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Thursday, July 18, 2024
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HomeAutomotiveThe All-New Mercedes-Benz E-Class (2024)

The All-New Mercedes-Benz E-Class (2024)

For over 75 years, the E-Class has set the standard for mid-range luxury saloons. In 2023, Mercedes-Benz will open a new chapter for the business saloon: the new E-Class points the way in the transition from the combustion engine to electric drive. At the same time, its new electronics architecture allows a comprehensive digital user experience. The first saloon models of the 214 series will arrive at the European sales partners in autumn 2023.

Classic proportions and special character lines in the exterior design

The new Mercedes-Benz E-Class has the proportions of a classic three-box saloon: the short front overhang and long bonnet are followed by a greenhouse which is set well back. The “cab-backward” design is rounded off by the well-proportioned rear overhang.

A black panel-like surface connects the radiator grille with the headlamps. This insert in high-gloss black is visually reminiscent of the Mercedes-EQ models. The three-dimensionally designed radiator grille is either progressive or classic, depending on the equipment line. The new E-Class has high-performance LED headlamps as standard. As an optional extra, DIGITAL LIGHT is available without and with a projection function. All headlamp variants offer a distinctive day and night design. As a typical feature of the brand, the daytime running lights take the shape of an eyebrow. Powerdomes accentuate the bonnet.

The side view shows off the harmonious proportions and the distinctive “cab-backward” design to particularly good effect. The flush-fitting door handles familiar from the luxury Mercedes-Benz models are available as an option. The two separate character lines on the side emphasise the car’s sporty character.

Highlights at the rear include the two-section LED lights with a new contour and special design: the star motif in both light units provides a special day and night design.

MBUX Superscreen as a highlight of the interior design

The dashboard makes for the digital experience in the interior. If the E-Class is equipped with the optional front passenger screen, the large glass surface of the MBUX Superscreen extends to the central display. Visually detached from this is the driver’s display in the driver’s field of vision. The models without a passenger display feature a large trim element that extends to the centre. Visually detached, the central display appears to float above the concave surface of this trim element.

The front section of the instrument panel is illuminated by the light strip of the Active Ambient Lighting. This runs in a wide arc from the windscreen, past the A-pillars and into the doors. This creates a generous feeling of space. An apparently free-floating control array in the upper section of the door panels matches the look of the glass surfaces of the screens.

The centre console is designed as a homogeneous unit and merges in a straight line into the lower section of the dashboard. At the front, a stowage compartment with lid and cup holders is integrated into the three-dimensionally shaped trim element. There is a soft padded armrest in the rear part of the centre console.

The door centre panel merges seamlessly into the armrest with a concave sweep. The front section here is designed as a metallic high-tech element. It serves as a grab and closing handle, and incorporates the switches for the power windows. Another highlight is the free-floating control array incorporating the door opener and the controls for the seat functions.

The contours of the seat surface and backrest flow elegantly from the inside to the outside, and appear to float above the base of the seat thanks to their layer design. Indented vertical lines follow the outer contour, widening out towards the top.

When it comes to spaciousness, the Mercedes-Benz E-Class is one of the favourites in its segment. The driver enjoys five millimetres more headroom than in the preceding model. The rear passengers particularly benefit from the two centimetre longer wheelbase: Kneeroom and maximum legroom are increased by 10 and 17 millimetres, respectively. The increase in elbow width in the rear is even greater: it is now 1519 millimetres. This is an increase by 25 millimetres, and almost S-class level. The luggage capacity is up to 540 litres.

Half of the engine variants are plug-in hybrids

Thanks to systematic electrification and intelligent downsizing, the new E-Class sets new standards in efficiency. Half of all the models will be fourth-generation plug-in hybrids. The model range already achieves this high proportion at market launch. Three of the six E-Class versions combine the advantages of a vehicle with combustion engine with those of an electric car.

The combustion engines are four and six-cylinder units from the current modular Mercedes-Benz engine family FAME (Family of Modular Engines). Accordingly, the engine range plays a major role in the flexibility of the international production network, with needs-based electrification.

In addition to turbocharging, both the diesel and petrol engines feature intelligent support from an integrated starter-generator (ISG). They are therefore mild hybrids. Thanks to a new battery, the power of the electric motor has been increased from 15 to 17 kW and the boost torque to 205 Nm.

Mercedes-Benz will offer no less than three fourth-generation plug-in hybrid models from the market launch of the new E-Class.

With an electric output of 95 kW (129 hp) and an all-electric range of up to over 100 kilometres (WLTP), they will in many cases and on many days be on the road purely electrically, without the use of the combustion engine. More plug-in hybrids with diesel combustion engines will follow.

AIRMATIC and rear-axle steering are optionally available

The agile handling of the new E-Class is due in large part to precise guidance of the front wheels by four control arms each. At the rear axle, an optimised multi-link independent rear suspension with five links ensures excellent wheel control and excellent straight-line stability. At both axles, the springs and dampers are combined in a single strut and are not involved in wheel guidance tasks, therefore the suspension responds with corresponding sensitivity. The front subframe and rear axle carrier decouple the suspension and body from vibrations and noise. As standard, the mild hybrid models are equipped with an AGILITY CONTROL steel spring suspension with selective damping system. It is also 15 millimetres lower than the suspension of the plug-in hybrids.

