Car review: Mercedes-Benz cabriolets

A dream car event

How does this sound? A perfect summer’s day in Cape Town, winding roads along the coast and through the winelands, a race track and an array of Mercedes-Benz’s gorgeous cabriolets…have I made you jealous yet?  You should be!

This is what we got to experience last week as we sampled the likes of the new C-Class Cabriolet and the new S-Class Cabriolet. I wish I could tell this story in pictures only as these cars are quite exquisite. And so they should be!

Mercedes-Benz Cabriolet

It’s no easy task producing a soft top car, it changes the whole structure and so you risk losing the entire essence of the car. But with both the new C-Class and S-Class Cabriolets, Mercedes-Benz has produced what I would call, pure excellence.

Because this is essentially two reviews in one, I shall give you an overview of the cars in as few words as I can. It shall be a struggle…

Let’s start with the S-Class Cabriolet. What stood out for me is the level of comfort, it really is comfortable on another level. It even has special touches such as an Airscarf which heats your neck up when the top is down. An enhanced automatic wind protection system called Aircap ensures there is no need for shouting conversation over the wind or the need for a Grace Kelly type head scarf. Just about everything is heated, including the arm rests. It’s just next level luxury. Mercedes-Benz has taken care of everything to ensure that you can experience a drop top, but at the level of comfort as a hard top. Speaking of the the roof, it opens and closes in 20 seconds at speeds up to 60 km/h, so there is no need to get caught with your pants top down in the rain.

Mercedes-Benz Cabriolet

You can choose between three engines. Firstly, the S500. This houses a mighty 4,7-litre V8 engine under the bonnet producing 335 kW of power and 700 N.m of torque. If that’s not enough power for you then you need your head checked there is the AMG S63 and the AMG S65, both monsters!

The AMG S63 has a 5,5-litre turbocharged V8 engine giving you 430 kW and 900 N.m. The S65 then hits you in the face with a 6,0-litre turbocharged V12 engine producing 463 kW and an unbelievable 1000 N.m of torque. What on earth do you do with all that power? You take it around a track of course. And just in case you needed to get some where really quickly, this beast will get you to 100 km/h in just 4,1 seconds! Impressed yet? You should be! I wish I could play the exhaust notes for you, it can get you rather emotional.

Mercedes-Benz S-Class Cabriolet AMG S 65

What will the Mercedes-Benz S-Class Cabriolet range cost you?

S500 cabriolet:  R2 299 900
AMG S63 cabriolet: R2 899 900
AMG S65 cabriolet: R3 499 900

Now for the C-Class Cabriolet, which may be more in my price range…ya right, I am a journalist, but it could be in yours! As Mercedes-Benz even puts it, these would not be a rational buy, they win you over with your heart and then your mind follows.

Mercedes-Benz class-cabriolet The C-Class cabriolet is the new youngest member in the world of Mercedes-Benz cabriolets. It has a far more youthful appeal than it’s older siblings, but still keeps that sporty look. When the top is up it resembles the C-Class Coupé and has almost identical dimensions. It even offers a reasonable sized boot of 360-litres, with the top down it drops to 285-litres, still not bad for a cabriolet. Based on the S-Class Cabriolet, this soft top roof can be opened and closed in less than 20 seconds at up to a speed of 50 km/h. You can also opt for the Airscarf offered in the S-Class cabrio.

Mercedes-Benz class-cabriolet

There are three petrol engines to choose from and one diesel engine. For the first time we see the 4MATIC all-wheel drive in this model. The petrol engine line up ranges from a 1,6-litre to a 3,0-litre.

C-Class Cabriolet Pricing

C-Class Cabriolet C 220 d : R774 900
C-Class Cabriolet C 200: R699 900
C-Class Cabriolet C 300: R805 900
Mercedes-AMG C 43 4MATIC: R1 039 900

If you’re looking for more power you can opt for the 4.0-litre eight-cylinder bi-turbocharged engine which is already used in the C 63 Sedan, Estate and Coupé.

Mercedes-AMG C 63: R1 439 900 (350 kW, 650 N.m)
Mercedes-AMG C63 S: R1 599 900  (375 kW, 700 N.m)