Whether from the inside or the outside, the S-Class has changed little in appearance since the current generation made its U.S. debut, for 2007. But to most people, that's fine; the S has never been particularly edgy from a design standpoint. The exterior of the current S-Class is laid out with emphatic curves and precisely drawn lines—yet that's a serious departure from the bank-vault look of the earlier models. There's quite a bit of feminine sculpting and gentle arcs, along with a wrap-around, double-decked treatment in back, and alongside the wheel wells are flared out noticeably.
Last year, the S-Class got a reshaped grille, smoother front bumpers, new rear bumpers, and LED turn signals within the headlamps; meanwhile, AMG versions gained a new grille, deep air dams, and new wheel designs up to 20 inch. Round fog lamps and It's not entirely cohesive, but the S-Class' sheetmetal conveys great road presence, especially from the rear quarters, where the perfectly blistered fenders intersect with a rising bumper line.
Inside the S-Class, Mercedes-Benz has gone with a simplified, living-room aesthetic; the overall look and feel is relaxed, with a wide, ornately grained wave of wood bridging the cabin. It's capped by a large LCD screen for secondary controls and adorned by a minimum of buttons and switches; gauges are lit in bright white. The shift control sits on the steering column, which frees the dash from the clutter that afflicts some competitive cars. Crawl around the interior or just take a glance inside, and it's not surprising that furniture designers were brought in to help style the interior.