The new Mercedes-Benz E-Class is available with the Technology package as an option. This includes the all-round AIRMATIC air suspension system with ADS+ continuously adjustable damping and rear-axle steering. The AIRMATIC suspension with air springs and adaptive ADS+ dampers responds very sensitively. Level control is another feature of AIRMATIC. It keeps the ground clearance constant irrespective of the vehicle load, but also makes changes when needed.

The new E-Class is especially agile and stable with the optional rear-axle steering and the accompanying, more direct steering ratio at the front axle. The steering angle at the rear axle is 4.5 degrees. This reduces the turning circle by up to 90 centimetres

Impressive, immersive entertainment experience

Music, games and streaming content can be experienced with almost all the senses in the E-Class. Thanks to digital innovations in the interior, the E-Class is now more intelligent, achieving a new dimension of personalisation and interaction. At the same time, the electronic architecture is more software-driven and less hardware-driven.

The computing functions of previously separate domains take place in a single processor. Screens and the MBUX infotainment system thus share a new, very powerful central onboard computer. This form of networking improves the performance and speed of the data streams.

The Entertainment package (MBUX Entertainment Plus) will be available for the new E-Class. It includes Mercedes me connect services and a data package from a third-party provider. Depending on the market, a communication module with 5G as the transmission technology is used. The mobile phone standard 5G makes much faster data rates possible than LTE/UMTS.

The Digital Vehicle Key is now available for the iPhone and Apple® Watch

With the Digital Vehicle Key, the E-Class can be started and locked simply by the driver carrying a compatible device with them. Key sharing is also possible: various digital channels can be used to invite family members or friends to use the E-Class. In doing so, the vehicle owner can assign different rights, granting only access to the vehicle or also allowing it to be driven. The vehicle can recognise several users at once, and the Digital Vehicle Key can be shared by up to 16 persons. In those markets where Mercedes me connect services are available, the pre-installation for the Digital Vehicle Key forms part of the KEYLESS-GO Convenience Package. This equipment combination is available in the new Mercedes-Benz E-Class from the Premium Package onwards.

Music becomes visible: Sound Visualisation

With the new Active Ambient Lighting with Sound Visualisation, occupants in the new E-Class can experience music with three senses: pieces of music and sounds from films or apps can be heard (with Dolby Atmos® technology if desired), felt (by means of sound resonating transducers in the optional Burmester® 4D surround sound system) and now also “seen”. Visualisation takes place on the light strip of the Active Ambient Lighting (optional extra). For the first time, this applies throughout in the E-Class. For example, fast sequences of beats can cause rapid light changes, while flowing rhythms can create softly merging lighting moods.

The entertainment experience for the front passenger is always impressive. On their optional screen, the front passenger can watch dynamic content such as TV or video streaming even when the driver at the wheel is looking over at them. This is because the display is switchable. The advanced camera-based privacy function reduces its brightness and therefore the risk of driver distraction.

New third-party apps plus selfie and video camera

The software experts at Mercedes-Benz have developed a new compatibility layer that allows the installation of third-party apps. The following apps are available on the central display on the launch of the E-Class: the entertainment platform “TikTok”, the game “Angry Birds”, the collaborative application “Webex” and the office application “Zoom”, as well as the browser “Vivaldi”. In addition, the ZYNC entertainment portal (optionally) offers video streaming, on-demand content, interactive experiences, local video programmes, sports, news, games and much more on the central and passenger displays, via one user interface.

Another new feature is a selfie and video camera (part of the optional MBUX Superscreen) on top of the dashboard. When the vehicle is stationary, the driver can participate in online video conferences via e.g. “Webex”, and take personal photos and videos.

More operating convenience is also available with MBUX. With the “Just Talk” function, the intelligent voice control can now be activated without the keyword “Hey Mercedes”. When the function is activated, a red microphone symbol appears in the display. This indicates that the vehicle is ready and waiting for commands.

Added day-to-day convenience: the routines

Mercedes-Benz is working on the use of artificial intelligence (AI) so that the car learns which comfort systems vehicle occupants use repeatedly. Given the same circumstances, the aim is for AI to automate such functions. The result is personalised automation. Mercedes-Benz uses the term ‘routine’ for this innovation, the development of which is already well advanced.

On the launch of the new Mercedes-Benz E-Class, customers will be able to use templates for standard routines. They also have the option of creating routines themselves. In doing so, the occupants can link several functions and conditions. For example, “Switch on the seat heating and set the ambient lighting to warm orange if the interior temperature is below twelve degrees Celsius”.

For enhanced well-being: ENERGIZING COMFORT and THERMOTRONIC with Digital Vent Control (both optional)

Soothing sounds, mobilising massage, activating light – Mercedes-Benz offers a comprehensive wellness programme with the variously configured ENERGIZING COMFORT programmes and the individual recommendations of the ENERGIZING COACH. The E-Class marks the debut of a new feature: The anti-travel sickness program of ENERGIZING COMFORT can help affected passengers to alleviate the symptoms. A bio-feedback function is planned for the ENERGIZING COACH in the medium term. This can reduce the feeling of stress with breathing exercises.

