The Mercedes-Benz S-Class lineup has undergone a complete revamp, and now the German automaker is adding a new, greener wrinkle to the lineup. We’re talking about a brand-new plug-in hybrid.
That’s right, the large-and-in-charge S-Class is getting a new plug-in version dubbed the 2019 S560e in place of the old S550e. This flagship green machine will combine a 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged V-6 engine that’ll produce 362 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque with an electric motor that churns out 90-kW (120-horsepower) and 325 pound-feet of instantly available torque. Mercedes made no mention of its combined output, but given its name is 10 higher than the S550e it replaces, it’s got to be more powerful than its predecessor’s 436 horsepower and 479 pound-feet of torque.
While the S-Class was never designed with thriftiness top of mind, the S560e will deliver in this department. Its 13.5-kWh, 37 Ah battery will give it a surprising 25 miles of estimated EV range, which is more than double the S550e’s 12-mile range. There is no mention of its overall fuel-economy rating, but it should trounce its predecessor’s 58 mpg-e combined rating.
On top of being the greenest of the S-Class sedans, the S560e will also be quite the performer in a straight line, as it’ll hit 60 mph in just 4.9 seconds — 0.3 seconds quicker than its predecessor. Top speed is limited to the German-preferred 155 mph.
Backing up the gasoline engine is a nine-speed automatic transmission, while the torque converter, clutch, and electric motor are neatly tucked in a hybrid-drive unit. My assumption is that the electric motor’s power will also run through this nine-speed transmission, but Mercedes didn’t confirm this.
New on the 2018 S560e is ECO Assist. This system takes into account speed limits, distance between vehicles, and route profile (bends, roundabouts, intersections, etc.) and informs the driver when it is ideal to release the accelerator and allow the vehicle to glide to recuperate some of the battery’s charge.
There is no mention of just how much the 2018 S560e will cost, but given the 2017 S550e was actually the same price as the S550, the 2019 S560e will likely match the new S560’s price.
We should learn more about the S560e as we approach its mid-2018 arrival on showroom floors.