2017 Mercedes-Benz S-Class Cabriolet first drive review Page 3

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Both models have surprisingly quick, accurate steering; and while the steering wheel feels smaller than perhaps it should for such a large car, it’s altogether a combination that makes the S-Class Cabriolet easy to place—important on those narrow French lanes where we were one of the widest cars on the road.

The S65 V-12 is expected to make up a rather small portion of the lineup—it costs nearly a quarter of a million dollars, to start—and although it’s the most powerful model in the lineup we’re expecting it to again be a little less boisterous in overall feel than the S63.

Keeping the noise and turbulence out

Getting in and out is easy, although the doors are of course quite long. Seats are absolutely dreamy; they feel like the same ones offered in the S sedan and have an available Energizing Massage function—which, in the S63 with its more aggressively bolstered sport seats was almost too tight at the side bolsters.

The multi-layer top itself can be opened or closed in less than 20 seconds, at speeds of up to 37 mph. It definitely seals out a lot of outside noise, and it stows in a tight space that allows enough of a trunk for several carry-on suitcases.

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Raising the front and rear side windows makes a huge difference for wind turbulence in the cabin at normal boulevard speeds and relaxed highway ones, but at higher highway speeds that aerodynamic baton seems to be passed back to the strong, sizable wind deflector just behind the back seat.

Visibility is definitely a bit limited with the top in place, although the light tones used in much of the lineup for the instrument panel help lift the feel of the interior. So do the multiple top colors, which include even a burgundy red hue.

Although the instrument panel forgoes real analog gauges in favor of a screen of simulated ones, the approach has some disadvantages here as it can get quite bleached-out in midday sun.

The space this convertible requires to park can be another serious drawback. At about 198 inches long (or 199 for the AMG versions and their additional airdam fanfare), the S-Class Cabrio is an exceptionally long car for a two-door—and a car that will still live as a two-seater the vast majority of the time.


 
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