2006 Mercedes-Benz S-Class Sedan Review | Edmunds.com

2006 Mercedes-Benz S-Class Sedan

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Mercedes-Benz S-Class Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 6.0 L V 12-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Rear Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 5-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 604 hp @ 4800 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 11/18 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation Yes
  • Heated Seats Yes
Gas Mileage


  • 11
  • cty
  • 18
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs

Review of the 2006 Mercedes-Benz S-Class

  • The S-Class is a top choice when it comes to a no-compromise, full-size luxury sedan.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Elegantly appointed and spacious cabin, feels nimble for its size, state-of-the-art safety features, strong resale value.

  • Cons

    Complicated COMAND system, not as athletic as some of its competitors, a few low-grade interior materials.

  • What's New for 2006

    The S350 arrives as a new entry-level S-Class model, powered by a 241-hp V6. The S600 now includes Keyless Go, an electronic trunk closer, heated steering wheel and rear side window blinds as standard equipment, while the Hands Free Communication system has moved to the options list.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

High cost of maintenance -

by on
Vehicle: 2005 Mercedes-Benz S-Class

This is my first Benz and I really like the car. My fiance bought a 2004 C Class the same day and has not had as good an experience as I. Great interior size, great performance, great styling. White Exterior, cream interior - just yummy looking! Stereo system sounds great, but the iPod connection is subpar, to say the least. Handles well in all weather and the brakes are second to none; I feel very safe in this vehicle. The only major issues are: electronics are touch and go on this vehicle, maintenance costs are expensive on all MB, storage is NON EXISTANT on this vehicle (interior or trunk - you are hard pressed to fit 10 bags of groceries). But the leg room in back is truly wonderful!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful


by on
Vehicle: 2005 Mercedes-Benz S-Class

This car has been the worst car I have ever had. The vaccum assist has gone bad 5 times and so has the GPS. Driver side seat has been repired more than 4 times. Above all, I lost complete power stering fluid at 65mph and no warning light came. I nearly died controlling the car. Tire pressure sensors have gone bad, battery, alternator, dvd on the gps. Music dvd cartridge. The only saving grace has been that the dealers repiring the car have been polite and agreed to fix the items. Now as soon as the car is out of warranty i needed engine mounts, trans mounts and control arms. German cars are not only very poorly made, they are also very, very expensive to maintain.

Great car... best i've owned

by on
Vehicle: 2005 Mercedes-Benz S-Class

Bought the car last weekend and I cant get enough of driving it. It's a super smooth car, rides like no other, not even other MBs. This is smooth creamy ride. I wish it just had a bit more power, but I can compensate it with the manual shifter, because I love leading off-the-line. The car is worth the money and I get compliments like crazy, even from people I don't know. I got black/black and I love it. I feel like I want to drive it all the time. I really don't have any experience in the reliability of the vehicle, but it better be excellent because its a MB because I heard that repairs can be costly.

Fun when it works

by on
Vehicle: 2005 Mercedes-Benz S-Class

Great when it works. Fun to drive, quiet, responsive, nice style, but reliability is awful. Electronics are terrible. What a shame. Second Mercedes in a row that was a lemon. It also depreciated from $96,5000 new to under $50,000 in just a little under two years. Stay away! Look at Lexus LS instead.

Tires, brakes and dash

by on
Vehicle: 2005 Mercedes-Benz S-Class

Brakes have squealed since first service. At 19,000 miles I am on my third set of Michelin Pilot sports at =/-$300 each. Dash electric went out in first 6,000 miles and dealer replaced under warranty. Dealer also performed a full alignment on them after second set of tires wore out.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Great luxury and safety

by on
Vehicle: 2005 Mercedes-Benz S-Class

I have owned two S500 sedans and I can't imagine driving anything else. I have the sport package and love the interior. The ride is so smooth,nothing compares. The front and rear seat areas are roomy. Seats are comfortable and easily adjustable to drivers and passengers of all sizes. Very open feel and no blind spots. Keyless go and automatic door and trunk closing is great. Sound system is awesome. Hands free phone system is a must have. I had a major side impact accident and the car held up to its reputation for safety. The head curtain airbags saved my life, and side door airbags prevented serious injury. Walked away without a scratch.


Full 2006 Mercedes-Benz S-Class Review

What's New for 2006

The S350 arrives as a new entry-level S-Class model, powered by a 241-hp V6. The S600 now includes Keyless Go, an electronic trunk closer, heated steering wheel and rear side window blinds as standard equipment, while the Hands Free Communication system has moved to the options list.


