2019 Mercedes S-Class vs. 2019 Genesis G90

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 G90 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 G90 doesn’t offer a night vision system.

Both the S-Class and the G90 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, around view monitors and rear cross-path warning.

Reliability

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the S-Class’ reliability 11 points higher than the G90.

Engine

The S-Class has more powerful engines than the G90:

 

Horsepower

Torque

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.

G90 3.3T turbo V6

365 HP

376 lbs.-ft.

G90 5.0 DOHC V8

420 HP

383 lbs.-ft.

As tested in Car and Driver the S 560 is faster than the G90 5.0:

 

S-Class

G90

Zero to 60 MPH

4.9 sec

5.3 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

11.5 sec

12.6 sec

Quarter Mile

13.4 sec

13.8 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

108 MPH

105 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the S-Class gets better fuel mileage than the G90:

 

 

S-Class

G90

 

RWD

450/Auto

19 city/28 hwy

17 city/24 hwy

3.3T/Auto

 

560/Auto

17 city/27 hwy

16 city/24 hwy

5.0/Auto

AWD

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 G90 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 G90 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 G90 doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

The S-Class V12’s standard fuel tank has 2.7 gallons more fuel capacity than the G90 (24.6 vs. 21.9 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 G90.

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 G90 doesn’t offer launch control.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the S-Class’ brake rotors are larger than those on the G90:

 

S 450/560

S 63/65

G90 3.3T

G90 5.0

Front Rotors

14.6 inches

16.5 inches

14.2 inches

14.8 inches

Rear Rotors

14.2 inches

14.2 inches

13.4 inches

13.4 inches

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 G90 doesn’t offer ceramic brake rotors.

The S-Class stops much shorter than the G90:

 

S-Class

G90

 

70 to 0 MPH

167 feet

179 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

114 feet

122 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the S 63’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the G90 (F:255/40R20 & R:285/35R20 vs. F:245/45R19 & R:275/40R19).

The S 63’s 255/40R20 front and 285/35R20 rear tires provide better handling because they have a lower 40 series front and 35 series rear profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the G90’s 45 series front and 40 series rear tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the S 63 has standard 20-inch wheels. The G90’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 G90 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 G90, 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 G90.

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 G90 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 G90 doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the S-Class’ wheelbase is .2 inches longer than on the G90 (124.6 inches vs. 124.4 inches). The Maybach S-Class’ wheelbase is 8.1 inches longer than on the G90 (132.5 feet vs. 124.4 inches).

The S 600 handles at .90 G’s, while the G90 3.3T AWD pulls only .83 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The S 600 executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.1 seconds quicker than the G90 3.3T AWD (25.8 seconds @ .75 average G’s vs. 26.9 seconds @ .67 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the S AMG S 65’s turning circle is 1.1 feet tighter than the G90’s (38.1 feet vs. 39.2 feet).

Passenger Space

The Maybach S-Class has 6.8 cubic feet more passenger volume than the G90 (120 vs. 113.2).

The S-Class has .6 inches more front shoulder room and 1.2 inches more rear shoulder room than the G90.

Cargo Capacity

The S-Class has a larger trunk than the G90 (16.3 vs. 15.7 cubic feet).

Ergonomics

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 G90 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 G90 doesn’t offer heated windshield washer fluid.

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 G90 doesn’t offer secondary sun visors.

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 G90 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 G90 doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Model Availability

The Mercedes S-Class comes in coupe, convertible and sedan bodystyles; the Genesis G90 isn’t available as a coupe or convertible.

Recommendations

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

The Mercedes S-Class outsold the Genesis G90 by almost five to one during the 2018 model year.

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

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