Mercedes-Benz’s S-Class is the world’s best-selling luxury sedan for very good reasons; it’s unmatched in safety, drivetrain, and infotainment techology. However, the S-Class is under siege with Audi, BMW, Jaguar, and even Hyundai release their new flagship sedans to take the crown. With those cars in the hunt, Mercedes knows the next S-Class has to be the best. Autocar has learned some new information about the next S-Class due out sometime in late 2012.
The next S-Class will use a version of Mercedes’ modular rear-wheel drive architecture, which is currently used on the current E-Class. The S-Class will also use more aluminum in the body panels and suspension for weight savings.
Design of the S-Class will depart from the “gothic” styling towards a “contemporary appearance.” In other words, think the Mercedes CLS and F800 Concept had a child with a bolder grille, more defined lines, and a roofline with more pronounced curvature. Inside, Mercedes will incorporate more natural materials and a new multi-media screen.
Mercedes will offer five different bodies for the S-Class: SWB sedan, two LWB sedans including a extra long Pullman sedan, coupe (replacing CL), and convertible.
Powertrains for the S-Class will include a group of gas, diesels, and hybrid models. The transmission will be a new nine-speed automatic, an evolution of the current seven-speed auto.