S-neaking out

Here’s the All-New Mercedes-Benz S-Class Before You’re Supposed to See It

May 17, 2020 Cars By Photo by cochespias on instagram
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2020 may be a year jam-packed with new car debuts and reveals, but few bear greater gravitas than the incipient arrival of an all-new Mercedes-Benz S-Class. That full-size sedan, after all, is the standard-bearer for Mercedes, the car that points the way forward and dictates the company’s priorities like none other. The G-Class may be the icon and the Project: One the flagship, but no car represents the core of the brand quite like the big four-door known as the Sonderklasse.

So it’s a little surprising that, in spite of all the company’s years of efforts to develop it in secret, the new S-Class should leak online so thoroughly ahead of its formal debut.

The car was caught all but undisguised by Spanish media site Cochespias, which posted them to its Instagram account. The exterior of the new S-Class bears a definite familiar resemblance to the other recent additions to the carmaker’s sedan line; the tail lamps, in particular, look an awful lot like the ones on the newest A-Class and facelifted E-Class. Overall, it looks elegant, refined and subtle — just like you’d expect of a big Mercedes sedan.

The inside, however, is where the biggest changes lie. Mercedes-Benz’s new, touchpad-laden steering wheel sits in front of a tall, all-digital instrument panel, which in turn sits in front of what appears to be a ginormous head-up display. Between the driver and shotgun rider sits an enormous touchscreen display for the infotainment system, with what appear to be just a handful of hard buttons beneath it. The back seat looks as luxurious as you’d expect, with video screens for both occupants and the same rich quilted leather upholstery as up front.

Cochespias also posted a video apparently shot from inside the new S-Class, revealing more of the switchgear, gauges and infotainment system. The latter, in particular, seems poised to shock and awe, with a high-resolution display that controls everything from radio to climate — the latter taking what may be a permanent or semi-permanent place at the bottom of the giant display. (And on a random interesting note, the headlight controls seem to have moved to the driver’s side door.)

As for when we’ll see this new S-Class — well, Mercedes-Benz isn’t saying much, but a spokesperson told Car and Driver that the model would be revealed before 2020 is up. In fact, in a post-coronavirus world where air travel may be more burdensome and frustrating than ever, we’re betting there’ll be more reason than ever for buyers to snap up large, luxurious cars that are perfect for long road trips…or at least, that’s what we hope.

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Will Sabel Courtney

Will Sabel Courtney is Gear Patrol’s Motoring Editor, formerly of The Drive and RIDES Magazine. You can often find him test-driving new cars in New York City, cursing the slow-moving traffic surrounding him.

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