Mercedes-Benz has given the fifth-generation E-class a refresh, with revised styling, new electrified engines and more interior comfort and technology, in a bid to take the fight to the BMW 5 Series and the Audi A6.
The current version of the long-running model was revealed back in 2016, and for this facelift, the sedan and estate versions have received subtle styling tweaks. These include new-look front and rear lights and bumpers and a grille that features a three-pointed star as standard. Cars in top-spec AMG Performance trim gain extra design revisions to bring their styling closer to that of Mercedes-AMG models such as the newly introduced E53. The rugged All-Terrain estate version has received more changes that tighten the visual links between it and Mercedes’ SUVs.
While the exterior changes are minor, Mercedes has extensively reworked the E-class’s electronics, allowing the firm to offer a host of new driver assistance systems, ‘energising’ comfort seats and its latest infotainment technology. The E-class globally now comes as standard with two 10.25-inch screens, for the MBUX infotainment and instrumentation, with 12.3-inch screens optional. A new steering wheel design, which features capacitive touch controls, is offered in three varieties and is set to be introduced across the range.
The revised global engine line-up includes seven petrol and diesel plug-in hybrid variants across the sedan and estate, variously offering rear- and four-wheel drive. Outputs for the PHEVs range from 156hp to 367hp for the petrol units and 160hp to 330hp for the diesels. Full details have yet to be released.
Other engine options include the four-cylinder M254 mild-hybrid petrol unit, along with six-cylinder petrol and diesel engines, all of which now feature a 48V starter-alternator electric motor. The installation of the EQ Boost system has been tweaked to further improve fuel economy.
The range-topping Mercedes-AMG E53 has also been unveiled, sporting more aggressive styling and a mild-hybrid 3.0-litre turbo-petrol powertrain. The 3.0-litre twin-turbo six-pot offers 435hp and 520Nm of torque, with a 48V starter-alternator electric motor adding an extra boost of 22hp and 250Nm when needed. The sedan maintains a 0-100kph time of 4.5sec, with the estate 0.1sec slower. The car has a top speed of 250kph, rising to 270kph with the optional AMG Driver's Package.
While the refreshed E-Class is due to go on sale internationally in the coming months, the sedan is expected to come to India later this year. The launch of the E-class for India will coincide with the sedan’s launch in China where the model is still being tested – both markets will get the long-wheelbase (LWB) version of this BMW 5 Series and Audi A6 rival.
The pre-facelift LWB E-class sedan is on sale in India for Rs 59.08-75.29 lakh, the E-class All Terrain (which is based on the standard wheelbase model and is a CBU import) is priced at Rs 75 lakh, while the range-topping Mercedes-AMG E 63 S costs Rs 1.5 crore.
All prices, ex-showroom, pan-India