Deliver again hood ornaments.

Andrew Krok/Roadshow

Think about the strain of creating a brand new Mercedes-Benz S-Class. This automobile is meant to be the height of Everest for consumers who need a full-fat luxurious automobile, and each successive technology ought to add extra to the pile with out forgetting its raison d’être, which suggests there’s loads using on each new mannequin. All that tough work has paid off, although, as a result of the 2021 Mercedes-Benz S-Class is an absolute banger, as soon as once more setting the usual for all different luxurious automobiles.


High-tier rideMakes you are feeling like 1,000,000 bucksSweet augmented-reality HUD

Do not Like

Confounding sunroof controls

The 2021 Mercedes-Benz S580 is rattling close to the right luxurious automobile, though styling is subjective, and I will be the primary to confess that the newest iteration of Mercedes’s design language is not my favourite. My sole grievance is that the rear finish is Eeyore-tier droopy, with a chrome unibrow spanning the width of the trunk, which is my absolute least favourite Twenty first-century flourish.

The remainder of the S580’s exterior is all about class. Regardless of carrying the extra aggressive bumpers and aspect skirts of the $4,300 AMG Line package deal, my tester remains to be moderately demure. The 21-inch AMG alloy wheels have a reasonably trad-luxe look to them, too. This automobile does not want loopy angles or minimize traces to make a press release — it is only a massive, fancy sedan, carving its manner via visitors with a correctly old-school hood decoration main the cost.

If for some cause I do not really feel like 1,000,000 bucks strolling as much as the Mercedes S580, I certain really feel prefer it as soon as the doorways open — truly, no, earlier than, due to digital door handles that come out from the physique as I method. The S-Class has lengthy had  the plushest interiors within the auto trade, and that continues with the 2021 mannequin. The black Nappa leather-based is comfortable, and never solely are the entrance seats supportive as heck, on the S580 they arrive normal with a superb multi-contour therapeutic massage perform. The rear seats are roomier than earlier than, with loads of headroom and legroom for me to splay out.

The S580’s inside design borrows closely from the Imaginative and prescient EQS idea, with a big swath of wooden trim working the width of the dashboard, punctuated by pairs of vents on both aspect. The 12.8-inch OLED infotainment display screen rises up from the middle console, leaving sufficient area behind it for a further storage tray. The duvet beneath the display screen strikes to disclose two normal-sized cup holders, a wi-fi charging pad and an additional tray for masks, keys or different pocket detritus. Beneath the armrest, there’s sufficient area for a small purse, whereas the door pockets are simply sufficiently big to carry some giant drink containers. There is not any large binnacle surrounding the 12.3-inch gauge show, which suggests the dashboard stays good and low, making for wonderful ahead visibility.

Plunk down an additional $3,000 and the area in entrance of the gauges turns into a large projector for one critically spectacular head-up show. Not solely will it ship the standard data readouts like velocity and course of journey, it might additionally work with native vehicle-to-infrastructure tech to show the time remaining on a pink gentle. My favourite half, although, is the augmented-reality integration that the S-Class shares with its electrical EQS sibling, displaying upcoming turns as arrows that develop nearer because the intersection does, in addition to highlighting visitors when adaptive cruise management is lively. The data is all the time the place it must be, too, due to eye-tracking cameras constructed into the gauge show, which might perform in a trick 3D Mode for a bit additional visible aptitude. Flipping via the numerous obtainable layouts and menus is made straightforward due to touchpad-style buttons on the steering wheel.

The large ol’ display screen in the course of the S580 runs an up to date model of the MBUX infotainment system we have seen in each different Merc, and it really works in addition to ever on this iteration. It’s going to run wi-fi Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, however there are additionally 4 USB-C ports within the heart console for front-seat occupants to make use of. The touchscreen collects smudges like no different, nevertheless it’s responsive, and it is fairly darn spectacular, too, particularly when it is working a fullscreen map. The underside a part of the show all the time exhibits local weather controls, with a smattering of bodily buttons beneath that for altering driving modes, turning up the quantity, partaking the hazard lights or studying my fingerprint to tug up my private settings (not obligatory).

