We're set to record Autoblog Podcast #325 tonight, and you can drop us your questions and comments via our Q&A module below. Subscribe to the Autoblog Podcast in iTunes if you haven't already done so, and if you want to take it all in live, tune in to our UStream (audio only) channel at 10:00 PM Eastern tonight.
We've seen some rather unfortunately garish chrome-jobs in our day, and yes, some have even ladled on the shiny stuff in gold. Many of those have also been Mercedes-Benz vehicles. But while we've come to expect that kind of bling from owners with cash coming out of their Ferragamo shoes, we didn't expect the same treatment to be carried out by Mercedes-Benz itself on its own vehicles.
The current Mercedes-Benz S-Class has grown a bit long-in-the-tooth, but a new model is expected to change that shortly. Slated to arrive for 2013, the next S-Class will return to the fray with some very powerful competition to measure itself against; namely the recently re-engineered Audi A8 and the always potent BMW 7-Series.
The S-Class is one of the flagship models from German luxury car maker Mercedes-Benz. We'd expect to see such a model packing a monstrous V12, a stout V10 or perhaps even a twin turbo'd V8, but never in our wildest dreams could we have imagined that Mercedes would drop a four banger in between the fenders of such a beast. In fact, during the 60-year existence of the S-Class, no four-cylinder mill has ever found a home in its engine bay. That is, until now.
Europe's Mercedes-Benz S 320 CDI BlueEfficiency began this year as the most frugal S-Class available. With 235 horsepower and 398 pound-feet of torque, 31 mpg, and S-Class luxury, it's a fine runner if you want to have it all without grenading your treehugging credentials. But hang on – new reports are now popping up suggesting that Mercedes will soon up the frugal luxury stakes with a new S 250 CDI BlueEfficiency – the first S-Class with a four-cylinder engine.
Say you have a Mercedes-Benz W140 S-Class from two generations ago, but you really want is a Mercedes W221, the current generation car. Well, what else is an individualistic plutocrat to do other than give a willing tuner an unknown (and seemingly substantial) quantity of cash to make a few changes?
The current Mercedes S-Class is getting the nip/tuck treatment, and when the newer, younger looking car arrives in mid-2009 -- as a 2010 model -- it will come with an Audi-esque band of LED daytime running lights below the headlamps, and a Porsche-esque band of LEDs in the lower front fascia. Out back, the rear lamps get a much slicker treatment in basic red and white. And for the interior, SPLITVIEW will make it's split-personality entrance so that passengers can watch movies without being dist
If you'd suspected that Mercedes' F700 show car was a preview of cues we'd soon see on production cars, there's a Schulte Design rendering to bolster your theory. The current S-Class debuted in 2005, so we won't see its replacement for a couple of years, but there's already lots of development underway. The new sheetmetal will be a full redesign, not a freshening, and the rendering depicts a car that takes inspiration from the F700, but tones the cues down a bit. The shape of the front end is ve