The Mercedes-Benz management team on the new E-Class
Prof. Dr. Thomas Weber, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and responsible for Group Research and Mercedes-Benz Cars Development: "The E-Class is the core of the Mercedes-Benz brand and in the past has repeatedly redefined the standards in the luxury-sedan segment. Now it carries this tradition into the future with a wealth of top-class innovations. The new E-Class takes another major step towards autonomous driving. In addition, it enhances efficiency, safety and comfort, reduces the stress level when driving and intensifies driving pleasure."
Ola Källenius, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG, Mercedes-Benz Cars Sales & Marketing: "With our new E-Class we are continuing to write the long history of this model series in impressive style in what is now the tenth generation. With its innovative engineering, it enables a new driving experience and, together with the exclusive high-quality interior, it systematically implements the high Mercedes-Benz standards. I am sure that the new E-Class will delight our customers and add fresh energy to the luxury sedan class."
Gorden Wagener, Vice President of Design, Daimler AG: "With its contemporary luxury, the new E-Class embodies the perfect interpretation of the design philosophy of ‘sensual purity,’ both on the exterior and in the interior. It is the most beautiful and luxurious E-Class of all time while also exuding a sporty elegance. In addition, it is the first Mercedes-Benz model with the catwalk line."
Hartmut Sinkwitz, Director of Interior Design: "With its emotionally appealing design, intelligent interior architecture and ultra-modern controls and displays, the new E-Class embodies the ideal fusion of craftsmanship and high-tech experience."
Highlights of the new E-Class at a glance
- Wide-screen cockpit with high-resolution double display, individually configurable 12.3-inch screens
- Touch Control Buttons for controlling the entire infotainment system using finger swipes
- A new, intelligently simplified graphic design with high-resolution visualizations and animations
- Comprehensive smartphone integration: new key design, wireless charging, antenna coupling and support of smartphone-based infotainment systems (Apple's CarPlay® and Google's Android Auto®)
- Extended Driving Assistance package with DRIVE PILOT, Distance Pilot DISTRONIC, Active Lane-Change Assist, Active Emergency Stop Assist, Speed Limit Assist, Active Brake Assist with cross-traffic function, Evasive Steering Assist, Active Lane Keeping Assist, Active Blind Spot Assist and PRE-SAFE® PLUS
- Enhanced Parking Pilot functions including Remote Parking Pilot (available in the US in a later model year)
- Car-to-X Communication (available later this year)
- Improved PRE-SAFE® protection concept with new PRE-SAFE® triggering scenarios
- PRE-SAFE® Impulse Side (in Driving Assistance Package Plus)
- PRE-SAFE® Sound
- Beltbag for passengers in the outer rear seats
- 9G-TRONIC nine-speed automatic transmission
- AIR BODY CONTROL air suspension
- Quietest vehicle in its segment
- Best-in-class interior sizes and entry/exit
- Ambient lighting with 64 colors
- LED Intelligent Light System headlamps each with individually controlled high-performance LEDs and Adaptive Highbeam Assist
- Tail lights with multi-level functionality
Dynamic, exciting and powerful
With contemporary, clear elegance and dynamically sensual looks, the new E-Class visibly reflects the current values of the premium brand while at the same time radiating a high-tech character.
The design of the new E-Class impresses with its hallmark Mercedes sedan proportions. The elongated hood coupled with a coupe-esque roof flowing into a sensual, broad-shouldered tail end creates an exciting silhouette. Short overhangs, long wheelbase and large wheels emphasize the athletic character of the vehicle.
The taut, well-defined flanks display a fresh, stylish and dynamic interpretation of the feature line, which develops from the headlamps and extends over the whole vehicle length. A sculptural reverse curve in the lower region of the doors and in the bumper visually resumes the feature line while ensuring a stylistic tension. Low, stretched-looking side windows surrounded by high-grade discontinuous aluminum trim around the window outline also contribute to the muscularly stretched vehicle body, which appears to be visually more compact than it actually is. The E-Class thus systematically embodies the Mercedes-Benz design philosophy of "sensual purity."
Front with prestige look
The new E-Class clearly shows a muscular front end that boasts a different look for each design and equipment line. The Luxury version features the classic Mercedes radiator grille with the star on the hood, while the Sport models are identifiable by the sport radiator grille with a large Mercedes star as its centerpiece. Each of the radiator grille designs lends the E-Class a distinct character, offering a unique degree of diversity that makes each model stand out.
The intelligence of the new E-Class is also reflected in the headlamps. A characteristic element is the double eyebrow of the reinterpreted daytime running lamps. The face of the vehicle is shaped by distinctive headlamps with a clear-lens design.
LED headlamps are equipped as standard; an LED Intelligent Light System is optionally available which gives the sedan a focused look while featuring an unmistakable design, also by day, with double torch and high-quality modelled details.
A striking feature is the integration of an iconic daytime running lamp design in the LED headlamps and LED Intelligent Light System headlamps. Following the inner contour, it gives a distinctive note to the direction indicators, side lights and daytime running lamps. The result is that, in both their night and day design, the Mercedes-Benz E-Class models are uniquely identifiable, standing apart from other vehicles at the visual level.
All the headlamp functions are grouped under a lens of clear polycarbonate with scratch-resistant coating. Like various other design elements, the headlamp housing is in black, giving an impression of both quality and depth.
Sporty rear end
Similarly to the front end, the tail lights are tautly drawn. The design of the tail lights emphasize not only an iconic shape, but also improve safety.
Standard LED rear lights provide an additional highlight reminiscent of stardust. This optic effect is created by an innovative reflector technology with a specially designed surface structure for the tail light which ensures a brilliant appearance.
The newly designed rear lights are also brilliant in terms of safety. The light intensity of the brake lamp and the turn signals vary between daytime and night-time within the legally permissible limits in an effort to not dazzle other drivers.
A black insert in the rear bumper gives the rear end a lighter and sportier look. The Sport and Luxury lines both come with a two-part rear bumper and visible stainless steel tailpipe trims integrated into the bumper.
Next-Level Interior Design
With its emotional design, intelligent interior architecture and highly advanced controls, the interior of the new E-Class ideally embodies the synthesis of emotion and intelligence.
