Mercedes Benz At The International Motor Show - The S 600 | Part Two

12 cylinders: increased output and high-tech equipment as standard for the S 600

Sports car-like performance is offered by the flagship model of the new S-Class, the S 600. With its enhanced Mercedes 12-cylinder engine, with an output that has been boosted to 517 hp, the saloon can accelerate from zero to 62 mph in 4.6 seconds. Compared to the predecessor model, the engine’s maximum torque has been increased from 800 to 830 Nm, which is available from 1,900 rpm. Despite the increase in power, the car’s fuel consumption has been improved by one mpg to 20 mpg. The V12 model is equipped with the very best technology as standard, including Active Body Control.

Dimensions: more spacious car body for even greater comfort

Compared to its predecessor, the brand’s new top model has grown in every dimension. Two different body shells are available, measuring either 5,076 or 5,206 millimetres in length, which represents increases of 33 and 43 mm over the former S-Class. Likewise, the wheelbase has been increased by 70 and 80 mm to 3,035 and 3,165 mm, respectively. In addition, the body shell is now 16 mm wider and 29 mm higher than that of its predecessor.

The new dimensions create the conditions for an interior layout that provides every passenger with first-class comfort. Interior parameters such as shoulder room and elbow width have increased by up to 39 mm, while headroom has been further improved by up to 5 mm. The effective legroom, which is a key factor for determining seating comfort, has been increased by 5 mm at the driver’s and front passenger’s seats, and by 24 mm for rear-seat passengers. In the long wheelbase version, rear-seat legroom has grown by 52 mm. The boot capacity has meanwhile increased by 60 litres to 560 litres (VDA measuring method).

Interior: harmonious blend of colours, shapes and functions

Exquisite fine wood and chrome trim, stylishly shaped aluminium controls and carefully coordinated colours provide the interior with an incomparable ambience in which drivers immediately feel at home and know their way about. Contributing to this user-friendly environment is the all-new operating concept, which was purposely designed with a number of redundant features in order to allow the driver to quickly access frequently used functions. Depending on the driver’s habits, he or she can operate the car radio, TV receiver, CD/DVD changer, car phone, navigation system and climate control by either turning conventional switches, pushing buttons on the multifunctional steering wheel, or using the enhanced COMAND system.

The chief control element is the new COMAND Controller on the transmission tunnel. It is used to select the COMAND system’s main and sub-menus and to activate the desired functions. If the car comes with a pre-installed car phone, the soft armrest behind the Controller can be opened to reveal the phone’s keypad. The COMAND system’s large, rotatable colour display is positioned at the same height as the instrument cluster and is therefore more in the fields of vision of the driver and front passenger alike.

With its world premiere at the International Motor Show (IAA), the new S-Class will succeed the predecessor model, which won numerous awards as the world’s best car. This top-of-the-line Mercedes Benz remained the world’s best selling upper-range saloon even in the last year of its production run.

continues... | Part Three
Published 9 September 2005 Melanie Carter

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