Mercedes reveals the all-new S-Class
After a frankly absurd amount of leaked images stretching back 2 months, Mercedes has finally unveiled the all-new 2014 S-Class in a star-studded event held in Frankfurt. Aiming to be one of the most luxurious and advanced vehicles ever produced, the new S-Class aims to take business away from not just BMW’s 7-Series and Audi’s A8, but from Bentley’s Flying Spur and Rolls Royce’s Ghost.
The styling has links to the latest design language seen in the A- and E-Class ranges, with a more rounded appearance compared to the angular previous models. It even has a slight look of the 2001 era S as well. One area that has been significantly improved is the aerodynamic efficiency, with a very impressive drag coefficient (Cd) of 0.24. To put that into perspective, the BMW 7-Series has a Cd of 0.31, meaning the S-Class will use less fuel to push the car through the air.
There are a raft of material changes in the body structure, which is larger than the previous model but help to lower the weight by around 20 kg. Not a massive amount, but given the size increase it’s impressive nonetheless.
The interior is where Mercedes claims to have made the biggest improvements, with rear legroom and ambience improved to cater for the important Asian market. Mercedes claims that there is virtually zero road or wind noise at 70 mph thanks to new NVH sound deadening and suspension components. Up front there is a massive twin TFT display covering all the major dials and infotainment screens, which we think is actually quite an ugly solution, but we can see why some would like it.
The most popular engine in the UK is expected to be the carry over 3.0-litre V6 diesel with 254 bhp in the S350 BlueTEC though now there is the option of a 2.1-litre four-cylinder diesel with 204 bhp in combination with a 20kW electric motor for a total output of 228 bhp in the S300 BlueTEC Hybrid. The diesel hybrid has a lower coefficient of drag than conventional models, dropping from 0.24Cd to 0.23Cd, and is stated to emit 115g/km of CO2. Depending on cost, this could attract many buyers away from the standard diesel version.
Also planned is an upgraded version of Mercedes-Benz’s existing twin-turbocharged 4.7-litre V8 petrol engine that produces 449 bhp in the S500; a plug-in hybrid version is planned for 2015 which will emit less than 75g/km of CO2.
Coming next year will also be the S63 AMG. Like its predecessor, it is powered by a twin-turbocharged 5.5-litre V8 that is likely to offer 563 bhp. In 2014, Mercedes-Benz will bring a new S600 model to the line-up. It receives a revised version of the outgoing model’s twin-turbocharged 5.5-litre V12 developing around 530 bhp. This engine will also power a range-topping S65 AMG flagship in 612 bhp 6.0-litre guise.
The new Mercedes-Benz S-class goes on sale in the UK in September, with prices starting at around £68,000.
Images and video courtesy of Mercedes-Benz