With THERMOTRONIC automatic climate control (optional extra), Digital Vent Control enhances the comfort experience. It automatically adjusts the front air vents to a desired ventilation scenario. This can be done for each seat via the user profile, for example. However, the nozzles can also be aligned by hand as usual.

Numerous driving assistance systems, some of which have been developed further

The standard equipment of the E-Class with driving assistance systems includes Active Distance Assist DISTRONIC, ATTENTION ASSIST, Active Brake Assist, Active Lane Keeping Assist, Parking Package with reversing camera and Speed Limit Assist. The status and activity of the driving assistance systems are shown as a full-screen view in the Assistance mode of the driver’s display.

In conjunction with the camera, ATTENTION ASSIST now also offers a driver distraction warning in the 3D driver display (optional extra): if the driver’s eyes are not focused on the road for several seconds, ATTENTION ASSIST can detect a distraction and warn the driver acoustically and visually. If the driver still fails to turn their attention to the traffic situation, there is an escalation with a second warning and a continuous warning tone. If the driver still fails to respond to the warning, the system can initiate an emergency stop by Active Emergency Stop Assist.

The Driving Assistance Plus package is also offered as an optional extra, for example as part of the Premium package. Components include Active Steering Assist, which assists with lane-keeping. As already on motorways, the E-Class can now also restart automatically in city traffic and on country roads after a longer standstill. Another new feature: if Active Steering Assist is no longer available because the lane markings are not clearly visible, it signals this to the driver by vibrations in the steering wheel.

Sophisticated body concept and coordinated restraint systems

The safety concept of the Mercedes-Benz E-Class is based on a body with a particularly rigid passenger cell and specifically deformable crash structures. The restraint systems, e.g. seat belts and airbags, are specifically adapted to this. In the event of an accident, they can be activated in such a way that their protective effect for the occupants is adapted to the situation.

In addition to driver and front passenger airbags, a knee airbag on the driver’s side is also standard. It can protect the legs from contact with the steering column or instrument panel in a severe frontal crash. The standard window airbags can reduce the risk of head impact with the side window or penetrating objects. In the event of a serious side-on collision, the window airbag on the side of the impact extends from the A- to the C-pillar like a curtain over the front and rear side windows. If a rollover is detected, the window airbags can be activated on both sides. In addition to the head protection system, side airbags can also cover the thorax area in the event of a severe side impact – including on the outer rear seats (optional).

In addition, the vehicles are equipped with a centre airbag, depending on the country. Pyrotechnic belt tensioners and force limiters are standard on all outer seats.

Resource-conserving materials

Numerous E-Class components are made partly from resource-saving materials (recyclates and renewable raw materials). Upholstery made of undyed alpaca wool combined with a recycled material is used for the basic seat of the E-Class. In the foam of the seats, certified recycled raw materials are used for the first time according to the “mass balance approach”, and their properties do not differ from those of raw materials produced from crude oil. In this way, the need for fossil resources can be reduced while maintaining product quality.

Neutral CO2 balance in production at the Sindelfingen plant

Since 2022, Mercedes-Benz has been producing with a neutral CO2 balance in all of its own plants worldwide. The externally sourced electricity comes exclusively from renewable energies, and is therefore CO2-free. In addition, the company aims to increase the generation of renewable energy at its locations. Investments will be made in a further expansion of photovoltaics at the entire Sindelfingen location by the end of 2024. Another focus at the Sindelfingen location is on constantly reducing water consumption and the amount of waste produced.

The E-Class as a long-standing success story

Mercedes-Benz has produced more than 16 million upper mid-range vehicles since 1946. The heritage of the Mercedes-Benz E-Class goes back to the very early days of the brand. At the beginning of the 20th century, the preceding companies from which Mercedes-Benz emerged brought corresponding vehicles to market.

When operations recommenced after the Second World War, the Model 170 V (W 136) originally introduced in 1936 went back into production. In 1947 the Saloon followed as the first post-war passenger car from Mercedes-Benz. The 180 model (W 120) of 1953 with self-supporting “Ponton” body introduced new technical as well as formal features. In 1961, the four-cylinder versions of the “Tailfin” series (W 110) followed. In 1968, the upper medium class of the “Stroke/8” series (W 114/115) signified the next major step. The succeeding 123 model series from 1976 proved even more successful.

The 124 model series produced from 1984 to 1995 bore the name E-Class for the first time from mid-1993. The “twin-headlamp” face and innovative technology were the characteristic features of the 210 model series launched in 1995. The E-Class of model series 211 was launched in early 2002. The E-Class 212 (Saloon and Estate) and 207 (Cabriolet and Coupé) model series followed in 2009. The Mercedes-Benz E-Class model series 213 had its debut in 2016, and from 2017 for the first time also as an All-Terrain. In addition, there are the coupés and cabriolets of the 238 model series.

