Mercedes E-Class is a cut above the competition

Motoring

Mercedes E-Class is a cut above the competition

The Mercedes E-Class has always been the mainstream luxury car for the Stuttgart brand.

Over the years it has evolved with the times while yet remaining restrained in its style and design.

However the latest new E-Class has truly embraced the latest in automotive technology, with a fully digital dash board in some models, a huge centrally mounted navigation screen and a host of electronic driver aids.

So I have been road testing the E220d AMG line saloon to find out what its like.

So Has it any street cred?

The new E-Class is a distinctive looking car with sweeping lines and curves that go to create an appealing style.

It looks rather like the larger S-Class.

What’s it like inside?

The cabin of the new E-Class is one of the best I have seen of late.

My test car was the E220d AMG Line, and was finished black while the interior was trimmed in beautiful saddle brown Nappa leather upholstery with judicious use of aluminium trim. The whole style and design of the interior is really faultless.

The huge 12.3 inch centrally mounted screen (its almost too big I feel) is used to display navigation, audio, climate and phone controls.

The driving position is excellent and the sports seats prove very comfortable. The boot is big too.

Standard kit is impressive and the list too long for here but highlights include,19 inch AMG alloys, Ambient lighting (64 colours), AMG bodystyling, AMG, Sports Seats, AMG sport pedals, active park assist, rear view camera, agility control suspension, Garmin map pilot, heated seats, remote online and much more.

What is under the bonnet?

The E220d is powered by a 2.0 litre four cylinder in-line turbocharged diesel and in my test car this was mated to a superb 9-speed auto gearbox.

I found overall performance from this new Mercedes diesel turbo to be very good indeed while refinement is well up on previous Mercedes diesel offerings.

Interestingly its fuel consumption over my weeks test was just 6.0 litres per 100km and combined with a low emission of just 112g/km it is quite inexpensive to road tax. Just €200.00

Will I enjoy driving it?

Probably the single most impressive aspect of this car is the dynamic way in which it handles. It handles and corners with aplomb.

No matter what the conditions the new E-Class has limpet like grip through the corners inspiring great confidence in the driver.

The precise steering allows the driver to accurately place the car in a bend making it a pleasure to hustle along a twisty country road. Sport and Sport+ modes add to the sporty feel, giving a more punchy response to control inputs.

The other area that I was immediately impressed by is the high level of refinement.

No matter what the speed, wind, road, and engine noise are almost non-existent.

On the negative side the ride is good but the suspension could bottom out quite easily on some undulating country roads.

What is the verdict?

The new E-220d AMG is truly a rewarding car to drive, the dynamics are such that you look forward to finding some challenging roads.

The new style is contemporary yet will not offend the loyal Mercedes buyer,and the interior is superb cosseting the driver and passengers in a quiet, safe, and luxurious environment.

Prices start at €53,085 for the new E220d AMG line 9-speed Auto.