The S-Class has long been the best car in its segment. However, a new one has been due since BMW upgraded its 7 Series. Audi, it seems, are still lagging behind its German counterparts in this industry. The all new S-Class will hit the Indian markets in January next year. Here’s a sneak peek into what you can expect.
The S-Class is not meant to be a raging monster, one that can terrify most italian supercars. It is supposed to be a luxury vessel with good road manners, and have the ability to make a quick getaway if the master wishes so! However, expect the S500 to have 450 BHP and 700 Nm of torque. The S350 should be good for 300 BHP, and 500 Nm of torque.
What this means is that the S350 achieves a 0-100km/h speed in 6.8 seconds. The S500 beats that timing by 2 seconds, making that speed in 4.8 seconds.
The S-Class has a reputation of introducing new safety features to cars. It was the first to use airbags in Europe, fit ABS, use brake-assist, use traction control, etc. amongst others. The latest safety feature is a very useful one for the Indian roads in the least. After achieving 120 km/h, the car lowers itself by 20mm to provide more downforce and keep it firmly planted on the road.
Also, buyers can expect the same safety oriented feature allowing you to ‘latch’ onto cars in front of you. The S-Class will moderate its speed on its own, and even come to a full stop on its own if it feels the need to do so. This feature even works in peak winter, when the fog makes it almost useless to drive.
Another new feature is in the seatbelts. The seatbelts now inflate when the car senses a crash so as to limit the damage to you.
Body Work & Suspension
The car uses air-suspension, which makes sure the passengers do not feel most potholes, even when cruising at a higher speed. The weight of the car has also reduced by 100kg, despite the increase in length.
Another note on the suspension is the Magic Body Control system. The car maps the road ahead and prepares the suspension for any dips, or bumps that may be coming up.
The first noticeable difference in the interiors is the steering wheel, which is now a 2-spoke wheel, instead of the previous 3-spoke wheel. All the seats come with inbuilt massagers. The rear bench comes with an option of being a fixed bench, or two individual recliners. The rear passengers also get individual screens for themselves.
Expect the S350 to now cost Rs 1.2 crores, while the S500 will set you back by about Rs 1.4 crores. The running costs should come down though, as the S-Class now averages about 10 km/l. There are plans for a diesel-electric to be introduced sometime next year, which will average 25 km/l.
If I had to choose a car in this segement, it would be the current S500 or the BMW 730D. However, the new S-Class has changed that, as it offers a better overall package than the BMW. It’s surely just the S-Class now!