Model strengths: Strong, smooth powertrains; limousine-like interior (especially with Executive package); innovative technology; long-held reputation for durability; a luxury benchmark; coupe and cabriolet availability.
Model changes: Mercedes-Benz seems intent on expanding the S-Class lineup as far as it will reach. Originally offered as the flagship sedan in Mercedes-Benz’ lineup, the S-Class now comes in no fewer than four different body styles. The latest offering is an S-Class Cabriolet, with a soft top that can fold away in less than 20 seconds. The new S-Class Cabriolet is the marquee’s first open-top flagship 4-seater since 1971. The car utilizes about 60 percent of the coupe’s body components while benefitting from an aluminum rear floor. Pyrotechnically activated roll bars extend to protect occupants in the event of a rollover.
Model value: With a base price of over $95,000 — and prices that can range to near double that for a well-equipped S65 AMG, the 2017 Mercedes-Benz S-Class lineup isn’t cheap. That’s always been beside the point, though; the S-Class continues to showcase the leading edge of automotive technology — including some world firsts for active safety — and in ride comfort and interior ambiance.
With Mercedes-Benz’s PRE-SAFE technologies, owners get some of the most sophisticated accident-avoidance systems in the world. The Mercedes-Benz S-Class is also the first regular-production car to move entirely to LEDs for lighting — with the entire car now using more than 400 LEDs, including up to 56 for the headlamps.