There’s one thing that is overwhelmingly odd about assessing the Mercedes S-Class: it is really designed to transport rear-seat passengers in comfort, rather than provide pleasure for the driver, who is often not even the owner.

However, it is a very fine long-distance car for both its driver and passengers. You sit high and comfortably, unlike the sports-coupé driving position that marks the Jaguar XJ. The steering may be a little distant, but the seamless shove of all the engines and the car’s mix of effortlessness and unstoppability is quite addictive.

Standard 18-inch alloys offer best ride quality, but look a little lost on such a big car

The S-Class has aged exceptional well and a mark of its abilities is the fact that, at six years old, it does not feel past its sell-by date.

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