The W221 S-Class was introduced in the autumn of 2005 at the Frankfurt International Motor Show, with export to other markets beginning in 2006. Since then, BMW and Audi have both introduced all-new versions of their flagship sedan, the 7-Series and the A8 respectively. The S-Class contributes the highest profit margin per car sold for the Stuttgart automaker and hence the pressure is on the 2013 model to continue to do so.
The new Mercedes S-Class is expected to be unveiled in production form at the 2013 Detroit motor show in January, before it goes on sale next spring. The new luxury saloon was recently previewed by a new sculpture called Aesthetic S at the 2012 Paris motor show.