NEW FOR 2008:

– New S450 4MATIC short-wheelbase model
– New S63 AMG model
– S550 only available in 4MATIC all-wheel drive; 19-inch wheels with performance tires and tire pressure monitoring system added
– S600 adds rear seat memory and 19-inch twin-spoke wheels
– S65 AMG adds climate comfort rear seats
– Auxiliary audio and video input and SIRIUS Satellite radio added to all models

Completely redesigned in 2007, the Mercedes-Benz S-Class adds two new models for 2008: the S450, a short-wheelbase model equipped similarly to the S550, and the new S63 AMG, which slips in under the S65 AMG.

Each of the S-Class models has a specific drivetrain. The S450 4MATIC uses a 4.6-litre V8 with seven-speed automatic; the S550 4MATIC uses a 5.5-litre V8 with seven-speed automatic; the S600 is a turbocharged 5.5-litre V12 with five-speed automatic; the S63 AMG is a 6.2-litre V8 with seven-speed automatic; and the S65 AMG uses a 6.0-litre bi-turbo V12 with five-speed automatic.

The 4MATIC versions feature 45/55 front/rear torque bias, with model-specific suspension, steering, brakes and stability control program.

Features on the S450 and S550 models include automatic climate control, 12-way heated front seats with three-position memory, ambient lighting, anti-theft alarm system with tow-away protection, matte Burl Walnut wood trim, Bluetooth telephone preparation, COMAND system with navigation system, PCMCIA interface and voice control, cruise control, electric parking brake, Harman/Kardon LOGIC7 surround sound system with SIRIUS Satellite Radio, heated steering wheel, garage door opener, easy-entry function, door-hold system, pneumatic rear headrests, power rear sunshade, power tilt and telescopic column with three-position memory, TeleAid emergency calling system, active bi-Xenon headlamps with washers and cornering lights, Airmatic suspension with adaptive damping system, auto-dimming mirrors, power-folding heated mirrors with integrated turn signals, parameter steering, Parktronic parking assist, power sunroof, power-assisted soft-closure trunk, SmartKey with panic button, tinted infrared-reflecting glass, tire pressure monitoring system and two-stage rain-sensing wipers with heated washer system. The S450 uses 18-inch alloy wheels, while the S550 uses 19-inch wheels.

The S600 adds 19-inch wheels, high-gloss Burl Walnut wood trim, Alcantara headliner, Drive-Dynamic multi-contour front seats with massage function, leather and Burl Walnut steering wheel, rear climate control, active body control and panoramic sunroof.

The S63 AMG adds 20-inch AMG wheels, high-gloss Burl Walnut wood trim, wheel-mounted shift paddles, multi-contour front seats, and power sunroof.

The S65 AMG adds front and rear climate comfort perforated leather seats with Drive-Dynamic multi-contour front seats with massage function, rearview camera and Keyless Go.

With the addition of the S450, the S-Class line-up returns to the two-wheelbase configuration that it temporarily dropped for 2007. All models are beautifully styled along the lines of the stunning CLS, and feature beautiful interiors, powerful engines and a host of active and passive safety features.

Hard-core fans will still prefer the S65 AMG’s raw power, but the new S63 AMG is considerably less, and at quick glance it can be hard to tell them apart. While those who need extra space for rear-seat passengers will enjoy the S550 and S600’s massive legroom, the S450 now presents all of the line’s luxury and performance in a more driver-oriented vehicle.

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