In-Car Tech

10 coolest high-tech features of the 2021 Mercedes-Benz S-Class MBUX system

The improved MBUX system has new features for the 2021 model year S-Class.

Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz

The newest version of Mercedes-Benz's flagship model will have new ways to keep its driver and passenger safe, and keep passengers occupied, all thanks to a tech infusion. And there's a new level of security that helps you keep your information safe.

You can open and close the sunroof with a hand gesture.

No need to press a button! New convenience features include the ability to preposition the driver's seat and outside mirrors according to body side, operate the rear roller blind by glancing over the shoulder, and using a hand gesture to open and close the sunroof of the S-Class.

There are five screens.

2021 Mercedes-Benz S-Class MBUX features tech

Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz

The 2021 Mercedes-Benz S-Class gets five screens including one at the center of the car, lower than the traditional setup and orientated portrait-style, that is a 12.8-inch OLED screen with haptic feedback. Buyers can get up to three screens in the rear. A standard screen sits in front of the driver.

Your preferences can be transferred to any seat. 

Want to switch drivers? Change seats after a quick stop? Now there is no fuss. Simple scan a QR code with the Mercedes app and the vehicle is automatically connected to the Mercedes me account. Personal preferences such as a favorite radio station and preselected settings can be transferred to any seat via the personal Mercedes me profile (up to seven can be saved). These setting can be used in other Mercedes vehicles as well.

This setting could be especially helpful for fleet drivers who ferry around "regulars". They can save their clients' seat settings and preferences then apply them to the vehicle before arriving for pickup.

Fingerprint, face, and voice recognition is used for security.

In addition to the use of a PIN, new authentication methods are available in the 2021 S-Class. The MBUX system now features fingerprint, face and voice recognition, which allows access to individual settings or verification of digital payment processes from the vehicle.

The driver's information screen has four appearance styles and three modes.

2021 Mercedes-Benz S-Class MBUX features tech

Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz

The driver's information display features a three-dimensional effect. Drivers can choose between four different appearance styles of the screen: Discreet, Sporty, Exclusive, and Classic. The screens also function in three modes: navigation, assistance, and service.

The car warns you about your safety.

The car's exit warning function uses cameras to recognize that an occupant wants to leave a vehicle. If another user is approaching in the blind spot, the active ambient lighting becomes part of the exit warning system and flashes red. The system can slo check whether a child seat is correctly attached to the front passenger seat. Additionally, there is a driver attention monitor.

The voice assistant is capable of chit-chat.

This technology appears to work in a similar fashion to Amazon Alexa or Google Home. The new Chit-Chat function can answer a number of general domain questions, start a dialogue with a real person, connect to and control home appliances, and more.

Your Mercedes is listening to everyone.

2021 Mercedes-Benz S-Class MBUX features tech

Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz

The car's voice assistant can be operated from each seating position. Using the "Hey Mercedes" voice command to activate the microphones within the car. However, "Hey Mercedes" isn't always necessary. For example, "Accept call" will answer a ringing phone call. The system now supports 27 languages.

The head-up display has augmented reality content.

The system doesn't just show you which way to turn. It shows lanes and overlays the lanes with arrows to show which way to go. Mercedes calls these arrows "fishbones".

The HUD's display area corresponds to the area of a 77-inch diagonal televisions.

Content can be shared among screens.

2021 Mercedes-Benz S-Class MBUX features tech

Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz

Content presented on screens throughout the cabin can be shared with other passengers. Selection and amendment of navigation is now possible from the rear seats.

More information about the 2021 Mercedes-Benz S-Class is expected to be revealed in the coming weeks.

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Nuts & Bolts

 
 

The material Jaguar Land Rover is adding to its vehicle interiors is called Econyl.

Photo courtesy of Jaguar Land Rover

As automaker work toward more sustainable business practices, Jaguar Land Rover is working with Econyl nylon to develop high-quality interiors made from ocean and landfill waste. The automaker promises that next-generation Jaguar and Land Rover models will feature floor mats and trims made with Econyl fiber from recycled industrial plastic, fabric offcuts from clothing manufacturers, fishing nets from the farming industry, and those abandoned in the ocean– known as 'ghost nets'.

Econyl nylon was created by Aquafil. It's already been sued in the high-end fashion, sportswear, and luxury watch industries to create handbags, backpacks, swimwear, and watch straps. In one year, the company recycles as much as 40,000 tons of waste, making it in to the nylon. For every 10,000 tonnes of Econyl raw material produced, 70,000 barrels of crude oil are saved and 65,100 tons of carbon emissions equivalent are avoided.

Jaguar Land Rover Econyl interior Jaguar Land Rover has committed to including more sustainable materials in its interiors.Photo courtesy of Jaguar Land Rover

Turning to sustainable materials isn't a new idea. For years Ford has been incorporating all manner of materials into its vehicles including tomatoes, soy, and coffee chaff from McDonald's. General Motors recently showcased a breakdown of how recycled materials are used inside their automobiles.

Bentley's facility in Crewe, England is collecting rainwater for use in its office building allowing the company to not have to draw from the local water system.

Each year automakers release their sustainability report, which champions all the ways that the company is moving forward in its resources conservation plans. This year's GM report sets forth numerous goals. Among them, by 2030, 50 percent of the parts used in General Motors vehicles will be made with sustainable materials. Additionally, GM's Spring Hill plant in Tennessee will run solely on solar power by 2022.

FCA made big strides in 2019. Their 2020 sustainability report touted their 40 percent reduction in water use and 27 percent carbon footprint reduction per vehicle.

Jaguar Land Rover Econyl interior Photo courtesy of Jaguar Land Rover

This week Polestar announced that its Precept concept vehicle is headed into production. When the Precept debuted a few months ago, the company bragged about its sustainable interior.

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Cadillac will give the 2022 Cadillac CT5-V Blackwing carbon fiber seats.

Photo courtesy of Cadillac

Cadillac continues to tease its long-awaited Blackwing sedans. The company is using the Blackwing monknier to designate their top-performing models of the CT4 and CT5.

Those models will also wear the "V' designation and be given the full name Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing and CT4-V Blackwing. They will both be 2022 model year vehicles.

2022 Cadillac CT5-V Blackwing testing This CT5-V Blackwing was spotted testing at Virginia International Raceway, Photo courtesy of Cadillac

Cadillac has slowly been leaking out details of the models, even as the market moves away from sedan sales. We know now know that Cadillac CT-5 Blackwing will feature racing inspired seats. According to the automaker, "The carbon fiber seat back will feature a precision book-matched design and laser-etched V-Series logo. The seats will also include other customer-centric innovations and features that will be announced at a later date."

Cadillac also confirmed that the model is a limited edition.

We already have seen a picture of the cars' interior. That photo showed a new performance steering wheel that is crafted with leather and cut-and-sewn stitching. It features a 12 o'clock red racing stripe, carbon fiber trim, and a V-Series emblem. That emblem is designed to envoke nostalgia for Cadillac's championship-winning heritage on the track. Cadillac has designed the wheel with driver ergonomics as a priority.

The new models will feature V-Mode and a Performance Traction Management system that can be accessed on the left- and right-hand side of the wheel, respectively.

Additional buttons on the steering wheel are more typical to the General Motors lineup. They feature heated steering wheel, follow distance, cruise control, phone call/Bluetooth, and volume controls.

Each V-Series Blackwing model will feature a specially tuned chassis, vehicle control technologies, and engines. The models will be offered with a manual transmission.

The CT5-V Blackwing will be available starting in summer 2021. Expect pricing to be around the $60,000 mark.

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