2015 Mercedes-Benz S550 Coupe Review
Web2Carz Contributing Writer
Published: July 29th, 2015
A full-size two-door luxury coupe is not a car. It's an objet d'art, meant for showing off as much as it's meant for driving. When you have this much disposable income, a car like the 2015 Mercedes-Benz S550 Coupe won't be your primary car; it will be your excuse to get out and look damn good while doing it.
The S-Class Coupe is a brand new creation for 2015, rising out of the ashes of the dearly departed CL-Class. Its rear end features a design language that's since been adopted for coupe variants of its new CUVs (GLC- and GLE-Class), and it'll likely transfer over to the upcoming all-new C-Class Coupe, as well.
If you've got a functioning pair of eyes, you can tell why this is a good thing. Just look at it. Stop what you're doing, browse the pictures, and grab a paper towel to clean up all the drool. This may very well be the most beautiful car that Mercedes-Benz makes right now; hell, it may be the prettiest thing they've conceived in years.
There isn't a harsh angle anywhere inside this car. Instead, it's nothing but a serious of smooth curves, from the top of the dashboard down to the center armrest. There is no harshness here. Our tester came with the optional designo full-leather interior, which covered nearly every surface in smooth, soft leather. The wood accents are surprisingly few and far between, but they create a very nice band around the dashboard and feel nothing less than the epitome of quality.
We would advise against a white-leather interior, unless you're a remarkably clean human being; otherwise, even the slightest hint of dirt or grime will lead to prints marking up every surface. No matter what color you choose, though, you won't be disappointed with how it looks.
You need to see this car in person to truly get a feel for its presence. It's far larger than it looks in pictures, despite losing nearly nine inches of wheelbase over the sedan. Nothing about this car is svelte; it's a hulking mass of beauty, with large pillarless side windows and a sloped rear end that finishes off with a hint of a ducktail on the trunklid. Had we studied art history in school, we'd have a better grasp of the language required to describe this car. Simply put, it's a stunner.
On the Road
A standard S-Class sedan will start up with a slight hint of engine noise, followed by a transition into near-silence. Start up the S550 Coupe, however, and its 4.7-liter biturbo V-8 barks to life, sounding closer to an AMG model than S63 owners would likely prefer. The noise doesn't go away, either; at all times, the S-Class Coupe retains a more aggressive on-road presence than the sedan, and rightfully so; remember, this isn't a car to be driven around in. This is a car to drive, and that gets crystal clear the second you nudge the dinky little column shifter into D.
Everything feels different in the coupe. The car feels faster, more nimble, damn near angry. You can keep the car in its standard driving mode, and the transmission will keep the revs nice and low for the sake of fuel economy. Or, if you prefer something a bit more engaging, Sport will keep the needle right in the torquey sweet-spot, waiting for the next pedal push to send you careening toward the horizon on a wave of torque that never seems to drop off. You don't need to experience the top of the rev counter; just mash the gas and the engine will pin you to your seat at any speed. So much for subtlety.
We preferred to keep the adjustable air suspension in Comfort; Sport does firm up the ride a bit, but in Comfort, asphalt imperfections damn near disappear. Was that a pothole? Who knows; who cares. Few cars are capable of balancing comfort and fun as the S-Class Coupe. If you're the kind of person who switches between sedate and spirited driving styles on a whim, this car will keep you entertained until the heat death of the universe.
Surprisingly, we did not accept money from Mercedes-Benz for this review. This car is just that good. It excels at everything we threw at it, from slow boulevard cruising to hustling around in a very un-gentlemanlike manner. It looks good, it sounds good (both from the exhaust and from the standard Burmester audio), and it makes you feel good.
We have but two actual, honest complaints about this car (three, if you count us being unable to afford one). First, the rear seats don't accommodate bipedal organisms when both driver and passenger are taller than six foot. Second, the massive brake discs are so close to their dust shields that small rocks (from alleyways or gravel lots) will get stuck in there, creating a sound that's not very far away from a brick inside a washing machine.
But if you follow only the most well-manicured ribbons of asphalt, and you've purchased a car for the children to get around in themselves, then these are of no concern to you. Just sit back, drop all four windows, and bask in this car's splendor.
Specs & Price
Engine: 4.7-liter twin-turbocharged V-8
Transmission: Seven-speed automatic
Drivetrain Layout: Front-engine, all-wheel drive
Power Output: 449 horsepower / 516 lb-ft
Fuel Economy (mpg): 16 city / 24 highway
Base Price: $119,900
As Tested: $135,375 (incl. $925 destination)
Sport Package: Sport body styling, 19- or 20-inch alloy wheels, brushed aluminum pedals
Premium Package: Active multicontour front seats with massage, quick-heating front seats, surround-view camera, head-up display
Warmth and Comfort Package: Heated rear seats, heated front armrests and door panels, heated steering wheel, wood/leather steering wheel
Driver Assistance Package: Adaptive cruise control with steering assist and full start/stop capability, automated braking assist, active blind spot assist, active lane-keep assist
Individual Options: Wood/leather multifunction steering wheel, refrigerated box for rear cabin, electrically heated windshield, photoelectric sunroof, Burmester 3D surround sound audio, split-view front-seat entertainment system, night vision
• For more information such as specs, prices, and photos of the 2015 Mercedes-Benz S-Class, click here: 2015 Mercedes-Benz S-Class.