Mercedes Benz S Class Review & Test Drive


Mercedes Benz S Class Overview


For decades, the Mercedes-Benz S-Class has been the poster child of opulence and luxury in the world of automobiles. Times change quickly though and competition from Audi and BMW had become stiffer in the recent past. This meant that Mercedes-Benz had to spruce up the S-Class and that they exactly did but not quite like most would have expected. Mid-cycle facelifts are generally cosmetic enhancements with a few new features and some powertrain improvements.

Mercedes-Benz engineers though had different things in mind so they went ahead and plonked in two new engines, a host of new features inside the cabin, improved Advanced Driver Assist Systems (ADAS) and topped it off with a mild update to the design. Now the S-Class was already a great car so improving it was always going to be tough. So Mercedes-Benz invited us to Hyderabad to drive the new facelift S-Class and our objective was to find out if the changes were an actual improvement or just a round of fancy marketable features.

Mercedes Benz S Class Design

In terms of design, the profile and proportions roughly remain the same as the outgoing model, however, the sheet metal appears more sculpted and streamlined now with two strong character lines and these give the new Mercedes S-Class a streamlined look with a nice interplay of concave and convex surfaces. Standout features include a large front grille inspired by the F700 Concept car and LED head and tail lamps. Integrated exhaust tips and a large panoramic glass roof help highlight the overall design theme. The drag coefficient stands at a Cd of 0.24 for the petrol and diesel variants while the hybrid improves on that by going even lower with a Cd figure of 0.23. Check for Mercedes Benz S Class price in Bangalore at Tryaldrive.

Mercedes Benz S Class Cabin

The interiors of the S-Coupe need to luxurious, elegant and at the same time sporty (because of the AMG character). It is a difficult task. But the designers at Affalterbach and Stuttgart did a lot of thinking and crafted the perfect interiors. The instrument panel is derived from the S-Class and it still has some touches from AMG and the S Coupe. This is likely to be one of the few AMGs to have a gearstick on the steering column than the sporty AMG gearshifter at the centre. The steering wheel is chunky and good to grip with flappy paddles that make it a joy to shift. The large LED display for the instrument cluster and the centre console makes the S Coupe look very tech-loaded and modern.

The front row seats are comfortable and do look sporty. They are a hybrid of luxury and sportiness, so it has lumber support, while the side support is dynamic and in sync with the steering input for best support. We had experience something similar with the E63 AMG, this has been further personified for better support. The space in the second row is also decent, though it might be a bit tight for long people. The rear seat is extremely comfortable and there the seat is cosy. There is space for two people only as there is a centre arm-rest as well. You will only have difficulty to sit at the back only if you are a six-footer and front seat is occupied by someone who is equally tall too. The toy quotient on the S63 AMG is high thanks to its connect with the S-Class. The seatbelt is offered to you by a robotic butler everytime you step inside. The sunroof tints automatically to avoid harsh sun rays from intruding into the cabin.

Mercedes Benz S Class Performance

So, back to driving and the new engines. The E-class’ new OM654 2.0-litre diesel engine was the first of a new family of modular engines, but the S-class introduces the newest members; the OM656 – a straight-six diesel and the M256 – a straight-six petrol engine, which will replace the current S-class’ V6 diesel and petrol engines internationally. There’s also a new 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8 petrol engine (Code: M176), derived from the 4.0 V8 in the AMG C 63 and AMG GT S, that will replace the 4.7-litre V8 in today’s S 500.

All three make more power than their predecessors, while being more efficient thanks to new tech and lower weight. However, in India, the only new engine we will get (initially at least) is the straight six diesel, albeit in its lower state of tune, called the S 350d, while the new petrol motors won’t be available at launch. The six-cylinder petrol engine for the updated S-class will be the same 2996cc unit of today’s S 400 which is likely to be retuned for more power and re-badged as the S 450, while the V8 petrol will likely be a re-tuned version of the 4.7-litre V8.

The new 4.0 V8 in the S 560, however, is the one is the one we spent most time with on this drive. This new 3,982cc motor uses a pair of twin-scroll turbochargers housed within the vee of the cylinder banks and produces 469hp and 700Nm of torque (10hp more than the current S 500 with the same amount of torque). It also features cylinder shut off, letting it run as a four-cylinder under low loads, and of course, engine stop-start, all for better fuel economy.At idle and at low revs, you still get that same incredible refinement as the old engine, and as is befitting an S-class. It stays this way when you’re cruising gently too, remaining so quiet that all you can hear is some road noise from the wide tyres.

