On Sunday night, in a tasty town called Bolognese, Lamborghini threw a...
Driven: The brutally luxurious S65 AMG Limo-Spec
There’s a famous VW ad from the 60s which asked, “Ever wondered how the guy who drives the snow plough, gets to the snowplough?”. Well if you’ve ever wondered how the guy who owns the snowplough company gets to the snowplough company, Mercedes-Benz has the answer: The S 65 AMG L-spec.
It proves the Germans have a sense of humour after all. They’ve handed their svelte, distinguished flagship S-Class over to their dark arts division, AMG, and the result is the most powerful series saloon ever built.
It produces more torque than a gaggle of secretaries trapped in a lift. 1000 Newton metres of it to be precise. And here’s the kicker. It’s electronically limited to 1000Nm. Newton certainly never expected his name to be associated with this sort of vulgarity.
Let’s start with the looks though. We had more than week of the most perfect sunshine until this sidled into my driveway. Suddenly there were menacing grey clouds above as if it had scheduled doomsday to arrive just after lunch. The big S in ‘iridium silver’ just looks better under brutish brooding skies, and it seems to know that. I’m sure this amount of power can control the weather. And that sort of power is simply intoxicating. An engine this good and this relentless doesn’t seem possible. It’s almost alien as it staggers your senses with a whispered whoosh. It’s like that ghost army that sweeps through the forces of darkness at the end of Lord Of The Rings.
This car has to straddle the two worlds between luxury saloon and madman- with-a-gun-in-a-belltower performance. So it has a few visual clues to separate it from its more sedate brethren. Look at the front. Have you ever seen a powerful businessman fly into a frothing rage? Not in a hammy Alan Sugar way, but in a real life (shouting down phone) “I’m going to turn France into a f****n parking lot” kind of way. That’s what the front of this looks like. It’s angry. Very angry.
This is the S 65 L-spec, which could stand for Luxury, Limousine, Limited or Large as Luxembourg. The car is massive, and as a result my 6ft 4 frame fits comfortably in the back where I can keep an eye on the Nasdaq and fire people at the same time via the complimentary cordless phone and two televisions. There’s also a bar fridge and remote controls for things like the blinds to keep the sun off your expensive indoor tan.
Hauling this two tonnne-plus leviathan along is a handbuilt V12 Biturbo producing 450kW. AMG have a one man one engine policy which sounds very Trotskyish, but is in fact rather liberating considering it gets you to 100km/h in 4.8 seconds.
Inside simplicity is the order of the day spoiled slightly by a German “sock and sandal-ness” that sometimes creeps in. The AMG clock in the centre is just tacky considering the people who own these cars have watches worth more than a block of holiday flats. And the silver lining along the burrwood just seems out of place.
They’re small complaints on a car that is always the benchmark of safety and innovation. It can make you see better at night, stop on its own and make a confident bound to the private airstrip if the coup d’etat doesn’t go quite as planned. In the world of performance luxury motoring, it stands alone.