The Friday Five:The Six Figure Flagship, Top Safety Pick Awards, and Sporty Chevy SUVs Edition

Liz Kim | Dec 18, 2020

This week, we covered the departure of Alfa Romeo’s sports car from the U.S. market, prices and details about Toyota’s Mirai fuel cell electric vehicle, and the finalists for car, truck, and SUV of the year awards. We’ve also got a 2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E review this week, covering the new electric SUV in-depth. 

But that’s not everything that was happening in the automotive space.

2021 Mercedes S-Class Price Jumps Nearly 15% - Find the best Mercedes-Benz deals!

You might think that Mercedes-Benz already prices its flagship S-Class sedan well into the stratosphere, but just wait until you see what 2021 has in store. 

2021 Mercedes-Benz S-Class Front View Lights On

Today, you can still get a 2020 S-Class S 450 sedan for $95,300 (including a $1,050 destination charge). Next year, the redesigned 2021 S-Class in its base Luxury trim level will begin at $110,850 for the S 500 and $117,350 for the S 580. The performance-tuned AMGs kick off at $115,150 for the S 500 and $121,650 for the S 580. Executive trim comes only in S 580 guise, and it is priced from $132,500. 

Granted, the all-new 2021 Mercedes S-Class takes a giant leap forward in terms of technological sophistication, and nobody said owning the best should cost less. But that’s a big jump in price.

Top Safety Pick Awards Bonanza! - Find the best Acura deals!

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) doled out a flurry of late-year safety awards to 2021 model-year vehicles it has recently tested. 

Thanks in part to its standard LED projector headlights, the redesigned 2021 Acura TLX earns a 2020 Top Safety Pick Plus designation. The 2021 Hyundai Palisade midsize SUV and the 2021 Mazda CX-30 small SUV also receive a Top Safety Pick Plus award.

The Audi A4/S4 sedan and A5/S5 Sportback also get excellent safety scores, with a Top Safety Pick designation for both body styles, but a Marginal headlight performance prevents them from adding a Plus designation. The same goes for the full-size 2021 Ram 1500 pickup truck, although you can get a headlight upgrade with higher trim levels.

2021 Nissan Murano Price and Changes Revealed - Find the best Nissan deals!

Nissan has announced pricing for and changes to its midsize 5-passenger SUV, the 2021 Murano. The base price is $33,605 (including the $1,095 destination charge). For 2021, the Murano gets Nissan Safety Shield 360, the automaker’s collection of advanced driving assistance systems (ADAS), as standard equipment across the lineup. Additionally, three new paint colors are available: Boulder Gray Pearl, Magnetic Black Pearl, and Scarlet Ember Tintcoat. 

2021 Lincoln Navigator Black Label Goes Dark - Find the best Lincoln deals!

If you’ve lived through the era during which gold packages were a thing, it is easy to consider currently trendy black packages to be a vast improvement. Lincoln jumps on the bandwagon with a new Special Edition Package for the 2021 Lincoln Navigator Black Label. The new package marries the existing Monochromatic Package offered for Navigator Reserve trim with an exclusive black-painted roof, black 22-inch wheels, and a black mesh grille, mirror caps, and spoiler. It comes in a variety of paint colors.

2021 Chevy Traverse is Gettin’ Sporty with It - Find the best Chevrolet deals!

Touting the success of its Midnight and Sport special editions on other models, Chevrolet is expanding the availability of the cosmetic treatments to midsize, 3-row Traverse SUV for the 2021 model year. 

The Traverse Midnight Edition follows the heart of darkness with a Mosaic Black metallic paint job paired with a black grille, black wheels, black roof rails, and black badges. Meanwhile, the Traverse Sport Edition also features all of the blackness, but it offers more choice in paint colors. 

Chevy also reminds small SUV buyers that the refreshed compact 2022 Equinox will come with a new RS trim, which sports a gloss black mesh grille, dark-finish 19-inch wheels, black roof rails, and special badges. Inside, the Equinox RS will feature black upholstery with contrasting red stitching and an RS shift knob.

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