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After adjusting the front passenger seat of the cars to my sitting position, I got into their back-seats to find out which one of these offered the ultimate rear seat space and comfort. This explained the S-Class’ predominance in this super-saloon segment. The ‘S’ has the best rear legroom and is the cosiest, closely followed by the A8 and the Seven. But what makes the A8 stand out is the power foot-rest that is integrated at the back of the front passenger seat. The front seat folds at the press of a button and a foot rest unfolds to let you stretch your legs, even the 10-inch entertainment adjusts automatically. Perks of travelling first class.

The A8 is a four seater with a fixed armrest and a control system that take up the rear centre seat, whereas the Beemer and Mercedes have foldable armrests equipped with cup-holders and climate controls. However, I doubt if anyone would like to be seated in the rear centre seat of these commodious cars and miss out on the luxury. For instance, the seat massage system is only available on the rear seats. I must mention that the A8 offers the best automotive rubdown I’ve ever experienced and wouldn’t mind being stuck in the Mumbai traffic in it.

All the three luxury cars offer loads of goodies like infotainment screens, rear climate controls, massage function and electric window blinds, to name a few. And it goes without saying that all the three cars are well insulated from outside noise. Though the hushed interior isn’t entirely a good thing as sitting underneath their hoods is the V-8 motor and my inner outlaw misses its beastly howl!

Unleashing the beast
The German engineers have in no way compromised on powering these luxosedans. The S-500L comes loaded with a massive 5,461-cc, V8 petrol engine mated with a seven-speed G-TRONIC auto-box that helps deliver 374 PS of peak power and 505 Nm of max torque in the smoothest possible way to achieve zero to 100 km/h
in 7.44 seconds. Yes, it is impressive for a car of this size and weight, but appears to be slack when compared to Audi’s latest offering.

The A8 is roughly 100 kg lighter than the competition due to its lightweight and rigid aluminium body, which benefits its overall fuel efficiency, performance, handling and braking. Nowadays, when every gram is important, this is a huge difference. The car sports the same 4,163-cc, direct-injection V8 mill that did duty on its forebear, but by using Audi’s variable intake-valve-lift system and reducing internal friction and a taller top gear, it adds another 22 steeds to the luxury chariot. While cruising on the highway in top gear, the slick eight-speed triptonic kicks down to third the moment you put your right foot down and the Audi surges ahead effortlessly with authority and a soft V8 howl. The motor can now churn out 377 PS and 445 Nm of torque and manage 0-100 km/h in just 6.9 seconds, that’s 3.5 seconds faster than the previous A8.

Finally, the Beemer, the champion of speed propelled by the 4,395-cc twin turbo V8, produces 409 PS and an unbelievable 600 Nm of torque and is mated with the six-speed Steptronic automatic transmission. The spontaneous 750Li takes just 6.65 seconds to reach the 100 km/h mark from standstill, putting a few sport cars to shame!


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