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by Tim Beissmann

The 2011 Mercedes-Benz S-Class range has been updated in Australia with a range of new engines that are more powerful and considerably more fuel-efficient.

The upgraded 3.5-litre V6 petrol engine in the S 350 BlueEFFICIENCY now produces 225kW and 370Nm of torque (up from 200kW and 350Nm). Accelerating from 0-100km/h takes 6.9 seconds and the top speed is 210km/h. Combined cycle fuel consumption and CO2 emissions are down from 9.8 litres/100km and 234g/km to 9.0 litres/100km and 210g/km respectively.

The new 4.7-litre bi-turbo V8 engine in the S 500 BlueEFFICIENCY produces 320kW and 700Nm of torque, up significantly from 285kW and 530Nm. Acceleration from 0-100km/h takes just 5.0 seconds, while combined cycle fuel consumption is 10.5 litres/100km and CO2 emissions average 244g/km (10.7 and 249 for the long-wheel base model).

The S 350 BlueTEC with its 3.0-litre diesel engine has become the first Euro VI-compliant vehicle in Australia. Power increases to 190kW and torque steps up to 620Nm. Combined cycle fuel consumption is just 7.0 litres/100km and emissions average 185g/km. Despite being an environmental warrior in the luxury sports sedan market, the S 350 BlueTEC can still sprint from 0-100km/h in 7.1 seconds.

Performance of the bi-turbo V12 in the S 600 remains the same at 380kW and 830Nm of torque. Teamed with a five-speed automatic transmission, it accelerates from 0-100km/h in 4.6 seconds, consumes 14.3 litres/100km and emits 340g/km CO2.

The 5.5-litre V8 engine in the S 63 AMG takes power up to 400kW and torque to 800Nm. Combined cycle fuel consumption is 10.6 litres/100km and CO2 emissions average 247g/km. Acceleration from 0-100km/h takes just 4.5 seconds and the S 63 AMG will reach a top speed of 250km/h. The S 63 AMG also benefits from a stop-start system, which is a first for the model line.

The range-topping 6.0-litre bi-turbo V12 in the S 65 AMG lifts power to 463kW, while torque remains an almighty 1000Nm. Acceleration from 0-100km/h takes just 4.4 seconds, while combined cycle fuel consumption matches the S 600 at 14.3 litres/100km.

From the outside, there are no changes to the S-Class, as the range was updated a little more than a year ago.

The S-Class now comes with Active Blind Spot Assist and Active Lane Keeping Assist, safety features that help it keep pace with its German competitors.

The AMG models include crosswind stabilisation, Torque Vectoring Brake, Direct-Steer system and Active Body Control, all for the purpose of improving handling and reducing body roll.

The 2011 Mercedes-Benz S-Class range is available now for the following Manufacturer’s List Prices:

  • S 350 CDI BlueTEC – $213,428
  • S 350 BlueEFFICIENCY – $220,650
  • S 350 L BlueEFFICIENCY – $238,975
  • S 500 BlueEFFICIENCY – $296,975
  • S 500 L BlueEFFICIENCY – $315,300
  • S 600 L – $412,000
  • S 63 AMG – $392,900
  • S 65 AMG L – $499,200



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