Among the many eye-catching highlights present within the interior of the E-Class are the two 12.3-inch displays, each with a resolution of 1920 x 720 pixels. These two screens merge visually to form a wide-screen cockpit, emphasizing the horizontal bias of the E-Class’ interior design. As the instrument cluster, this wide-screen cockpit contains a large display with virtual instruments in the direct field of vision of the driver as well as a central display above the center console. A common glass cover across both screens delivers a modern flat-screen look. The driver can choose between three different styles for the wide-screen instrument cluster: "Classic," "Sport" and "Progressive." The 12.3-inch wide-screen instrument cluster is optionally available.
The entry-level model of the new E-Class combines two tube-type round dials and a 7-inch color display cluster (1000 x 600-pixel resolution) with a 12.3-inch central display screen. The round dials, instrument cluster and central display are installed in a single frame with a high-gloss piano-lacquer look.
The driver can adapt the content of the central display to suit their personal preferences. With the exception of the navigation map (which always fills the complete display area), the central display of COMAND Navigation is divided into a main area for informative graphics and animations (2/3 on the right side of the display) and a supplementary area (1/3 on the left side of the display).
The display can be backlit at night with multicolor ambient lighting – which then makes the wide-screen cockpit appear to float in space.
Touch Control: finger swipes
The new E-Class is the first-ever car to integrate touch controls within the multifunction steering wheel. Like the surface of a smartphone, the two buttons are touch-sensitive and therefore respond precisely to horizontal and vertical finger swipes. This enables the driver to control every function of the infotainment system in a simple, logical and ergonomical manner without having to take their hands off the steering wheel. Having selected the desired function with a swipe, the driver presses the appropriate touch controls to trigger the function. Another four buttons present on each switch panel are provided with the familiar functions such as volume control and telephone control.
A further input option is offered by the Touchpad on the center console. This, too, allows all functions to be controlled by single or multi-finger gestures. The Touchpad also permits letters, numbers and special characters to be entered in handwriting. The system reads out characters detected by handwritten input so that the driver need not avert their gaze from what is happening on the road. A handrest detection feature makes for added operating safety while helping to prevent incorrect inputs. Three touch-sensitive buttons are arranged behind the Touchpad and can be used to operate key functions quickly and directly.
In addition, the driver can use the COMAND Controller and voice control system to operate the infotainment system. They can choose at any time which input method they prefer.
Many functions of the new E-Class can also be controlled by direct-access buttons, such as for controlling the air-conditioning system or for simple activation and deactivation of certain driving assistance systems.
New control experience
The various control possibilities are coupled with an all-new control and display concept. The goal was to closely combine intuitive use with an attractive and functionally meaningful design. The result is that passengers in the E-Class can enjoy a new control experience with high-resolution visualizations and animations. Developers have focused on the use of newly implemented presentation and display techniques to make it easier for the driver to register information. For example, animated displays are used to show the activating of assistance systems or of DYNAMIC SELECT. The likewise animated ECO display in the instrument cluster helps the driver to adopt an intuitive and economical driving style.
Ergonomics and intuitiveness of use were the key criteria for the developers—thus, the new infotainment appearance comes with a simple menu structure that makes functions easier to select.
With user experience and connectivity ever more in the spotlight, Mercedes-Benz has set up two new centers to address the digital future: "Digital Graphic & Corporate Design" and
"User Interaction." These centers are closely networked for designing the control and display concepts, i.e. the user interface, for current and future vehicles. This is because, alongside a workplace and private environment, the vehicle interior is increasingly becoming a "third place;" a living area in which passengers can enjoy contemporary luxury.
With the new department, Daimler is responding to the global trend of "Digital & Connected Life" and thus the rapid advance of digitalization in all areas of life.
Focus on information from the Head-up Display
A Head-Up Display is a new, optional feature in the E-Class. As in a jet fighter, it projects important information directly into the driver's field of vision on the windshield, ensuring that there is less distraction from the road ahead. The system provides information on speed, speed limits, navigation instructions and messages from Distance Pilot DISTRONIC.
The driver can adjust the height of the virtual image so that it can be easily viewed and, on vehicles with seat memory function, this feature stores individual preferences. A range of display content can also be enabled or disabled and the brightness of the display can be adjusted individually.
Interior as expression of emotion and intelligence
The interior of the new E-Class combines elegance and modern sportiness. The design idiom of the new luxury sedan is characterized by an interplay of strong solid bodies with sculptural surfaces and extensiveness of control and display zones. This gives rise to an entirely distinctive, contrast-rich Mercedes-Benz design language that optimally reflects the design philosophy of sensual purity.
The horizontal, low-lying trim part of the instrument panel, with its elegantly sweeping form and flowing lines, creates a visual sense of space. The wrap-around of the wave motion into the door linings provides a continuation of the horizontal emphasis on width with timeless sweeping forms. This is typical of the design of Mercedes-Benz sedans across the product lineup. Four circular air vents, as seen on the S-Class, make it additionally clear that the new E-Class is closely focused on the luxury segment.
Above the low-lying trim part is a formally coherent and separate solid body, which is forceful and sporty in appearance as if the upper part of the instrument panel is floating in space. Free-standing yet fully integrated, the wide-screen display stands in front of the upper part of the instrument panel. Ultra-flat and smoothly glazed across its entire area, the high-resolution screen is exceptionally high in quality. With its emotional design idiom on the one side and intelligent interior architecture as well as highly advanced control and display elements on the other, the interior of the new E-Class perfectly embodies the synthesis emotion and intelligence.
The E-Class has a straight-through center console with a dynamically-rising, high connection to the cockpit by a control panel in a "Black Panel" glass look. Other controls, such as in the doors, also feature the "Black Panel" look.
Intelligent material design
Modern and high-grade materials define the sporty and elegant style of the interior, including Natural Grain Ash wood and wood with “flowing lines.” Another Mercedes hallmark clearly evidenced is the high-quality look and feel created through meticulous attention to detail and craftsmanship.
Interior materials and colors have been carefully selected, highlighted by various shades of brown, including several attractive, new color combinations which allow for an even more personalized interior design.
