2011 Mercedes-Benz S Class vs. Its Competition

2011 Mercedes-Benz S Class 4-door Sedan 5.5L V8 RWD Angular Front Exterior View
Bengt Halvorson Bengt Halvorson Deputy Editor

The 2011 Mercedes-Benz S-Class covers a huge range, from the wealthy to the very rich, and competes directly through most of that range with the BMW 7-Series.

Within most of the lineup, we have a slight preference toward the 7-Series, mainly because of its somewhat better tailored exterior; it's no longer the clear handling favorite.

The Lexus LS range comes in hybrid and gas versions, but even though it's attractive and welcoming it's woefully short on handling.

The new Audi A8 and Jaguar XJ are the most stylish rivals; the XJ is absolutely stunning, builds on the sportier, edgier feel of the XF, and hits the mark with its interior, while the new A8 also steps up in performance while adding more in-cabin tech and even better interior detail.

Lastly, there's the fabulous new Aston Martin Rapide and the bulkier-looking Porsche Panamera.

2011 Mercedes-Benz S Class 4-door Sedan 5.5L V8 RWD Angular Front Exterior View2011 Mercedes-Benz S ClassBrowse Used Listings2011 Audi A8 L 4-door Sedan Angular Front Exterior View2011 Audi A8Browse Used Listings2011 BMW 7-Series 4-door Sedan 750Li RWD Angular Front Exterior View2011 BMW 7-SeriesBrowse Used Listings2011 Jaguar XJ2011 Jaguar XJBrowse Used Listings2011 Lexus LS 460 4-door Sedan L RWD Angular Front Exterior View2011 Lexus LS 460Browse Used Listings2010 Porsche Panamera V62011 Porsche PanameraBrowse Used Listings
Quick Specs
9.2
From earth-friendly to exclusive and exotically fast, the 2011 Mercedes-Benz S-Class does it all in superb comfort.
8.8
Suave styling, an impeccable cabin, innovative cabin tech, and a lean, athletic driving feel earn the 2011 Audi A8 a spot in the top tier.
9.4
Call us converts: The latest BMW 7-Series turns our eyes more than ever and drives with real big-guy brio.
8.8
The 2011 Jaguar XJ severs ties with its past, and rocks a mod new look that suits its dynamic personality.
8.4
The 2011 Lexus LS sedans deliver a luxury-liner ride and hushed interior, with some options that are unmatched by all but ultra-luxury brands, but they sorely lack driving involvement.
8.2
There's not much ordinary or traditional about this phenomenal fastback, and that's mostly a good thing.
MSRP From     
$91,000$78,050$70,650$72,700$67,130$74,400
Gas Mileage     
12 MPG City / 25 MPG Hwy17 MPG City / 27 MPG Hwy13 MPG City / 25 MPG Hwy15 MPG City / 23 MPG Hwy16 MPG City / 24 MPG Hwy15 MPG City / 27 MPG Hwy
Engine     
Gas/Electric V6Gas V8Turbocharged Gas I6Gas V8Gas V8Gas V6
EPA Class     
LargeLargeLargeLarge CarMidsize carsLarge Car
Style Name     
4-Door Sedan S 400 Hybrid RWD4-Door Sedan4-Door Sedan 740i RWD4-Door Sedan4-Door Sedan RWD4-Door HB
Drivetrain     
Rear Wheel DriveAll-Wheel DriveRear Wheel DriveRear Wheel DriveRear Wheel DriveRear Wheel Drive
Passenger Capacity     
555554
Passenger Doors     
N/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Body Style     
Sedan4 Door Sedan4-Door Sedan4 Door Sedan4 Door Sedan4 Door Hatchback
Transmission     
AutomaticAutomaticAutomaticAutomatic w/ODAutomatic w/manual shiftAutomatic w/Manual Shift
Detailed Spec Comparison
 2011 Mercedes-Benz S Class vs. 2011 Audi A82011 Mercedes-Benz S Class vs. 2011 BMW 7-Series2011 Mercedes-Benz S Class vs. 2011 Jaguar XJ2011 Mercedes-Benz S Class vs. 2011 Lexus LS 4602011 Mercedes-Benz S Class vs. 2011 Porsche Panamera