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by Daniel DeGasperi

The sixth-generation Mercedes-Benz S-Class will arrive in Australia earlier than expected, in the fourth quarter of 2013.

Speaking at the international launch of the all-new S-Class, Mercedes-Benz Australia corporate communications manager David McCarthy confirmed that two bodystyles and three spec levels would launch initially, with more to follow.

Arriving between October and December this year will be the S350 BlueTEC with a 190kW/620Nm 3.0-litre turbo-diesel V6; the S500 with a 355kW/700Nm 4.7-litre twin-turbo petrol V8; and the S63 AMG with yet-to-be-announced outputs.


All will be available in short wheelbase versions, with only the S350 and S500 scoring a long wheelbase option from launch.

Following in the second quarter of 2014 will be the as-yet unreleased S600 long wheelbase grade, while “a 90 to 95 per cent chance” of being added to the range at the same time will be the S300 hybrid and S400 twin-turbo petrol V6. The S300 will be available with the smaller body only, while the S400 will be available in both short and stretched format.

In Europe the S400 gets a 225kW/370Nm 3.5-litre petrol V6 teamed with a 20Nm electric motor, which is only two seconds slower from 0-100km/h compared with the S500 – 6.8 seconds versus 4.8sec – but claims 6.3L/100km combined, compared with 8.6L/100km. The S400 for Australia, however, will utilise the same 3.0-litre twin-turbo V6 engine, with an expected 245kW and 480Nm, matching the figures of the Mercedes-Benz E400 in which the engine last year debuted.

Mercedes-Benz S-Klasse ( W222) 2012

Defending the decision to offer both a twin-turbo V6 and twin-turbo V8, despite recently ditching a V8 engine in E-Class because of the V6’s performance, McCarthy asserted that “in that [upper large car] market there is significant demand for a V8.”

The S300 Hybrid, meanwhile, with a 150kW/500Nm 2.1-litre twin-turbo diesel and 20Nm electric motor will be “price wise pretty close to the S350,” according to McCarthy.

Although the petrol-electric S300 isn’t as quick as the turbo-diesel-only S350 from 0-100km/h – 7.6 seconds versus 6.8sec – it is 1.1L/100km more economical, rated at 4.4L/100km.


McCarthy also said that for the first time Mercedes-Benz would offer the S350 diesel in long wheelbase format because “we’ve had demand for it”.

There won’t, however, be an immediate replacement for the S65 AMG range topper. Mercedes-Benz Australia has decided instead, McCarthy says, to wait for the now all-but-confirmed S-Class coupe coming next year.

“There’s another S65 we may be taking down the track, with a few less doors.”

  • Hjalle

    After having seen numerous article and photos on the new S-Class, it hasn’t grown on me, it is too chintzy and try hard both inside and out, while the A8 in my opinion albeit a bit boring has understated opulence and would be the one I would spend my money on if I were in the market

    • Smart US

      ill be honest as alwyas – I love it – think this is the best looking MB and S class ever

      • racrepus

        Smart US, for once I have to agree with you. I think this is the best S Class yet. The last one looked too try-hard with those massive wheel arches. This is more restrained and refined. Looks a lot better to my eye.

      • Zaccy16

        i agree, it looks great, classy and sophisticated improvement over the dated last gen, that 4.4l per 100 km fuel efficiency for the s300 hybrid is truly amazing with a 0-100 time of 7.6 seconds!

    • Golfschwein

      My favourite is the 1991 W140. At the time, I was in complete awe of its grandiose blockiness and its monstrosity, yet it combined all of this with a light-handedness of design which I thought quite beautiful, and still do. Not everyone saw it that way, as history has it. I can pick up a nice one for 8 grand, but I’m not sure if I dare to.

      • Ox

        W140 sure was a beast and so advanced for its time, more so than the new W222 compared to its contemporary competitors .

      • Dr Sheldon Cooper

        Good call, Mr Golfschwein. That model in one word – CLASS.

      • Zaccy16

        i agree, amazing car! just don’t turn it into a cottage like on topgear!

      • F1orce

        The W140 was a shoddy answer to the Lexus LS400

        Imagine how scared Mercedes was, in U.S. the biggest market and the Lexus LS400 outsold the legendary S-class in its first year of release LMAO

        • Golfschwein

          The W140 was comfortably superior to the LS400. Mercedes wasn’t running scared at all. All they were doing was replacing a 10 year old car, making sure as usual to equip it with a range of technologies that made the world sit up and take notice . The S Class is where they play a home game, as one journo put it so beautifully at the time. In contemporary road tests, the poor LS400 flopped about all over the place trying to keep up, but only managed to kick a goal on panel gaps and decibel levels. The W140 was the King of Cars, especially in awesome 600SEL guise.

