Mercedes-Benz did all it could to keep the 2017 E-Class under wraps, but it was still leaked ahead of its debut. Instead of giving in and releasing all of the E-Class’ details as soon as the leak happened, Mercedes stuck to its guns and released all of the details today.
As you can see, the E-Class has undergone a pretty significant overhaul. The midsize sedan takes on a sportier look than ever before, thanks to its coupe-like roofline, long hood and broad shoulders, all while retaining its elegance. When compared to its predecessor, the 2017 E-Class is 1.7 inches longer and rides atop a 2.6-inch-longer wheelbase.
The interior also received a full redesign for this new model year, and I am on the fence as to what I think about it. The oddest parts are the horizontal lines in the trim that look a tad tacky and the large glass casing that houses the analog gauges and the 12.3-inch navigation screen. While I appreciate the attempt at being unique, this large hunk of glass covering half the dash looks odd.
Not all of the new E-Class’ cabin is bad. Its new center stack looks cleaner than ever, and the new touch-sensitive controls on the steering wheel are a nice touch. The 64 colors in its LED ambient lighting system is also a nice touch.
When the E-Class initially hits showrooms, it will be available only in the E300 model. This version of the sedan will come with a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that produces 241 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque. This peppy four-pot will mate to a nine-speed automatic transmission as standard. According to Mercedes, there will be additional models available at a later date.
In the class the E-Class is in, it needs to deliver both a sporty ride and comfort. It delivers this via two Direct Control suspension settings: Comfort and Sport. There is also an optional Air Body Control suspension – a multi-chamber air suspension – that allows the driver to choose from Comfort, Eco, Sport, or Sport+ modes. This allows for even finer tuning for driving enthusiasts.
On top of the new body, interior, and powertrain are some new available features. These include Remote Parking Pilot for those who prefer not to park their own car, Car-to-X communication for added safety, and PRE-SAFE impulse side, which moves occupants away from the side of the car when an impact is imminent.
The 2017 E-Class will hit showrooms in the summer of 2016. We’ll have more details on the other versions of this midsize sedan as they become available.