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The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
When Size Matters
Large and in charge. Big is beautiful. Size matters. Yes, there are endless clichés to support the notion that the bigger something is, the better it is. In the automotive kingdom, some vehicles not only adhere to this philosophy, but redefine it. We aren’t talking the puny realm of offerings like the Honda Accord, Toyota Camry or even Dodge Charger. No, this is for the serious four wheeled hippos. The cars where it is more fun to be in the backseat than the front seat.
If you have more money to burn than the average NFL Quarterback, then there are some serious vehicles you can buy that are seriously long. How about the 220.9-inch Phantom Coupe? Not long enough for you? You could upsize to the 239.8-inch Phantom extended-wheelbase sedan, or maybe the 242.7-inch Maybach 62?
But for the rest of us mere mortals, there are some sizable vehicles out there under $100,000. Heck, two of the top ten are even under $30,000. So we will now present to you the top ten vehicles that are longer than The Hobbit.
Top 10 Most Important Cars You’ve Never Heard Of
Everyone’s heard of the Ford Model T and Toyota Prius. They’re two of the most significant – and best-known – vehicles produced by the automotive industry. Introduced at opposite ends of the last century they were each revolutionary in their own way, bringing about important changes that shaped the car business for years to come. But if you believe that’s the limit of automotive innovation think again.
There are literally dozens of other pioneering products that have changed the landscape of the car business – at least 10 of them in fact – some of which you’ve probably never even heard of. Take flight like an eagle and allow your friends at AutoGuide to introduce you to a goddess, and so much more.
These photos were snapped in Sweden, as the new model looks to test out its chops in the cold weather.
Earlier reports stated that we’d be seeing a significant styling change in the new S-Class, so maybe that’s why parts of the car are still under wraps. Expect the usual high-tech goodies on the S-Class, and the Mercedes Magic Ride suspension system.
The new S-Class should also be available with diesel, hybrid, V8, and V12 options, offering an engine choice for just about everybody.
GALLERY: Mercedes-Benz S-Class Spy Photos
Mercedes-Benz revealed its hydrogen-powered gullwing F 125! luxury car concept, offering a glimpse at what the company’s vehicles will look like in the year 2025.
The F 125! – named for Mercedes-Benz’s 125th anniversary – illustrates the company’s styling direction for the next decade and beyond while also highlighting Mercedes-Benz’s commitment to developing hydrogen-powered technology. Mercedes foresees a range of 1,000 km (621 miles) for the F 125! thanks to the combination of the car’s fuel cell drive system and plug-in technology. Helping to increase the range is a new hydrogen storage unit which integrates the hydrogen tank with the floor assembly. In addition to the hydrogen storage unit, the F 125! uses a 10 kWh lithium-sulfur battery stored behind the rear seats. The battery can provide enough power for a range of 50 km (31 miles).
Insiders have revealed that Mercedes-Benz is testing banana wood as a trim on the next S-Class and that all wood veneers are 100 percent real. Exotic materials such as silk and cashmere are also being considered.
The current S-Class is becoming somewhat long-in-the-tooth, compared to the recently released Audi A8 and BMW 7-Series. Mercedes-Benz has prepared to launch the next-gen S-Class vehicle, to combat the rivals, sometime next year as a 2013 model. The designers and engineers are working to make the materials more durable for everyday use, which is a smartl idea considering what buyers expect from a $100,000 car.
[Souce: egm Car Tech]
To celebrate the 60 years that have passed since Mercedes first introduced the S-Class to the market, AMG has helped develop the 2012 S-Class Grand Edition.
The S-Class Grand Edition package will be available on the S250 CDI, S350 BlueTEC and the S350 BlueEFFICIENCY models in Europe. Each model will retain its stock power, with 204-hp from the S250 CDI, 258-hp from the S350 BlueTEC and 306-hp from the S350 BlueEFFICIENCY.
The exterior of the Grand Edition features a new front spoiler with LED daytime running lights and a new lower air intake. Side skirts and a new rear bumper with a rear apron round off the aesthetic modifications. The Grand Edition will also come with 19-inch AMG wheels while braking will feature 8-piston calipers in the front and 6-piston calipers in the rear.
For the inside, the steering wheel features leather, while the pedals have been swapped out for stainless steel pieces. Wood styling inserts are also used throughout the interior.
