The updated Mercedes-Benz E-Class: Intelligence becomes exciting and lovable

Mihai Cristea 14/08/2020 | 14:17

Automotive intelligence is now getting exciting and even more desirable: the models in the Mercedes-Benz E-Class are being comprehensively upgraded. The styling has a more sporty touch, with the front sections in particular being given a fresh look. The all-LED headlamps have been given flatter housings, while the interior of the LED tail lights has been reworked. The technical enhancements include electrified petrol and diesel engines with integrated starter-generator, the next generation of driving assistance systems and the MBUX infotainment system (Mercedes-Benz User Experience).

 

More dynamic design for the Saloon and T-Modell

The enhanced dynamics and the upgrade to the E-Class Saloon and Estate are reflected in the model range: Now the entry-level model already comes with the sporty Avantgarde Line exterior. As a result, the base model of the E‑Class features a central star at the front for the first time. The grille of the Avantgarde Line was redesigned with two chrome louvres and vertical high-gloss black struts. Chrome and high-gloss black trim elements in the front bumper underscore the sporty and elegant appearance. The likewise available Exclusive Line lives up to its name: The special grille, the upright star on the bonnet and the large chrome elements in the front bumper emphasise this positioning.

The AMG Line with a new bumper in the style of the AMG Performance models looks even sportier. In addition, Avantgarde, AMG Line and All-Terrain feature a bonnet with powerdomes. The E-Class features all-LED headlamps as standard. MULTIBEAM LED headlamps including ULTRA RANGE high beams are available as optional equipment.

The designers also updated the Saloon’s rear end with a new bumper, two-section tail lights and a new boot lid. The inner design of the tail lights has been revised for all models.

The three new paint colours available for the E-Class as part of the model refresh go by the names high-tech silver, graphite grey metallic and mojave silver. The wheel line-up has also been expanded and now includes aero wheels, which also contribute to saving fuel and thus to sustainability.

 

Even more emotional: the design of the Cabriolet and Coupé

Especially the front section design of these dream cars has been revised and sharpened up. The more dynamic impression comes courtesy of flatter headlamps which, even in the entry-level models, feature all-LED technology. The “A-shape” design of the new diamond radiator grille, which is likewise standard on all versions, adds a particularly dynamic touch. The grille also features chrome-plated dots, a single louvre and the Mercedes star in the centre.

A new highlight of the muscular rear section is the completely redesigned inner workings of the two-section tail lights, featuring LED technology. The star module with integrated reversing camera is inset into the boot lid.

The four paint colours newly available for the E-Class Coupé and Cabriolet as part of the facelift go by the names high-tech silver, graphite grey metallic, mojave silver and patagonia red (designo). It also includes aero wheels, whose special design contributes to fuel economy and therefore sustainability.

 

New colours and trim in the interior:

New appointment colours and materials upgrade the interior of the Saloon and Estate. These include the new colour combinations magma grey/neva grey (Avantgarde), black/nut brown (Exclusive) and magma grey/macchiato beige (Exclusive), and trim in silver open-pore ash wood, fondant burr walnut wood, brushed aluminium and aluminium with a carbon grain.

Next-generation driving assistance systems: better assistance in tailbacks and when parking

The new E-Class has the latest generation of Mercedes-Benz driving assistance systems providing cooperative support to drivers. This results in an especially high level of active safety: the vehicle is able to react intelligently and rapidly if the driver fails to respond. The hands-off detection feature of the steering wheel now works on a capacitive basis. This enhances user-friendliness when driving in semi-automated mode. This is because to inform the assistance systems that the driver still has control of the E-Class, it is sufficient for the driver to hold the steering wheel. If the system detects that the driver does not have his/her hands on the steering wheel for a certain time, a warning sequence is started. This finally activates Emergency Brake Assist if the driver continues to be inactive.

As standard the E-Class comes with Active Brake Assist, which in many situations is able to use autonomous braking to prevent a collision or mitigate its severity. The system is also able to brake for stationary vehicles and crossing pedestrians at typical city speeds and even to prevent collisions, depending on the situation. A range of further Intelligent Drive functions can optionally be added to the Driving Assistance Package.

 

Even more comfort in the interior: a new generation of steering wheels, plus MBUX

The E-Class is equipped with an entirely redesigned, intelligent steering wheel as part of the facelift. This is available as a leather steering wheel and in a Supersport variant. The control surfaces sport a high-gloss black finish, while the trim elements and surrounds have a silver shadow finish. The functions of the instrument cluster and media display are operated using touch controls, the physical principle of which has been changed from optical to capacitive.

The new E-Class is equipped with the latest generation of the MBUX multimedia system (Mercedes-Benz User Experience). As standard, it includes two large 10.25-inch/26 cm screens arranged side by side for a sublime widescreen look. Two 12.3-inch/31.2 cm screens are optionally available. The information in the instrument cluster and on the media display is easily legible on the high-resolution screens.

