Mercedes-Benz gets new halo with 621-horsepower S65 AMG Coupe

Mercedes announces the all-new S65 AMG Coupe will sit atop luxury line starting in late 2014

Mercedes-Benz is getting a new halo.

The automaker announced Monday that the all-new S65 AMG Coupe will sit atop its esteemed lineup of luxurious vehicles. The twin-turbocharged V-12 coupe replaces the CL model as Mercedes moves to consolidate it under the S-Class umbrella.

"There are AMG fans for whom our V-12 engine is the measure of all things," Tobias Moers, chief executive of Mercedes’ AMG performance division, said in a statement. "For this clientele we have developed a unique car."

The massive engine in the S65 AMG Coupe is largely the same as the CL65 it replaces. The turbocharged 6.0-liter V-12 makes 621 horsepower and 738 pound-feet of torque. Routing power through the rear wheels via a seven-speed automatic transmission, Mercedes estimates the S65 will do zero-60 mph in four seconds, a drop of 0.2 seconds from the outgoing CL65.

This being Mercedes’ best showcase of technology, every corner of the car is stuffed with electronic goodies. The air suspension stiffens at the outside wheels during a turn to minimize body roll. A stereo camera continuously scans the road ahead and can adjust the suspension accordingly.

There’s the expected suite of autonomous driving aids -- automatic cruise control, lane-keeping assist, automatic collision braking. And a standard lithium-ion battery replaces the starter battery and the backup battery, while also saving 44 pounds.

S65 AMG buyers who fancy themselves true racers can even opt for carbon ceramic brakes that reduce fading and drop weight by 20% over conventional brakes.

As with the retiring CL model, the new S-Class Coupe’s styling sets it apart from its sedan counterparts. A more upright profile with a single-piece grille replaces the sedan’s wind-swept chrome affair. At the back, sleek, horizontal taillights wrap around the corners, while quad-exhaust tips are integrated into the lower bumper.

The new coupe’s insides will largely resemble the sedan’s. Twin 12-inch screens greet the driver; one for the instrument panel and one in the dashboard for the infotainment system. A touch pad in the center console controls the latter screen.

Pricing on the new S65 AMG Coupe hasn’t been announced, but it will probably start at around $220,000 when it rolls into dealerships at the end of 2014.

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