2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Introduction

The Mercedes-Benz E-Class lineup adds a hybrid model for 2013 and otherwise carries over largely unchanged. E-Class is extensively redesigned for 2014.

The 2013 Mercedes-Benz E400 Hybrid borrows its gasoline V6 engine from the E350 and adds a 20-kilowatt electric motor. The direct-injection V6 generates 302-horsepower while the electric motor adds another 184 pound-feet of torque.

All 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class models come standard with a marque-exclusive, next-generation mbrace2 telematic assist system, which moves into the Cloud and offer more functions and features than before.

The 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class lineup includes sedans, coupes, convertibles, and wagons with diesel, V6, or V8 power.

The 2013 Mercedes-Benz E350, E550, and E63 AMG models are each a technological tour de force, yet none of the technology is intrusive. On the street, the cars are robust and exhibit the engineering excellence that has defined them for decades.

The E-Class Cabriolet, or convertible, features an innovative soft top that’s nearly one-inch thick with three layers of acoustic sound dampening. The design leaves good trunk space, and provides wind protection with the top down. The soft top disappears in 17 silent seconds, as Mercedes says.

The E-Class sits in the middle of the Mercedes car line, between the compact C-Class and the big S-Class. It’s the company’s best-selling car worldwide, and as such it defines the brand’s essence. Every E-Class model delivers an excellent balance of passenger space, luxury, style, and impressive performance in a practical, manageably sized package.

Like other more recent Mercedes-Benz models, the E-Class looks angular and technical, but is still quite pleasing to the eye. The current-generation E-Class debuted in 2010, with a new chassis strengthened to improve crash protection, reduce vibration and sharpen handling without adding weight. Yet if this generation of E-Class cars have a theme, it might be their high-tech control and management systems. That’s not surprising for a car that introduced a host of now-familiar features, from antilock brakes to airbags, to mass production.

The 2013 E-Class represents the most electronics-intensive model line Mercedes has offered to date, and most of the computer-managed systems focus on safety. An Attention Assist system monitors up to 70 driving parameters to determine whether the driver is getting drowsy behind the wheel and uses both visual and auditory warnings to tell the driver to pull over for rest. The Distronic Plus cruise control option features both blind-spot warning and lane-departure warning technology, while automatic self-adjusting headlights automatically dim the brights. And those systems are just the start.

Beyond the technological wizardry, the E-Class remains what it has always been, only a little nicer. Every model is smooth, quiet and appointed in elegant, understated fashion, with comfortable space for four or five passengers and a substantial load of luggage.

The gasoline V6 in the Mercedes E350 models displaces 3.5 liters and produces 302 horsepower. The new E400 Hybrid supplements the same gas engine with an electric motor rated 27 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque.

E550 models are powered by a twin-turbocharged 4.6-liter V8, which delivers the turbine-like, overpowered feel that characterizes Germany’s best autobahn blasters. The turbocharged diesel engine in the Mercedes E350 BlueTEC sedan is the smoothest, quietest diesel available in the United States. It delivers amazing bursts of acceleration for passing, with mileage that surpasses most other cars in this class by about 30 percent.

And if even that’s not enough, the top-performing E63 AMG models boast a twin-turbocharged 5.5-liter V8 that cranks out 516 horsepower. To keep fuel use somewhat within reason, the E63 AMG comes standard with start/stop technology. A neat variant is the E63 AMG wagon.

Those seeking help through the worst of a northern winter can choose the 4MATIC all-wheel-drive system for the E-Class sedans, wagon, and coupe.

The E-Class created a category of mid-sized luxury cars that has become one of the most competitive (and enjoyable) in today’s automobile market. The 2013 E-Class models simply reinforce Mercedes credentials at or near the top of the class.

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