What's the news?
The E-Class is the heartland of Mercedes-Benz's line-up and has had a significant overhaul to improve its looks, equipment, efficiency and safety against strong BMW 5 Series and Audi A6 rivalry. Debuting safety equipment from the forthcoming S-Class, the new E-Class promises to be the safest Mercedes-Benz to date, while the E's numerous safety, comfort and convenience features are bundled under the moniker 'intelligent drive'.
The most obvious change to the E-Class's exterior design is its bold new front end. The grille is reshaped, the larger opening more prominent than the outgoing model's and framed by completely revised headlamps. Those lights feature LED technology, although single unit items give the four-light look expected of a 'Benz. Revised lower air intakes and chrome highlights also help give the E-Class a significantly different appearance. Changes at the rear aren't so obvious, though the flanks have a new feature line running from the rear doors to the boot, while the tail features revised lights and bumpers on both saloon and estate.
It's unlikely you'll be bowled over by the developments of the E-Class inside. Think subtle evolution than anything revolutionary, the changes limited to a new trim design that stretches across the entire dashboard, along with a 'three-tube' instrument cluster. Higher quality materials and a new framed display in the centre console make up the majority of the changes, while the clock and air vents are also subtly reworked.
Seven-speed automatic or six-speed manual transmissions driving the rear wheels are hooked up to a range of engines that consist of four diesel options, two petrol and a diesel-electric hybrid powertrain. All are significantly improved regarding economy and emissions with all featuring stop-start technology. The big-selling 170hp E 220 CDI offers 60.1mpg (4.7 litres/100km) and 125g/km emissions on the combined cycle. The petrol engines also see improvements, with both the E 200 and E 250 four-cylinder units delivering 48.7mpg (5.8 litres/100km) on the combined cycle - along with 135g/km CO2 output. The real star is the E 300 BlueTec Hybrid, which has an official combined economy figure of 69.0mpg (4.1 litres/100km) and CO2 emissions of just 107g/km.
Lots, as in too much to list when it comes to the E's impressive safety arsenal. Featuring what Mercedes-Benz calls 'intelligent drive', the new car builds on the outgoing model's driver aids with entirely new or significantly enhanced versions of Distronic Plus, Steering Assist, Brake Assist plus, Junction Assist, Pre-Safe, Pre-Safe Plus or Impulse, Active Lane Keeping Assist, Active Parking Assist, Adaptive Headlamp Assist, Active Blind Spot Assist, Traffic Sign Assist, Attention Assist and even more yet... Prices have yet to be confirmed.
For more images and up to date news check out CompleteCar.ie