2019 Mercedes S-Class vs. 2019 Infiniti Q70

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Mercedes S-Class have pretensioners to tighten the seatbelts and eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision and force limiters to limit the pressure the belts will exert on the passengers. The Infiniti Q70 doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.

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 Q70 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 Q70 doesn’t offer a night vision system.

The S-Class’ driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Q70 doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the S-Class and the Q70 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive, around view monitors and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty

There are over 79 percent more Mercedes dealers than there are Infiniti dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the S-Class’ warranty.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates rated the S-Class third among large premium cars in their 2018 Initial Quality Study. The Q70 isn’t in the top three in its category.

Engine

The S-Class has more powerful engines than the Q70:

 

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.

Q70 3.7 LUXE DOHC V6

330 HP

270 lbs.-ft.

Q70 5.6 LUXE DOHC V8

420 HP

417 lbs.-ft.

As tested in Motor Trend the S 560 is faster than the Q70 5.6:

 

S-Class

Q70

Zero to 60 MPH

4.7 sec

4.8 sec

Quarter Mile

13.2 sec

13.3 sec

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the S-Class gets better fuel mileage than the Q70:

 

 

S-Class

Q70

 

RWD

450/Auto

19 city/28 hwy

18 city/25 hwy

3.7/Auto

 

560/Auto

17 city/27 hwy

16 city/24 hwy

5.6/Auto

AWD

450/Auto

18 city/28 hwy

18 city/24 hwy

3.7/Auto

 

560/Auto

17 city/27 hwy

16 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 Q70 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 Q70 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 Q70 doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

The S-Class’ standard fuel tank has 1.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the Q70 (21.1 vs. 20 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The S-Class V12’s standard fuel tank has 4.6 gallons more fuel capacity than the Q70 (24.6 vs. 20 gallons).

Transmission

A nine-speed automatic is available on the Mercedes S-Class, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a seven-speed automatic is available for the Q70.

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 Q70 doesn’t offer launch control.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the S-Class’ brake rotors are larger than those on the Q70:

 

S 450/560

S 63/65

Q70

Q70 Sport

Front Rotors

14.6 inches

16.5 inches

12.6 inches

14 inches

Rear Rotors

14.2 inches

14.2 inches

12.1 inches

13.8 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 Q70 doesn’t offer ceramic brake rotors.

The S-Class stops shorter than the Q70:

 

S-Class

Q70

 

70 to 0 MPH

167 feet

171 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

114 feet

116 feet

Motor Trend

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

138 feet

143 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the S 63’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Q70 (F:255/40R20 & R:285/35R20 vs. 245/40R20).

The S 63’s 285/35R20 rear tires provide better handling because they have a lower 35 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Q70’s optional 40 series tires.

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 Q70 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 Q70, 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. Infiniti doesn’t offer an active suspension on the Q70.

The S-Class has a standard driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads. The Q70’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

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 Q70 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 Q70 doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the S-Class’ wheelbase is longer than on the Q70:

 

S-Class

Q70

SWB Sedan

124.6 inches

114.2 inches

LWB Sedan

132.5 inches

120.1 inches

For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the S-Class is 2.3 inches wider in the front and 2.8 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the Q70.

The S-Class handles at .88 G’s, while the Q70 3.7 LUXE pulls only .82 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 Q70 5.6 LUXE AWD (25.8 seconds @ .75 average G’s vs. 26.7 seconds @ .67 average G’s).

Chassis

As tested by Car and Driver, the interior of the S 560 is quieter than the Q70 3.7 LUXE:

 

S-Class

Q70

Full-Throttle

75 dB

77 dB

70 MPH Cruising

67 dB

73 dB

Passenger Space

Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the EPA rates the S-Class a Large car, while the Q70 is rated a Mid-size.

The S-Class has 8.4 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Q70 (112 vs. 103.6).

The S-Class has .6 inches more front headroom, 1.3 inches more front shoulder room and 2.4 inches more rear shoulder room than the Q70.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the S-Class’ available rear seats recline. The Q70’s rear seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity

The S-Class has a much larger trunk than the Q70 (16.3 vs. 14.9 cubic feet).

A low lift-over trunk design makes loading and unloading the S-Class easier. The S-Class’ trunk lift-over height is 27.4 inches, while the Q70’s liftover is 29.1 inches.

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier, especially for short adults, the S-Class has a standard power trunk, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button, or optionally by just kicking your foot under the back bumper, completely leaving your hands free. The Q70 doesn’t offer a power trunk.

Ergonomics

The S-Class has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The Q70 doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

Unlike the driver-only memory system in the Q70, 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 offers an optional heads-up display that projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Q70 doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The power windows standard on both the S-Class and the Q70 have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the S-Class is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The Q70 prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.

The S-Class’ front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Q70’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to open or close them fully.

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 Q70 doesn’t offer heated windshield washer fluid.

Consumer Reports rated the S-Class’ headlight performance “Good,” a higher rating than the Q70’s headlights, which were rated “Fair.”

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the S-Class detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The Q70 doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

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 Q70 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 Q70 doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats in the rear.

Standard smartphone integration for the S-Class allows the driver and passengers access to select programs on their smartphones, including reading text messages aloud, playing internet radio stations, searching the internet and other connected activities without taking their eyes off the road or their hands from the wheel. The Q70 doesn’t offer factory integrated smartphone program access.

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 Q70 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 Q70 doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Model Availability

The Mercedes S-Class comes in coupe, convertible and sedan bodystyles; the Infiniti Q70 isn’t available as a coupe or convertible.

Economic Advantages

Insurance will cost less for the S-Class owner. The Car Book by Jack Gillis rates the S-Class with a number “1” insurance rate while the Q70 is rated higher at a number “5” rate.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the S-Class is less expensive to operate than the Q70 because typical repairs cost much less on the S-Class than the Q70, including $29 less for front brake pads, $86 less for front struts and $943 less for a timing belt/chain.

Recommendations

Consumer Reports® recommends both the Mercedes S-Class and the Infiniti Q70, based on reliability, safety and performance.

The Mercedes S-Class outsold the Infiniti Q70 by over three to one during the 2018 model year.

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

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