By on May 13, 2020

CocheSpias/Instagram

A Spanish Instagram account seemingly leaked photos of an uncovered next-generation Mercedes-Benz S-Class late Tuesday, showing off the flagship’s new face and caboose and revealing something far more noteworthy: a screen-heavy cockpit that throws tradition to the wind.

Not that the previous S-Class’ cabin was overly festooned with traditional buttons or dials. Still, the new layout takes cockpit digitization to the next level, placing a massive touchscreen where the center stack should be, and adding an expansive digital gauge display ahead of the steering wheel. It’s this feature (which is paired with a secondary screen further up the dash) that comes across as awkward, given that the screen stands alone, rather than ensconcing itself in a traditional housing.

Cochespias/Instagram

Unlike the Widescreen Cockpit of the new A-Class, the separate screens seen here provide less of a cohesive look. Aside from that, the dash itself aims for futuristic and minimalist. Compare with the current-gen S-Class below:

Moving back outside, the front fascia of the W223 is blunter, more upright than the angled front ends of current and past S-Classes. Lower air openings grow in size, as does, seemingly, the grille. Some online pundits pointed out the fascia’s vague resemblance to the pre-refresh Genesis G90 — a connection this writer couldn’t help but notice, either.

CocheSpias/Instagram

Out back, the taillights move to a horizontal alignment, adopting a pinched design reminiscent of the CLS-Class (and, to some eyes, the Lexus ES). Details about the car’s bodyside sculpting will have to wait.

Expected to debut officially late this year, going on sale as a 2021 or 2022 model, the next-generation S-Class is believed to source its power from a mild-hybrid inline-six or an obligatory V8.

[Images: CocheSpias/Instagram, Daimler AG]

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19 Comments on “Bolder, or Blander? Upcoming Mercedes-Benz S-Class Apparently Spied...”


  • avatar
    Lie2me

    The pictures made me think this was a Junkyard Find

    Looks very safe, no one is taking chances with styling these days

  • avatar
    theflyersfan

    I see a bit of Infiniti in the rear as well.

    I’m not a fan of the glued on tablet look, especially just jutting out from behind the wheel like that (honestly, it would have me looking for any Velcro keeping the screen up) But I am just not a fan of the current M-B interiors – it reminds me of a digital form of a 1980s GM-billboard style dash.

    But I think this design will age better than the past few generations of S-classes.

  • avatar
    Flipper35

    It does not look like they finished it yet between the grill and interior.

  • avatar
    cardave5150

    I’ve gotta agree – the exterior looks like a M-B copy of a Genesis copy of an M-B. A strange turn of events. The taillights look positively downmarket – I’m thinking Sonata/Camry/Elantra.

    That interior may look a bit better when photographed professionally, but not enough to make it scream MONEY.

  • avatar
    Imagefont

    I thought it was a Hyundai at first. I don’t know who is stealing from whom.

  • avatar
    theflyersfan

    Looking more at it – not sure that tablet behind the wheel is a permanent fixture. It looks like it’s leaning against the dash. Plus, the location is very close to all of the stalks and the wheel – I can see it getting in the way of everything. Maybe the cowl behind the iPad is the dash display.

  • avatar
    KOKing

    Yeah, that tablet thing is just propped up against the back of the wheel. But that way-recessed bit doesn’t look right, either. Maybe there’s some sort of projection system that shows both inside the bin, and somehow ‘holographically’ projects toward the driver, and that tablet is there just to simulate what that projection would look like?

    That front view also made me say ‘G90’ at first glance, but the rear does have new GLE/GLS resemblance.

  • avatar
    cimarron typeR

    For a 6 figures, this S has very little stage presence. I though Audi was getting boring with their design language but MB is even more conservative.I hope the above posters are correct that the dash isn’t finished. I’m not sure the traditional S class buyer will favor the tacked-on tablet dash.Don’t try to be Tesla,just be you.

  • avatar
    slavuta

    This looks like Kia

  • avatar
    slavuta

    The most unfortunate thing in automotive design today is that we, the consumers still need a car and can’t simply reject these contraptions automakers force on us. In reality most people are buying these out of necessity and not because they really like these stupid designs.

    When it comes to this specific car, what #$%^&ing difference does it make if the screen is a tablet or 1950 style? This will be driven by the driver. The passengers of these only care about the back seat comfort, etc. For the purchase, the purchaser probably just calls MB dealer, tells him to deliver one to his house and signs paperwork on the porch while still wearing golf outfit after few rounds on a private golf course.

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    I’d reserve judgment until I see the side, but I’ll echo what others have said – it looks like a Genesis. Then again, Genesis cars were designed to look like a Benz.

  • avatar
    jdmcomp

    Looks Korean from the front, sure this is an MB?

  • avatar

    Agree with others. It looks like used Genesis but with higher quality of interior. Russian mafia will be less than thrilled (it is a joke).

  • avatar

    Oh, MB. What are you doing? This looks like a mashup of a Genesis and a Tesla.

  • avatar
    CincyDavid

    MB screwed the pooch when they tried to “out-Lexus” Lexus and now they are trying to “out Hyundai/Genesis” Hyundai…MB excelled with the relatively simple, bank-vault solid cars and when they went crazy with tufted/ruched leathers and unreliable electronics they lost it. There’s a reason we have Asian electronics in our homes and not German…Asian companies are better at that sort of thing.

    This poor thing looks so generic and derivative, it’s pathetic.

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