Just as carefully composed is the material and color concept with various shades of brown, including new attractive color combinations such as nut brown/Espresso and Macchiato Beige / Espresso.
Lighting atmosphere with 64 colors
Interior lighting makes exclusive use of durable, energy-saving LED technology, even throughout the enhanced ambient lighting system. With 64 colors to choose from, the ambient lighting system offers a host of possibilities for personalization: adding touches of light to various trim parts, central display, storage on the center console, handle recesses, door pockets, front and rear footwells, overhead console and tweeters (if the vehicle is equipped with the Burmester® high-end 3D surround sound system).
Seat design: first class
A further highlight of the new E-Class is its seats, which create an ergonomic, sculptural impression with their torso form, uniting Mercedes-Benz's typical suitability for long journeys with a sporty look. The seats are differently designed depending on the line:
Also available is a diamond-patterned designo seat with perforations similar to the S-Class and the enhanced lateral support of the sports seat. Available designo seat color combinations include designo Black / Titanium Gray Pearl and designo Macchiato Beige / Saddle Brown.
Equipped as standard on the E-Class are power adjustable front seats with lumbar adjustments, 3-position memory and electric seat cushion depth adjustment, offering an adjustment travel of 2.4-inches as a one-part cushion without gap. The package also includes an electronic head restraint adjustment. The controls for seat adjustment, heating and seat ventilation are integrated in the door panel.
Furthermore, the following additional options, among others, are available for the seats:
- Climatized seats for driver/front passenger with reversing seat ventilation for the front seats; electrically heated seats are also part of the seat ventilation package.
- Active Multicontour Seats, part of the Premium 2 package, for the front seats. This includes the following functions: Energizing Massage, dynamic seat, multicontour backrest and – new – the active cushion. The scope of functions also includes fast seat heating plus a 6-way comfort head restraint that allows the occupant to adjust the side bolsters in order to provide the head with comfortable lateral support.
The functions of the Active Multicontour Seat package (part of Premium 2) in detail:
- Multicontour backrest: allows infinitely variable adjustment of the side bolsters for individual adaptation of the contour of the backrest.
- Dynamic seat: offers additional lateral support when cornering by inflating the side bolsters of the backrest on the outside of the curve.
- Massage functions: extended for maximum comfort.
The massage functions include:
- Active Workout backrest and Active Workout cushion – these two new functions call on the driver/front passenger to actively participate by pressing back, thereby helping to strengthen the supporting muscles.
- Hot Relaxing Massage– treats the occupant to an intensive massage with additional heat, similar to a massage with the application of hot stones. Individual air chambers massage the parts of the shoulder and back in different sequence and intensity.
- Activating Massage and Mobilizing Massage – activate/stimulate tired areas of the back.
- Wave massage – makes a wave-like transition through the backrest into the cushion and, in various intensities and speeds, offers a completely new massage experience for back and bottom.
Further innovations in comparison with the previous model are the heatable armrests for the driver's door and the center console as Warmth and Comfort Package.
The rear bench seat in the new E-Class sedan comes standard with a three-piece backrest with a 40% - 20% - 40% split, making it exceptionally versatile. Integral features of the center armrest include a storage box and two pop-out drink holders.
New engine generation: redefining efficiency
A powerful and efficient gasoline engine equipped with the ECO Start/Stop function provides for lively performance and great fun behind the wheel.
The most important data at a glance
All figures preliminary
2.0-liter four-cylinder engine: Powerful, fast and clean
The 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder gasoline engine in the E-Class combines spontaneous response and high output with efficiency and low emissions thanks in part to third-generation direct injection with spray-guided combustion. Piezo injectors enable optimal mixture formation with up to five injections per power stroke.
The third-generation direct injection is supplemented by rapid multi-spark ignition (MSI). The MSI system enables up to four sparks to be discharged in succession within one millisecond, creating a plasma with a larger spatial expansion than a conventional ignition system.
The rapid multi-spark ignition can be controlled to vary both the timing of the sparks and the combustion period to suit operating conditions. This provides scope for optimizing the center of combustion and improved residual gas compatibility. This in turn reduces fuel consumption and minimizes emissions.
Nine-speed automatic transmission for more comfort and efficiency
Mercedes-Benz offers the new 9G-TRONIC nine-speed automatic transmission as standard on the E-Class. Its broad ratio spread allows an overall reduction in engine speed - a key factor behind high levels of energy efficiency and ride comfort.
4MATIC® all-wheel drive
The E300 will be available with either rear-wheel-drive or 4MATIC permanent all-wheel drive. The 4MATIC system improves traction and driving stability, especially under difficult road conditions. The combination of the ESP® driving dynamics control system with the 4ETS electronic traction system makes regular differential locks superfluous. This saves weight and noticeably improves handling safety as well as ride comfort.
The suspension on the new E-Class offers agile driving pleasure on twisting roads as well as an extremely high level of ride comfort. Unique in its segment is the optionally available AIR BODY CONTROL multi-chamber air suspension.
The E-Class sedan comes with a steel-spring suspension as standard. Two suspension systems with selective damping are available in conjunction with this suspension:
- Suspension with selective damping
- Lowered suspension with selective damping
No compromises AIR BODY CONTROL air suspension
Alternatively, the new E-Class can be equipped with a multi-chamber air suspension at all corners – the only car in its segment to offer this option. Three chambers of different sizes in the spring struts of the rear axle and two in the spring struts of the front axle make it possible to control, in three stages, how firmly the suspension reacts to the road. In this way, the occupants enjoy a soft base suspension, together with the secure feeling of good handling stability as speed increases.
Furthermore, the highly sensitive and fast-responding AIR BODY CONTROL air suspension features all-round self-leveling for excellent ride comfort even with the vehicle loaded. It automatically controls the ride height depending on the speed and reduces fuel consumption on the freeway, for example, by lowering the vehicle. When driving on rough roads, ground clearance can be increased at the push of a button.
The multi-chamber air suspension is supplemented by a continuously operating, electronically controlled damping adjustment system, which automatically adapts the damping on each individual wheel to the current driving situation and road conditions. The system therefore delivers good road roar and tire vibration characteristics, excellent ride comfort and outstanding driving dynamics.
