Published on July 15th, 2020 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
2021 Mercedes S-Class Will Have Up To Six Screens
How many screens do you really need?
Did you that there is a new Mercedes Benz S-Class on its way to showrooms round the world. Covid-19 may still be taking its toll on many countries around the world, but we are all aware that the S-Class buyer is little affected financially by this deadly virus. Even in Malaysia, the high level premium car segment is little troubled by Covid-19 and their sales numbers are almost back to 2019 levels.
The Mercedes Benz S-Class has always been in the forefront of innovation in the automotive world. This luxury limo was the production car first car in the world to come with ABS, airbags, sat-navigation and that innovative streak continues in this latest 2021 model.
This time however, the pioneering feature in the world’s best luxury sedan that is setting the automotive world alight is not any innovative safety feature or drivetrain revolution, but instead the sheer amount of screens in the car.
Poised to be the most connected, screen-heavy vehicle in the world, the new S-Class is set to feature up to six screens within the 4 or 5-seat cabin. The star of the show being the new central 12.8-inch portrait touch screen dominating the dash design, that comes with an optional OLED display for even crisper visuals.
Standard in the new S-Class too is a LCD digital driver’s display; now with Spatial View that Mercedes claims is essentially 3D without 3D glasses. And if that wasn’t enough for the driver, there is an option for a heads-up display, that brings with it augmented reality navigation functions.
Rear passengers meanwhile can enjoy up to three screens consisting of the same functionality as the screens up-front, with even the possibility of sharing content between screens within the vehicle.
It isn’t just all screen and no tech though. As part of the new generation MBUX (Mercedes Benz User Experience), this all-new S-Class is set to feature improvements on its “Hey Mercedes” voice assistant software, that is now capable of answering more nuanced commands in more languages. There is also a multitude of ways to control the screens, ranging from improved touch and gesture controls to a new gaze control feature.
“We have built a couple of intelligence functions,” said Sajjad Khan, the firm’s board member for connected, autonomous, shared & services, and electric cars (CASE). “If you would like to ask about a country, like what’s its capital or its population, you can do that either from the rear seats or from the front seats. It’s kind of like Wikipedia, or another encyclopaedia. Of course, this technology is connected digitally on the cloud side. That’s why you could also ask how a dog barks, or what sounds ducks make. We added this feature for kids sitting in the rear seat; they might want to enhance their knowledge instead of playing on a mobile device.”
Owners of the new S-Class can also set their preferred interior settings via the Mercedes Me profile, and await new updates over the air, something increasingly common in this connected world.
There is also a new Interior Assist feature, which consist of several cameras embedded in the overhead control panel, constantly monitoring the occupants of the luxury limo and act on “the wishes and intentions of the occupants”. A simple example will be when the driver is looking over their shoulder at the right rear window, the blind on that side will roll down.
Some might disagree with Mercedes’ claim of removing 27 mechanical switches as an improvement. Happily, though, the climate control features are permanently shown on the bottom of the giant central infotainment screen, and it has come to that point in the future where there is actually a need to mention that traditional wiper and indicator stalks are still present in this latest generation luxury sedan.
While on this topic, just a little food for thought. We aren’t allowed to play with our mobile devices while driving, yet we can fiddle around with this massive touch panel that is more confusing and constantly present.
The new Mercedes S-Class will be launching in September.
Opinion and Text by Joshua Chin