It's not every day that Mercedes rolls out a new S-Class, but when it does, Benz usually makes the most of it. Since revealing the latest W222-generation model just last year, the Silver Star automaker has revealed a steady stream of variants, including sedans, coupes and AMG models. You can bet there will be more to come, including Pullman and Maybach versions to make Mercedes' flagship model even more luxurious, but for some buyers there can be no greater luxury than safety. And for just such buyers, Mercedes has now revealed the new S600 Guard.

Joining the E-Guard, M-Guard and G500 Guard, the new S600 Guard offers what Mercedes claims are unprecedented levels of ballistic protection. Rather than buying an existing S-Class and sending it for retrofitting, the German automaker fits it with components made of aramide, polyethylene and a special steel compound right on the assembly line. It also gets polycarbonate-coated glass and underbody reinforcement to make the S600 Guard the first vehicle to meet the top VR9 level of ballistic certification against firearms and explosives.

Despite all the modifications, the S600 Guard is said to be virtually indistinguishable from a standard S-Class, and provides the same level of comfort you'd expect from the flagship Mercedes. The cabin can be configured in either four- or five-seat layouts, and in addition to all the usual luxuries, Mercedes has equipped the S600 Guard with opaque roller blinds, opaque roller blinds, a panic alarm system, automatic fire suppression system, emergency fresh air system and beefed-up hydraulic power windows.

The S600 Guard is powered by the same 6.0-liter twin-turbo V12 as the standard S600 with 523 horsepower and 612 pound-feet of torque channeled through a seven-speed automatic transmission. You can expect performance to be more lethargic due to the added weight, however, with the top speed electronically limited to 130 miles per hour. Mercedes also gives the armored sedan a recalibrated air suspension, larger brakes and Michelin PAX run-flat tires with tire pressure monitoring system.
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PREMIERE: THE NEW S 600 GUARD - SPECIAL PROTECTION TO THE HIGHEST STANDARDS

Stuttgart – Mercedes-Benz has updated its range of special protection models with the new S 600 Guard based on the new S-Class. The S 600 Guard provides all-round protection to the level of resistance class VR9 (both in transparent and non-transparent areas). With first-class comfort, an outstanding AIRMATIC suspension, a powerful V12 engine, intelligent driver assistance systems and unrestricted day-to-day suitability, the new flagship Guard model sets an unprecedented new standard in this segment, seamlessly continuing the long tradition of armoured special protection models from Mercedes-Benz.

With its Guard models, Mercedes-Benz has the world's widest range of special protection vehicles. The Mercedes-Benz Guard range currently has models from the S, E, M and G-Class. The latest member of the Guard family is the Mercedes-Benz S 600 Guard.

No weak spots – integrated special protection

The armouring of the S 600 Guard follows the principle of integrated protection based on many years of Mercedes-Benz experience in building special protection vehicles. The major advantages are:

- Outstanding strength and stability thanks to specific reinforcement of the base structure which is integrated into the bodyshell production stage.
- The high level of comfort is maintained by sophisticated integration and intelligent overlapping of all protective elements.

Already at the bodyshell stage, protective components of special steel are integrated into the cavities between the body structure and the outer skin. Special aramide and PE components provide additional splinter protection. Intelligent overlapping systems at particularly critical points ensure comprehensive ballistic protection.

The glass areas are an essential part of the protective concept. They are coated with polycarbonate on the inside for splinter protection, and have outstanding visual characteristics thanks to their laminated structure. Particular attention is devoted to the protective performance of the glass areas, with an appropriate choice of materials and thicknesses.

The interaction between all the components provides the occupants with a highly effective protective space which not only includes ballistic protection, but also comprehensive protection against explosive devices. The occupants are effectively protected by the armouring if a splintering explosive charge is fired at close range on either side.

With its sophisticated and strong protective system, the new S 600 Guard has immediately met all the personal protection requirements of the relevant authorities in Germany, and is the first vehicle to have been comprehensively certificated for highest ballistic protection in resistance class VR9 (according to BRV 2009, version 2).

