2013 Mercedes-Benz S Class Photo

2013 Mercedes-Benz S Class - Review


out of 10
When it comes to flagship offerings from luxury automakers, the benchmark of the luxury class is generally considered to be the Mercedes-Benz S Class. Known for its refinement, understated elegance and pioneering safety innovations, the S Class is the full size luxury sedan against which all others are judged.

To be fair, the S Class lineup spans seven distinct models, ranging from the S350 BlueTEC 4MATIC diesel, to the S400 Hybrid to the performance variant, the S65 AMG. Whether you’re a captain of industry or the captain of an NFL football team, there’s likely an S Class model that meets your needs and expectations. Expect the range to grow even more complex with the upcoming refresh, due next year, as Mercedes-Benz will position the S Class to fill the void left by Maybach’s shuttering.

While all seven S Class models differ in powertrain details, all share the same tastefully-penned exterior. Organic in design, it’s not exactly cutting-edge, but it is more memorable than the exterior styling of the rival Lexus LS. Inside, the inviting cabin of the S Class, regardless of model selected, surrounds occupants with classic upscale touches like soft leather and rich wood trim.

The most affordable models (which begin at $93,255) will likely be of interest to those concerned with fuel economy. The range begins with S400 Hybrid, which delivers 25 mpg highway fuel economy while still clocking a 0-60 mph run of seven seconds. Next up is the S350 BlueTEC 4MATIC, which blends the fuel economy of its diesel engine (rated at 31 mpg highway) with the all-weather sensibility of Mercedes’ 4MATIC all-wheel-drive. At the opposite end of the spectrum, however, lies the S65 AMG, powered by a 621 horsepower, 6.0-liter V-12 that can get the big sedan from 0 - 60 mph in a mere 4.2 seconds.

In between these extremes lie more mainstream models, like the S 550 and the S 550 4MATIC, which likely make up the bulk of S Class sales in the United States. Regardless of which is best suited to your tastes, each comes with ample head and leg room for both front and rear-seat passengers, since all U.S. models are built on the long wheelbase platform. Ride quality is exceptional with either the base air suspension or the optional active suspension, yet the S Class never manages to wallow or feel numb behind the wheel.

Befitting of a flagship sedan, the S Class comes with an impressive array of standard or available equipment, including Active Body Control for a more composed ride; active multicontour front seats to aid in both comfort and cornering; a panoramic sunroof; a power rear sunshade; Keyless Go; parking guidance and a rearview camera.

If safety is a priority, the list of available features for the S Class includes things like an infrared night vision system, PreSafe braking (which works with the adaptive cruise control to automatically apply the brakes when a collision is detected) and mbrace emergency telematics to notify first responders if a crash is detected.
For a more complete look at the 2013 Mercedes-Benz S Class range, see our comprehensive review on The Car Connection.

Specs: Select a Trim

Style MSRP Invoice MPG City MPG Hwy
4-Door Sedan 4MATIC (2)
S350 BlueTEC Specs $93,000 $86,490 21 31
S550 Specs $98,000 $91,140 15 24
4-Door Sedan RWD (5)
S400 Hybrid Specs $92,350 $85,886 19 25
S550 Specs $95,000 $88,350 15 25
S600 Specs $160,300 $149,079 12 19
S63 AMG Specs $140,000 $130,200 15 23
S65 AMG Specs $212,000 $197,160 12 19
New Car Price Quotes
Update ZIP
We are committed to your privacy. By submitting this form you agree the phone number you provided may be used to contact you (including autodialed or pre-recorded calls). Consent is not a condition of purchase.

© 2014 MotorAuthority. All Rights Reserved. MotorAuthority is published by High Gear Media. Stock photography by izmo, Inc. Send us feedback.