Drive

Australian T3 - - CONTENTS -

Mercedes’s new S-Class de­liv­ers ex­ec­u­tive tech; the Porsche Ma­can goes turbo

The Mercedes S350 BlueTEC may not have the svelte lines of a su­per­car, but if you want to live it up on the mo­tor­way there are few cars that can pro­vide this level of luxe, speed, tech and fuel ef­fi­ciency…

Back in the day, the bat­tle to be the best car in the world was a ridicu­lous race to guz­zle the most gas; a com­pe­ti­tion of deep-pile car­pets and leather in­te­ri­ors. In other words, all a bit ir­rel­e­vant to mo­tor­ing in 2014. The new Mercedes S350 BlueTEC, how­ever, man­ages to meld the ben­e­fits of cut­ting-edge tech and ef­fi­ciency with old-school op­u­lence.

The re­sult is one mas­sive mo­tor­way cruiser, with a 5.2-me­tre wheel­base and a kerb weight of just un­der two tonnes. There’s only 192kW drag­ging that load along the road, so you’d be for­given for ex­pect­ing the S-Class to be a lit­tle, well, slug­gish. Not so. It will hit 100km/h in around 6.5 sec­onds and man­ages 60 miles per gal­lon when cruis­ing.

Ob­vi­ously this is no sportscar, but if you’re look­ing for a re­fined drive that still man­ages to re­main dy­namic and di­rect, nat­u­ral and lin­ear, there’s lit­tle bet­ter. Where other mo­tor­way barges feel re­mote and syn­thetic, the S-Class is gen­uinely fun to drive.

Of course, its gi­ant pro­por­tions al­low for some pretty out­ra­geous lux­ury on the in­side. There’s al­most un­prece­dented amounts of leg room and a mas­sage func­tion on all four of the pri­vate jet-style seats, plus a thump­ing

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