ENERGIZING comfort control cleverly networks various comfort systems in the vehicle, and uses musical and lighting moods plus a number of massage modes for a wide range of feel-good programmes. The ENERGIZING COACH is a new feature. This function is based on an intelligent algorithm and recommends one or other of the programmes depending on the situation and the individual concerned. If a Garmin® wearable is integrated, personal values such as stress level or quality of sleep optimise the accuracy of the recommendation. The aim is to ensure that the driver feels well and relaxed even during demanding or monotonous journeys.

The “PowerNap” programme is available in the plug-in hybrids (Saloon and Estate): a useful feature, for example when taking a break from driving at a rest area. The programme has three phases – falling asleep, sleeping, waking – and can enhance the performance of the driver.

 

URBAN GUARD: intelligent interlinking of hardware and digital solutions for protection against crime

In conjunction with Mercedes me, the two packages URBAN GUARD Vehicle Protection and URBAN GUARD Vehicle Protection Plus enable all-round monitoring of the parked vehicle. URBAN GUARD comprises an anti-theft alarm system, tow-away protection with visual and audible warning in the case of a detected change in position, an alarm siren, interior monitoring (triggers in the case of movements in the interior) as well as a preinstallation for theft and parking collision detection. In the case of the latter, the vehicle sensors register when the parked and locked vehicle is bumped or towed – or when someone attempts to break into the vehicle. In addition, URBAN GUARD Vehicle Protection Plus offers a function for pinpointing the position of stolen vehicles.

 

E as in efficiency: electrification of the powertrain is extended

The electrification of the powertrain takes another major step forward with the facelift of the E-Class. Seven models are available as plug-in hybrids (diesel and petrol, Saloon and Estate, rear-wheel drive and all-wheel drive). The line-up of high-efficiency, low-emission and powerful petrol engines will cover an output range from 115 to 270 kW, while the diesel spectrum spans from 110 to 243 kW.

New technical features for the OM 654: on the way to becoming the most powerful four-cylinder diesel

Fundamental further technical development is envisaged for the OM 654 four-cylinder diesel engine introduced in 2016. It therefore has a partially 48-volt onboard electrical system. A recuperation function and the ability to “glide” with the engine switched off make the engine even more efficient. Along with electrification, which also includes the use of an electric refrigerant compressor for the air-conditioning system, the following are the most important modifications that allow an output of up to 195 kW plus an additional 15 kW from the EQ Boost system:

  • A new crankshaft increases the stroke to 94 mm and the displacement to 1993 cc (previously: 92.3 and 1950).
  • The injection pressure is increased to 2700 bar (previously 2500)
  • Particularly fast response times and steady power delivery thanks to two water-cooled turbochargers, both featuring variable turbine geometry.
  • A sodium-filled cooling duct in each of the steel pistons. This helps to dissipate temperature peaks in the piston recess.
  • In terms of exhaust gas aftertreatment, this most powerful of the four-cylinder diesel engines also takes things a step further.

 

Four-cylinder petrol engine with second-generation ISG.

Also for the first time, a four-cylinder petrol engine (M 254) with second-generation integrated starter-generator (ISG) producing up to 15 kW of additional output and 180 Nm. Models equipped with this engine will have a 48-volt onboard electrical system. In the M 254, Mercedes-Benz has for the first time combined all the innovations of the modular engine family of four and six-cylinder petrol and diesel units in a single engine. They include the NANOSLIDE® cylinder coating, the CONICSHAPE® cylinder honing (trumpet honing) and the exhaust aftertreatment system positioned directly at the engine.

The in-line six-cylinder petrol engine (M 256), available for the first time in the E-Class, is also fitted with an ISG. This unit already familiar from the CLS, S-Class and GLE, with its electrical boost of up to 16 kW and as much as 250 Nm, reinforces the sporty character. The standard combination with the all-wheel drive system 4MATIC further accentuates the dynamism. The systematic electrification of the engine is a major factor in the exceptional efficiency of the powertrain.

The 9G-TRONIC transmission has also been further developed to accommodate the second-generation ISG and is being used, in a first step, with the four-cylinder ISG engine. The electric motor, the power electronics and the transmission cooler have now moved into or onto the transmission. Previously required cables can be eliminated, which offers advantages with regard to installation space and weight. This makes it easy to combine the transmission with the different combustion engines. In addition, the efficiency of the transmission has been increased. Among other aspects, the optimised interaction with the electric auxiliary oil pump reduces the delivery rate of the mechanical pump by 30 percent, improving efficiency.

The line-up of diesel engines is completed by the in-line six-cylinder unit (OM 656), which is available in conjunction with the all-wheel drive system 4MATIC.

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