Where explosive charges are concerned, the new S-Guard has demonstrated its protective capabilities by meeting the requirements of ERV2010 and the Federal Office of Criminal Investigation. Innovative underbody armouring almost entirely covers the underbody for the first time, a unique feature in the civilian special protection segment.

Discretion as a matter of course

Despite the extensive protective measures, the S 600 Guard is externally hardly distinguishable from the standard model. Its exterior has the same emphatic lines that already suggest power and dynamism when at standstill, the same striking design of the LED High Performance headlamps and the same LED rear light clusters. As the S 600 Guard is hardly recognisable as an armoured saloon, it meets a further important requirement for special protection vehicles: maximum discretion thanks to unobtrusiveness.

Protection without compromises

The S 600 Guard has a generously spacious interior. Like the flagship S-Class model, the S 600 Guard excels with exemplary headroom and elbow room in the rear, and is also in a class by itself in this segment in terms of comfort dimensions such as entry height and door apertures. In addition, for the first time and as the only car in this segment, the new S 600 Guard is available both as a 4-seater and as a fully-fledged 5-seater, and offers unrestricted day-to-day suitability by virtue of a 350-litre boot capacity and high payload.

Thanks to the intelligently integrated armouring, the Guard version retains the first-class ambience of the S-Class Saloon for its occupants, and meets the highest expectations with regard to perceived quality, appointments and comfort. The comfort features of the standard model, and especially its innovations, are also almost without exception available for the S-Guard. These include:
- The Chauffeur package, which has a chauffeur position for the front passenger seat, EASY ADJUST luxury head restraints for the driver and front passenger, folding and removable on the front passenger side, and footrests electrically extendable on the front passenger side.
- The Executive seat in the rear on the front passenger side has a legrest and cushionbag.
- The Rear PRE-SAFE® package with illuminated belt buckle extenders, PRE-SAFE® belt tensioners and beltbags for the outer rear seats, assisted closing for the doors and boot lid.
- The First-Class rear suite with a continuous Business console transforms the rear into a mobile office with two individual seats.
- Business telephony in the rear features a handset with touchscreen and a separate hands-free zone in the rear.
- The Warmth Comfort package pleasantly warms all surfaces with which the passengers come into contact.
- The AIR-BALANCE package, including ionisation, improved air filtering and fragrancing.

A rear reading lamp with newly developed LED lights is also optionally available for the S 600 Guard.

Twelve-cylinder powerpack

The S 600 Guard delivers superior performance thanks to its V12 petrol engine, which now generates 530 hp and therefore has even more pulling power than the engine of the preceding model. Thanks to 830 Nm of torque and the 7G-TRONIC automatic transmission, which is available with the V12 engine for the first time, the S-Guard combines lower fuel consumption with impressive acceleration for a rapid escape from the danger zone when under threat. For weight reasons the top speed is electronically limited to 130 mph.

Highly efficient air suspension

The S 600 Guard offers its passengers outstanding ride comfort and excellent driving dynamics. This is ensured by the AIRMATIC air suspension with variable damper control, as well as reinforced, redimensioned suspension components and adapted control functions such as ESP® or ASR to cope with the increased vehicle weight. The air springs at the front are reinforced, for example, and additional steel springs are used at the rear axle. As in the unarmoured S-Class, all-round level control also maintains a constant vehicle level irrespective of the payload in the S‑Guard. In the S 600 Guard it also compensates the reduced ground clearance caused by the underbody armour.

The brakes of the S-Guard are considerably larger than those of the standard model, so that the extra weight can be safely handled. Larger 6-piston brake callipers and significantly larger brake discs are used at the front axle, for example. The rear brakes are also of larger dimensions than on the standard model.

Standard equipment on the S 600 Guard includes Michelin PAX run-flat tyres with an additional tyre pressure monitoring system which allows an escape from the danger zone up to a distance of 19 miles even with damaged tyres.

Intelligent assistance systems

The S 600 Guard is also equipped with the latest technical innovations that make the Mercedes-Benz S-Class a shining example of passenger car development in general and the world's best-selling luxury saloon. As part of Intelligent Drive, these optionally include assistance systems which considerably enhance comfort and safety.