A DYNAMIC SELECT switch in the cockpit enables the driver to select from four AIR BODY CONTROL modes: "Comfort," "ECO," "Sport" and "Sport+." The additional "Individual" option allows drivers to configure their vehicle to suit their own preferences.
Independent multilink suspension at front and rear
The agile handling is due in large part to the 4-link front axle, which releases the spring strut from wheel control duties. In addition, the four-link principle offers favorable axle kinematics and allows an improved camber change for higher cornering forces. As a result, the suspension responds more sensitively to steering movements and allows a sporty, agile driving style. Since the kingpin inclination axis is also close to the wheel center, this provides for large longitudinal force leverage and keeps the scrub radius small, thus minimizing sensitivity to vibrations caused by tire unbalance and fluctuations in braking force.
As components of the new front axle are made of aluminum, they weigh about four pounds less than a corresponding steel design. This reduction in weight supports a sensitive response and contributes to the efficiency of the new E-Class.
An optimized multi-link independent rear suspension with 5 links ensures excellent wheel control qualities and supreme straight-line stability. The rear axle carrier and the spring control arms are made of forged aluminum. A large rear axle bearing contributes to improved isolation of vibrations, NVH characteristics and ride quality.
Sporty steering feel
All models of the E-Class family are equipped as standard with a sporty, electromechanical Direct-Steer system. It combines speed-sensitive power assistance with a steering ratio that varies according to the given steering angle.
Advantages of the electromechanical Direct-Steer system:
- improved agility thanks to more direct steering response
- comfortable handling and high level of steering comfort at all speeds
- enables the use of several assistance systems, such as Active Park Assist
Fade-resistant brakes for short stopping distances
The braking system with internally ventilated compound brake discs meets high standards in terms of stopping distance, response, fade resistance, directional stability and service life of the brake pads.
The E-Class comes as standard with ADAPTIVE BRAKE, offering:
- Hill-Start Assist which prevents the vehicle from rolling backwards on hills
- a HOLD function which keeps the vehicle immobile without having to continuously press the brake pedal
- a brake-drying function which regularly wipes the moisture from the brake discs to make full braking power available at all times
- a brake-priming function, which brings the brake pads into light contact with the disc if the driver suddenly releases the accelerator, and can thus shorten the stopping distance during subsequent braking.
Additionally, ESP® Dynamic Cornering Assist offers improved safety in critical cornering conditions. If the ESP® sensors detect an understeering tendency, the system performs specific braking intervention on the side of the vehicle which is on the inside of the bend.
Electric parking brake
An electric parking brake is provided as standard. Pressing the control beneath the rotary light switch engages the electric parking brake; pulling releases it. The driver can also use the automatic release function, which automatically releases the parking brake when driving off.
Key topics: DYNAMIC SELECT
From "Comfort" to "Individual," there are five different drive programs that allow the driver to influence the characteristics of their E-Class.
The driver chooses the desired driving experience with a switch in the lower control panel of the center console. Depending on the equipment level, the driver can choose from various preconfigured drive programs and one fully customizable setting. This influences the settings of various systems and components, such as the speed-sensitive power assistance for steering, shift points of the automatic transmission, throttle response, ECO Start/Stop function and suspension.
Depending on the installed equipment, “Comfort,” “ECO,” “Sport,” “Sport+” and “Individual” drive programs are available.
"Comfort" mode is the most balanced drive program with corresponding suspension tuning and a consumption-optimized powertrain set-up. As the default program, "Comfort" mode is activated after the engine initially starts.
The "ECO" drive program trims the vehicle for minimal fuel consumption. The driver can access ECO information in the multifunction display in order to adopt a more economical driving style. With some engines, the vehicle is also capable of coasting when the driver releases the accelerator and lets the vehicle roll on overrun. This decouples the engine from the powertrain and the associated friction losses.
"Sport" mode is characterized by agility and driving pleasure with a sporty suspension tuning and direct accelerator pedal characteristics. The suspension is firm, but still offers ride comfort.
In "Sport +" mode, the powertrain responds very directly and rapidly to dynamic load changes. In addition, optionally available multi-chamber AIR BODY CONTROL air suspension has even firmer tuning. The ECO Start/Stop function is then deactivated.
"Individual" mode additionally offers the possibility to vary individual parameters for suspension (in case of air suspension), steering and powertrain. They are complemented by additional adjustment options such as ECO Start/Stop, climate control and ECO Assist, depending on the vehicle
New assistance and safety systems
Next-generation driving assistance systems - Intelligent Drive
Mercedes-Benz's new assistance and safety systems elevate safety, comfort and driver assistance to new levels. The new Mercedes-Benz E-Class is the world's first series production vehicle to be awarded a test license for fully autonomous driving in the U.S. state of Nevada.
Mercedes-Benz is further developing safety components and driving assistance systems in its vehicles. Integral Safety and Intelligent Drive are becoming increasingly intertwined, working in a cross-system concept. Its components can:
- assist and provide stress relief during normal driving
- detect dangers
- warn, assist and intervene in a timely manner if needed
- prevent accidents or reduce the severity of accidents
- activate protective measures such as the PRE-SAFE® components as a precaution in the event of danger
Individual functions are linked to networked sensors with information about the vehicle and its surroundings – including an enhanced stereo multipurpose camera behind the windscreen, new multi-stage radar sensors with adjustable range/ opening angle around the vehicle, ultrasonic sensors and a 360° camera. The combined use of data from the sensors allows analysis of complex traffic situations, better detection of potential dangers on the road and the ability to further enhance the capabilities of safety and assistance systems.
Extensive assistance systems as standard
The new E-Class comes standard with Active Brake Assist. This advanced system can provide effective aid in mitigating the severity of rear-end collisions or even in preventing them entirely. The radar-based system constantly monitors the area of traffic in front of the vehicle and can determine the distance and speed of the vehicles ahead. If, in the speed range between 4 and 155 mph, the system detects an acute risk of collision because of slower or stopped vehicles or, in the speed range between 4 and 50 mph, because of stationary vehicles or crossing pedestrians, the system gives the driver an additional audible warning. Further, the system computes the brake pressure required to prevent a collision if at all possible. If, having been warned, the driver then steps on the brake pedal, the system is capable of boosting braking pressure in line with the needs of the situation, making the best possible use of the remaining stopping distance in order to leave the vehicles behind room to brake.