Exterior design

The new E-Class combines tradition and modernity: on the one hand, the model series continues the long model history of the classic Mercedes-Benz E-Class; on the other hand, its new appearance builds a bridge to the avant-garde trendsetters from Mercedes-EQ.

The new E-Class has the proportions of a classic three-box saloon: the short front overhang and long bonnet are followed by a greenhouse which is set well back. The passenger area is generously dimensioned, partly owing to the two-centimetre longer wheelbase (2961 millimetres) compared to the preceding series. The “cab-backward” design is rounded off by the well-proportioned rear overhang. Among other things, the E-Class derives its status from the so-called prestige dimension, i.e. the distance from the front axle to the windscreen. Nevertheless, sportiness has not been sacrificed: powerdomes accentuate the bonnet. The flowing C-pillar has a dynamic effect. The new E-Class has a wide track (front/rear: 1634/1648 mm) and flush-fitted wheels measuring up to 21 inches.

The two separate character lines on the side emphasise the car’s sporty character. This shows off the elaborately designed surfaces to their best advantage. In line with the design philosophy of “sensual purity”, the design team modelled a 3D sculpture with a special play of light. Chrome trim is discreetly and stylishly placed.

A surprising feature at the front particularly illustrates the bridge between tradition and modernity: A black panel-like surface connects the radiator grille with the headlamps. This insert in high-gloss black is visually reminiscent of the Mercedes-EQ models. The three-dimensionally designed radiator grille is either progressive or classic, depending on the equipment line. In the Avantgarde version, the central star is integrated into the grille. Other design features of this line include a single louvre, grilles in a chrome star motif and chrome surrounds. In the Exclusive version, on the other hand, the radiator grille has three horizontal twin louvres. This variant also has an upright star on the bonnet.

An illuminated radiator grille surround is optionally available for all lines. In this case there are two optical fibres behind the chrome strips. Light is fed into the glass-fibre bundles via LED modules. In addition to a Welcome and Leaving function, the radiator surround is illuminated in combination with the daytime running lights when driving.

The new Mercedes-Benz E-Class has high-performance LED headlamps as standard. As an optional extra, DIGITAL LIGHT is available without and with a projection function. All headlamp variants offer a distinctive day and night design. As a typical feature of the brand, the daytime running lights take the shape of an eyebrow.

The side view shows off the harmonious proportions and the distinctive “cab-backward” design to particularly good effect. The flush-fitting door handles familiar from the luxury Mercedes-Benz models are available as an option. They extend electrically when the driver approaches or strokes the outer surface of the door handle.

Highlights at the rear include the two-section LED lights with a new contour and special design: the star motif in both light units provides a special day and night design. A light show is optionally available to welcome or bid farewell to passengers. The two rear lights are connected in the middle. This emphasises the width of the rear end, as does the v-shaped design of the boot lid and the chrome trim bar on its rear edge.

Interior design

The dashboard makes for the digital experience in the interior. If the Mercedes-Benz E-Class is equipped with the optional front passenger screen, the large glass surface of the MBUX Superscreen extends to the central display. Visually detached from this is the high-resolution driver display in the driver’s field of vision.

The contour of the cover glass is dynamic in design. For the central display, the glass surface is extended downwards accordingly. The profile becomes flat towards the outer edges. A narrow nozzle band nestles against the upper contour of the glass surface, connecting the central nozzle with the outer nozzles to form a single unit.

The models without a passenger display feature a large trim element that extends to the centre. Visually detached, the central display appears to float above the concave surface of this trim element.

The front section of the instrument panel is illuminated by the light strip of the Active Ambient Lighting. This runs in a wide arc from the windscreen, past the A-pillars and into the doors, so creating a spacious feeling in the way the door panels merge with the collar of the instrument panel to form a single unit. An apparently free-floating control array in the upper section of the door panels matches the look of the glass surfaces of the screens.

The centre console is designed as a homogeneous unit and merges in a straight line into the lower section of the dashboard. At the front, a stowage compartment with lid and cup holders is integrated into the three-dimensionally shaped trim element. There is a soft padded armrest in the rear part of the centre console. USB ports are located in the compartment below.

The door centre panel merges seamlessly into the armrest with a concave sweep. The front section here is designed as a metallic high-tech element. It serves as a grab and closing handle, and incorporates the switches for the power windows. Another highlight is the free-floating control array incorporating the door opener and the controls for the seat functions.

The contours of the seat surface and backrest flow elegantly from the inside to the outside, and appear to float above the base of the seat thanks to their layer design. Indented vertical lines follow the outer contour, widening out towards the top. The association made here by the interior designers was with the organic beauty of shells. If the customer opts for leather upholstery, the seats are designed with elaborate longitudinal fluting, created in individual panels. The nappa leather seats feature quilted and perforated diamond patterns that follow the shape of the seat. The seat with MICROCUT offered as part of AMG Line interior is also perforated.

Extensive range of interior colours and decorative trim

The colour & trim concept conveys a technoid character. Mercedes-Benz E-Class buyers can choose between numerous interior colour combinations. The palette ranges from light beige combined with space grey, including a classy pearl effect, to the sophisticated tonka brown and the cool and technical-looking grey.

