The all-new Mercedes-Benz S-Class Coupe has launched in Italy claiming a world-first feature for a production vehicle, dubbed Active Curve Tilting.
Like the S-Class sedan with which its shares its platform, the Coupe version uses an adaptive suspension system called Magic Body Control, which uses a camera to ‘see’ the road ahead to improve ride comfort.
However, the freshly launched Coupe builds on this system by adding a “curve tilting” function, which, upon reading a bend in the road, leans the car into it, like a motorcyclist or skier would.
Mercedes says that this feature isn’t intended to enhance high-speed cornering but rather to improve passenger comfort on twisty roads.
The system reduces the lateral forces acting on passengers by allowing the vehicle to incline automatically and continuously in fractions of a second on bends – depending on the road angle and vehicle speed.
The curve tilting function is active between 15 and 180km/h and can be selected as one of the three drive modes (“Curve”, “Comfort”, “Sport”) using the ABC switch on the centre console.
Asked if the new technology would also aid in minimising the onset of carsickness, Mercedes-Benz project leader, Magnus Rau said: “By reducing the lateral forces throughout the entire corner, passengers sit more firmly, without needing to prop oneself up and therefore less stress on the body”
"It wasn’t something we thought about in any specific manner when developing the system, but it certainly a real possibility”, he added.
So far the active curve tilting function is only available on the S-Class Coupe, though Rau admitted to CarAdvice that the technology could be applied to every Mercedes-Benz vehicle with active suspension including the S-Class and SL-Class models, but for now it remains exclusive to the S-Class Coupe.