Mercedes-Benz reveals redesigned S-Class luxury car, adding augmented reality windshield, ‘evasive steering’

Mercedes-Benz is Giving its Most Luxurious Sedan a Total Makeover

Daimler, the German automaker that owns the brand, revealed the redesigned 2021 Mercedes S-Class on Wednesday.

It’s bigger, more spacious, and it has substantial new tech upgrades, including emergency steering assistance and an augmented reality system that displays turning directions on the windshield. USA TODAY reported in 2019 that automakers were pursuing augmented reality systems for windshield projection.

The company did not reveal pricing for the new S-Class, but starting prices for the 2020 model range from about $94,000 for the base version to more than $152,000 for the most luxurious version, according to car-research site Edmunds.

The 2021 S-Class is set to hit U.S. dealerships in the first half of 2021.

 

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The base model, the S500 4Matic, comes with a 3-liter, 6-cylinder engine that gets 429 horsepower. The premium version, the S580 4Matic, comes with a 4-liter, 8-cylinder twin-turbocharged engine that gets 496 horsepower.

Known for its sumptuous interior and advanced driver assistance technologies, the S-Class traces its heritage back to the model 220, which debuted in 1951. The S-Class nameplate itself debuted in 1972.

“With the latest generation we want to offer our customers innovation, safety, comfort and quality as never before,” Daimler chairman Ola Källenius said in a statement.

Features on the 2021 model include:

• Slightly longer, wider and taller body style, with a 2-inch longer wheelbase, enabling additional elbow room and headroom on the interior. Making the S-Class larger fits with a trend in which vehicles across the automotive industry are generally getting larger.

• Over-the-air software update capability. This enables remote upgrades to everything from the infotainment system to the driver assistance technology. Tesla popularized over-the-air updates, nudging competitors to follow.

• Thirty loudspeakers in a Burmester surround sound system.

• Massaging seats capable of performing 10 different programs.

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• A new suspension system capable of immediately raising the vehicle body by up to three inches within “a few tenths of a second” when the car is threatened with a side collision.

• An augmented reality system that displays animated arrows onto the windshield, corresponding to a monitor with a 77-inch diagonal screen.

• A large portrait-style screen on the center console with haptic feedback.

• A voice assistant that responds to the call, “Hey Mercedes,” to activate features like seat heating and vehicle navigation. The system can recognize vehicle occupants by their voices to personalize data and functions.

• An advanced vehicle assistance system, including “evasive steering assist,” which will help the car avoid walking pedestrians or stationary objects at speeds of up to 67 miles per hour. The S-Class was already capable of steering, braking and accelerating the vehicle in certain situations, much like various systems available on Tesla, Cadillac and Nissan vehicles.

• Automatic sign recognition technology, which will trigger warnings when the driver is fastly approaching a stop sign or red traffic light with no signs of slowing down.

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