Mercedes 2005 S-Class to Keep Rivals Honest
By Motoring Channel Staff - 30/05/2005
2005 Mercedes S-Class
17-inch alloy wheels and Bi-Xenon headlights
are standard features on the new 2005 S-Class
Slight price rises are made up
for with more standard features
Australia's leading luxury car importer, Mercedes-Benz, has
further enhanced standard equipment levels in its top-selling
flagship S-Class saloon.
With the release of 2005 model-year S-Class, now arriving
at Mercedes dealers across the country, rear television/DVD
screen, innovative 'Linguatronic' voice-operated control system,
Bi-xenon headlamps and remote control for COMAND (entertainment,
information and navigation system) have all been added to
the already impressive list of standard appointments across
the company's flagship model line-up.
A universal handy interface (UHI) mobile phone pre-installation
also joins the comprehensive standard equipment list for all
S-Class models and a new metallic paint finish, Flint Grey,
increases the colour choices for buyers.
Further to these additions, V6 and naturally aspirated V8
variants now come equipped with 17-inch light-alloy wheels
(225/55 R 17), replacing the 16-inch light-alloy wheels previously
standard on these models.
"The S-Class is a car for the truly influential,"
said Horst von Sanden, managing director of the Mercedes Australia,
"but in terms of passenger-car safety advances, it has
done more to influence the entire automotive industry than
almost any other car."
"The new model-year 2005 S-Class provides buyers in
the top-end luxury market with further reason to visit their
nearest Mercedes dealer," said von Sanden.
The model-year enhancements add up to $10,000 worth of additional
value in some cases, even after moderate price increases,
reflecting recent reductions in tariffs on imported vehicles.
To contribute to the extensive product improvements for model-year
2005 vehicles, prices have risen by $2,000 for V6 models and
$3,000 for the remainder of the range, except the S 65 AMG,
which remains unchanged.
Mercedes currently dominates the market for luxury cars in
Australia (vehicles priced above the luxury-tax threshold
of $57,009) with a market share of 35.4 per cent, according
to VFACTS, and is well above German rivals BMW (25.6 per cent)
and Audi (11.5 per cent) and the S-Class is no exception.
So far this year the company's flagship saloon, often described
as the best car in the world, has outsold its nearest competitor
two-to-one. Worldwide the Mercedes-Benz S-Class has been the
number one selling vehicle in the upper-luxury segment ever
year since its market launch in 1965.
In terms of passenger-car safety development, the S-Class
plays an outstanding role as a trendsetter for the entire
auto industry. Its pioneering advances in the area of passive
safety include the ABS anti-lock braking system, which made
its debut in the S-Class in 1978. In 1981, airbags and belt
tensioners were offered in this production series for the
first time. Groundbreaking concepts for dynamic handling such
as ASR, ESP and 'Airmatic' followed.
The latest 220 series S-Class includes more than 30 new developments,
for which a total of 340 patents have been registered. The
PRE-SAFE occupant protection system in particular, which recognises
potential accidents in advance and can activate preventive
protection measures, heralds a new era of vehicle safety.
The entire spectrum of unique features of the S-Class has
been honoured with numerous national and international awards.
'Linguatronic' is one of the most efficient assistance systems
used in todays vehicles. It allows voice-activated control
of the telephone, audio systems and navigation system. This
means that when using this system the driver does not need
to take his hands off the steering wheel or his eyes off the
The addition of this high-tech assistance system increases
safety and convenience for the S-Class driver. For a number
of driving tasks and other control tasks, Mercedes engineers
have developed intelligent assistance systems designed to
significantly reduce strain on the driver. The majority of
such innovations were pioneered in Mercedes-Benz vehicles
further proof of the trend-setting role of Mercedes-Benz
Today, Bi-xenon is a synonym for the best and most powerful
headlamp technology available. Bi-xenon means that the high-output
gas discharge lamps provide both low and main beam light.
In 1999 Mercedes-Benz became the first car brand to offer
Bi-xenon headlamps. These high-tech headlamps are now standard
on all S-Class models.
One xenon lamp is required for each light function: whilst
the full light beam is released for main beam illumination,
a slide is inserted between the lamp and the lens system when
the headlamps are switched to low beam, blocking out part
of the light beam. The Bi-xenon technology really comes into
its own on main beam, when it can demonstrate its outstanding
brightness and range, and particularly homogeneous road illumination.