It’s the war of the flagships and this time around, we are looking at two of the most famous and long running names - the Mercedes-Benz S-Class and the BMW 7 Series - among which the latter will get a mid-life update tomorrow. Both are pioneers in terms of what they offer and well, here is how they stack up against each other.
The Mercedes-Benz S-Class and the BMW 7 Series sit right at the top of their food chain. This means they have one major purpose in terms of looks, which is to make sure that their presence is known wherever they travel. This has been achieved in large part via their long-bodied nature. In the Indian market, the cars are only sold in LWB (long wheelbase) format and so both top out at over five meters in length with a wheelbase length that is not too far away from the full size of cars like the Alto 800 and the Hyundai Santro.
This mid-life update for the 7 Series sees it get a new and rather massive version of the BMW signature kidney grille, front and rear bumpers and laser headlamps. However, the large and rather chunky nature of the 7 Series as a car has been retained and it loses none of its design identity.
The S-Class has far more bling while the 7 Series is the natural option for those who want an added touch of sportiness to their luxury barge on four wheels. In fact, for the latter, you can even have the M Sport design package when you order the car.
Interior and features
The price range of these cars and their position in the market are indicative of what is on offer inside the cabin. The standard features list across the range even has hot and cold massaging rear seats for both cars and for a price tag of over Rs 1 crore, it’s pretty much a sure thing that options like multi-zone climate control and a detailed touchscreen infotainment system will be part of the total package. One notable addition to both models is that you get a mobile app to control the infotainment system from the rear in the place of two remotes from the previous generation/pre-facelift versions of the two cars.
Engines and gearbox
The S-Class gets a turbocharged inline-6 3.0-litre motor producing 282bhp/600Nm with power going to the rear wheels via a seven-speed AT. The petrol is a turbocharged 3.0-litre V6 producing 362bhp/500Nm with power going to the rear wheels via a nine-speed AT.
The 7 Series’ engines options include one diesel and two petrol engines. The turbocharged diesel is a 3.0-litre inline 6 producing 262bhp/620Nm with power going to the rear wheels via an eight-speed AT.
The lower spec petrol in the 740 Li is a turbocharged 3.0-litre straight-six producing 322bhp/450Nm while the more powerful 750 Li gets a 4.4-litre twin-turbo V8 producing 450bhp/650Nm. Both engines are mated to an eight-speed AT and are RWD oriented.
The fact file on both cars is pretty huge and you can see that both cars have a lot going for them across the board. Both cars, in terms of looks, have specific appeal and are pretty much evenly matched in terms of features. The Mercedes-Benz S-Class family comprises one diesel and three petrol engines and they are in the price range of Rs 1.6-crores to Rs 3.14 crores for the top-of-the-line S650 Maybach. We expect the BMW range to stay the same and with a similar price bracket.