The eagerly anticipated next-generation Mercedes-Benz S-Class luxury flagship sedan, bearing the internal designation "W222", will reach dealerships by the end of the year, bringing a new more-simplistic, cleaner design and a suite of world-first advanced active safety features.
Captured here during on-road testing completely devoid of camouflage, as well as in some official interior shots from Mercedes, the S-Class does away with the bulbous pontoon-like fender flares of the current 2013 model. We see shades of the new compact CLA in the car's multiple arcing side body character lines, and full LED headlamps and taillamps for a high-tech look.
Power will come from the familiar naturally aspirated V8 and V12 engine choices, with AMG models getting turbocharged V8s and V12s. A hybrid model will return, with rumors pointing to a Mercedes-first diesel-electric hybrid. The conventional turbodiesel BlueTec model may not make U.S. shores.
Mercedes will bring its next-generation PRE-SAFE tech to S-Class, a comprehensive suite of active safety and driving aid technologies designed to correct for the small errors we all make behind the wheel from time to time. That means Distronic Plus adaptive cruise control with semi-autonomous following at speeds of up to 124 mph, plus Active Lane-Keeping Assist, Attention Assist, Active Parking Assist, and Brake Assist Plus, all made possible by a complex 360-degree array of cameras and sensors.
The 2014 Mercedes-Benz S-Class is expected in dealerships right around the end of 2013 for the 2014 model year. Pricing is expected to rise just slightly from the current model, which starts at $92,255.