It’s pure Class in this E-xceptional new Mercedes Benz E-Class

The new Mercedes Benz E-Class is a touch of class
The new Mercedes Benz E-Class is a touch of class

Mercedes Benz E-Class E220d

Limos, pink Hummers, horse-drawn carriages and even helicopters are the norm these days when it comes to little boys and girls on their Communion days.

But not for us.

Here at Motormouth Towers, we like to think we have a little bit more class than that – so we opted for the new Mercedes E-Class to chauffeur around the little ones on their special day. 

There is no doubt about it – the new E-Class is a carriage fit for a little king or queen. 

Ruby gets to travel to her Communion mass in the Mercedes Benz E-Class

The Mercedes Benz E-Class has always been the company’s most important model in Ireland, and distributors here expect it will continue to be the largest-selling model in the range – a position it has traditionally held.

The latest model to roll off the production line will definitely keep the E-Class at the top of the pile.

We were amazed at how much of the style and technology has trickled down from the flagship S-Class – at just a fraction of its price.

On the outside, it is fair to say that apart from a few nice little tweaks, and a new coupe-like roofline that features on both the new S- and C-Class, it looks close to the outgoing model.

It does feature a longer bonnet (43m) and wheelbase (65mm) than its predecessor and this is obvious with the extra legroom in the rear.

The good news is that you can personalise your E-Class to your own taste. 

For the more conservative buyer, you can opt to have the traditional radiator grille with separate star emblem placed on the bonnet. 

For sporty types like ourselves, there is an optional sports radiator grille available with star badge in the middle of it – we think it gives the E-Class a more aggressive look that will appeal to the younger buyer. 

Mercedes has done a wonderful job on the interior, and it is as close to an S-Class as you are ever going to see.

Highlights include new sculptured seats designed for long journeys, heated armrests in the doors and centre console and a choice of sixty-four interior LED lighting colours. 

Optionally available are two high-resolution 12.3-inch display screens, and three different wide-screen instrument cluster styles.

A wide choice of materials and colour combos are available. 

It also features touch-sensitive finger swipe buttons on the steering wheel, which the driver can use to control the infotainment system while keeping both hands on the steering wheel.

Mobile phones with the inductive charge facility can be charged and connected with no need for cables or a telephone holder.

On the road, the new E-Class is smooth as silk, with the new 2.0-litre diesel mated with the 9-speed auto, making driving effortless.

The new diesel is a big improvement on the older 2.2 unit, although it’s still a little noisy on start-up.

Once warmed, it feels refined with a decent amount of power to move the big E-Class.

When you get behind the wheel of the new E-Class you are transformed into a zen-like state as the quality wafts through the cabin.

You really do think you’re driving an S-Class. 

It handles beautifully and it can certainly move rapidly when asked.

On a long journey you feel relaxed with plenty of comfort and support from the new sculpted seats.

Better still, the range of a full tank is more then 1,200 kms, which is superb. Any car with a 1,000 range gets our nod of approval. 

We tested both the Avantgarde model and the AMG spec, and for us, the sportier design of the AMG would be our choice. 

The most impressive thing for us, though, is that the new E-Class will now come with more than €7,000 worth of extras that you would have paid for in the outgoing model.

In fact, the new E-Class has more spec and costs a lot less than it did during the Celtic Tiger.

Some of these extras include, parking pilot parking assist, heated front seats, full-leather upholstery, reversing camera, satellite navigation, ambient lighting, stowage pack and a ‘connect me’ function.

Plus, standard on all models is 9G-Tronic nine-speed automatic transmission, which is sublime.

In Ireland, focus is being placed on the E220d Avantgarde auto at €52,850 ex works – which represents a price decrease of €850 compared to the previous model.

Also available to order will be Exclusive (€55,210) and AMG versions (€57,650). Available also is an E350d version at €66,900.

Further model variants to follow in time will include an E350e hybrid and a powerful V6 E350d.

The new E-Class makes great strides with the latest model and Mercedes say it will continue to be their top seller.

We think it’s good enough to take on the Audi A6 and BMW 5-Series for class honours, and for that, we give it top Mercs.

Robbie Farrell & Paul Keown

Model: Mercedes-Benz E-Class E220d
Price: From €52,850 (Avantgarde model tested €56,183 AMG model tested €60,492)
Road Tax: A4 €190
0-100kph: 7.3s  max speed: 240kph
Fuel Economy: 3.9-4.3l/100kms (claimed)
Boot Space: 540 litres