Mercedes-Benz India has launched the all-new E-Class E200 at Rs 56.15 lakh. The more premium E350 is priced at Rs 69.47 lakh, prices ex-Mumbai. The new Mercedes-Benz E-Class comes only in the long-wheelbase (LWB) form and is available with petrol as well as diesel engines. This is also the first time the company has introduced a right-hand drive LWB and the cars are assembled at Mercedes' Chakan plant.
Since this is an LWB, we will get straight to the heart of the matter. The new E-Class has a wheelbase that is 205mm more than the outgoing car. This equates to nearly S-Class levels of space inside the cabin, as was evident in our first drive experience of the car. While the car can seat five passengers, the taller transmission tunnel makes it essentially a very comfortable 4-seater. The rear seat occupants are also pampered with their individual 34-degree recline for the seats and controls over the blinds as well as sunroof. In our first drive, we had also noted that these "seats are large and supportive, and the rear headrests are as soft as putting your head on a cloud".
The new E-Class looks similar to the other freshly launched Mercs, namely the C- and S-Class. There is a slight difference to the way the headlamp layout as well as DRL cluster sits on the new E. The new E, however, looks closer to the C than the S. The dashboard though resembles the more premium S. Nestled between two analogue dials is the colour MID. Unlike international-spec regular E-Class, we don't get digital dials. The steering wheel hosts twin touch-sensitive buttons that help one choose different menus on the MID.
There are two engine options for the new E-Class LWB - a 2.0-litre turbo petrol and 3.0-litre diesel V6. The diesel is also used in the S320d and produces a similar 258PS/620Nm. Mercedes-Benz claims a 0-100kmph figure of 6.6s and top speed is 250kmph. There are different driving modes to select from - Eco, Comfort, Sport, Sport+ and Individual. Apart from the LWB, India also gets the E-Class with air suspension. This gives you a choice to raise the suspension when going over nasty speed breakers.
There are no long-wheelbase cars in the segment that the E-Class operates in, rendering it quite a unique proposition.
Read our review of the new Mercedes-Benz E-Class LWB here.