While everyone has been gushing over the styling of Mercedes’ new sedans, I’ve been yawning. Not because I’m a fan of BMW (because I like Mercedes, too) but because they just bore me. There’s nothing that intriguing or exciting about Merc sedans and their rear ends seem to be melting. They just have a saggy-ass look to them that I don’t personally like. Mercedes coupes, on the other hand? Very sexy, indeed. Especially the S-Class Coupe, which is one of the prettier and classier grand tourers on the market. It was always going to be a tough car for the upcoming BMW 8 Series to contend with. But now it’s gotten even better.
For 2018 model year cars, Mercedes-Benz has given the entire S-Class Coupe range a facelift. This makes it even more of a worthy adversary to the 8 Series when it finally debuts. More importantly, the Mercedes-AMG S63 and S65 have also gotten that same facelift. Along with that facelift comes some new powertrains and new tech. So the BMW M8 will have its hands full.
At the front, the newly-facelifted S63 AMG gets the brand’s new corporate grille, which looks slimmer and sportier. The “Panamericana” grille, which references the brand’s 1952 road racer, looks at home on the S63, even more so than the the AMG GT R on which it debuted. Out back, new OLED taillights make the rear end looks sharper and less droopy. Inside, it gets the same new features as the facelifted S-Class sedan, with the new steering wheel and gauge cluster. Though, the “all-white errthang” upholstery in these pics looks a bit too Vanilla Ice for my tastes. Still, in any other color scheme, it looks quite superb.
We don’t fully know what the BMW M8 will look like yet, as we’ve only seen spy photos of it. Its overall shape and silhouette look very good but that’s about all we know. So it’s going to have to be seriously pretty to be better looking than this new S63.
Under the hood of the AMG now lies the brand’s 4.0 liter twin-turbo V8. Gone is the old 5.5 liter unit but downsizing hasn’t left it wanting for power. The new 4.0 liter V8 makes the same 603 hp as the Mercedes-AMG E63 S. So it should be properly quick. Also, the S63 ditches that ancient seven-speed gearbox that Mercedes had been using for too long and was quite bad. In its place is a newer nine-speed automatic that seems to work quite well in all other Mercedes applications.
Overall, this is good news for BMW. Sure, it adds some heavy competition for the Bavarians but the more good cars on the market, the better. Competition breeds excellence and this newly facelifted S63 should only make BMW work harder on the upcoming M8. So the real winners here are us enthusiasts.