Mercedes-Benz released images and details of the next-generation S-Class on Monday. Two of the engines available at launch this fall will be a new 382-hp V8 in the S500 and a V12 producing 512 hp in the S600. The S-Class will also be available with the world's first 7-speed automatic transmission, as well as advanced safety features like Brake Assist PLUS and Distronic PLUS that together monitor vehicle distance and can actively apply brake pressure in potentially dangerous situations. More pictures at the link.
There?s also an infrared night-vision system that can scan the road ahead and display a high-res B&W image in the instrument cluster. Techno-gadgets aside, the new design of the S-Class is certainly evolutionary with fender creases being perhaps the largest departure from the smooth design of the current S-Class. Though we?re sure there?ll be debate on the new design, we?d say Mercedes has maintained the identity of the S-Class while offering customers a design that deserves to be called fresh. We?re somewhat relieved, however, that the schnoz adorning the front of the SLR McLaren and SLK didn?t end up on the leading edge of Mercedes-Benz?s most stately sedan. GermanCarFans.com has the press release.