Who is the kind of person who buys this dream machine?
When I got handed the keys to the Mercedes-Benz S65 AMG Coupe my initial excitement soon turned to trepidation as it dawned on me that this car costs more than a very comfortable house. I’ve driven expensive cars before yet something about this one was different.
This car costs, take a breath, R3 070 700! It is already the most expensive Mercedes-Benz on South African roads yet with the addition of a few extras this test car came it at around a cool R3.5 million.
This got me thinking about the owner profile for a car like the S65 AMG Coupe. What are they like, who are they, what makes them tick and so on. I would hazard a guess and say that most cars are bought for practical reasons, close behind that the image they portray. I imagine a psychologist would have a field day delving in to the reasons behind buying a S65 AMG Coupe.
Some research suggests buying a car is about forming an emotional connection with a brand and how it makes them feel behind the wheel. It can also be about showing-off how successful one has become. The S65 AMG, however, is just on another level. This car stands out from the crowd, which, in turn, means you stand out from the crowd. You have to be a rather confident individual to drive this car…or are you insecure and need a approval from others? I couldn’t make up my mind. But one thing for sure is, you need to be ok with people staring at you (or the car) wherever you go.
I continuously had people taking photos of the car once stopped at a traffic light. People came up to me in parking lots to ask about it and some even went so far as to follow me to my destination just to chat about the car and to take a pic. It was unnerving to say the least. But there must be a buyer out there looking for this kind of attention, otherwise, why would you buy it? A love of performance can not be the sole reason. Or could it?
It houses a 6,0-litre Biturbo V12 engine that produces 463 kW and 1000 N.m of torque, making it not only the most powerful Mercedes ever but also currently the tenth most powerful car in the world. This alone would excite anyone. Just the sound of the engine will make you cry happy tears! Once again though, it is this sound that ensures you won’t be arriving discreetly.
It drives like a dream too. Despite its large dimensions the power on hand is unlike anything I have experienced before. It’s almost dangerously satisfying. It makes you want to do things you wouldn’t usually do. It makes breaking the law ever so tempting. A trait that, for me, can be frustrating. The confines of the city is not where you want to drive this car. As an everyday commute then, you arrive feeling somewhat…unsatisfied. Take it on to the open road and that foreplay would have been worth it! But again, you still need a smidgen of restraint otherwise you could find yourself being someone else’s plaything in jail while the S65 AMG sits alone in a lot.
The comfort levels are right up there with what I imagine Air Force One boasts. It’s so luxurious, you can almost smell the money! And it is jam-packed full of technology! You get the obvious electrically adjusted seats with memory function and heating as well as climate control. More contoured seat cushions and backrests improve lateral support when cornering at speed. There is a head-up display which projects information such as vehicle speed, speed limits, navigation directions, traffic signs and information from the Distronic Plus onto the windscreen. The visualisation of the engine speed and the current gear is exclusive to AMG. The Mercedes-Benz touchpad makes it significantly easier to operate the radio, telephone and navigation system. In contrast to conventional systems, the touchpad can be used to operate all of the infotainment functions.
Safety is another reason people purchase cars and, of course, the S65 AMG is right at the top of the safety chain with standard features such as a 360-degree camera, Active Parking Assist with parktronic, Distronic Plus with Steering Assist, Pre-Safe Brake, Cross-Traffic Assist, Active Blind Spot Assist, Active Lane Keeping Assist and keyless go.
The Mercedes-Benz S65 AMG comes with a two-year/unlimited km warranty and six-year/100 000 km maintenance plan.
I am still not certain I know the type of person who would buy this car. For some reason, I have a horrible image in my head of someone who is lacking in so many areas that they need to compensate for something. On the other hand this could also just be my jealousy talking as this is certainly one of the finest new cars currently on our roads! And not because of its price tag, but because of all the elements Mercedes-Benz has nailed that make this an absolute dream machine!