And it's now got AWD traction to match the Audi A8 L Security.
If you're going to order a bulletproof vehicle, you may as well get one with some style too. Over the years, vehicles from Audi, BMW, and even Rolls-Royce have served as popular choices for VIPs needing added protection when on the move. Mercedes-Benz has for some time also offered its S-Class Guard, an armored version of the S-Class which remains perhaps the quintessential luxury car in the world.
With a new S-Class having been revealed recently, it makes sense that a new armored S-Class would follow. It's called the S680 Guard 4MATIC and although Mercedes itself has been quiet about its arrival, we now know all the important details regarding the toughest new S-Class yet.
Only offered with a long wheelbase and not the extended Pullman model offered for its predecessor, the S680 Guard is powered by a 6.0-liter twin-turbocharged V12 engine from Maybach. It delivers 612 horsepower to all four wheels but that isn't even that much considering that this beast weighs over 9,200 pounds. It can reach a top speed of 118 mph, for the record, and the AWD system brings it into line with the Audi A8 L Security.
Like most armored vehicles, the S680 Guard looks like a stock model from the factory from the outside, effectively concealing the extreme strength of its passenger cell beneath. The various upgrades qualify this Merc tank for the VPAM VR10 classification level of protection. There are Michelin Pax tires with an emergency running system, enabling 19 miles of driving even if they're punctured. The windows are around four inches thick to ward off an attack from an assault rifle.
Like the armored Toyota Land Cruiser, VR10 protection should protect against up to 33 pounds of TNT detonated from a distance of 6.5 feet away or two hand grenades on the roof. Optionally, customers can spec a fire extinguishing system as well as an emergency fresh air system. The latter system counters incoming smoke or gases and provides the occupants with fresh air. The trunk measures just 13.8 cubic feet, a result of the many layers of protection built into this sedan.
"The S 680 4MATIC is one of the most customer-oriented products from Mercedes-Benz," said Dirk Fetzer, Head of Product Management for the S-Class. "That is because this special protection model focuses on people and their safety."
Due to its extreme level of protection, it takes 51 days to produce one of these armored Mercs and the starting price is an astronomical €457,100 in Germany, equivalent to around $540,600.