The interior surfaces have a new fine-grain finish from the base trim level upwards, underlining the contemporary character. The interplay between analogue and digital sensory experience is further exemplified by the wide range of trims with innovative, natural or technoid surfaces. Exclusive to the E-Class is interior trim of open-pore wood – dark ash – which is backlit by the Mercedes-Benz pattern.

In addition to other trim panels featuring open-pore woods, the “MANUFAKTUR piano lacquer black flowing lines” variant familiar from the S-Class is also available. Another highlight is interior trim in a silver-coloured metal-mix material. Its high-gloss finish gives it a very futuristic look.

Customisable UI design

The main icons on the central and optional passenger displays are now simpler, and also colour-coded to match smartphone tiles. This enables the driver to recognise them even more intuitively.

With two display styles (Classic and Sporty) and three modes (Navigation, Assistance, Service), the graphics of the screens can be individualised. In the “Classic” style, the driver is greeted by the familiar display layout with the look of two dial instruments. Varying content with vehicle-related information is displayed between the two tubes.

The “Sporty” style is dominated by the colour red, with a dynamically designed central rev counter. A holistically impressive colour experience is created in the interior by the optional seven colour themes of the ambient lighting.

Aerodynamics and aeroacoustics

With a Cd figure from 0.23, the new Mercedes-Benz E-Class performs very well in its vehicle segment. It therefore matches the excellent value achieved by its predecessor on market launch. The fact that this high level has been maintained with only a slight spread between the individual variants is remarkable. This is because certain factors make aerodynamic performance more difficult: these include the wide wheel portfolio from 17 to 21 inches as well as the rear-axle steering with additional steering arms and larger underbody cavities. At 0.236 sq. m., the frontal area A of the new E-Class is slightly larger than that of its predecessor (0.234 sq. m.).

Many computer simulations at an early stage increased the degree of maturity. This made fewer optimisation loops necessary in the wind tunnel. In close cooperation with their design colleagues, the aerodynamics team has specifically improved the E-Class in numerous areas. Some details such as wheels with cladding inserts were adopted from the famously efficient Mercedes-EQ models. Here are the most important measures:

  • Optimised contours: even including the tyres
  • Innovative sealing of the front section: for the first time with side-sealing of the bonnet and an aero-lip in the radiator grille
  • Wheels with claddings: so-called “aeroblinds”
  • Special spoilers ahead of the front and rear wheels
  • Flush, retractable door handles
  • Underbody: new materials (2-component main floor with moulded-on sealing lips) and improved shape (ramp-shaped spoiler lips, aerodynamic cladding on suspension components)

“Acoustic camera and acoustic holography” with almost 500 microphones

When it comes to aeroacoustic development, Mercedes-Benz always takes a dual approach: on the one hand, as little noise as possible should be generated at the source, i.e. when the air flows around the outer skin of the vehicle with all its mounted parts. And on the other hand, the quality of the sealing and sound insulation help to ensure that unavoidable wind noises are hardly perceptible in the interior, or not perceptible as disturbing.

During the early development phase, the engineering team began to configure the geometric dimensions of the A-pillar and the exterior mirrors, which are particularly relevant for noise generation, accordingly. Advanced development methods using flow simulations and noise measurements were combined when optimising shapes: For the latter, a special microphone array was used in the acoustic wind tunnel. The extensive interior measurements are also called “acoustic holography”. In this process, Mercedes-Benz uses 64 double microphones in the interior (hand array), which can locate problem areas in low-frequency ranges. Including the devices for outside measurements (“acoustic camera”), Mercedes-Benz uses almost 500 microphones.

The high-frequency components of the wind noise were reduced by a variety of measures in the door seals, side windows and exterior mirrors. The structural rigidity of the doors was increased in the relevant areas. At very high driving speeds, this results in less wind noise. Cavities are foam-protected to improve the acoustic insulation in the body-in-white. This affects the structure of the cockpit cross-member and areas of the transmission tunnel and the A and C-pillars.

In the panoramic sliding sunroof, many detailed improvements were made to the wind deflector and by adding side wind deflectors to the glass roof. The result is better noise comfort and reduced draughts. In the tilt position, the glass panel is lowered depending on the vehicle speed. This also ensures pleasant interior acoustics and reduces actual aerodynamic drag.

Suspension

The agile handling of the new Mercedes-Benz E-Class is due in large part to precise guidance of the front wheels by four control arms each. At the rear axle, an optimised multi-link independent rear suspension with five links ensures excellent wheel control and excellent straight-line stability. At both axles, the springs and dampers are combined in a single strut and are not involved in wheel guidance tasks, therefore the suspension responds with corresponding sensitivity. The front subframe and rear axle carrier decouple the suspension and body from vibrations and noise, and are part of the sophisticated comfort concept.

As standard, the mild hybrid models are equipped with an AGILITY CONTROL steel spring suspension with selective damping system. It is also 15 millimetres lower than the suspension of the plug-in hybrids.

