Opulent Six Appeal
While wondering through the Mercedes-Benz showroom, most will certainly gravitate to a model they find appealing. From my experience, most of the ladies tend to gravitate towards the C or E-Class sedans, while the gents tend to gaze slightly slack-jawed at the G, GLE, or GTR that is quietly crouched in the corner…ready to pounce.
But they say that with age comes beauty and that is certainly the case as you come to the far end of the Mercedes-Benz spectrum. The 2018 S-Class sedan benefits from being 114 years in the making. It may not garner your attention right away, but once you find yourself on the open highway, minds and opinions will start to sway.
3 Levels of Indulgent Opulence
The S450 comes in three distinct versions; Low, High, and High Premium. The only difference between the High and High Premium is that the latter comes with the Chauffeur package and loads of sexy-soft Napa Leather.
There is still the plethora of making-life-easy technology onboard, most of which I didn’t have enough time to completely try out, but nonetheless am already familiar with. Some of the key features I found intriguing was that mobile phones can be charged without a charger through the 2 wireless charging platforms located in the front and rear armrests. And just how comfortable the rear seats are when you bring them into the 43.5 degree reclined position at the touch of a button.
Since this was the High Premium version, it came equipped with the Chauffeur package which allowed the front passenger seat to be electronically controlled from the seat in the back. Moving it forward gave the rear passenger just over 3 inches of extra leg room. Combine it with the electronic foot rest and reclining seats and long journeys feel more like time in a first class cabin of the A380.
Getting a better Six Life
As the driver, starting the engine and slowly pulling away from any location will be a disappointing issue, but only if you allow it to be.
As I mentioned, I was fortunate enough to get the High Premium version 4-Matic. It boasts the same twin-turbo 3.0 litre V6 as most of the current line-up, and will still provide you an extremely respectable 367-horse power to be at your disposal getting you from zero to 60mph in about five seconds.
There is a sport mode as one of the drive choices if you want to have a slightly more bang for your buck. But with the S450 there really isn’t any need. This is a Mercedes-Benz for drivers that prefer long hours of gently cruising as the engine hums away just above 2,000rpms. It was easy to sustain a average speed of 100mph on the Abu Dhabi – Al Ain Road without the lamentation of not having 8
or 12 cylinders blasting away.
You won’t notice the difference in engine prowess anyway once you sink into the seats and gently recline for the journey as Jeeves drives you home. Either way, you wont’ have to worry about it too much as the Intelligent Drive package is working quietly to keep everybody safe.
When it’s working, it is a bit disconcerting to be honest; especially the first few times you try
it. It centers you between the lines of the road and keeps you there; making the trip from Al Ain to Abu Dhabi far more enjoyable. What’s even more impressive is the Active Lane Change Assist, which will automatically change lanes for you by simply activating the turn signal.
The S450 may take a few signal blinks before it slides into the adjacent lane once it makes sure everything is clear, but by that time you’ve opened a bottle of water and found a new radio station.
Coming and Going
Once you become accustomed to everything the S450 has to offer, it really is the dream-liner that any flagship should be. In the opinion of this driver, if the automotive world is heading down the autonomous avenue in terms of getting you from one place to another, then they should all take a look at Mercedes-Benz, as the German engineers have certainly got a good head start in figuring it out.
The German giant hails the new S-Class as “the best car in the world”. Is it? I can’t be sure myself, as there are a lot of cars out there that I’ve never driven. But does it have enough opulence to be considered at the top of the list? Yes it does.
From my own personal experience, driving the S-Class has been one of the most effortless and pampering experiences in luxury I’ve even experienced. Perhaps because the new S-Class is the culmination of 114 years of doing just that. And now, the flagship comes with a spectacular six-cylinder engine.
Price as Tested: $139,940
Engine: 3.0-liter Bi-turbo V6
Horse power: 367
0-60mph: 5 seconds
Top Rivals: BMW 7 Series, Audi A8, Jaguar XJ, Lexus LS