GALLERY: Mercedes-Benz 2012 S-Class Grand Edition
One of the new technologies set to debut in the 2012 Mercedes-Benz S-Class is called Magic Body Control.
As good as current high-tech suspension systems are, reacting in milliseconds and predicting what’s ahead based on driver inputs, Magic Body Control will actually see the road. Utilizing two cameras to scan the road it can compensate surface irregularities milliseconds before the car encounters them. The cameras scan the area 15 to 45 feet in front of the car, and can detect and measure imperfections as small as 0.4 to 0.8 inches at speed of up to 80 mph.
Another technology set to debut on the new S-Class (complete with it’s own trademark three part Mercedes name) is Magic Light Control, which adds full LED headlamps with light levels that vary with speed, weather and steering angle.
The 2012 S-Class is reported to be offered in four body styles, including both a coupe and a convertible.
[Source: Car Magazine]
While the majority of Americans are cutting back and looking for cars that save money while delivering maximum mpgs, the affluent in China continue to ignore price tags on vehicles they really, really want.
Lorinser, a premium Mercedes-Benz tuner, decided to get their feet wet in the Chinese market by taking their new S-Class-based S70 flagship to Auto Shanghai in China. They also decided to attach a $740,000 price tag to the 810-hp S-Class and of course, it sold.
Even though many have wondered how aftermarket manufacturers will do in China, it’s clear that it shouldn’t be that big of a concern. What will be even more interesting to see is whether more aftermarket tuners follow Lorinser’s path by reaching out to Chinese consumers directly with fully built automobiles complete extravagant price tags.
[Source: China Car Times]
Continuing to expand their already impressive portfolio of tuning Mercedes-Benz vehicles, Brabus has now introduced an engine tuning program for the new V8 biturbo powerplants from Mercedes, which includes the newest S550 and CL550, S63 and CL63 AMG. Power output from the new performance kits can reach 620-hp and 737 ft-lbs of torque and comes backed with a 62,000 mile warranty.
There are several different stages to Brabus’ PowerXtra CGI performance kits with pricing varying from $7,200 to $8,700. Your choice of kit depends on which V8 biturbo powerplant you’re sporting and is essentially an ECU reflash. In addition, enthusiasts can purchase a Brabus sport exhaust system with exhaust control. With a push of a button, your Mercedes can go from “Coming Home” mode to “Sport” mode.
In addition, further performance can be had with Brabus’ limited-slip differential upgrade. Exterior modifications can also be added to your package with carbon fiber aerodynamic accessories. And of course you can choose to outfit your Mercedes with any of Brabus’ 19- to 21-inch wheels.
GALLERY: Brabus PowerXtra CGI Performance Kits
We knew it was just a matter of time once Apple introduced its next-generation of products (most noticeably the iPad 2) that Brabus would be updating their iBusiness package on Mercedes-Benz‘s S-Class luxury sedan. Geared towards becoming the world’s fastest mobile office, Brabus stepped up their game some more on their Brabus 800 iBusiness 2.0 demo car, pushing out 800-hp and 1,047 ft-lbs of torque, giving it a top speed of 219-mph.
The heart of the iBusiness 2.0 is essentially in the excess use of Apple technology throughout the cabin. A Mac Mini is installed in a leather-lined tray in the trunk, connected to a 15.2-inch TFT display that is revealed from the alcantara headliner. The display is also hooked up to be an auxiliary display to the two iPad 2s that can be found on the adjustable custom tables found behind each front seat. Along with each tablet is an Apple bluetooth keyboard, giving its passengers full control to work on the road.
An Internet connection is always ready on the go also thanks to Brabus outfitting the S-Class with UMTS and HDSPA networking. Brabus has even developed their own app, allowing the iPad 2s in the backseat to control Mercedes’ COMAND system that’s normally taken care of by the front driver and passenger. Oh yeah, a 64GB iPod Touch can be found in the rear center console to adjust what tunes are being blasted through the S-Class or Sennheiser’s Noise Gard headphones.
The iBusiness 2.0 conversion is available for any S-Class model, from the S 350 to the S 65. Obviously the gaudy 800-hp is only available for the twin-turbo V12, but hey, some people might rather get to their destination a little slower with all the gadgets available to them. Angry Birds anyone?
Official press release available after the break.