The following options are available:
- the Driver Assistance package PLUS – this includes the assistance systems DISTRONIC PLUS with Stop&Go Pilot, BAS PLUS Brake, Active Blind Spot Assist and Active Lane Keeping Assist, PRE-SAFE® Brake with pedestrian recognition and ESP®, and an electric parking brake.
- Night View Assist Plus
- LED Intelligent Light System
- 360° camera

Guard-specific equipment for more comfort and safety

In addition Mercedes-Benz offers further optional extras which were specifically developed for the S-Guard. These include:
- opaque roller blinds all-round in the rear
- heated windscreen and side windows
- easily operated panic alarm system
- fire extinguisher system with automatic activation
- emergency fresh air system protecting occupants from the ingress of smoke or irritant gases
- hydraulic power for the heavy side windows
- gimbal LED reading lamps in the rear
- special cooling compartment in the rear

As in the case of standard production models, the full manufacturer's warranty also applies to the S 600 Guard and the other models in the Guard family. All the Mercedes-Benz service outlets worldwide are also able to service, maintain or carry out any necessary repairs for the Guard models.

The Guard family

The Mercedes-Benz Guard range currently has models from the S, E, M and G-Class. Mercedes-Benz offers the most extensive range of special protection vehicles, with a total of nine models.

Mercedes-Benz E-Guard

The Mercedes-Benz E-Guard models are available in three engine variants. With a six-cylinder diesel engine in the E 350 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY Guard, a V6 petrol engine in the E 350 Guard and a 5.5.-litre V8 in the E 500 Guard. All E-Guard models provide high protection in resistance class VR4 (according to BRV 2009).

Mercedes-Benz G 500 Guard

The Mercedes-Benz G-Class is also available in a special-protection version. The G 500 Guard is equipped with a 5.5-litre V8 engine and highest protection to VR6 or VR7 (according to BRV 2009).

Mercedes-Benz M-Guard

The M-Guard is available as the ML 350 BlueTEC with a V6 diesel engine and as the ML 500 with a powerful V8 petrol engine. 4MATIC permanent all-wheel drive is obligatory for these models, ensuring maximum traction and enhanced handling stability. As a special protection vehicle, the M-Guard with its integrated protective components meets all the requirements for resistance class VR7 (according to BRV 2009).

Further information: Protection classes

High-Protection vehicles engineered to the VR4 protection level resist large-calibre revolver ammunition and offer particularly good protection against the increasing threat of drug-related and violent street crime.

Highest-Protection vehicles engineered to protection level VR6/VR7/VR9 provide effective protection against the threat posed by terrorist attacks. Their armour is designed to resist rifle-fire from military weapons, which has a velocity almost twice that of handgun bullets. They also offer resistance to splinters from hand-grenades and explosive charges.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 11 Comments
      Andrei
      • 4 Months Ago
      Opaque roller blinds AND opaque roller blinds?! Now that's a deal!
        Dan
        • 4 Months Ago
        @Andrei

        So, I'm unclear.  Does the S600 come with opaque roller blinds?

      rattlcan
      • 4 Months Ago
      the thick window bezel backmasking gives it away. tiny windows=ballistic glass.
      bleexeo
      • 4 Months Ago
      Pretty impressive that they finally made it up to VR9 level.
      elanjacobs
      • 4 Months Ago

      Polycarbonate coated glass? Surely it's polycarbonate INSTEAD OF glass.

      11fiveoh
      • 4 Months Ago
      I'd honestly like a go at driving this. I imagine it'd be like a tank with leather seats.
        Dan
        • 4 Months Ago
        @11fiveoh

        You know, unlike a standard S600.

      Hernan
      • 4 Months Ago
      Red Reddington's new ride.
      Petrol
      • 4 Months Ago

      Problem is, if I'd like to purchase this for individual and private (enthusiast reasons), I'd be put on watch-lists, black lists and all sorts of totalitarian lists.

      Winnie Jenkems
      • 4 Months Ago

      Too bad it still has that ugly plastic Distronic shield stuck on the grille. That looks horrendous and sticks out like a sore thumb. I'd expect Mercedes to engineer a better solution than that by now. Hide it in the lower front fascia like Audi does, or find some way to incorporate it into the glass. I don't want an ugly plastic plate on the front of my $100K+++ car.