Standard ATTENTION ASSIST, with adjustable sensitivity, can warn the driver in a timely manner of inattentiveness and drowsiness. Crosswind Assist helps the driver by enabling them to clearly counteract disturbances such as strong gusts of wind by means of one-sided braking via ESP®.
DRIVE PILOT: Intelligent Drive in the Driving Assistance Package Plus
The E-Class offers additional optional assistance systems, the key innovations of which have been included in the Premium 3 Package. The most important functions include semi-autonomous driving on motorways, country roads and even in the city as well as assistance when changing lanes on multi-lane roads. Furthermore, it is capable in more and more situations of autonomously braking the vehicle if required and providing active assistance during evasive maneuvers.
The centerpiece of the Premium 3 Package is DRIVE PILOT. This assistance system automatically maintains the correct distance to vehicles in front by adjusting the car's desired speed to that of a slower-moving vehicle ahead. With the Steering Pilot subfunction, the E-Class will stay within a lane up to speeds of 130 mph. This can make life easier for the driver, who no longer needs to operate the brake or accelerator pedal during normal driving and also receives plenty of steering assistance – even on bends.
For orientation, DRIVE PILOT uses an enhanced stereo multipurpose camera behind the windscreen and new radar sensors beneath the radiator grille and the rear bumper to detect road markings, the vehicle in front and also its surroundings.
In ideal situations and at speeds of up to 81 mph, this system is not dependent on clearly visible lane markings as it can intervene actively if the lines on the road are unclear, e.g. at roadworks, or even if there are no lines on the road at all.
Despite active longitudinal and transverse guidance with enhanced steering assistance, DRIVE PILOT continues to be designed as a semi-automated assistance system in which the driver still needs to keep their hands on the steering wheel. Intelligent hands-on detection provides a noticeably increased customer benefit while taking account of vehicle speed, road type and curvature. This can take the pressure off the driver and provide assistance, especially in bumper-to-bumper or congested traffic and also on long journeys.
Active Emergency Stop Assist can brake the vehicle to a standstill in its lane if it detects that the driver is not taking control while on the move. If there is no steering wheel movement over a longer period when the Steering Pilot is active, the system gives the driver a visual and audible prompt to place their hands on the wheel. If, after being repeatedly warned, the driver does not react by steering, accelerating, braking or pressing a Touch Control Buttons, the vehicle safely decelerates to a standstill in its lane.
Lane-changing made easy
Impressive DRIVE PILOT innovations include an Active Lane-Change Assist. Once the driver has indicated to turn for at least two seconds, the Active Lane-Change Assist helps with steering the vehicle into the desired adjacent lane if it detects that the lane is unoccupied. The driver merely monitors the lane change.
The criteria for operation of Active Lane-Change Assist are:
- operation of the turn indicator for longer than two seconds
- the unoccupied zone detection system allows a lane change within three seconds
- Steering Pilot is activated
- vehicle traveling on a multi-lane, motorway-like road, detected via the navigation module integrated into COMAND Navigation
A long-range radar system and the stereo multipurpose camera monitor the area in front of the vehicle, while multi-mode radar sensors permanently check the area to the rear and sides.
Active Lane Change Assist is aborted by the system if the sensor system detects an obstacle, no longer sees lane markings, the driver counter steers or Steering Pilot is switched off.
Automatic braking in an emergency
Further assistance is provided by an Active Brake Assist with significantly extended functionality compared with the standard functions. Its job is to warn the driver of imminent collisions and initiate autonomous braking if necessary.
Active Brake Assist likewise uses the radar sensors installed in the vehicle as well as the stereo multipurpose camera. These sensors enable the system to detect whether the vehicle in front is slowing down, stopping or is stationary. If the system detects a risk of collision and the driver fails to respond to a collision warning, the system automatically initiates autonomous braking.
The cross-traffic function of Active Brake Assist also detects cross-traffic and pedestrians in the danger area in front of the vehicle. Active Brake Assist first warns the driver if there is a risk of collision, providing assistance if the driver fails to brake hard enough. If the driver fails to react, the system initiates braking automatically. If a pedestrian enters the danger area relatively late, the assistance system brakes simultaneously with the warning to allow the speed of the vehicle to be reduced faster.
Safe evasive action
The intelligent innovations of the Driving Assistance Package Plus include Evasive Steering Assist. This can help the driver to avoid a pedestrian detected by the assistance system using the radar sensors and stereo multipurpose camera. If the driver initiates an evasive maneuver by turning the steering wheel, the system provides assistance by adding precisely calculated steering torque to support the movement of the steering wheel. This torque helps the driver to avoid the pedestrian in a controlled manner and then makes it easier to straighten the vehicle up again so that it can drive past safely. While the philosophy behind Evasive Steering Assist is to provide the driver with significant assistance, the initiative to take evasive action must come from the driver. This is because, if evasive action were automatic, a previously inattentive driver might be surprised by the spontaneous movement of the steering wheel and might react incorrectly.
Proven assistance systems
The intelligent assistance systems in the Premium 3 Package also include proven systems that have been further developed in terms of their mode of operation and the sensors they use. Active Lane Keeping Assist can help stop the driver from unintentionally changing lanes with corrective one-sided application of the brakes in the case of solid or broken lines and risk of collision. Active Blind Spot Assist can now also warn of a lateral collision in typical urban traffic at low speeds and, correctively intervene at the last moment to prevent a lateral collision at speeds above 19 mph while and activating PRE-SAFE® belt tensioners. PRE-SAFE® PLUS can protect against collisions with following traffic and their impacts on the occupants by, activating the PRE-SAFE® belt tensioners and, if stationary, by applying the brakes to stop the vehicle from being moved.
The E-Class offers a modular range of driving assistance systems. In addition to the already extensive standard equipment specification, optional extras provide the possibility to individually configure the vehicle. Blind Spot Assist is capable at low speeds of warning of vehicles, including cyclists, in the danger area to the right and left of the vehicle.