The AIRMATIC air suspension system: level control included

The new E-Class is available with the Technology package as an option. This includes the all-round AIRMATIC air suspension system with ADS+ continuously adjustable damping and rear-axle steering. The AIRMATIC suspension with air springs and adaptive ADS+ dampers responds very sensitively. The damping characteristics are controlled fully automatically for each individual wheel, and separately during rebound and compression. While driving, a sophisticated sensor system and algorithms set the dampers according to the quality of the road to ensure that, for example, driving over a bump with just one wheel is not transmitted to the entire axle and the interior.

Level control is another feature of AIRMATIC. It keeps the ground clearance constant irrespective of the vehicle load, but also makes changes when needed. To reduce air resistance and thus fuel consumption, the vehicle level is automatically lowered by 15 millimetres from a speed of 120 km/h in the COMFORT driving mode. At the same time the vehicle’s centre of gravity is lowered, which improves driving stability.

Rear-axle steering: more agile and dynamic

The new Mercedes-Benz E-Class is especially agile and stable with the optional rear-axle steering and the accompanying, more direct steering ratio at the front axle. The steering angle at the rear axle is up to 4.5 degrees. This reduces the turning circle by up to 90 centimetres In the E-Class models with 4MATIC, the turning circle is 11.1 metres instead of 12.0 metres, while in the rear-wheel drive versions it is reduced from 11.6 to 10.8 metres. The driver also needs fewer turns of the steering wheel from lock to lock. With rear-axle steering, it is 2.2 instead of 2.4 turns (figure rounded for rear and all-wheel drive).

At speeds below 60 km/h, the rear wheels steer in the opposite direction to the front wheels – and by up to 4.5° against the front steering angle when parking. The wheelbase is therefore virtually shortened depending on the situation, making the vehicle more manoeuvrable, light-footed and agile. At speeds above 60 km/h, the rear wheels steer up to 2.5° in the same direction as the front wheels This virtual increase in wheelbase has noticeable advantages: in the form of improved handling stability and safety at high speeds, during fast lane-changes or sudden evasive manoeuvres.

Moreover, considerably less steering input is required during dynamic manoeuvres, e.g. when driving on country roads – and the vehicle responds to steering movements in a more sporty manner. This is supported by the integrated dynamic control function of ESP®.

Drive system

Thanks to systematic electrification and intelligent downsizing, the new E-Class sets new standards in efficiency. Half of all the models will be fourth-generation plug-in hybrids. The model range already achieves this high proportion at market launch. Three of the six E-Class versions combine the advantages of a vehicle with combustion engine with those of an electric car.

The combustion engines are four and six-cylinder units from the current modular Mercedes-Benz engine family FAME (Family of Modular Engines). Accordingly, the engine range plays a major role in the flexibility of the international production network, with needs-based electrification.

In addition to turbocharging, both the diesel and petrol engines feature intelligent support from an integrated starter-generator (ISG). They are therefore mild hybrids. Thanks to a new battery, the power of the electric motor has been increased from 15 to 17 kW and the boost torque to 205 Nm.

The ISG uses a 48 volt on-board electrical system that ensures functions such as gliding, boosting or energy recovery, and makes significant fuel savings possible. The engines also start very rapidly and comfortably as a result, so that the start/stop function is almost as imperceptible to the driver as the transition from gliding with the engine switched off to strong acceleration under engine power. When idling, the intelligent interaction between the ISG and the combustion engine ensures outstandingly smooth running.

Petrol models: with many innovations compared to the preceding power units

The four-cylinder petrol engine (M 254) is initially available in the Mercedes-Benz E-Class with 150 kW as the E 200 (WLTP: combined fuel consumption: 7.3-6.4 l/100 km, combined CO2 emissions: 166-144 g/km). Further output levels will follow. In the M 254, Mercedes-Benz has combined all the innovations of the FAME modular engine family in a single unit. They include NANOSLIDE® cylinder coating, CONICSHAPE® cylinder honing (trumpet honing) and the exhaust aftertreatment system positioned directly at the engine.

A top model with an electrified in-line six-cylinder will round off the engine range at the top end.

Diesel: current development level

E 220 d (WLTP: combined fuel consumption: 5.5-4.8 l/100 km, combined CO2 emissions: 144-125 g/km) and E 220 d 4MATIC (WLTP: combined fuel consumption: 5.7-4.9 l/100 km, combined CO2 emissions: 149-130 g/km) powered by the OM 654 M. The electrification also includes the use of an electric refrigerant compressor for the air conditioning system.

The OM654M in the E 220 d is charged by a single-stage turbocharger with variable turbine geometry and friction-optimised roller bearings. The turbocharger is tuned so that the engine responds quickly and delivers its power smoothly. The four-cylinder diesel is also up to date in terms of exhaust gas aftertreatment. Its components include:

  • a close-coupled NOx storage catalytic converter for reducing nitrogen oxides
  • a DPF (diesel particulate filter with special coating for reducing also the amount of nitrogen oxides)
  • an SCR catalytic converter (selective catalytic reduction with metered injected quantity of AdBlue®) and
  • an additional SCR catalytic converter in the vehicle’s underbody, with a separately metered injected quantity of AdBlue®

A more powerful variant with a six-cylinder engine will also soon follow in the diesel range.

