The groundbreaking features of the Mercedes-Benz E-Class

Meet the car that is driving in the fast lane to the future.

Damien Reid July 4, 2016

Look closely, for this is the new Mercedes-Benz E-Class. I was on the fourth of five jetlagged legs in four days at an airport somewhere in Europe, being met by the driver who ushered me to his waiting Mercedes in the dark.

I commented on how he was among the first to have the new E-Class but he assured me it wasn’t and it was only when I opened the rear door and saw the extended legroom that I realized it was the big brother S-Class.

Until then, having walked up to it, opened the boot to dump my bags and walk around to the rear door, a guy who is supposed to know his Es from his Ss made the ultimate rookie error.

I blame the jetlag plus the fact I’d just finished two days deep diving into the new E-Class with the Mercedes team but there’s no escaping the fact that the new E looks remarkably like the flagship S and even the smaller C-Class below it.

Some, including Mercedes obviously, see that as plus but for me personally, I feel that as companies like Audi, Lexus and Mercedes work so hard to create a ‘family identity’ to the point of building almost identical clones of each model, those models are losing their individual personality.

Unfortunately, it’s becoming a bit like buying a pair of shoes. “I’ll have this Mercedes in a size 9 thanks.”

Thankfully that’s my only gripe and it’s subjective so it might not be yours. The good news is that this car represents the pinnacle of technology that brings autonomous driving one step closer. Soon, cars will be driving us, like it or not, and every car maker has entered the new space race to be the first.

So much so, that Mercedes couldn’t wait for the next S-Class, which normally debuts major new advancements and the E-Class is the lucky recipient of ground-breaking features like the active lane change assistant. All you do is flick the indicator stalk and the car moves into the next lane after it gives itself the all-clear via its own cameras. 

The E-Class has evasive steering that detects an imminent crash and literally takes the steering away from you, jolting it suddenly to get it back in line, even using the brakes for a more sudden effect. It can also stop the car suddenly and if your hands have been off the wheel for too long, it will also stop the car for you.

I also had the chance to park the car, lock it, unlock it, start it and reverse it out of a tight garage, while standing outside using a mobile phone app. This, folks, is the future. 

Specs

  • Engine: 3.0-litre, twin-turbo V6
  • Power: 329bhp @ 6000rpm
  • Torque: 480Nm @ 1600rpm
  • 0-100kmh: 5.3 seconds
  • Top Speed: 250kmh
  • Price: AED 235,000