The new Mercedes has a built-in SPA and sci-fi satellite navigation arrows that float in the air
YOU might see a blacked out Mercedes S-Class and wonder who’s inside. Well i can assure you it’s not as exciting as what’s this inside.
I tried a high-end version of this luxury engine, and it’s like driving a car from the future.
From the outside, the S350d L AMG Premium Plus Executive is a sleek, graceful and road-hungry Mercedes. Nothing new there.
It goes like crazy, thanks to a powerful 3.0-liter six-cylinder diesel engine capable of 286 horsepower.
This gives you a top speed of 155mph and manages from zero to 60mph in 6.4 seconds. Very fast for a 17.5ft juggernaut.
Of course, it’s designed to put VIPs in the back and get them somewhere very quickly – on German roads designed for cars that go even faster.
It’s an automatic transmission with a nine-speed transmission, and it’s as smooth as you might expect.
Of course, this is a Mercedes so nothing here is surprising.
What shocked me was the extent of the technology on board.
It’s like they’ve built a car that they wanted to present to James Bond.
The first thing you notice is the gorgeous 12.8-inch OLED touchscreen (it’s almost certainly better screen tech than your TV, and is found on leading iPhones).
There’s also a 12.3-inch driver screen and a removable tablet on the back to boot.
The main screen is huge and the Mercedes infotainment system is extremely easy to navigate. Attractive too.
It’s important to note that even if you hated it (which you won’t), you still have Apple CarPlay, which essentially turns the entire system into an iPhone – with all your apps, music, and more. ready to use.
So far completely normal, but all of a sudden you start to notice all the wonderful and crazy features that Mercedes has built.
When you set up the car, you can add a fingerprint.
This allows you and others to connect with the touch of the scanner, automatically switching to your preferred settings for seating, heating and more.
On biometrics, there is also a facial recognition system to monitor drowsiness. It’s an extremely comfortable car – but napping at 70 mph is still a really bad idea.
That said, there is a sort of “sleep mode” for the offside rear passenger.
With the push of a button, the front seat folds down to maximize legroom, so you can really stretch out and close your eyes.
And there’s a panoramic sunroof, side and rear window sun shades, and a fairly long cabin that can lower your back into complete darkness.
Sit back, relax
I have never wanted to be a passenger on a long road trip as much as I did in this car.
There is ambient lighting throughout, the color of which can be adjusted in seconds via the main screen.
And for the real lazy, there is a voice control feature that lets you control the car’s features without the touch of a button.
I first found out that “Hey Mercedes, open the sunroof” was working inside the Blackwall tunnel. It was disgusting, but quite brilliant.
There is four-zone climate control so everyone can enjoy their own specific temperatures.
The seats are also air conditioned, so you can heat or cool them to different levels.
And a massage function lets you massage yourself quickly as you travel between important meetings.
One particularly odd feature was the Energizing Mode, which occasionally hinted at itself via the screen.
It’s a 10-minute program that uses various seating and climate functions, paired with soothing sound and zen on-screen animation to invigorate you.
I don’t really understand it, but I’m very glad it exists.
This car is essentially a rolling spa.
The seats are electrically adjustable and move to almost any angle you want.
Most excitingly, they are controlled by a single large, chair-shaped touch button. It’s very intuitive and a lot of fun to use.
The armrests in the front and rear doors are heated, and there are deluxe headrests that are definitely more comfortable than the pillows on my bed. It’s a pink revolution.
Mercedes has designed an easy-access system for the car, with doors that unlock when you walk in with the key on you.
You can tell when this is happening because the handles come out of their sit-flush position. Beautiful and scary – just like I love my cars.
And when you turn on the car, the headlights do a weird, haunting dance that lets everyone know you’re driving a £ 100,000 Mercedes.
The cabin itself is extremely quiet, in part thanks to the low noise tires with foam absorbers.
But if you want to wake up, the car sound is fantastic.
It’s a brilliant Burmester 3D surround sound system that will blow your mind.
But it also sounds rich and satisfying at low volume – probably playing a bit of Wagner while cruising the freeway to your next business venture, or something like that.
There is no shortage of driving assistance functions.
You have 360 degree parking sensors, including an absolutely stunning 3D view that lets you turn around the car and see your whole surroundings in any direction.
There’s adaptive cruise control, lane assist, and blind spot warnings.
And there’s even a view of the traffic lights, so if you’re too close to the lights to see them changing, you can get a camera facing upwards to show you what’s going on.
A HUD is projected onto the road for the driver, showing the all-important speedo – and perhaps more importantly, the speed limit.
But it also has an augmented reality navigation system that projects arrows on the road ahead. Yes, like a video game.
Oh, and it has USB ports and wireless charging. Nothing was missed.
It’s hard to imagine what else Mercedes could put in this car without going into the realm of ridicule. A fridge maybe, or a former special ops bodyguard.
Almost everything you would need in a car is covered – and a few extras.
Every few minutes I accidentally found a new feature and my mind was blown away.
Children usually say they want to be a fighter pilot or an astronaut when they grow up.
Really, they should say they want to own a Mercedes S350d AMG Premium Plus Executive.
It’s certainly more comfortable than an F15 or a trip to the International Space Station.
A little cheaper too …
We tested the Mercedes S350d L AMG Line Premium Plus Executive, with a road price of £ 99,490. The series starts at £ 78,705.
All prices shown in this article were correct at the time of writing, but may have since changed. Always do your own research before making a purchase.
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