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MERCEDES-Benz Malaysia on Wednesday launched the new E-Class. “Signifying a new era of intelligence and luxury and refreshed with a new attitude, the new E-Class portrays a new form of luxury with the latest innovation and exclusivity.” With over 14 million vehicles delivered since 1946 globally, the E-Class is the best-selling model series in the history of Mercedes-Benz.

Locally-assembled, two variants are offered – E200 Avantgarde (pix, dark exterior) and E300 AMG Line (pix, silver).

New attitude

As standard, the E200 comes with the attractive Avantgarde exterior, featuring among others sleek new grille with newly-designed LED high performance headlamps and taillamps, a bonnet with a pronounced “power domes” and 18-inch five-twin spoke light alloy wheels.

The E300 features a new AMG Performance bumper, 19-inch AMG five-twin-spoke light-alloy wheels and its Multibeam LED headlamps now including Ultra Range high beam.

Both variants feature a new bumper, split taillamps and a new boot lid. The inner design of the taillamps was revised. There are two new paint colours – grey metallic and high-tech silver.

New intelligence

A new multifunction steering wheel is, of course, a must for any new model. The new E-Class’ is wrapped in genuine leather combined with fine materials and its control surfaces sporting a high-gloss black finish. For the E200, the trim elements and surrounds have a light longitudinal-grain aluminium trim, while the E300’s has open-pore black ash wood trim.

The instrument cluster and the media display are controlled by swiping along the touch control buttons. The operating principle of the touch control buttons changes from optical to capacitive. A mechanical system was no longer needed and the touch surfaces also are less susceptible to fingerprints.

The design of the front seats accentuates the sporty aura of the interior. They offer strong lateral support without compromising on comfort. The seat contour follows the pronounced side bolsters and depending on the specification, the centre section has sporty transverse or modern longitudinal seams.

The colours of the centre sections of the seat backrest and cushion are matched to the overall sculpture of the seats. The upholstery comprises numerous material combinations ranging from Artico artificial leather in the E 200 to genuine leather in the E 300.

New luxury

The new E-Class – equipped with the latest generation of the MBUX (Mercedes-Benz User Experience) multimedia system displayed in the widescreen cockpit, which includes two 12.3-inch displays – has the latest generation of Mercedes-Benz driving assistance systems providing cooperative support to drivers.

This results in an especially high level of active safety, as the vehicle is able to react if the driver doesn’t. The hands-off recognition now works on a capacitive basis. This enhances user-friendliness when driving in semi-automated mode. To inform the assistance systems that the driver still has control of the vehicle, a slight steering movement was previously required as feedback.

The new steering wheel now features a pad with the appropriate sensors in the rim. These register whether the driver is holding the wheel. If the system detects that the driver does not have their hands on the steering wheel for a certain time, a warning cascade is started, which finally activates the emergency brake assist system if the driver continues to be inactive.

As standard, the new E-Class comes with active brake assist system, which in many situations is able to use autonomous braking to prevent a collision or mitigate its severity.

The system is also able to brake for stationary vehicles and crossing pedestrians at typical city speeds and even to prevent collisions, depending on the situation. As part of the driving assistance package, this is now also possible when turning off across the oncoming lane.

Active parking assist with Parktronic and 360-degree camera on the E300 makes it possible to enter and leave parking spaces automatically. The system facilitates the search for and selection of a parking space as well as entering and leaving (if the vehicle was parked automatically) parallel and end-on parking spaces or garages.

For the first time, the new E-Class is able to recognise and use parking spaces which are only marked as areas on larger sites, for example. The 360-degree camera on the E300 transmits an even more realistic image to the media display, which includes an expanded side view. When leaving a parking space, the system is able to warn of traffic crossing behind the vehicle and can apply the brakes in case of doubt.

The E300’s driving assistance package consists of active distance assist (Distronic), active steering assist, active brake assist, active lane keeping assist, active blind spot assist and Pre-Safe Plus.

For protection against crime, there’s the Urban Guard vehicle protection package, an intelligent interlinking of hardware and digital solutions. Providing all-round monitoring, it comprises an anti-theft alarm system plus tow-away protection which is able to detect changes in position. Movement in the vehicle interior also triggers visual and audible warnings. The driver will be notified of theft or parking damage detection through the “Mercedes me” app.

E200 Avantgarde

Displacement: 1,991cc

Max. output: 197hp at 5,500-6,100rpm

Peak torque: 320Nm at 1,650-4,000rpm

0-100km/h acceleration: 7.4 seconds

Top speed: 240km/h

Recommended retail price* (on-the-road, without insurance): RM326,943.19

E300 AMG Line

Displacement: 1,991cc

Max. output: 258hp at 5,800-6,100rpm

Peak torque: 370Nm at 1,800-4,000rpm

0-100km/h acceleration: 6.2 seconds

Top speed: 250km/h.

Recommended retail price* (on-the-road, without insurance): RM375,432.19

*Effective until the end of the tax-free incentive period.

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