Transmission: automatic as standard

The 9G-TRONIC transmission has been further developed and is used in all E-Class models. The electric motor, power electronics and transmission cooler have now moved into or to the transmission. Previously required lines are eliminated, which offers advantages with regard to installation space and weight. In addition, the efficiency of the transmission has been increased. Amongst other things, the optimised interplay with the electric auxiliary oil pump reduces the delivery rate of the mechanical pump by 30 percent compared with the predecessor – good for efficiency. Furthermore, it uses a new generation of the fully integrated transmission control with multi-core processor and new design and connectivity technology. In addition to the increased computing power, the number of electric interfaces has been drastically reduced, and the weight of the transmission controls have been cut by 30 percent compared with the predecessor.

The 4MATIC drive system of the all-wheel drive models has been further improved. Front axle drive allows higher torques to be transmitted, and ideal axle load distributions can be achieved for good driving dynamics. Moreover, this has a significant weight advantage compared to the corresponding component in the preceding series – a contribution to CO2 reduction.

Driving assistance systems

The driving assistance systems with which the Mercedes-Benz E-Class is equipped as standard include ATTENTION ASSIST, Active Brake Assist, Active Lane Keeping Assist, Parking package with reversing camera and Speed Limit Assist. The status and activity of the driving assistance systems are shown as a full-screen view in the Assistance mode of the driver’s display.

The new ATTENTION ASSIST, in conjunction with the camera in the 3D driver display (optional extra) in the new E-Class, can not only detect signs of microsleep. ATTENTION ASSIST now also offers a driver distraction warning: if the driver’s eyes are not focused on the road for several seconds, ATTENTION ASSIST can detect a distraction and warn the driver acoustically and visually. In addition, Active Brake Assist and Active Lane Keeping Assist temporarily switch to a sensitive mode. If the driver still fails to turn his/her attention to the traffic situation, there is an escalation with a second warning and a continuous warning tone. If the driver still fails to respond to the warning, the system can initiate an emergency stop by Active Emergency Stop Assist. The ATTENTION ASSIST distraction warning is active from 20 km/h.

Active Distance Assist DISTRONIC is standard equipment In Western Europe. The system relieves the driver by regulating the speed to match that of slower vehicles ahead. The desired safety distance can be set in several increments. In an easy-to-understand way, the Get Started app in MBUX explains how Active Distance Assist DISTRONIC works.

With extended functionality: the Driving Assistance Plus package

The Driving Assistance Package Plus is available as an optional extra. Components include Active Steering Assist, which assists with lane-keeping. As previously on motorways, the Mercedes-Benz E-Class can now also start off automatically in city traffic and on country roads after coming to a standstill. This is possible in a time window of 30 seconds when the hands are on the steering wheel. Another new feature: if Active Steering Assist is no longer available because the lane markings are not clearly visible, it signals this to the driver by vibrations in the steering wheel. As before, if Steering Assist is not available, the steering wheel symbol in the driver display also changes from green to grey.

Other features of this assistant include lane detection at low speeds additionally with 360° camera, very high availability and cornering performance on rural roads and improved lane centring on motorways. Depending on the situation, a driving position which is off the centre of the lane (e.g. formation of an emergency corridor, but also orientation via the edge of the carriageway on rural roads without centre markings) can be used.

The other components of the Driving Assistance Plus package:

  • Active Distance Assist DISTRONIC offers more functions than the standard system. These include reaction to stationary vehicles, automatic restart and automatic speed resumption up to 210 km/h.
  • The junction start-off function ensures additional safety when moving off at junctions with crossing traffic. The system uses intuitive arrows in the driver’s display to indicate from which direction cross-traffic is approaching. If the driver nevertheless attempts to move off, an audio-visual collision warning is triggered. The vehicle is prevented from moving off by automatically applying the brake. The driver can cancel this at any time by fully depressing the accelerator pedal.
  • Active Lane Change Assist cooperatively assists the driver in changing to the adjacent lane. A lane change to the right or left is only assisted if the sensors detect that the adjacent lane is separated from the present lane by broken lane markings, and no other vehicles are detected in the relevant danger zone.
  • Active Emergency Stop Assist brakes the vehicle to a standstill in its own lane if it recognises that the driver is no longer responding to the traffic situation for a longer period. If the E-Class is travelling at less than 60 km/h, the assistant warns following traffic with the hazard warning lights. In addition, the doors unlock when the vehicle is stationary and the assistant calls for assistance via Mercedes-Benz Emergency Call.
  • Active Brake Assist with cross-traffic function can use the onboard sensors to register whether there is a risk of collision with a vehicle ahead or crossing or oncoming traffic. If a collision is imminent, the system can warn the driver visually and audibly. If the driver’s braking is too weak, it is also possible to support the driver by increasing the braking torque according to the situation and to initiate emergency braking if there is no reaction from the driver.
  • Evasive Steering Assist can assist the driver when seeking to avoid another road user detected by the system in a critical situation. In the new E-Class, the system not only recognises stationary and crossing pedestrians, but now also takes account of pedestrians and vehicles alongside, as well as cyclists. Thespeedrange is up to 110 km/h.
  • From speeds above 60 km/h, Active Lane Keeping Assist uses a camera to detect when road markings or road edges are crossed, helping the driver to avoid leaving the driving lane unintentionally. If there is a risk of collision with detected road users in the adjacent lane, for example overtaking or oncoming vehicles, the system can also react with steering intervention and warnings.
  • Active Blind Spot Assist can give a visual warning – and if the indicators are operated, also an audible warning – of potential side collisions at speeds exceeding around 10 km/h. If the driver ignores the warnings and still tries to change lanes, the system can take last-moment corrective action by one-sided braking intervention at speeds over 30 km/h. When the vehicle is stationary, the exit warning function can warn against exiting because a vehicle (or even a bicycle) is passing within the critical area.
  • PRE-SAFE® PLUS can take action in the event of an imminent rear-end impact. The system warns the driver in the vehicle following behind by activating the rear hazard warning lights with increased frequency. In addition, the preventive PRE-SAFE® occupant protection measures, including the reversible belt tensioners, are triggered. If the vehicle is stationary, PRE-SAFE® PLUS locks the brakes. Reducing forward motion can significantly reduce the loads acting on occupants, including the risk of whiplash.
  • Only a limited crumple zone is available in a side impact. PRE-SAFE® Impulse Side can move the affected front occupant away from the danger towards the middle of the vehicle even before the crash, as soon as the system detects that a side-on collision is immediately imminent. For this purpose, air chambers in the side bolsters of the front seat backrests inflate in fractions of a second.

