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Mercedes ups E-Class safety, comfort, technology

First details, images of updated E-Class emerge, headlined by higher tech, PHEVs

27 Jan 2020

MERCEDES-BENZ has released partially camouflaged images and initial details of its updated E-Class large sedan and wagon ahead of the new series’ international debut later this year.


While local pricing, variant availability and exact specification are yet to be announced, the German prestige brand has issued information at a global level revolving around driver-assist safety technology, enhanced luxury and improved efficiency via new combustion engines and up to seven plug-in hybrid variants.


The already comprehensive suite of driver-assist technology is bolstered by Active Distance Assist Distronic with route-based speed adjustment, which uses LiveTraffic data to recognise and respond to looming tailbacks and slow-moving traffic – even before the driver has become aware of them.


This in turn partners with Active Tailback Assist, which helps the driver with lane keeping as well as maintaining a safe distance, though only up to 60km/h.


Active steering assist can then help the driver avoid emergency vehicles and form a rescue lane on multi-lane carriageways, while active brake assist and blind-spot monitoring further improve safety.


A new 360-degree camera has also been added to the Parking Package.


The overhaul to the powertrain line-up is still to be detailed, with Mercedes remaining tight-lipped on new inline engines set to power the E-Class, although it has revealed that the global range will include no fewer than seven plug-in hybrids.


Inside the cabin, occupants will be greeted with two new 10.25-inch touchscreens, a new steering wheel with touch controls, the latest iteration of the MBUX infotainment system (including voice control and augmented reality), interior assist, energising comfort control with energising coach, energising seat kinetics and an air quality indicator function for those in megacities.


Security has also taken a step up with the new E-Class offering the Mercedes-Benz Urban Guard system that includes collision damage warning, tow-away protection warning, anti-theft warning, a tracking function in case of theft as well as smartphone deactivation if the key is lost or stolen.


Changes on the style front have all been subtle, with tweaks being made to the headlights, tail-lights, grille and bumpers, the latter two being reduced in size and aggression.


According to Mercedes-Benz Australia Pacific media relations and product communications manager Ryan Lewis, the updated E-Class is due to arrive in Australia in October this year with “more information on the car in the coming weeks”.


Last year, Mercedes recorded 1228 E-Class sales in Australia, down 19.8 per cent on the previous year but still enough to outsell both its chief rivals: the BMW 5 Series (964) and Audi A6 (99).

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