29 October 2013

New Mercedes-Benz S-Class arrives

The new Mercedes-Benz S-Class will sell here at prices below those of the model it replaces, writes Trish Whelan.

The new S-Class is at the zenith of the transformation that has taken place across the Mercedes-Benz range over recent years in terms of new model development and design, technical advancement and price competitiveness.

This is a major step by the carmaker towards a car so technically advanced that it can virtually drive itself - they predict this will become a reality within the next 10 years. Add to that the fact that it exudes graciousness and luxury as well as being classically elegant with a smooth, rounded appearance.

Two hybrid versions will be sold here, one petrol and one diesel. First here is the S350 BlueTEC diesel priced at €98,255 which is €4,000 lower than the previous entry model. Others, for which prices will be announced later, are the S300 BlueTEC HYBRID, with an annual road tax of €200; the S400 Hybrid; S500 and S500 plug-in Hybrid - the first S-Class with fuel consumption lower than 4-litres per 100kms and the first luxury car in the world to emit less than 75g/km C02. All engines meet latest Euro-6 emissions levels, consuming up to 20 percent less fuel than the outgoing series.

Inside, space has been increased in all directions. Controls and displays include two colour screens - one to provide driver information and the other to control comfort and infotainment features. Fitments include a business class centre console, automatic climate control, heated armrests, cup holders that can heat and cool drinks, and two folding tables. The split view screen means the driver can be looking at relevant information on the right hand side of the screen while the front seat passenger can be watching a DVD on the same screen. Other features include voice-controlled telephone and audio systems with an option of having text messages and emails read aloud. There's also a huge array of safety features onboard.

The new S-Class is the first car in the world to fully adopt LED lighting, inside and out. There are no light bulbs, anywhere.

Such is the demand, the 50 cars ordered have already been sold. Additional supply will be available shortly.

Pictured above at today's launch are Mercedes-Benz Chief Executive, Stephen Byrne and Ciaran Allen, Sales Manager for Mercedes-Benz passenger cars.