2009 Mercedes-Benz S550 4Matic

In vehicles such as the S550, one of the first features I look for are massaging seats. In previous Benz's, this automotive indulgence could take some time to locate in the vehicle's multimedia system. Not this time. The instant my butt came to rest on the premium leather covered driver's seat, I noticed a vibrating seat icon on a button near the Comand dial, pushed it, turned the knob to "fast and vigorous," and was on my way to driving bliss. And for future reference, Mr. Zenlea, the side-bolster adjustors can also be accessed through this button.

Although the S550 is the poor kid on the S-class block, you'd never know it by its $93,000-plus base price. Amazingly, this doesn't include an iPod interface and Bluetooth. (These are also not standard on our just-as-expensive Four Seasons 2009 BMW 750Li.) Although hardly pricey at $425 and $300 respectively, these features are so commonplace even on cars costing a third of the S550 that it's strange that they aren't standard.

The chassis tuning is near perfect, power delivery is silky smooth, and acceleration is so undramatic that the speedo read jailbait long before I had even merged onto the highway. Fortunately, the massaging seats lulled me into legal speeds for the remainder of my drive.

Jennifer Misaros, Production Editor

New Car Research

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