Technology with future potential
To allow autonomous driving functions to be tested, test vehicles previously had to be elaborately equipped with special hardware and software. This included additional sensors, modified steering and an adapted ESP®. That is no longer the case with the new Mercedes-Benz E-Class; the series production vehicle is already extensively equipped with intelligent technology. This means that, for testing purposes, it is necessary to make some minor software modifications to the DRIVE PILOT control unit and the "Intelligent Drive Controller." More specifically, changes were made only to Steering Pilot and Speed Limit Assist. Other changes included disabling Hands-On Detection and sharpening the steering dynamics. The new Mercedes-Benz E-Class is thus the world's first series production vehicle to be awarded a test license for autonomous driving in the US state of Nevada.
Remote Parking Pilot
Parking - no problem
To make parking easier, the E-Class is optionally available with three variants of Parking Assist: Parking Pilot with Surround View System – as well as the new Remote Parking Pilot.
Parking Pilot with Surround View System and rearview camera makes it easier to find and choose a parking space and enter or leave parallel or end-on parking spaces. It maneuvers the vehicle automatically into the selected parking space and can steer and brake if an obstacle is detected.
If Parking Pilot is not used for parking or leaving a parking space, sensors will monitor the front and rear areas as well as the sides of the vehicle. If it detects a risk of collision, it warns the driver.
If Blind Spot Assist is installed, and if crossing traffic is detected behind the vehicle, Rear Cross Traffic Alert is capable of giving a warning or automatically initiating braking and providing the driver with an audible warning.
With Parking Pilot with Surround View System, all-round vision is made possible by the reversing cameras and three other additional cameras. Observation of the areas to the side and directly in front of the vehicle thus helps during parking and maneuvering.
The information from Parking Pilot with Surround View System is graphically presented in high definition on the display in the vehicle.
Remotely controlled parking by smartphone app (available in a future model year)
Entering or leaving a tight parking space or parking in the garage can be an ordeal. The newly available Mercedes-Benz system makes it possible for the first time to enter or exit a parking space from outside the vehicle. Remote Parking Pilot is enabled by smartphone over a Bluetooth® connection; the app, specifically developed by Mercedes-Benz, can be downloaded from the app store and activated via the “Mercedes me portal.”
Also beneficial for people with restricted mobility, the Remote Parking Pilot allows the vehicle to be remotely maneuvered into a position that makes it easier to get into or out of the car.
To use this convenient system, the driver and their smartphone must be within about 10-feet of the vehicle. Operation is via a smartphone app and the driver must unlock the vehicle before it is moved out of the parking space. It is then possible to establish a connection with an already authorized smartphone and, ultimately, retrieve the vehicle out of a parking space.
Prior to parking, the driver selects one of the relevant parking scenarios – such as parallel or perpendicular parking, left or right, forward or reverse. The vehicle can then be moved by remote control. The parking scenario is enacted automatically - including steering, braking and direction changes - as long as the driver provides a continuous confirmation gesture on the smartphone. The driver monitors the process from outside the vehicle and still has complete responsibility for their vehicle during the entire parking process.
In addition to the parking scenarios, there is an Exploration mode, which allows the vehicle to be maneuvered up to 49-feet forward or backward, avoiding any detected obstacles as it moves – when driving into a garage, for example.
The Remote Parking Pilot can only operate in conjunction with Parking Pilot PARKTRONIC's ultrasonic sensors. This newly developed system from Mercedes-Benz is available in conjunction with the optional extras Parking Pilot with 360° camera and KEYLESS GO, which monitors the distance between driver and vehicle.
More details about availabity will be offered at the time of the U.S. launch in summer 2016
Key topics: Car-to-X Communication (avaiable later this year)
Car-to-X technology allows information to be sent to other vehicles over a long distance in order to give them early warning of potentially hazardous situations. Mercedes-Benz is the first manufacturer to offer Car-to-X Communication in standard production vehicles.
Accident site around the next bend? A sudden traffic jam at a construction zone? These surprises are factored out of the equation if the approaching driver is given an accurate warning in plenty of time. Vehicles will be able to do this in the future by warning other road users automatically once they themselves have registered a hazard. This is the principle of Car-to-X Communication, which Mercedes-Benz has co-initiated, becoming the world's first car manufacturer to introduce this technology in series production vehicles.
Car-to-X technology significantly extends the previous range of vehicle sensors, such as radar or camera systems. It allows information on dangerous situations automatically detected by the vehicle or manually reported by the driver to be sent to other vehicles, making it possible to "see" around corners or through obstacles. Consequently, information on potential hazards on the road can be sent to drivers at an early stage so that they can prepare for them and avoid critical situations altogether.
As well as being able to receive hazard warnings, every vehicle equipped with Car-to-X echnology can also send such warnings to other road users. As a result of seamless integration into the existing vehicle systems, Mercedes-Benz passenger cars are able to automatically detect a variety of sources of danger and the driver does not need to do anything.
Car-to-X Communication operates in the background and does not distract the driver's attention from the road. It provides the driver with early and accurate information in safety-critical situations. Car-to-X technology can therefore be seamlessly integrated into the "Mercedes-Benz Intelligent Drive" strategy.
By becoming the world's first manufacturer to introduce Car-to-X technology in series production vehicles, Mercedes-Benz is once again reaffirming its role as a safety pioneer, and demonstrating that its engineers are continuing to work consistently to bring to the roads innovations that can be used not only by our customers but also by other road users.
Safe with intelligent systems
True to Mercedes-Benz tradition, the new E-Class sets standards in terms of passive safety, too. For example, the PRE-SAFE® protection concept has now been upgraded into all-round monitoring.
Mercedes-Benz has for years been protecting car occupants with its PRE-SAFE® concept in a host of accident situations. The concept includes various measures to move the occupants into the best possible position prior to an imminent impact. Based on findings from accident research, Mercedes-Benz has continuously developed this system further and is now incorporating innovations to upgrade it into an all-round monitoring system. For this purpose, the new E-class is equipped for the first time with the new subsystem PRE-SAFE® Impulse Side. Together with the familiar PRE-SAFE® protection concepts for frontal and rear collisions, it allows a kind of virtual crumple zone that extends all around the vehicle.
