AMG S 63 4MATIC Cabriolet*
Displacement- 5461 cc
Output- 30 kW (585 hp) at 5500 rpm
Peak torque- 900 Nm at 2250-3750 rpm
Fuel consumption- NEDC combined 10.4 l/100 km
CO2 emissions- 244 g/km
Efficiency class- F
Kerb weight (according to DIN/EC)- 2110 kg**, 2185 kg***
Power-to-weight ratio- 3.61 kg/hp
Acceleration- 0-100 km/h in 3.9 s
Top speed- 250 km/h****
* Only available with left-hand drive; ** Ready-to-drive condition (fuel tank 90% full, without driver and luggage); *** Ready-to-drive condition (fuel tank 90% full, with driver (68 kg) and luggage (7 kg); **** Electronically limited.
Exhaust system with automatic exhaust flaps
The S 63 Cabriolet also adapts to the driver’s individual wishes in terms of its engine sound – from emotional and sporty to a more restrained alternative suitable for long journeys. The exhaust system has automatic logic-controlled exhaust flaps in both rear silencers. When the transmission is in “C” (Controlled Efficiency) mode, the flaps remain closed in most situations, in which case the eight-cylinder biturbo engine’s sound is more understated. In “S” (Sport) and “M” (Manual) modes, the exhaust flaps open earlier and more spontaneously, especially if the driver prefers a dynamic driving style. This results in an emotional, signature AMG engine sound.
“One man, one engine”: a tradition of hand-built excellence
The biturbo eight-cylinder engine of the S 63 Cabriolet is fitted by hand in the hand-finishing section of AMG’s production plant in Affalterbach. Highly qualified engine fitters assemble the engines according to the strictest quality standards based on the “one man, one engine” philosophy. Apart from serving as an AMG hallmark confirming superlative precision and production quality, the AMG engine plate bearing the engine technician’s signature also alludes to the peerless DNA of Mercedes-Benz’s sports car and high-performance brand.
Individuality: AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sports transmission
The AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sports transmission combines perfectly with the V8 biturbo engine. Maximum agility and exciting dynamics are the two key strengths of this transmission, which is used exclusively at AMG. Drivers can configure their own personal set-up, depending on their driving style. There are three modes to choose from: “C” (Controlled Efficiency), “S” (Sport) and “M” (Manual). The ECO start/stop function features as standard and is activated in transmission mode “C”.
Performance-oriented AMG 4MATIC all-wheel drive
There are two variants of the S 63 Cabriolet available: with rear-wheel drive (as RHD version only) or with the performance-oriented AMG 4MATIC all-wheel drive (as LHD version). The combination of S-Class Cabriolet and 4MATIC is exclusive to the AMG variant. The drive distributes 33 percent of the engine torque to the front axle and 67 percent to the rear axle. This rear-biased power distribution provides for the signature AMG high driving dynamics and superlative driving enjoyment, and improves acceleration in all driving situations, including from a standing start. The all-wheel drive also enhances driving safety on wet or wintry road surfaces.
AIRMATIC air suspension
The AMG specialists have also pulled out all the stops when it comes to the suspension: The S 63 Cabriolet comes with the AIRMATIC full-support air suspension featuring the adaptive damping system ADS PLUS, which can be preset to “Sport” or “Comfort”. At the touch of a button, the special configurations of these two programmes enable outstanding agility and dynamics or unlimited comfort on long journeys and smooth cruising at low speeds.
Specific front axle kinematics – including a higher camber, a larger anti-roll bar and a stiffer subframe carrier on the rear axle – have also been developed for the Cabriolet. The AMG-specific elastokinematics and parameterisation of the continuously variable damper control, the lower air volume of the air suspension system and the progressive piston geometry nip unpleasant rolling and pitching in the bud.
It is also possible to raise the vehicle’s level by 30 millimetres on poor surfaces. The chassis is lowered again automatically in “Sport” mode and from a speed of 120 km/h in “Controlled Efficiency” mode.
Systematic lightweight construction: AMG forged wheels as standard
The S 63 Cabriolet is equipped with forged AMG light-alloy wheels as standard. This forged design provides for extremely strong and particularly light wheels. The resultant lower unsprung masses give rise to advantages in terms of handling and spring/damper element response. In the standard specification, the S 63 Cabriolet is fitted with multi-spoke forged wheels painted in titanium grey with a high-sheen finish – 8.5 x 19 at the front and 9.5 x 19 at the rear, with 255/45 R 19 and 285/40 R 19 tyres respectively. Forged wheels are available as optional extras from the AMG Performance Studio, in size 8.5 x 20 at the front and 9.5 x 20 at the rear, fitted with tyres in size 255/40 R 20 and 285/35 R 20 respectively.
Optional AMG high-performance ceramic composite brake system
Short stopping distances and rapid deceleration are a given for the S 63 Cabriolet, which is equipped with a weight-optimised, fade-resistant high-performance composite brake system. A ceramic high-performance composite brake system is available as an option. The design, which is more than 20 percent lighter, ensures lower unsprung masses as well as enhanced driving dynamics, agility and ride comfort.
Design as an expression of sportiness and performance
The S 63 Cabriolet also boasts exciting looks to emphasise its sporty performance: The design is a stage for the exciting technology at the heart of the new dream car. Numerous exquisitely designed aerodynamic elements underscore the outstanding driving dynamics: the front end is dominated by the three-dimensional “twin-blade” radiator grille in silver chrome. Under the radiator grille is the “A-wing”: this three-dimensional aerodynamic feature is painted in the body colour and sports the stylised “A” that is a hallmark of AMG vehicles. Large, black flics surround the outer cooling air intakes. Down below, the front splitter in silver chrome optimises the flow of air to the cooling modules. It also makes the vehicle appear closer to the road.
A similar effect is created by the side sill panels with their high-quality, three-dimensional inserts in silver chrome. Together with the lower feature line, these inserts make the S 63 Cabriolet exude dynamism even when it is at a standstill.
At the rear, the diffuser insert in high-gloss black also catches the eye straight away. The lower trim element in silver chrome is reminiscent of the A-wing at the front and provides an effective contrast. The two chromed twin tailpipes of the exhaust system with sports flaps are perfectly integrated into the diffuser insert.
Interior: beguiling luxury and sporty exclusivity
Opening the door reveals the beguilingly luxurious interior of the S 63 Cabriolet: the instrument panel almost seamlessly transitions into the doors in a wrap-around design. High-quality materials and fine workmanship are combined with a sporty, exclusive design idiom. The newly developed AMG sports seats with electrical adjustment, Memory function and seat heating offer the driver and front passenger optimum lateral support.
The three-spoke sports steering wheel with its distinctively contoured rim and perforated leather in the grip area allows perfect vehicle control. Aluminium shift paddles shorten the reaction time when changing gear and enhance dynamism. Another feature displaying the hallmark AMG look is the high-resolution TFT colour display as an instrument cluster with two animated round dials. In addition to the AMG-specific lettering and the needles in red/silver, further distinctive design features include the start-up display, the AMG logo in the speedometer with 330 km/h scale and the “V8 BITURBO” lettering in the rev counter.
World premiere in 2015 and market launch in 2016
The S 63 Cabriolet will have its world premiere at the Frankfurt International Motor Show. It will go on sale in December, and the market launch will begin in the spring of 2016.