          • Guest1

            URBAN DICTIONAIRY ; definition of LS400

            The most innovative car ever built. Toyota Spent billions of dollars developing this tank. The Lexus LS400Also referred to as the UFC10, which was the first model LS, the car came standard with telescoping wheel, traction, and the best sound system ever put in a car PERIOD. Most cars in 1990 didn’t even have a single cd player. The car had a drag coefficient that was SO low, that you can drive it at 140mph and not hear anything. It is the quietest car EVER made. (This has been proven). After all the innovations, the reliability and ride quality are its main fortes. The car always seems to float on air and shifts gears so seemlessly and quietly that nobody in the car notices. Most LS’s run in excess of 400k miles with proper maintenence. Not to mention, the whole car is blanketed in Yamaha piano wood and the finest leather money can buy. They also never break down. And the fact that the newer mercedes have a few more gadgets (made by chrysler) doesn’t concern me because the craftsmanship is not even on the same level and if you own it you’re either a poser or a snob.
            I blow by benzes doing 120mph, listening to Sinatra on my $3000 Nakamichi sound system that came stock with my car. Bill Gates rocks in the Lexus LS400. Alan Mulally said the LS400 was the ‘finest’ automobile on the planet.

            The LS400 was designed & executed with unprecedented precion and craftsmenship. With 4000 dedicated designers and engineers for the LS400 using the latest computing technology to design the LS400, the body, engine & interior were of the upmost refinement. The goal was to create a vehicle that would surpass the very best. And that they did.

          • Golfschwein

            Urban Dictionary’s a laugh. I mean, spelling pneumatic as phneumatic IS…a laugh.

          • lexus luthor

            How about the LS430? Is it better than the LS400?

          • Golfschwein

            Oh, and price. Lexus kicked a goal on price. I know it was a damned good car that told the Germans “we’re comin’ for ya” but it didn’t quite better the S Class, not the W140 at any rate.

        • guest

          Have you ever driven the LS400 at speeds above 220km/h?

          I guess you haven’t, or you wouldn’t be praising the LS400.

          That said, it wasn’t a problem that would affect the American market.

        • sfgh

          The LS400 is a really old car. You should get with the times.
          Also the first year of release for the LS400 was the 10th year of release for the W126 S class which didn’t even get a facelift so outselling a decade old model for one year in one single country with a heavily undercut price was not a big achievement.
          It doesn’t happen anymore either. The current LS model range does not outsell the S class in the USA. Last year Lexus LS sold 8435 in the USA against 11,794 S class.

    • Scott

      If you had THAT much money surley you could find something better

  • Johnno

    Quattroporte instead anyone?

    • Ox

      XJ for sure, but that interior might sway just me

    • guest

      Maybe the old one in its original form (before they brought along the GT-S and Automatica versions).

      A Quattroporte never looks old – it looks incredibly graceful and elegant, only for the elegant facade to be interrupted by the menacing bark of 8 cylinders blasting their angry soundtrack off the nearby buildings and walls.

      That’s the appeal of Quattroporte, a real split personality. At one point, a luxury limousine, yet it has this sporting intent as well.

      I could also have a new XJ as well, in black and with a V8.

  • Martin

    This is the epitome of what Mercedes Benz is all about. I love it. Certainly makes the styling of the 7 series look cheap.

  • Dr Shedlon Cooper

    Elegant. I am glad they kept the traditional tri-star ATOP the hood in understated glory and not ON the grille like a crass and ridiculous wall-clock worn as a necklace by that one rapper. BRAVO!!!! Mercedes for not making it look like like it belonged to the set of Farce and Spurious – unlike MOST of your new offerings.

  • Sumpguard

    More brilliance from Merc.

    • Mike

      Are you alluding to the Chinese car brand of that name?

  • marc

    What’s the point of a 200k+ car with 4.4l/100 fuel consumption?

    • Compare Meerkat

      You SAVE $3.00 a week or $150 a yr or a WHOPPING $450 for the three years that you own the car.


    • Phil

      gives you something to brag about, instead of just weeping at the depreciation…

  • Declan Collins

    Good luck getting anywhere near those fuel economy claims.not sold join the back end either

    • mike

      this is true, German fuel figure claims are one of the most , if not the most unreliable and inflated I’ve ever seen.

  • Daniel DeGasperi

    **UPDATE** Mercedes-Benz Australia has clarified that we will not take the S400 which in Europe is a hybrid model, but rather the not-yet-released S400 with the twin-turbo petrol V6 which recently debuted in the E400. The copy has been updated to reflect this. Cheers,