2019 Mercedes S-Class vs. 2019 Genesis G80

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

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 G80 doesn’t offer inflatable seatbelts.

An active infrared night vision system optional on the S-Class helps the driver to more easily detect people, animals or other objects in front of the vehicle at night. Using an infrared camera and near-infrared lights to detect heat, the system then displays the image on a monitor in the dashboard. The G80 doesn’t offer a night vision system.

The S-Class offers an optional Surround View Camera to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The G80 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.

Both the S-Class and the G80 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, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, rearview cameras, driver alert monitors, available all wheel drive and rear cross-path warning.

Engine

The S-Class has more powerful engines than the G80:

 

Horsepower

Torque

S 450 3.0 turbo V6

362 HP

369 lbs.-ft.

S 560 4.0 turbo V8

463 HP

516 lbs.-ft.

AMG S 63 4.0 turbo V8

603 HP

664 lbs.-ft.

AMG S 65/Maybach S 650 6.0 turbo V12

621 HP

738 lbs.-ft.

G80 3.8 DOHC V6

311 HP

293 lbs.-ft.

G80 3.3T Sport 3.3 turbo V6

365 HP

376 lbs.-ft.

G80 5.0 DOHC V8

420 HP

383 lbs.-ft.

As tested in Car and Driver the S 560 is faster than the Genesis G80:

 

S-Class

G80 3.3T Sport

G80 5.0

Zero to 60 MPH

4.9 sec

5 sec

5 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

11.5 sec

12.5 sec

12.3 sec

5 to 60 MPH Rolling Start

5.2 sec

5.7 sec

5.6 sec

Quarter Mile

13.4 sec

13.6 sec

13.6 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

108 MPH

104 MPH

105 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the S-Class gets better fuel mileage than the G80:

 

 

S-Class

G80

 

RWD

 

n/a

18 city/26 hwy

3.8/Auto

 

450/Auto

19 city/28 hwy

17 city/25 hwy

3.3T/Auto

 

560/Auto

17 city/27 hwy

16 city/24 hwy

5.0/Auto

AWD

 

n/a

18 city/24 hwy

3.8/Auto

 

450/Auto

18 city/28 hwy

17 city/24 hwy

3.3T/Auto

 

560/Auto

17 city/27 hwy

15 city/23 hwy

5.0/Auto

 

AMG 63/Auto

17 city/26 hwy

n/a

 

 

Maybach 560/Auto

16 city/25 hwy

n/a

 

An engine control system that can shut down half of the engine’s cylinders helps improve the S-Class 560/63’s fuel efficiency. The G80 doesn’t offer a system that can shut down part of the engine.

Regenerative brakes improve the S-Class Hybrid’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The G80 doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the S-Class’ engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The G80 doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

The S-Class V12’s standard fuel tank has 4.3 gallons more fuel capacity than the G80 (24.6 vs. 20.3 gallons).

Transmission

A nine-speed automatic is available on the Mercedes S-Class, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only an eight-speed automatic is available for the G80.

The S-Class 63/65’s launch control uses engine electronics to hold engine RPM’s precisely in order to provide the most stable and rapid acceleration possible, using all of the available traction. The G80 doesn’t offer launch control.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the S-Class’ brake rotors are larger than those on the G80:

 

S 450/560

S 63/65

G80 3.8

G80 3.3T Sport

Front Rotors

14.6 inches

16.5 inches

13.6 inches

14.2 inches

Rear Rotors

14.2 inches

14.2 inches

12.4 inches

13 inches

The S-Class’ standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs standard on the G80 3.8 are solid, not vented.

The S-Class S 63/65 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 G80 doesn’t offer ceramic brake rotors.

The S-Class stops much shorter than the G80:

 

S-Class

G80

 

70 to 0 MPH

167 feet

180 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

114 feet

116 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the S 63’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the G80 (F:255/40R20 & R:285/35R20 vs. F:245/40R19 & R:275/35R19).

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the S 63 has standard 20-inch wheels. The G80’s 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 G80 doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling

The front and rear suspension of the S-Class uses air springs for a smoother, controlled ride than the G80, which uses coil springs. Air springs maintain proper ride height and ride more smoothly.

The S-Class offers an available adjustable active suspension system, which counteracts cornering forces actively, limiting body roll and improving handling and stability. Genesis doesn’t offer an active suspension on the G80.

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 G80 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 G80 doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the S-Class’ wheelbase is 6.1 inches longer than on the G80 (124.6 inches vs. 118.5 inches). The Maybach S-Class’ wheelbase is 14 inches longer than on the G80 (132.5 inches vs. 118.5 inches).

The S-Class handles at .88 G’s, while the G80 AWD pulls only .84 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The S 600 executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the G80 5.0 (25.8 seconds @ .75 average G’s vs. 26.7 seconds @ .7 average G’s).

Chassis

As tested by Car and Driver while cruising at 70 MPH, the interior of the S 560 is quieter than the G80 5.0 (67 vs. 70 dB).

Passenger Space

The S-Class has 4.3 cubic feet more passenger volume than the G80 (112 vs. 107.7).

The S-Class has 1.4 inches more front shoulder room and 2 inches more rear shoulder room than the G80.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the S-Class’ available rear seats recline. The G80’s rear seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity

The S-Class has a larger trunk than the G80 (16.3 vs. 15.3 cubic feet).

Ergonomics

Unlike the driver-only memory system in the G80, the S-Class has standard driver and passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat, steering wheel position and outside mirror angle and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.

The S-Class’ standard easy entry system raises the steering wheel and glides the driver’s seat back, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. An easy entry system costs extra on the G80.

If the windows are left open on the S-Class the driver can close them all at the outside door handle or from a distance using the remote. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the G80 can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

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 G80 doesn’t offer heated windshield washer fluid.

Consumer Reports rated the S-Class’ headlight performance “Good,” a higher rating than the G80’s headlights, which were rated “Poor.”

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 G80 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 G80 only offers an air-conditioned driver’s seat.

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 G80 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 G80 doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Model Availability

The Mercedes S-Class comes in coupe, convertible and sedan bodystyles; the Genesis G80 isn’t available as a coupe or convertible.

Recommendations

Consumer Reports® recommends both the Mercedes S-Class and the Genesis G80, based on reliability, safety and performance.

The Mercedes S-Class outsold the Genesis G80 by 38% during the 2018 model year.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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