However, rev it up just a little more and you’ll realise how closely it’s related to AMG’s snarling monster of a motor. You hear the growl a lot sooner this time around, and it also feels a lot more urgent. Where the old motor had a lazy, butter-smooth nature, this one is capable of whacking the car forward at a very un-limo-like rate should you prod it a little, with a claimed 0-100 time of just 4.6sec. It sounds like a proper V8 too – not quite as loud as the AMG version for sure, but still having a nice underlying rumble. The nine-speed auto is, once again, brilliant with superb smoothness and an uncanny ability to sense which gear you need at any time.

The good news is, the ‘9G-Tronic’ gearbox will now feature on the six-cylinder motors as well, unlike the current car, which still uses the old seven-speed unit for its V6s. The new six-cylinder petrol motor, which will eventually replace the ‘400’-badged V6 petrol engines in the S-class, GLE and GLS internationally, is badged either S 450 or S 500 on the S-class. It uniquely comes with some interesting tech like a separate 48v electrical system with an integrated starter generator (ISG) that works as a mild hybrid system, allowing for engine switch-off during coasting, brake energy recuperation and even providing electric boost to fill torque gaps. But alas, it’s unknown if or when we’ll see this motor in India.To know more details on Mercedes Benz S Class visit Stsoft

Mercedes Benz S Class Riding

Moving on to ride comfort and handling, the new S-Class uses a hybrid exoskeleton made of aluminium, high-strength steel, plastics and high rigidity foam to keep weight in check without compromising safety and integrity. The suspension continues to sport the road surface scan feature with a stronger camera that is now capable of detecting bumps in the road ahead at speeds of up to 180kmph and a range of 15 metres.The S-Class also has a curve inclination function that allows the body to tilt into a bend by up to 2.65 degrees thus reducing lateral force acting on the passengers. Curve inclination along with the road surface scan and active body control are the three primary components of the famous Magic Body Control, which is an optional feature and one not available for the Indian market. By the end of it, all there are just so many things we aren’t getting in India that it seriously makes me question — what is it that Indian consumers are getting exactly in the S-Class?

And then there’s standard fitment adaptive suspension whose air dampers work individually and continuously at each wheel to maintain optimal ride height and comfort. You can even select how you want the dampers to function, in Comfort mode or with a stiffer action if you switch to Sport mode. In either case, the ride quality is fantastic, but I was most impressed with the S-Class in Sport mode — you can feel the dampers working hard to keep the car in line while at the same there isn’t any harshness. Now despite the acceleration performance levels the S-Class in its various trims is capable of, bear in mind it’s over 5 meters long and nearly 2 meters wide, that’s a massive footprint it occupies on the road. And all of that may not seem to turn in easily. Yet it’s agile, sure-footed and precise. Though not in the sportscar throw, it accurately anywhere kind of way. Rest assured if you had to make this a getaway car, you’d…getaway!

Mercedes Benz S Class Safety

The Mercedes-Benz S-Class sedan is equipped with various advanced safety and security features including Attention Assist, LED Intelligent Light System, Night View Assist Plus, ASR (Anti-Slip Regulation), airbags for driver and front passenger with adaptive levels for the front passenger airbag, sidebags for driver and front passenger, rear sidebags, window bags, ABS (Anti-Lock Braking System) with EBD (Electronic BrakeForce Distribution), Brake Assist, ESP (Electronic Stability Program) and Traction Control System.

Mercedes Benz S Class Price in Bangalore.

Mercedes Benz S Class On Road Price is 1,53,86,656/- and Ex-showroom Price is 1,21,28,886/- in Bangalore. Mercedes Benz S Class comes in 12 colours, namely Polar White,Iridium Silver,Metallic Obsidian Black,Diamond White Metallic White,Designo Allanite Grey Magno,Ruby Black,Obsidian Black,Palladium Silver,Designo Cashmere White Magno,Emerald Green,Magnitite Black Metallic,Diamond Silver Metallic. Mercedes Benz S Class comes with RWD with 2987 CC Displacement and 6 Cylinders with Maximum Power 255 bhp@3600 rpm and Peak Torque 620 Nm@1600-2400 rpm DRIVE TRAIN RWD and reaches 100 KMPH at 6.8 seconds . Mercedes Benz S Class comes with Automatic Transmission with RWD .

Mercedes Benz S Class Bottomline

This car is nothing short of irresistible. It packs the finest drive experience possible, with a mix of lavishness, comfort, and entertainment, while at the same time, not letting go of performance and inner dynamics. However, its tall price tag would be more than enough to put many people off. In the end, go for this car if you’re willing to spend big bucks for a no-compromise drive experience. On the other hand, to those on the thriftier side who just need an average vehicle for A to B commuting, we’d recommend some other model for you.


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