2018 Mercedes-Benz S Class first drive: From Maybach to S65 AMG

The Mercedes-Benz S Class represents the commitment to build the best car in the world, so you can’t accuse the German automaker of having low ambitions. Then again, with more than four million sales of the “Sonderklasse” – or “Special Class” – and its variants under its belt since 1972, it seems there’s a market out there for obsessive attention to detail and a price tag to match. That makes the 2018 S Class line-up not only important to Mercedes-Benz, but to the industry as a whole.

You might wonder why, though, Mercedes invited me to New York to drive the newest models. There are a few good reasons for that, actually. From 1957 to 2012, Mercedes-Benz was on display at the theatrical auto showroom designed by Frank Lloyd Wright at 430 Park Avenue at 56th Street. Now, New York has one or the most significant Mercedes dealerships in the United States, which covers 330,000 sq.ft. Most crucially, over the last few years, 20-percent of all US sales of the S Class have been in the Tri-State area. In short, New York is an essential market, and one the new car needs to get right.

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