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Next-Gen Mercedes-Benz S-Class Glimpse Mixes Traditional Styling With New

2020 05 25 Screenshot Meet Mercedes DIGITAL 03 25 jpg Mercedes-Benz S-Class | Manufacturer image

In a 19-minute episode of a new online video series, Mercedes-Benz offered the first glimpse of its next-generation S-Class, a car long venerated as a luxury benchmark. If the image is any indication, the redesign will mix elements from Mercedes’ other sedans with longstanding S-Class cues.

Related: 2021 Mercedes-Benz E-Class’ Touch-Sensitive Steering Wheel Could be a Touchy Subject

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2020 Mercedes-Benz S-Class 4MATIC
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2020 Mercedes-Benz S-Class 4MATIC
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The image shows the S-Class’ nose, with piped headlight accents in a checkmark pattern similar to the lighting on the A-Class, CLA-Class, CLS-Class and E-Class, among others. But instead of those cars’ upright, pinched grilles, the S-Class retains a taller unit that appears less upright, inasmuch as can be gleaned from the image. It also keeps Mercedes’ traditional hood ornament, a feature most U.S. models have dropped in favor of a sprawling in-grille star.

Below the grille is a continuous bumper opening that spans the width of the nose, fanning out similarly — though not as dramatically — as the kayak-paddle expression on Mercedes’ other models. Such treatment often changes depending on cosmetic packages or drivetrains, so the bumper arrangement may vary considerably depending what you buy.

So when exactly can you buy the next S-Class? Probably not for some time yet. A U.S. spokesperson for Mercedes-Benz didn’t immediately respond when asked about stateside timing, but Ola Källenius, chairman at the German brand’s parent automaker, Daimler AG, said in the video that the new S-Class is launching “in the second half of the year.”

Promising a “technological tour de force,” Källenius said the S-Class is “really where we put our brightest minds and most creative people into inventing what the technologies of the future are really going to be.” Adding that he’d recently driven a pre-production example on a high-speed autobahn loop, Källenius touted the car’s high-speed stability.

The S-Class will also have an electric sibling, the EQS, in 2021, Källenius said. Mercedes will build both models near Stuttgart, Germany.

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The current S-Class has roamed America’s well-manicured neighborhoods since the 2014 model year, and Mercedes’ video signals the 2020 model year might be its last. For a nameplate known for technological leaps — some 20 years ago, the S-Class was among the first cars to offer adaptive cruise control — the redesign should herald a slew of new multimedia and driver-assist technologies for Mercedes-Benz, a brand leapfrogged of late on the latter front. As of yet, no Mercedes in the U.S. offers hands-free steering, something BMW and Cadillac now offer. And no U.S. production car, Mercedes or otherwise, has ventured into situational attention-free driving ever since local regulations sank Audi’s efforts to introduce such capability in the A8. Will the S-Class break either mold? Wait and see.’s Editorial department is your source for automotive news and reviews. In line with’s long-standing ethics policy, editors and reviewers don’t accept gifts or free trips from automakers. The Editorial department is independent of’s advertising, sales and sponsored content departments.

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Former Assistant Managing Editor-News Kelsey Mays likes quality, reliability, safety and practicality. But he also likes a fair price. Email Kelsey Mays

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