2016 Mercedes-Benz S-Class

Performance


$58,508 - $125,820

2016 Mercedes-Benz S-Class Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2016 Mercedes-Benz S-Class was new.

Scorecard

Performance: 9.1

The 2016 Mercedes-Benz S-Class has a velvety smooth ride, potent engines, and a silky transmission, reviewers agree. They also appreciate that it has fairly nimble handling for a car of its size. Test drivers praise the S-Class' advanced suspension system for keeping the S-Class' ride incredibly smooth and comfortable over road imperfections. Fuel economy is just a bit below par for the class.

  • "Effortless. That's how the … Mercedes-Benz S-Class feels when you're behind the wheel." -- Edmunds
  • "Because of the extensive use of aluminum throughout its body, the 2016 Mercedes-Benz S-Class luxury sedan feels surprisingly light on its feet, especially given its rather ponderous size." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The S63 AMG coupe hauls ass while keeping yours comfortable, providing a driving experience engaging enough to distract you from the space program's worth of electronics on board." -- AutoWeek (2015)

Acceleration and Power

The 2016 Mercedes-Benz S550 comes with a twin-turbocharged 4.6-liter V8 engine that makes 455 horsepower. The EPA estimates that the 2016 S550 sedan gets 17/26 mpg city/highway, which is slightly below average for the class. The S600 is powered by a twin-turbocharged 6.0-liter V12 that makes 523 horsepower. Both trims come with a seven-speed automatic transmission.

The performance-oriented AMG S63 has a twin-turbocharged 5.5-liter V8 that makes 577 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque. The AMG S65 has a twin-turbocharged 6.0-liter V12 that produces 621 horsepower and 738 pound-feet of torque. A seven-speed automated manual transmission is standard in the AMG S63, and the AMG S65 has a seven-speed automatic. The AMG S63 sedan and coupe have a top speed of 186 mph and will accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 3.9 seconds, according Mercedes-Benz.

The S550's twin-turbocharged engine provides plenty of power for effortless acceleration. The AMG models offer blistering acceleration and a louder exhaust note. The S-Class' seven-speed automatic transmission offers silky, quick shifts.

  • "Even the base twin-turbocharged V8-equipped S550 is a powerful beast, capable of accelerating to 60 mph in less than five seconds. Mercedes-Benz's 7-speed automatic transmission is a model for all to follow, delivering seamless and instantaneous shifts." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The way the regular S550 gets up to speed is impressive. Acceleration from the turbo V8 is sports-car like, yet its noises are reduced to a whisper inside the cabin. The AMG models are less audibly subdued, and the way they even more quickly pile on the speed is all the more likely to get you into trouble with Johnny Law." -- Edmunds
  • "Power comes from the big daddy of German luxury motors: Mercedes' twin-turbocharged, 6.0-liter V-12 engine. It delivers that power like a swift-running stream - just a constant flow of output that you tap into whenever you're thirsty for some." -- Cars.com
  • "Delve deeply into the long accelerator-pedal travel and the S550 can blast around slower-moving traffic, creating opportunities even in short passing zones." -- Automobile Magazine (2014)

Alternative Fuels

The 2016 S550e Plug-in Hybrid has a twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 and an electric motor that together produce 436 horsepower. A seven-speed automatic transmission is standard. The EPA estimates that it has an electric range of 12 miles.

Handling and Braking

With its standard Airmatic adaptive suspension system, the S-Class delivers a smooth ride. The car can also be equipped with Magic Body Control, which uses a camera to scan the upcoming road for imperfections then adjusts the suspension accordingly. The feature delivers a supremely smooth ride over rough patches of road. The S-Class has somewhat light steering, but it handles well for its size. The 2016 Mercedes-Benz S-Class sedan comes standard with rear-wheel drive, and Mercedes' 4Matic all-wheel drive system is optional.

  • "The steering is fairly light, and when equipped with lane-keeping assist and/or Distronic Plus cruise control, it will even subtly steer the car for you. Still, you'll be surprised at how adeptly this very large sedan and coupe will hunker down and go around a corner." -- Edmunds
  • "The Airmatic cushion suspension features adaptive dampening that continually adjusts the car's suspension to deal with road surface variations, delivering a ride that is firm but never jarring." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "You can even drive the car over bumps and speed tables at a reasonable speed and the car just remains flat and level, so as not to disturb its well-heeled occupants." -- Cars.com
  • "For this incarnation of S-class perhaps more than any other, the question might better be, 'How does it ride?' From any of the seats fore and aft, the answer is a resounding 'Ahhhh-mazingly.'" -- AutoWeek (2014)

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