We’ve already seen the new S-Class Sedan and S-Class Coupe, and today we get our opportunity to salivate over the final addition the family: the S-Class Cabriolet. Its look are pretty much what I expected – an S-Class Coupe with the roof hacked off – but there are still some important details to go over about this big drop-top.
First on the list of important bits to talk about in a convertible is its safety. Helping in this department is the deploying rollover protection that is hidden behind the rear seats. These complement the existing hydraulically activated roll bars for enhanced safety in case this rig goes shiny side down. Other safety bits include PRE-SAFE Brake with pedestrian detection, DISTRONIC PLUS with steering assist, BAS PLUS with cross-traffic assist, Adaptive Highbeam Assist Plus, Night View Assist Plus, and more.
One downside to owning a convertible, especially those who live in the northeast like me, is the fact that the top pretty much goes up and stays up from early October through early May. To help extend these dates a bit, Mercedes has fit the 2017 S-Class Cabriolet with the AIRCAP wind-protection system, AIRSCARF neck-level heating system, heated armrests, heated front and rear seats, and a THERMOTRONIC automatic climate control system that senses when the top is up or down and compensates for the ambient temperature.
Mercedes also fixed a common flaw in its drop tops, which is that you needed to exit the vehicle and manually operate the luggage compartment divider prior to lowering the top. In the new S-Class, this is no longer the case, as the divider now automatically moves into place. The only time you need to exit the car is if there is something blocking the divider and you need to move this item, as the divider will not operate with anything in the way.
When it comes to dropping the top, Mercedes has gotten this process down to a science. The new S-Class’ soft top takes just 20 seconds to open or close and you can operate it at speeds of up to 37 mph.
In the U.S., the S-Class Cabriolet will come in two flavors. Its base model will be the S550, which will make use of a 4.6-liter V-8 that pushes 449 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque through a nine-speed auto transmission. For buyers in need of more power, AMG gets in on the fun to create the Mercedes-AMG S63 4MATIC Cabriolet, which not only has 577 horsepower and 664 pound-feet at its disposal, but it also has all-wheel drive and a seven-speed SPEEDSHIFT transmission that combine to get the big drop top to 60 mph in just 3.9 seconds.
The AMG-tuned model also gets some added weight savings by way of a lithium-ion battery, AMG light-alloy wheels, and AMG’s high-performance ceramic composite brakes.
The S-Class Cabriolet will make its in-the-metal debut in Frankfurt next month and it will hit showrooms in the spring of 2016.