2009 Mercedes-Benz S-Class


$12,793 - $21,111

2009 Mercedes-Benz S-Class Interior Review

Note: This interior review was created when the 2009 Mercedes-Benz S-Class was new.


Interior: 8.8

The passenger cabin of the 2009 Mercedes Benz S-Class, reviewers say, is one of the most opulent available. Fine leather and wood give it an old-world luxury feel, while advanced electronics keep it up to date. A quirky driver interface detracts from the appeal in the minds of some reviewers, but it can be mastered with time.

  • "First-class materials and soft accent lighting create an elegant interior ambience that's as good as it gets. Ingot-solid structural integrity adds to the appeal." -- Consumer Guide
  • "Fit and finish is impeccable on Mercedes' flagship, and the materials quality is truly superb." -- Edmunds
  • "A plush and coddling interior holds four adults in true comfort (with a fifth being able to enjoy the ride in the back when necessary), especially if you specify the self-adjustable, heated and cooled, multicontour seats." -- Forbes
  • "A beautifully organized, visually exciting interior." -- Automotive.com


The seats of the 2009 Mercedes Benz S-Class are completely unique. Constructed of 11 adjustable pneumatic chambers, the seats can change shape in response to the car's movements, cradling the driver and passenger in place. The 14-way power-adjustable front seats are heated and cooled, and, optionally, offer four massage settings. The rear seats can be similarly equipped through an option package

  • "Dynamic multicontour seats have 11 air chambers that fill and deflate as you drive, which allows the seat to cradle your body in virtually any position. During aggressive driving, the side bolsters can automatically pump up and down in response to cornering forces to better hold you in place. These seats can also provide a soothing massage." -- Edmunds
  • In the rear, "Legroom is ample for two passengers, but seat width and a high floor tunnel preclude comfortable three-abreast travel. Foot space is restricted with the front seats set far back. Supportive seat offers optional heat and ventilation and power recline with an adjustable-length cushion." -- Consumer Guide
  • "The S-Class's seats are among the best available in any car - and that goes for the back as well as the front." -- Forbes
  • "By tracking the location of its passengers and the sun, the S550 can keep everyone comfortable by blowing more cool air on those sitting on the sunny side of the car." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The seats in the new Mercedes-Benz S-Class are a technological marvel unto themselves. Lumbar, shoulder, and sides can all be adjusted via the car's Command system, Mercedes-Benz's vehicle interface. Further, the side bolsters will inflate during heavy cornering to keep the occupants from sliding around." -- CNET


Interior Features

The passenger cabin of the S-Class is built of high-quality, luxurious materials and advanced electronics. Most climate and entertainment functions, including seat adjustment, are controlled through Mercedes' COMAND interface, a mouse-like device that uses menus on the navigation screen. Reviewers often say it's not intuitive, though the current generation is easier to use than previous editions. Most functions can be set to respond to voice commands, however.

  • "When it comes to usability, many find Mercedes' COMAND system quirky and unintuitive, although the current generation of the interface is easier to use than in the past. Another pet peeve is the S-Class' turn signal stalk, which is located down lower than on most cars and is somewhat inconvenient to reach." -- Edmunds
  • "Gauges are large and clear. Features and their related controls are in abundance; nearly all require some study to understand, and many divert the driver's attention. Most climate functions are handled by simple buttons, but the COMAND system absorbs too many audio controls, complicating their use. It also governs a daunting array of navigation, phone, seat, suspension, and cruise-control adjustments. Further, COMAND's response to inputs via the center console knob or dashboard buttons is frustratingly slow." -- Consumer Guide
  • "Understated elegance is the theme on the inside of the S-Class. Amber ambient lighting rings the front cabin." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Better yet, most features, such as the dual-zone automatic climate control and the audio system, can be controlled via hard buttons on the dash or on the steering wheel. If you absolutely refuse to lift a finger, many of the systems are also voice-activated." -- Motor Trend
  • "Supple leather covers not only the seats but also the doors and the instrument panel. Mercedes has finally abandoned its black plastic buttons for ribbed chrome. Cool mood lighting emanates from under the wood strip that wraps around the cabin." -- Automobile Magazine


The trunk of the S-Class offers 16.3 cubic feet of space, which is easily accessed. For 2009, a previously optional power trunklid is standard. Interior storage disappoints some reviewers - but note that it's a common complaint with German luxury sedans.

  • "Inside storage spots are numerous, if small, and the big trunk is a trip-friendly luggage swallower." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The trunk is large, usefully shaped, nicely finished, and includes an underfloor storage bin. Lid hinges dip into cargo area but are covered...No folding rear seatbacks or trunk pass-through is offered. Interior storage space is disappointingly meager." -- Consumer Guide

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