Fuel consumption is kept low by efficient engines and – on the E 350 CDI 4MATIC – the BlueEFFICIENCY package. Parts and components have been optimised in order to improve energy management as a whole, thereby helping to save fuel. The work done in the wind tunnel was particularly fruitful, as the resulting drag coefficient of just 0.25 makes the E-Class Saloon the world's most aerodynamically efficient luxury car. It betters the already impressive cd figure of its predecessor by another four percent, which in practice represents a fuel saving of around 0.25 litres per 100 kilometres when driving at a motorway speed of 130 km/h. Further BlueEFFICIENCY measures include newly developed tyres with up to 17 percent lower rolling resistance, as well as the energy-saving control of the alternator, fuel pump, air-conditioning compressor and power steering.
The Mercedes-Benz E-Class – the epitome of ride comfort
Mercedes-Benz achieves the standard of ride comfort which all versions of the E‑Class are renowned for courtesy of the highly sophisticated DIRECT CONTROL suspension with adaptive shock absorbers, an intelligent body design with excellent rigidity, plus enhanced seats which are also available with massage and climate control functions.
The suspension automatically adapts to the changing driving situation by reducing the damping forces during normal driving to substantially improve ride comfort. When taking bends at speed or during rapid evasive manoeuvres, however, the system switches to the maximum damping force so that the saloon is stabilised to best effect. A lowered suspension with dynamic damping characteristics is available as an alternative to the comfort-oriented standard suspension. Mercedes-Benz is the only manufacturer in the world to combine the air suspension system optionally available for all 4MATIC models (standard on the E 500 4MATIC) with a three-link front axle design and a continuously variable, electronically controlled damping system, which processes a series of sensor signals and controls each wheel individually. So, not only do Mercedes customers experience the best in ride comfort, they reap the benefits of excellent handling safety and sporty agility too. The driver can switch between Comfort and Sport mode at the push of a button.
Snug warmth: E-Class offers the heating output of a family home
Carefully balanced control of the interior climate is especially important in the
winter. This is why Mercedes-Benz offers THERMOTRONIC luxury automatic climate control for the E-Class. Apart from regulating the climate separately for the driver, front passenger and passengers in the rear, this system allows individual pre-settings to be programmed too. If the optional multi-zone THERMOTRONIC system is specified, the occupants are able to select "Diffuse", "Medium" or "Focus" modes at the touch of a button, and so adapt the airflow rate and air distribution to their personal preferences whilst still benefiting from the system's automatic control functionality. This system furthermore includes a pollutant sensor which automatically switches to air recirculation mode if it detects any sudden increase in the carbon monoxide or nitrogen oxide levels in the outside air – when driving through a tunnel, for instance.
Another highlight of the THERMOTRONIC system is the residual heat function: pressing the "Rest" button heats or ventilates the passenger compartment for around 30 minutes when the engine is switched off. The E-Class is equipped as standard with THERMATIC, a two-zone automatic climate control system. Here, the interior air is kept clean by a large, hermetically sealed fine-particle com-bination filter which is 96 to 98 percent effective. Thanks to the activated-charcoal coating, gaseous substances can also be filtered out by the fine-particle combination filter.
THERMATIC and THERMOTRONIC heat up the passenger compartment of the E‑Class extremely efficiently, even after a cold start on winter mornings. This is thanks to a heating output of eleven kilowatts, equivalent to the capacity of the central heating system in a modern family home. On the diesel models, a heat exchanger with six integral PTC heating elements (PTC = Positive Temperature Coefficient) is also activated when the outside temperature falls below a certain level in order to boost the effect of the main heat exchanger with an electrical output of around 1200 watts. The assistance from the PTC heater is necessary due to the high thermal efficiency of today's CDI engines, which is precisely what makes them so economical and means that they dissipate considerably less heat to the coolant under partial load conditions than conventional engines.
Safety: nine airbags as standard, plus innovative driver assistance systems
The E-Class is proof that Mercedes-Benz leads the way when it comes to safety. Around a dozen driver assistance systems are on hand to help prevent traffic
accidents or at least reduce the severity of the impact. These include the standard ATTENTION ASSIST drowsiness detection system, as well as the optional DISTRONIC PLUS proximity control and PRE-SAFE® Brake, which is able to initiate partial and emergency braking autonomously. For the first time, PRE-SAFE® is also able to use only the information received from the short-range radar sensors in the front bumper to tension the front seat belts at the last moment before an inevitable collision, thereby reducing the strain exerted on the driver and front passenger in the impact. Plus, on models with fully power-adjustable seats (optional extra), the front passenger seat is adjusted into an optimum position too.
With nine airbags fitted as standard, not to mention four seat belt tensioners and belt force limiters as well as NECK-PRO crash-responsive head restraints for the driver and front passenger, the new E-Class offers an even more extensive safety specification than its predecessor. The airbags, which can deploy in a matter of milliseconds in the event of an accident, include two adaptive airbags for the driver and front passenger, a kneebag for the driver, two sidebags in the front-seat backrests and two large windowbags, which extend from the A-pillar to the C-pillar during a side impact. Pelvisbags for the front-seat occupants are also included for the first time. These reduce the loads acting in the pelvic area in particular during a side-on collision, as well as resulting in favourable occupant kinematics in such impacts. Sidebags are also available for the passengers in the rear as an optional extra. As a further safety innovation, Mercedes-Benz is also offering optional, self-adaptive belt force limiters in the rear for the first time. These are able to automatically adjust to the occupants' size and weight.
E-Class Estate: exemplary load compartment management
The Estate model comes with the ideal credentials for handling all manner of transport jobs. Not only can as many as seven passengers be seated in comfort with ample amounts of space, the luggage compartment also benefits from the growth in the model's dimensions. The luggage capacity of 695 litres with the normal seating arrangement can be increased to a vast 1950 litres by folding the rear backrests flat and loading up to roof height. A new best figure not just for this segment, but for the estate market as a whole. Mercedes-Benz's expertise in the design of estate cars is evident not just from the cavernous load capacity, but also from the top figures in other criteria which are important for everyday practicality, such as the load sill height (56.6 cm) or the through-loading length behind the front seats (over two metres). All Estate models include a self-levelling rear suspension for even greater handling safety as standard.
Extending the load compartment is perfectly straightforward thanks to the
standard-fit "Quickfold" system, which means that the rear backrest simply has to be folded onto the seat cushion to produce a flat load floor. For supreme convenience, the backrest can be released and folded down either from the side or from the luggage compartment. The rear backrest's standard asymmetric split (1/3:2/3) furthermore allows the load space to be increased on just one side. Exemplary load management comes built in too: take, for example, the electromechanically operated EASY-PACK tailgate or the EASY-PACK folding load compartment floor, which can be folded upright and locked into various positions. The EASY-PACK load compartment cover also forms part of the standard specification. The extended cover can be hooked into electrically powered carriers on the D‑pillars - when the tailgate is opened, the load compartment cover is automatically raised for unhindered loading and unloading.