Certified Benz & Beemer Compares 2015 Mercedes Benz S-Class VS 2015 Lexus GS Near Scottsdale, AZ

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2015 Mercedes Benz S-Class

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VS

2015 Lexus GS

Safety Comparison

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The S-Class’ pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The GS Series doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

The rear seatbelts optional on the S-Class inflate when a collision is detected, helping to spread crash forces over a much larger area of the body and limiting head and neck movement. This can help prevent spinal and internal injuries. The GS Series doesn’t offer inflatable seatbelts.

The S-Class offers an optional Surround View Camera to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The GS Series only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

The S-Class’ driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The GS Series doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the S-Class and the GS Series have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front and rear side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front and rear seatbelt pretensioners, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available night vision systems, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

The Mercedes S-Class weighs 518 to 1243 pounds more than the Lexus GS Series. The NHTSA advises that heavier cars are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts.

Warranty Comparison

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There are over 58 percent more Mercedes dealers than there are Lexus dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the S-Class’ warranty.

Engine Comparison

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The S-Class has more powerful engines than the GS Series:

Horsepower

Torque

S550 4.7 turbo V8

449 HP

516 lbs.-ft.

S600 5.5 turbo V12

523 HP

612 lbs.-ft.

S63 AMG 5.5 turbo V8

577 HP

664 lbs.-ft.

S65 AMG 6.0 turbo V12

621 HP

738 lbs.-ft.

GS 350 3.5 DOHC V6

306 HP

277 lbs.-ft.

GS 450h 3.5 DOHC V6 hybrid

338 HP

n/a

As tested in Motor Trend the S550 is faster than the Lexus GS Series:

S-Class

GS 350

GS 450h

Zero to 60 MPH

4.7 sec

5.5 sec

6 sec

Quarter Mile

13.2 sec

14 sec

14.4 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

107.7 MPH

100.9 MPH

101.8 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

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Regardless of its engine, the S-Class’ engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) Lexus only offers an automatic engine start/stop system on the GS Series Hybrid.

The S-Class has 4.5 gallons more fuel capacity than the GS Series (21.9 vs. 17.4 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

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For better stopping power the S-Class’ brake rotors are larger than those on the GS Series:

S550

S63/S65

GS Series

GS 350 F Sport

Front Rotors

14.6 inches

16.5 inches

13.1 inches

14 inches

Rear Rotors

14.2 inches

14.1 inches

12.2 inches

12.2 inches

The S-Class S63/S65 offers optional heat-treated ceramic brake rotors, which last ten to twenty times as long as conventional cast iron rotors, don’t rust, don’t fade during repeated high speed braking, and their lighter weight contribute to better braking, handling and acceleration. The GS Series doesn’t offer ceramic brake rotors.

The S-Class stops shorter than the GS Series:

S-Class

GS Series

70 to 0 MPH

167 feet

174 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

128 feet

137 feet

Consumer Reports

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

138 feet

147 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels Comparison

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For better traction, the S-Class has larger standard tires than the GS Series (F:245/40R20 & R:275/35R20 vs. 235/45R18). The S63/S65’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the GS Series (F:255/40R20 & R:285/35R20 vs. F:235/40R19 & R:265/35R19).

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the S-Class offers optional 20-inch wheels. The GS Series’ largest wheels are only 19-inches.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires available on the S-Class can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The GS Series doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

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The front and rear suspension of the S-Class uses air springs for a smoother, controlled ride than the GS Series, which uses coil springs. Air springs maintain proper ride height and ride more smoothly.

The S-Class offers an available active suspension system, which counteracts cornering forces actively, limiting body roll and improving handling and stability. Lexus doesn’t offer an active suspension on the GS Series.

The S-Class has a standard automatic front and rear load leveling suspension to keep ride height level with a heavy load or when towing. The GS Series doesn’t offer a load leveling suspension.

The S-Class’ drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The GS Series doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the S-Class’ wheelbase is 12.4 inches longer than on the GS Series (124.6 inches vs. 112.2 inches).

The S600 handles at .90 G’s, while the GS 450h pulls only .89 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The S600 executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.1 seconds quicker than the GS 450h (25.8 seconds @ .75 average G’s vs. 26.9 seconds @ .68 average G’s).

Chassis Comparison

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The design of the Mercedes S-Class amounts to more than styling. The S-Class has an aerodynamic coefficient of drag of .24 Cd. That is lower than the GS Series (.27) and many sports cars. A more efficient exterior helps keep the interior quieter and helps the S-Class get better fuel mileage.

As tested by Car and Driver while under full throttle, the interior of the S550 is quieter than the GS 350 (75 vs. 79 dB).

Passenger Space Comparison

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Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the S-Class is rated a Large car by the EPA, while the GS Series is rated a Mid-size.

The S-Class has 13 cubic feet more passenger volume than the GS Series (112 vs. 99).

The S-Class has 1.7 inches more front headroom, 2.4 inches more front shoulder room, 1.4 inches more rear headroom, 6.7 inches more rear legroom and 3.4 inches more rear shoulder room than the GS Series.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the S-Class’ available rear seats recline. The GS Series’ rear seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

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The S-Class has a much larger trunk than the GS Series (16.3 vs. 14.3 cubic feet).

To allow full utilization of available cargo room, the S-Class’ trunk lid uses concealed beam hinges that don’t intrude into the trunk. The GS Series’ useful trunk space is reduced by its intrusive beam hinge.

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier, especially for short adults or children, the S-Class has a standard power trunk, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button, or optionally by just kicking your foot under the back bumper, completely leaving your hands free. The GS Series doesn’t offer a power trunk.

Ergonomics Comparison

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If the windows are left down on the S-Class the driver can raise them all using the key in the outside lock cylinder or the keyless remote; on a hot day the driver can lower the windows. The driver of the GS Series can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The S-Class’ rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The GS Series’ standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

Heated windshield washer fluid is standard on the S-Class to defrost the washer nozzles and quickly clear ice and frost from the windshield without scraping. The GS Series doesn’t offer heated windshield washer fluid.

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the S-Class detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The GS Series doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

To better shield the driver and front passenger’s vision, the S-Class has standard dual-element sun visors that can block glare from two directions simultaneously. The GS Series doesn’t offer secondary sun visors.

Optional air conditioned front and rear seats keep the S-Class’ passengers comfortable and take the sting out of hot leather in Summer. The GS Series doesn’t offer air conditioned seats in the rear.

The S-Class has a 115-volt a/c outlet on the center console, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The GS Series doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

The S-Class’ optional Active Parking Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The GS Series doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Recommendations Comparison

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The Mercedes S-Class won two awards in Kiplinger’s 2015 car issue. The Lexus GS Series only won one award.

J.D. Power and Associates rated the S-Class first among large premium cars in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The GS Series isn’t in the top three in its category.

The S-Class was chosen as one of Automobile Magazine’s “All Stars” for 3 of the last 16 years. The GS Series has never been an “All Star.”

The Mercedes S-Class outsold the Lexus GS Series by 14% during 2014.

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