A brand-new premium-class vehicle generation was presented to the public in September 1972. The first officially designated Mercedes-Benz S-Class – internal designation W 116 – replaced the W 108/109 series and was initially comprised of three models: the 280 S, 280 SE and 350 SE. The 280 S and 280 SE models featured the six-cylinder M 110 engine with dual overhead camshafts that had made its debut in the W 114. Six months later the S-Class saloon was also offered with the larger 4.5-litre V8 engine in parallel to the 450 SL and 450 SLC. At the same time the 450 SEL was introduced, its wheelbase lengthened by an extra 100 millimetres; as with its predecessor models, the additional space served to increase legroom in the rear. The long version was also available from November 1973 as a 350 SEL and from April 1974 as a 280 SEL.
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