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HOW MUCH: Rs 80 lakh - 2.2 crore
ENGINES: 3.5-litre V6 petrol, 5.5-litre twin-turbo V8 petrol, 6.0-litre V12 petrol, 3.0-litre V6 diesel, 4.2-litre V8 diesel, Hybrid
Mercedes-Benz will introduce the all-new S-Class luxury saloon in 2013, autojunction.in can reveal. The all-new Mercedes-Benz S-Class, codenamed W222, is a significant model, and will span numerous iterations. It will compete with a vast range of luxury automobiles from numerous brands, including Audi, BMW, Jaguar and Bentley.
The new S-Class will also fill the slot vacated by the much-touted Maybach super luxury saloon, which has been quietly withdrawn following its poor sales performance. Mercedes believes that the new S-Class will be luxurious enough to compete with exalted brands such as Bentley, and perhaps a little optimistically, Rolls Royce as well.
The new S-Class has been spied undergoing final testing at a number of locations around the world, and so there is some idea of what the production model will look like. Significantly, the bulging haunches and wheel arches of the current model are expected to be done away with, making way for a smoother, flatter profile. Instead, there’s a step in the panel aft of the C-pillar, to give the new S-Class a somewhat bustle-back boot.
The large chrome grille is expected to be bolder, while the headlights are a complex geometric shape.
The 2013 Mercedes-Benz S-Class (W222) will be based on the Aesthetic S design concept revealed recently.
The new Mercedes-Benz S-Class is larger in every dimension, and while there are no official figures yet, the new car is expected to boast a wheelbase of 3,100 mm, according to some insiders associated with the W222 project. That is 65mm more than the present car. The LWB version, which is sold in India, is expected to have a wheelbase of 3,280mm, which is about 115 mm more than the present car. An even longer wheelbase version, rumoured to measure 3,450 mm is also under development, as is a six-door Pullman variant of the new S-Class, which could measure as much as 3,750 mm between the axles. Of course, these figures are somewhat speculative, but give a good idea of the new S-Class’ size.
On the inside, the new Mercedes S-Class will have the usual wood, leather and chrome appointments, but married to old world charm will be high-tech gadgetry, including dual touch screens on the dashboard, and probably a touchscreen interface for rear passengers as well. Multi-zone climate control, internet connectivity, massaging seats etc are expected to be standard.
‘Magic Ride Control’, which uses radar to read the road ahead and prime the suspension, will also be offered, ensuring the new S-Class will truly offer magic carpet like ride. The system will work overtime on Indian roads, however!
The new S-Class will also spawn a two-door luxury coupe, which will become the next CL, replacing the current car. Finally, a four-door coupe version, essentially the big brother of Mercedes’ own CLS (based on the E-Class), is also expected.
Recent Mercedes have been criticised as being overweight, and the company has worked hard to ensure that the new car will be lighter, cleaner and greener than the outgoing model it replaces. Carbon fibre composites have been liberally used, and the doors, bonnet, boot and roof are all rumoured to be made out of carbon fibre. If that is indeed the case, these panels together would constitute a weight saving of almost 60 percent compared to steel panels.
A whole range of powertrain options are expected to be offered on the new S-Class. These include everything from entry-level V6 petrol and four-cylinder diesel engines, to twin-turbo V8 and V12 variants, plus hybrid versions, including a plug-in hybrid expected in 2014. The full range of powertrain options will be revealed at launch, expected to be at the Geneva Motor Show next year in March, or potentially even earlier in January in New York.
For India, the new S-Class will follow a few months later. Mercedes-Benz India will assemble the new S-Class at its Chakan facility, for sale to local customers. AMG versions however, will continue to be fully imported.
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