As only a limited crumple zone is available in the case of a side impact, even before the crash, PRE-SAFE® Impulse Side can move the affected driver or front passenger as far as possible away from the acute “danger zone” as soon as the system detects that a side collision is immediately imminent. For this purpose, air chambers in the side bolsters of the front seat backrest are inflated in fractions of a second. This impulse can move the occupant to the side, away from the acute danger area and towards the center of the vehicle, thus increasing the distance between occupant and door. This can reduce the forces to which the occupant's rib cage is subjected during a side collision.
PRE-SAFE® Sound - protecting the ears against the noise of a crash
With its new PRE-SAFE® Sound, Mercedes-Benz is for the first time making use of a natural reflex to prepare the occupants’ ears for the loud noise normally associated with an accident. The system is based on the fact that the stapedius muscle in our ears reacts to loud noises by contracting in a reflex action. The contraction of this tiny muscle briefly changes the link between the eardrum and the inner ear, providing greater protection against high sound pressures.
Mercedes-Benz uses this natural reflex as biomechanical ear protection for PRE-SAFE® Sound. PRE-SAFE® Sound therefore emits a short noise signal through the vehicle's sound system if the risk of a collision is detected. This signal can trigger the stapedius reflex, which prepares the ears for a loud, sudden noise and thus lessens the risk of hearing discomfort or damage.
Even more intervention scenarios
So far, the PRE-SAFE® system has reacted as soon as it detects an imminent collision or other hazard or because of unusual vehicle behavior, such as over/understeer or substantial intervention by assistance systems. For added safety, the system now reacts to even more intervention scenarios. These include a detected fast switch by the driver from accelerator to brake pedal (shock reaction), critical steering wheel movements, now also at low speeds, an autonomous course correction by Crosswind Assist and a detected, immediately imminent side collision.
Beltbag – clever cross between belt and airbag
For the first time, beltbags are optionally available for the outer rear passengers in the E-Class. The beltbag is a combination of seat belt and airbag components - an inflatable seat belt that is capable of widening its belt strap and thus further reducing the risk of injury in the event of an accident. It is used in exactly the same way as a conventional seat belt. In the event of a serious frontal collision, a gas generator on the belt's end fitting inflates the belt strap to over twice its normal width. This enlarges the belt strap area in the upper body region so that the force is distributed over a significantly wider area.
In addition, a host of airbags provides occupant protection in an accident. These include:
- driver and front passenger airbags
- kneebag for the driver to protect the knees and stabilize the upper body
- a windowbag in the roof area between A, B and C-pillars for the head area of driver, front passenger and passengers in the outer rear seats
- combined thorax/pelvis sidebags for driver and front passenger, which are able to provide additional protection in the event of a side impact, as well as optionally available sidebags for the outer rear seats
Systematic pedestrian protection
Active Brake Assist warns if pedestrians are detected in the danger area by the stereo multipurpose camera and, if necessary, initiates autonomous braking if the driver fails to react to the warning from the system.
In the event of an accident
After an accident has occurred, various measures dependent on accident type and severity can mitigate the consequences and make fast rescue possible. These include:
- automatic activation of hazard warning lights
- emergency shut-off of engine and fuel pump
- emergency door unlocking
- emergency call
- disconnection of the 12V starter cable
- high-voltage switch-off
- emergency switch-off of the air conditioning system
- emergency interior lighting
- ventilation by slightly lowering the front windows by a few centimeters
- exit assistance for the driver by lowering the steering column
Guidelines for Rescue Services with important information for rescuers
To enable rescuers to work quickly and safely, Mercedes-Benz provides a rescue card for the E-Class in various languages that can be downloaded free of charge. The new E-Class is also equipped with QR code stickers – a small but effective measure with which Mercedes-Benz makes rescuing accident victims faster and safer. The QR code can be read with smartphones and tablet computers and sends a rescue card for the vehicle model to the display of the rescuers.
Very well entertained and connected
An all-new infotainment generation is making its debut in the E-Class equipped with COMAND Navigation. One of many highlights is the wireless integration of smartphones.
Mercedes-Benz is ushering in a new era of digitalization and networking in the new E-Class. This includes effortless integration of the smartphone into the vehicle's infotainment system by means of antenna coupling and wireless charging. This means that mobile phones can be charged wirelessly and at the same time connected to the vehicle's exterior antenna. Simply place the device on the charging pad at the front of the center console to connect the smartphone by Near Field Communication (NFC) with the multimedia system. The inductive charging pad has the dimensions 6.0” x 3.5” and is suitable for mobile devices that support the Qi standard.
The wireless charging system functions with all mobile devices which support or can be upgraded to support the Qi standard. The charging pad is integrated into the quick stowage tray at the front of the center console. A connection is established between head unit and mobile phone via Near Field Communication (NFC) by touching the "NFC" logo. Phone calls can then be made via the Bluetooth® hands-free system
Smartphone integration via Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto
With the standard COMAND Navigation system it is possible to use Apple's smartphone-based infotainment system CarPlay® as well as Google's Android Auto®. If a corresponding smartphone is connected by USB, the customer can switch to the CarPlay® or Android Auto® interface.
Internet and diverse data sources even in the basic version
Audio playback is possible from various sources with all three variants, for example via Bluetooth® or USB stick. COMAND Navigation also offers integrated hotspot functionality, allowing passengers in all seats to connect different WiFi-capable devices to the internet.
COMAND Navigation with its own fast 3D hard-drive navigation, topographical map display, photo-realistic 3D buildings and 3D map rotations makes for a special sensory experience.
3D sound with concert hall experience
The FrontBass(R) system in the new E-Class delivers a special listening experience as standard. It uses the space in the cross-member and side member of the body structure as a resonance chamber for the bass speakers.
The standard audio system has an output of 4 x 25 watts and seven speakers. The Burmester® Premium Sound System is optionally available for superior listening pleasure. It drives 14 speakers with a 9-channel DSP amplifier and a total system power of 640 watts. All the speakers are additionally optimized for performance with the premium sound system.
Alternatively, audiophiles can opt for the new Burmester® High-End 3D Sound System. This treats the occupants to a listening experience reminiscent of the acoustics in a concert hall. This second-generation sound system additionally uses four roof speakers – two in the front and two in the rear area of the roof. The effect: reflections, which come off the ceiling in a concert hall, are incorporated in the same authentic manner into the sound design of the E-Class.