The show’s angle is ideal for visibility, though you may accomplish 90% of what you want to by voice command alone.

Andrew Krok/Roadshow

The one controls that frustrate me are discovered overhead. This S580 has two sunroofs, one per row, and they’re managed with probably the most infuriating contact slider recognized to man. I spent a whole week attempting to determine the logic behind the way it works, however it doesn’t matter what instructions my fingers go, it does every little thing — opens and closes the entrance panel, tilts the entrance panel, engages the entrance panel’s solar shade — besides the one perform I truly need it to. I despise it on the EQS, and I despise it right here.

What’s unattainable to despise, although, is the 2021 Mercedes S580’s trip. It’s, merely put, the perfect within the section, with an adaptive air suspension that preternaturally eliminates almost each inch of dangerous highway underfoot, feeling pillowy easy virtually on a regular basis. The S-Class floats down the highway, and mixed with thick glass, driver and passengers alike can be all however shut off from the world on the opposite aspect. The suspension lowers and stiffens when put into Sport or Sport Plus mode, and whereas the S580 does a reasonably good impression of a full-size sport sedan, I might suggest ready for an AMG variant should you actually need to give it the ol’ what-for. This factor might nook properly, however what it actually desires to do is luxuriate in any respect attainable alternatives.

It is arduous to be uncomfortable in these seats. The S580 is certain to be a highway journey king for these thrones alone.

Andrew Krok/Roadshow

The S580’s powertrain is good and easy. Beneath the hood is a 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V8 producing 496 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque, augmented by a 48-volt gentle hybrid system that may throw one other 21 hp and 184 lb-ft into the combo, often when leaving a cease or pushing the accelerator into the firewall. The V8 is lots potent by itself, however with this little bit of electrification, the S580 feels prefer it runs on a unending properly of driving force. A nine-speed automated transmission does its factor with close to imperceptibility, and elective rear-axle steering (4.5 levels, $1,300, though 10-degree steering can be obtainable on some variants) means it is fairly darn straightforward to navigate parking heaps and different tight confines. The EPA charges the S580 at 17 mpg metropolis and 25 mpg metropolis, and whereas the town estimate appears spot on, I can squeeze out one thing nearer to 30 mpg on the freeway.

If a V6 looks like overkill within the twilight years of the inner combustion engine, the S500 may scratch your itch, as a substitute. This mannequin ditches two cylinders, choosing a turbocharged straight-6 making 429 hp and 384 lb-ft. It, too, has the EQ Enhance gentle hybrid system, in addition to normal all-wheel drive and the identical nine-speed automated. It is a bit extra environment friendly, although, coming in at an EPA-estimated 20 mpg metropolis and 29 mpg freeway.

This can be the ultimate technology of the combustion-powered S-Class, and this 4.0-liter V8 sings one heck of a swan music if that is the case.

Andrew Krok/Roadshow

There are some very succesful driver aids keen to assist. Commonplace full-speed adaptive cruise management combines efforts with lane-keeping help to maintain the car centered in its lane on the tempo of visitors, eliminating the tedium of longer commutes however nonetheless requiring fingers on the wheel and eyes pointed down the highway. Whereas lively, although, the motive force aids make comfortable inputs and hold the trip comfy. For parking, the infotainment display screen can present a 360-degree space across the automobile, which I can twist and spin on the display screen to ensure I am staying in all of the traces. Parking sensors mix efforts with the ambient lighting to offer me a further layer of warning in case I get too near a wall or one other automobile.

It should not come as a shock that the 2021 Mercedes-Benz S-Class ain’t low cost. The S580 begins at $117,350, and a restricted variety of aesthetic and practical enhancements bump my tester’s worth as much as $131,500 — and there is nonetheless an AMG variant or two that may dwell above this one, along with the big-boy Maybach. The S500 and its straight-6 engine are fortunately rather less costly, coming in at $110,850. Thank goodness.

Mercedes’ closest opponents, the BMW 7 Sequence and Audi A8, are each high-quality luxurious automobiles in their very own proper, nevertheless it’s arduous to suggest something aside from the S-Class. The usual bearer stays on the entrance of the pack, and may keep there for some time. 


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