A brand new Mercedes S-Class generation should be launched in 2020 and the first prototypes have already entered the testing phase. We reveal the first photos and information.
Mercedes is currently testing the new S-Class, internally called W223, in the far north. The current model series (W222) came on the market in 2013 and received a model update in April 2017. From 2020, the new eleventh generation of the luxury liner will be launched.
Despite the heavy camouflage, the new S-Class is recognizable as such thanks to its classic proportions with the short overhangs, the slightly sloping trunk lid and the long bonnet. Of course, the prototype does not yet reflect the final design, which seems cleaner, sleeker, with less side creases and a lower/wider grille flanked by thinner, more aggressive headlights.
However, that much is clear: the new top model is larger, in order to offer its rear seats occupants even more space. At the same time, the weight is said to be lower thanks to the extensive use of carbon fibre and aluminum, which in turn should have a positive effect on consumption. Currently the model weighs about 2 tons. For the first time, the S-Class will be based on the new rear-wheel drive platform MRA II, because the current model W222 is still based on the further development of the old W221 platform.
On the engines side, Mercedes will rely heavily on plug-in hybrids. To reduce consumption, every drive is electrified – as a mild hybrid or plug-in hybrid. Of course, a 48-volt electrical system will be standard across the range. An all-electric S-Class is definitely being planned as well, but it remains to be seen whether the zero emissions S-Class will be ready for sale at the market launch in 2020. The all-electric version should roll off the production line as an EQ model at the Sindelfingen plant.
In regard to connectivity, the luxury sedan will come with the latest generation of the newly introduced MBUX multimedia system.
Apart from that, the key points for the new S-Class are: autonomous driving and assistance systems. From 2020, the S-Class is expected to offer Level 4 of autonomous driving, provided the legislation will advance enough and allow such features by then.
In addition, the next S-Class – just as the new Audi A8; will be equipped with an intelligent active suspension. If a side impact is imminent, the air suspension will push the car up so that the frame will absorb the forces instead of the sensitive doors.
In addition to new technology, a well-known name is also making a comeback, but in a brand new guise: the Mercedes SEC morphed into a four-door coupe. Sounds plausible, as the S-class family has grown significantly in recent years: the sedan has been joined by a two-door coupe, a convertible and the luxury version Maybach.