Apart from 3D Surround, four other preset sound modes can be selected to suit every taste and audio source:
- Pure: audiophile sound reproduction with no additional effects, for musical enjoyment
- Live: appealing, dynamic sound background akin to live music
- Easy listening: milder sound background for relaxed listening over longer periods
- Surround: virtual surround sound
- 3D Surround: three-dimensional listening experience provided by the roof speakers
The technical specification of the Burmester® high-end 3D surround sound system employs 23 high-end speakers with diaphragms of fiberglass fabric for high level stability, low weight and higher power. Specially developed for their task, the roof speakers are extremely small and flat and radiate sound in all directions. The speaker package includes a 0.9-cu.-ft. bass box with its own 400 W amplifier in the trunk, two subwoofer/mid-range speakers in the front doors as well as seven mid-range speakers and ring radiator tweeters of aluminum for precise sound resolution. The tweeters in the front mirror triangle not only fulfill their sound function, but are also design objects: when the sound system is turned on, they revolve out from the mirror triangle into the optimal position. The ambiant lighting also transforms them into a visual highlight. Two amplifiers with a total power of 1450 watts drive all the speakers individually via separate channels and active crossovers.
A combination of digital and analogue amplifiers contributes to the special listening experience. The analogue technology ensures a full sound while the digital technology uses a separate power supply to produce high peaks in order to enable a high dynamic between the quietest and loudest tones.
As in the S-Class, the sound can be optimally adjusted for every seat position using the VIP setting.
Lighter and stiffer
Less weight, excellent stiffness for superb handling coupled with optimum noise and vibration characteristics as well as high crash safety – the bodyshell of the new E-Class provides an innovative base which also facilitates new fuel consumption benchmark figures.
Thanks to intelligent lightweight construction, the body is some 154 lbs. lighter than a conventional steel body. To achieve this, sheet steel and die-cast aluminum are used as materials for most of the bodyshell. The front fenders, hood, trunk lid, and large sections of the front and rear ends are made of sheet or cast aluminum. To increase the local introduction stiffness, the damper brackets at the front are no longer of the usual sheet steel, but of cast aluminum. It was possible to integrate and merge in a single pressure die-cast part several parts that are made up of several steel components in conventional designs. In addition, there was a significant increase in the proportion of ultra-high-strength steel compared with the previous model. This lightweight design reduces fuel consumption and makes for perceptibly sporty and agile vehicle handling.
Other design details include larger cross-sections as well as precisely calculated stabilizing beads in the floor and bulkhead. High-strength adhesives are used extensively to firmly bond the parts which helps increase the stiffness of the bodyshell.
Body and bodyshell set a new benchmark in terms of overall vehicle stiffness. As a result, the ambitious goals for driving dynamics and noise level have been exceeded.
Safety takes precedence
A high-strength safety passenger compartment forms the core of this concept. It consists primarily of high-strength and ultra-high-strength sheet steel and panels with graduated wall thicknesses designed to withstand specific local stresses. Many segments consist of hot-formed steels, which become very sturdy as a result of this production process.
The high-strength passenger cell is surrounded by specifically calculated deformation zones which have been extensively field-tested. Thanks to optimized dissipation paths and a combination of aluminum die-cast parts and ultra-high-strength materials, this set-up achieves outstanding crash test results and high occupant safety.
Key topics: LED Intelligent Light System
The E-Class with enhanced LED Intelligent Light System headlamps opens up new dimensions in headlamp technology. Each headlamp is now equipped with individually activated high-performance LEDs, which means that they are exceptionally bright and precise, and automatically illuminate the road surface with a previously unsurpassed, precision-controlled distribution of light – without blinding other road users.
The the next generation LED Intelligent Light System headlamps on the new E-Class use a newly developed, high-resolution LED module as a grid light source, fitted with high-performance LED chips. This is able to react dynamically, and the light illuminating the road is extremely precise.
When it comes to the number of pixels, the same is true of an LED headlamp as of a monitor: the higher the number of individually controllable pixels, the higher the resolution and the more detailed the image. A high number of pixels also allow greater dynamism in the display. In terms of perception, this leads to a clear increase in precision and brilliance.
New safety-enhancing functions
Adaptive Highbeam Assist has also been optimized: thanks to a larger number of pixels, the dark areas in the light distribution are more precise and dynamic than ever before in partial main-beam mode, and the main beam can be used for longer than before.
A camera on the windscreen supplies the system with the information it needs about the constantly changing traffic situation and is also used by other assistance functions. Four control units per vehicle calculate the ideal light pattern 100 times per second and activate all high-performance LEDs in each precision grid module individually.
Advantage of LEDs
The LED technology used for the headlamps offers further advantages. For example, the light from the bright LED headlamps is almost the same color as daylight and therefore in line with normal human perception patterns. Studies have shown that the closer the color of artificial light is to daylight, the less the strain on the eyes. With a color temperature of 5500 kelvin, LED light is closer to daylight (6500 K) than xenon headlamps (4200 K). The high-performance LEDs in the headlamps also help to increase efficiency thanks to their high lumen output and are designed to last for the entire vehicle lifetime.
Safety benefits of LEDs in tail lights, too: brightness rather than glare
The new E-Class, too, will launch with tail lights that feature multi-level functionality, still a unique feature of Mercedes-Benz. The brake lights and indicators are operated with varying light intensity, depending on the driving situation and ambient lighting (day/night).
If the driver presses the brake pedal while stopped at traffic lights at night, for instance, the brightness of the brake lights will be automatically dimmed to avoid blinding anyone behind.
During the development phase, light experts at Mercedes-Benz carried out experiments at a testing ground, simulating real traffic situations. The taillamps of the test vehicle were operated with varying intensity at different times of the day and under different light conditions, and the brightness and density of the light were measured, reducing glare.
Standard rear lights provide an additional highlight reminiscent of stardust. This optic effect is created by an innovative reflector technology with a specially designed surface structure for the tail light and ensures a brilliant appearance. The rear lamps utilize all-LED technology.
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