Mercedes-Benz S-Class still leads in opulent luxury
High-end luxury cars often seem like science fiction. The reason why is easy enough to understand. Because today's economy cars come with features like navigation and adaptive cruise control, luxury cars have to offer something substantially beyond those formerly exclusive features.
The 2019 Mercedes-Benz S-Class, and the S 560 in particular, is the top of the line of one of the world's top luxury automakers. This full-size sedan has everything that the automotive industry knows how to do, and you won't find anything like it anywhere else but a Mercedes dealer.
It starts with a 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 engine. The car's 463 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque aren't unusual in today's market, but Mercedes matches that engine with a 9-speed automatic that is so smooth you can forget that it's there. The S 560 also comes with 4MATIC all-wheel-drive if you want it, and if you're buying at this level, you should get it. The result is a powerful sedan that offers performance at speed and in any weather.
The S 560 also offers Mercedes' AIRMATIC suspension, which allows you to tailor the car's ride height and smoothness of ride. This Benz also comes with the DISTRONIC driver assistance system. The list of features is too long to go over in detail, but the S-Class will help you steer, maintain following distance and a reasonable speed, and even make sure you follow the speed limit, if you want to.
Inside, the science fiction story continues. With the S-Class, there's a reasonable expectation that the important person will be sitting in the back seat, so there's an Executive Rear Seat Package option. The rear seats recline, and on the passenger side there's a footrest that comes out to make that back seat into a full recliner. Back seat passengers can also order up a massage with heat or ventilation, and control the available Burmester surround sound audio system. Of course, there's a video screen back there, too, if you want to watch TV.
That's just the rear seat. The front seats have many of the same features, plus there's a cabin fragrance system, heated steering wheel, and heated armrests. The S-Class also offers the driver every single active safety measure available today, all as standard equipment.
On the road, the S 560 is a dream come true. It's whisper-quiet, smooth, fast, and comfortable. Within the bounds of a big luxury car, it's responsive to steering and corners well. That's especially true if you dial up sport mode for the suspension and steering. As tested, the 2019 Mercedes-Benz S 560 4MATIC costs $142,335. For that price, you really can have it all.
2019 Mercedes-Benz S560
Base price: $104,350
Price as tested: $142,335
Type: Full-size sedan
Engine: 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 (463 hp, 516 lbs-ft)
Transmission: 9-speed automatic
EPA estimated mileage: 17/27
Overall length: 215 inches
Curb weight: 4,802 pounds
Final assembly: Sindelfingen, Germany