Passive safety

The safety concept of the Mercedes-Benz E-Class is based on an intelligently designed body with a particularly rigid passenger cell and specifically deformable crash structures. The restraint systems, e.g. seat belts and airbags, are specifically adapted to this. In the event of an accident, they can be activated in such a way that their protective effect for the occupants is adapted to the situation.

With the aid of numerous numerical simulations, the safety experts at Mercedes-Benz have designed the vehicle structure for a high level of occupant protection. For the aspects of the vehicle configuration that are relevant in an accident, they not only took account of the legal requirements; they also considered internal requirements and test criteria derived from real-life accident findings.

Modern restraint systems: protection for all passengers

In addition to driver and front passenger airbags, a knee airbag on the driver’s side is also standard. It can protect the legs from contact with the steering column or instrument panel in a severe frontal crash.

The standard window airbags can reduce the risk of head impact with the side window or penetrating objects. In the event of a serious side-on collision, the window airbag on the side of the impact extends from the A- to the C-pillar like a curtain over the front and rear side windows. If a rollover is detected, the window airbags can be activated on both sides. In addition to the head protection system, side airbags can also cover the thorax area in the event of a severe side impact – including on the outer rear seats (optional).

In addition, the vehicles are equipped with a centre airbag, depending on the country. This is integrated into the backrest of the driver’s seat towards the centre console. It can position itself between the driver and the front passenger in the event of a severe side impact, depending on the direction of the impact, the severity of the accident and the occupancy status. Pyrotechnic belt tensioners and force limiters are standard on all outer seats.

The Mercedes-Benz E-Class has i-Size child seat attachments as standard on the two outer seats in the second row. With two anchors each between the seat backrest and the seat cushion, corresponding child seats can be installed particularly quickly and securely. Top-tether attachment points on the rear of the rear seat backrests provide additional support. If a rear-facing child seat is placed in the front passenger seat, the vehicle can automatically deactivate the passenger airbag as required, depending on the market.

 

Warnings: if the belt is not worn and people and animals are forgotten

The European version of the E-Class not only has a seat belt status indicator for the rear, but also a sophisticated seat belt warning system. This warns if the seat is occupied and the seat belt is not fastened.

The occupancy reminder can help to indicate people or animals that may have been overlooked in the rear of the vehicle. It activates and deactivates itself automatically if prolonged opening of a rear door indicates that somebody might enter or exit the vehicle.

When the vehicle is switched off, the driver receives the text message “Do not leave persons or animals behind” on the driver’s display if the system has activated automatically beforehand. The customer has the option to deactivate the system. An indicator light shows the status of the system.

PRE-SAFE® system: precautionary protection

In Europe, the PRE-SAFE® preventive occupant protection system is standard in the Mercedes-Benz E-Class as part of the Advanced package. This includes the known precautionary measures in the event of a recognised impending accident, including pre-conditioning of the hearing with PRE-SAFE® Sound.

In conjunction with the Driving Assistance Plus package, PRE-SAFE® Impulse Side forms a kind of virtual crumple zone on the vehicle sides. As there is only a limited crumple zone available in a severe side impact, PRE-SAFE® Impulse Side can move the affected driver or front passenger away from the danger towards the centre of the vehicle even before the crash as soon as the system detects an impending side collision. To this end, air chambers in the side bolsters of the front seat backrest are inflated in fractions of a second before the collision.

The post The All-New Mercedes-Benz E-Class (2024) appeared first on Wheelz.me-English.

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