The E-Class is the ‘Million Dollar Baby’ from Mercedes-Benz. It’s an absolute success. More than 1.2 million units of the tenth generation E-Class – which have been on the market since 2016 – have been sold worldwide to date. Mercedes-Benz now gives the E-Class a subtle refresher. Well, subtle, secretly there is quite a lot different.
Renewed Mercedes E-Class
The E-Class is the most successful model name in the history of Mercedes-Benz. Since 1946, the brand has sold more than 14 million copies. To keep the model ‘up to date’, the E-Class is undergoing a makeover. Mercedes-Benz is immediately sharpening the entire E-Class family. This means that the E-Class Saloon, Estate, the All-Terrain, the Coupé and Cabrio and also the AMG variants have all had an update.
Mercedes-Benz E-Class body styles
In the Netherlands we get acquainted with most body styles and we step into a very interesting version: the E 300 e, a plug-in hybrid. But more on that later. What exactly is new about the E-Class?
The design has been sharpened, with the front of all models in particular being refreshed. The standard full LED headlights have been narrowed and the interior of the LED taillights has also been modified. Also new: different bumpers. In addition, Mercedes-Benz has added new paint finishes: high-tech silver, graphite gray metallic, mojave silver and patagonia red.
In addition, new wheels have also been developed, including special aero wheels that contribute to lower fuel consumption. Coincidentally, they are under ‘our’ test car.
New steering wheel
There are also adjustments to be found in the interior. Inside we detect a new steering wheel with striking double horizontal spokes with integrated buttons. Beautiful steering wheel, also feels good in the hand. Only the high-gloss black elements in the tested E 300 e plug-in hybrid are very sensitive to greasy fingers. So you have to brush often to keep everything tidy.
The updated E-Class is also equipped with the latest generation of the MBUX multimedia system, which stands for Mercedes-Benz User Experience. It includes two large 10.25 inch (26 cm) displays placed side by side as standard. Optionally, Mercedes-Benz offers two 12.3 inch (31.2 cm) displays.
The MBUX system works excellently as usual. You can fill a thousand pages to name all the features, so let’s not do that. But one thing is certain: the MBUX system is one of the better ones on the market.
Driver assistance systems
The E-Class also gets many new driver assistance systems, such as an active distance assistant (Distronic), a traffic jam assistant, a steering assistant, a brake assistant, a blind spot assistant with exit warning and a parking package with 360° camera. Also handy: the E-Class can park automatically for the first time, not only in longitudinal and transverse parking, but also in marked places in large parking lots.
Yet we have not yet mentioned the most important novelty, because with the facelift of the E-Class, Mercedes-Benz is taking the electrification of the powertrain to a higher level. Engine variants always have a transmission with integrated starter alternator (ISG) with a 48V on-board system, ie mild hybrid (EQ Boost). The extra boost that the ISG gives depends on the chosen powertrain.
Energy is recovered and stored during braking. In addition, there is the possibility to ‘sail’ with the engine switched off, so that the power source becomes even more efficient.
One of the top models in the E-Class range is the Mercedes-AMG E 53 4Matic+ with 3.0-litre six-cylinder engine with 435 hp and 520 Nm. With an EQ Boost starter dynamo you temporarily have 22 hp and 250 Nm of extra power. The absolute top model is the Mercedes-AMG E 63 4Matic+. It produces 571 hp and 750 Nm as standard. If you choose the E 63 S trim, you will enjoy 612 hp and 850 Nm. In addition, the Limousine S version reaches 300 km/h, the Estate reaches 290 km/h.
E 300, a plug-in hybrid
But those are variants that you will not often see in the streets, at least not in the Netherlands. A variant such as the E 300 e is quite interesting for the Dutch market. This is a plug-in hybrid, also called EQ Power by Mercedes-Benz. So EQ Power is a PHEV and EQ Boost is a mild hybrid system.
Mercedes-Benz E-class luggage
The E 300 e combines an electric motor with a petrol engine and, thanks to a lithium-ion battery pack – placed on top of the rear axle – can cover approximately 49 to 53 kilometers fully electrically according to the WLTP test method. In practice you can count on 42 kilometers. In this case, some luggage space is lost, because the battery pack eats away some space. There remains 370 liters, where an E-Class Saloon has 540 liters as standard. Something to keep in mind if you use the E-Class for taxi transport, for example.
Petrol and electric Mercedes
The powertrain of the E 300 e consists of a 1,991 cc four-in-line turbo petrol engine with an output of 211 hp (155 kW) and a maximum of 350 Nm. The electric motor has 122 hp and a solid 440 Nm. This results in a system output of 320 hp (235 kW) and no less than 700 Nm.
Those are nice numbers. The performance does not lie. The E 300 e sprints to 100 km/h in 5.7 seconds and reaches a top speed of 250 km/h. At full throttle you feel a firm push in your back, partly achieved by that generous torque of 700 Nm. And because the car has rear-wheel drive and a longer wheelbase, you can easily have it broken out and checked. Shifting is done with a 9G-Tronic automatic transmission that puts all resistance in butter soft.
The car weighs 1,990 kilograms, while a regular E 300 with 258 hp has a weight of 1,730 kilograms. You notice the extra weight on the rear axle, especially when you increase the pace in corners. It’s all fine, but you want such an E-Class especially quiet and smooth drive. Because if this car excels in anything, it is in driving comfort. So quiet, so smooth, you really relax.
Mercedes-Benz E-Class price
What should a new E-Class cost? Prices vary widely. Below are the prices of the renewed Mercedes-Benz E-Class Saloon and Estate.
E 200 Business Solution: 57,808 euros
E 200 d: 59,735 euros
E 200: 60,291 euros
E 200 4Matic: 64,013 euros
E 220 d: 65,190 euros
E300 e: 66,996 euros
E 300 e 4Matic: 67,145 euros
E 300: 68,118 euros
E 220 d 4Matic: 68,183 euros
E 300 de: 68,597 euros
E 300 de 4Matic: 71,411 euros
E 450 4Matic: 85,816 euros
E 400 d 4Matic: 95,392 euros
E 200 Business Solution: 59,808 euros
E 200 d: 63,536 euros
E 200: 64,101 euros
E 200 4Matic: 66,376 euros
E 220 d: 69,194 euros
E 300 de: 70,898 euros
E 220 d 4Matic: 71,375 euros
E300: 71,928 euros
E 300 de 4Matic: 73,755 euros
E 220 d 4MaticAll-Terrain: 77,076 euros
E 450 4Matic: 90,034 euros
E 450 4MaticAll-Terrain: 97,201 euros
E 400 d 4Matic: 98,984 euros
E 400 p 4MaticAll-Terrain: 108,857 euros
The question is whether you will ever use all the new technologies in the renewed E-Class, the car has and offers so much that you can safely stay in the car for a few days and still discover new things. Apart from all that technology, the E-Class still does what it is good at: transporting people in a very comfortable way and with more luxury than before. In that regard, the sales counter of the E-Class will continue to rise sharply. It’s just a good thing.