The S-Class is Mercedes' flagship sedan. The current generation, introduced in 2000, brought sleeker styling, more advanced technology and greater performance than the heavier versions that preceded it. Two models were available initially, the S430 and S500 sedans, with V8 engines of 4.3 liters (275 horsepower) and 5.0 liters (302 horses), respectively. Lighter and less expensive than the robust Benz sedans that preceded it, the 2000 S-Class earned praise for its sleek body, exceptional comfort and performance that belied its size. However, it was criticized for overly complex controls, especially the standard COMAND system that operated the navigation and audio systems. Soon after, two more S-Class sedans joined the lineup, the top-dog S600 (with its 362-hp, 5.8-liter V12) and the AMG-tweaked S55 (which had a 5.4-liter, 355-horse V8), making sure both the ultraluxury and ultraluxury/sport sedan markets were covered.

For 2003, Mercedes made a number of significant advances in performance and safety. Responding to the ever-rising performance bar in this class, Mercedes installed a new, more powerful 493-hp V12 in the top-of-the-line S600 and added a supercharger to the S55, also yielding 493 horses albeit less torque. (If that's still not enough for you, Mercedes has slotted an even more powerful S65 AMG model into the lineup for 2006.) Practical technology comes in the form of all-wheel drive, dubbed 4Matic, which is available on the S430 and S500 models. Ideal for those who live in rainy or snowy climates, 4Matic automatically directs power to whichever wheel(s) have the best grip. And at the forefront of safety is the Pre-Safe system, which can sense an imminent accident and automatically tighten the seatbelts and position the power seats to afford the best protection for the occupants. For those who don't need the ultimate in power for their large sedan, Mercedes-Benz introduced the S350 for 2006. This S is powered by a 3.7-liter V6 with 241 hp. Regardless of engine choice, the S-Class is still one of the top sedans in its class and certainly the winner when it comes to curbside prestige.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The four-door S-Class sedan is available in four models: the S350, S430, S500 and S600. All models come with most of the luxury features you would expect in a sedan of this caliber, including 14-way power-adjustable front seats, a DVD navigation system, Bose premium audio system, and rich leather and wood trim. Notable options include ventilated front seats with a massage feature, a keyless entry and start system (called Keyless Go), adaptive cruise control and a sport package that includes larger wheels and tires, resculpted bumpers and side skirts.

Powertrains and Performance

The entry-level S350 features a 3.7-liter V6 with 241 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque. The S430 is powered by a 4.3-liter, 275-hp V8, while the S500 offers more power courtesy of its 5.0-liter V8 rated for 302 hp. Both V8 engines use a seven-speed automatic transmission, while the V6 uses a five-speed unit. The top-of-the-line S600 uses a twin-turbocharged 5.5-liter V12 rated to produce 493 hp and 590 lb-ft of torque; it's paired with a five-speed automatic. Mercedes claims that the S600 can hit 60 mph in about 4.5 seconds, placing it in a league usually occupied by exotic sports cars. The S430 and S500 are available with either the standard rear-drive setup or the fully automatic 4Matic all-wheel-drive system as a no-cost option. Note that 4Matic-equipped cars use a five-speed automatic instead of the seven-speed.


Every S-Class sedan includes "Pre-Safe," which determines accident probability by using sensors in the stability control and BrakeAssist systems. Should an accident seem unavoidable, the system applies split-second tensioning of the seatbelts, moves the front-passenger seat and power-adjustable rear seats to the most favorable positions and closes the sunroof (if the vehicle is skidding). If the accident is averted at the last moment, the seatbelt tensioning is cancelled and the seats are reset to their original positions. Of course, Pre-Safe joins a list of already impressive safety features that includes four-wheel antilock disc brakes, electronic traction and stability control, seat-mounted side-impact airbags for front occupants and side curtain airbags that protect both front and rear passengers.

Interior Design and Special Features

Virtually every luxury and convenience item to be found in an automobile, including a DVD-based navigation system and power door-closing assist, is standard on each S-Class sedan. Still, there are optional designo interior trim packages which include more dramatic leather and wood combinations, as well as dynamic multicontour front seats, four-zone climate control and power-adjustable rear seats.

Driving Impressions

The S-Class has that enviable quality of feeling smaller and more nimble than its substantial size suggests. Strong acceleration, precise handling and a relaxing ride remain strong virtues of Mercedes' senior sedan. The S600 provides truly exceptional performance in a straight line, but BMW's 760Li is still a more involving driving experience. Buyers needing all-weather capability should consider the 4Matic versions of the S430 and S500.


Talk About The 2006 S-Class

2006 Mercedes-Benz S-Class Discussions See all Started By

Since the new S-Class is only a few month away, its time to start a lead topic I think....

E-Class - A facelift for 2007. The E500 becomes the 382hp E550. The E320 CDI trades its I6 for a new 3.0L V6. New E320 CDI will be offered with 4Matic for the first time. In Europe there is a 314h...

Since the 545i, new A6 4.2. both have 325hp or more, I also expect a new direct-injection V8 to make its debut in the 2006 S-Class, this will no doubt be shared with the E-Class of the same year....

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