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EXCLUSIVE: Next-gen S-Class to go all-hybrid in U.S., save AMG variants

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Filed under: Hybrid, Sedan, Technology, Mercedes-Benz, Luxury

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2010 Mercedes-Benz S400 Hybrid - Click above for high-res image gallery

According to an Autoblog source close to the project, Mercedes-Benz will go all-hybrid with its next-generation S-Class lineup in America - with the exception of enthusiast-oriented AMG models. The plutocrat cruiser is expected to roll up in 2012, and it is understood that gas-only S-Class models will be the exclusive preserve of the company's performance arm - the German automaker is not talking about offering both regular and hybrid variants of the same model, at least in the States.

Presently, Daimler only offers a single gasoline-electric variant of its W221 S-Class - the S400 hybrid (the range's price leader at $87,950), and it incorporates a 3.5-liter V6 with a mild hybrid assist system for 295 horsepower and 26 miles-per-gallon on the freeway. Other models in current S-Class lineup all have more cylinders and power, including the 382-hp 5.5-liter V8 of the S550 and the twin-turbo 5.5-liter V12 of the S600. It is not immediately clear if company engineers plan to downsize the internal-combustion side of the next S' powertrain equation as a result of the all gas-electric strategy. While we expect Mercedes will offer a range of CDI diesel models in European market, no such model is apparently planned for the States at this time.

While the Daimler board has yet to sign-off on this plan, it appears to be all but certain. Interestingly, our contact indicates that S400 sales are going swimmingly in the States - particularly among Hollywood's green-minded glitterati, a contingent that our source maintains is abandoning their Priuses at a furious rate now that the model has become "something of a pariah" due to Toyota's recent troubles.


EXCLUSIVE: Next-gen S-Class to go all-hybrid in U.S., save AMG variants originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 25 Mar 2010 13:32:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Would this be a response to GM and the XTS? So SMK, how much with the S-Class fall in sales with their all hybrid offerings?

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This seems like suicide to me... I certainly wouldn't drive a car with that powertrain.

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I realize the S-class is a big car... but so are the Lucerne V8 and Avalon V6.... and they can make those highway numbers and similar power without needing battery backup.

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I realize the S-class is a big car... but so are the Lucerne V8 and Avalon V6.... and they can make those highway numbers and similar power without needing battery backup.

True, but S-classes are probably 1000lbs heavier. Serious heft. They should offer the diesels in the US again, haven't had a diesel S-class here since the W126, IIRC.

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True, but S-classes are probably 1000lbs heavier. Serious heft. They should offer the diesels in the US again, haven't had a diesel S-class here since the W126, IIRC.

S400 is only 390lbs more than a Lucerne Super, and the Lucerne still only has a 4-speed, and will do well above it's EPA 22mpg highway. I hate to use Hyundai as an example here, but the Genesis V8 gets 25mpg with 375hp and is only 290lbs less than the S400.

You're right about the Avalon... apparently that bloated look it has is from being filled with air. It has the same listed weight as the V6 Camry.

So... what's the point of the Hybrid again?

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S400 is only 390lbs more than a Lucerne Super, and the Lucerne still only has a 4-speed, and will do well above it's EPA 22mpg highway. I hate to use Hyundai as an example here, but the Genesis V8 gets 25mpg with 375hp and is only 290lbs less than the S400.

Interesting..didn't realize the current S class was so light...the W140 in the '90s was over 5000lbs.

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waitwaitwait - is the above saying that the S-class (AMG aside) is going ALL V-6, or that hybrid systems will be applied to the V8 & V-12 ??

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waitwaitwait - is the above saying that the S-class (AMG aside) is going ALL V-6, or that hybrid systems will be applied to the V8 & V-12 ??

I suppose we won't know until more info is released. I suspect they will offer a hybrid V8..I can't imagine them not offering a V8, considering the 7-series, LS, and A8 all are...

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I realize the S-class is a big car... but so are the Lucerne V8 and Avalon V6.... and they can make those highway numbers and similar power without needing battery backup.

Huh?

Lucerne V8, 3998 lbs: 15/22 MPG and 292 hp

S400 Hybrid, 4390 lbs: 19/26 MPG and 295 hp

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This seems like suicide to me... I certainly wouldn't drive a car with that powertrain.

Why? What's wrong with capturing waste energy and converting that into extra electric assist? Apart from cost, which I don't think the average S-class buyer cares about, you get more power and lower fuel consumption.

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