Biggest. Best. Better than the rest! That’s the mantra that has always surrounded the Mercedes-Benz S-Class. While there are indeed likely luxury cars more superlative than the 2022 S580 4Matic sedan, we think the evolution continues to keep the luxury sedan a sense of occasion.
Priced at $131,785 our S580 tester was well optioned in Diamond White paint with a black leather interior. It had niceties like the ambient lighting package, warmth and comfort package and outside the AMG and Night styling packages.
With 21-inch AMG wheels and the aforementioned styling, it makes a statement in a way that speaks with authority but doesn’t shout. Styling is traditional evolutionary Mercedes-Benz with a conservative set of lines updated with some new angles and details. It looks familiar and new at the same time.
Inside it received a redesigned dash and interior trappings. Most notable is that they moved on from the single slab of glass instrument cluster and infotainment panel that graced everything from an A-Class to the Sprinter vans.
Instead there is a single panel for the instrument cluster and a separate portrait style center screen for infotainment that floats independently over the center console. It’s a much more bespoke look and the center screen is easier to read and reach.
Quality of switch gear, comfort and technology inside is top of class as you would expect. The look and feel, the livability and quiet are all fitting of its place in the brand’s top drawer offering.
Under the hood is a 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V8 with mild hybrid EQ Boost. Mated to a 9-speed automatic transmission the power comes out to 496 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque. Under full throttle it bursts with a low growl and pushes your back into the seat with authority. Like its styling it never yells, but you know who’s in charge.
Suspension here is a fully adjustable air ride that’s tied to the drive modes. Settings can be dialed into a cushy floaty traditional S-Class ride or tightened up in Sport mode a bit more firm. You never forget however you are driving a massive sedan that weights a lot though, it is still a boat regardless of which mode you choose.
It’s insanely quiet. On the highway 70 mph sound test it rated 58.4 dB which puts it in the territory of one of the quietest cars we have tested. Even in traffic at a stop light, you are kept in the serenity with very little of the exterior noises getting in. It’s nice.
In the final analysis, we like the S580 a good deal. It has the quality, engineering, safety and presentation you expect when you spend $100,000 plus for a luxury car. Comparing it to much else is not an apples to apples equation. BMW is on their own path, Lexus is something else entirely and other brands also provide different animals.
That gets us to the rub. The Mercedes-Benz S-Class has one of the highest loyalty ratings of its class. Most S-Class owners come back to buy another, most buyers have owned one. In that way, this one I believe will meet the mark and satisfy even the purist who has had a few of them.