An Elegant E-Class Coupe for 2018
The Mercedes-Benz E 400 4Matic Coupe is bigger and bolder for 2018 and resplendent in Diamond White Bright Metal, adding curvaceous two-door coupe flavour to the brand’s vaunted E-Class lineup.
THE PROS & CONS
- What’s Best: The Mercedes-Benz E 400 4Matic Coupe offers the latest driving techs, luxurious accommodation and a full suite of standard amenities in a stylish and unique two-door coupe package.
- What’s Worst: Rear seat room still tight but who cares? It’s a coupe, not a minivan. My usual nickel-and-diming rant about $250 heated steering charge in a nearly $90K car. Come on.
- What’s Interesting: The E 400 Coupes and Cabriolets may not make the bulk of E-Class sales but, man, they add some extra style and panache to an already premium lineup.
It’s funny how iconic mental images persist despite the shifting sands of time and design.
Try to picture the Mercedes-Benz E-Class lineup and somehow the squared-off, staid and stolid executive cars of the past still come to mind.
That’s until you are faced with the curvaceous reality of a 2018 E 400 4Matic Coupe.
There’s nothing squared-off here.
It’s all sensual lines, streamlined quarters and a strikingly sleek, aerodynamic profile.
Hardly a right angle or corner to be found.
Of course, two-door coupes are the playground realm of automotive design, freed from practical constraint, blending whimsical details with technological one-upmanship and pushing both fashion and function beyond the limits of logic.
The E 400 starts on a new E-Class platform for 2018 that, compared to the previous generation, stretches all the coupe’s dimensions – wheelbase (+113 mm), front and rear track (+69 mm), length (+123 mm), width (+74 mm) and height (+32 mm).
Despite the bump-up in size, the coupe is still smaller and more compact than the E-Class sedan.
The sleek exterior is aerodynamically faster for 2018, rated with a lowered 0.27 cD, thanks to its smooth lines, the rake of windshield and rear glass, and an elongated cabin greenhouse that has been inched towards the rear.
Up front, the E 400 features LEDs, a low positioned diamond sport grille with chrome pins mounting a big central Mercedes-Benz star, a long power-domed hood, aggressive air intakes and AMG touches to the front apron and side sill panels.
There are 18- or 19-inch wheel choices. Sideview mirrors have been bumped to the beltline and strong character lines flow towards a muscular rear mounting an integrated decklid spoiler, LED “stardust” tail lamps and a chrome-trimmed AMG rear apron that frames wide dual exhaust outlets. Canadian models add “bumperettes” protruding from either side of the rear licence plate.
Take in the side view and admire the clean lines of sashless windows without B-pillar support, adding a graceful fluidity to the design with only a minimal penalty of increased wind noise.
That lightness of being extends inside the E 400 with a panoramic sunroof that opens up the cabin space.
And you could say that the panoramic influence even extends to the dash design, courtesy of a central 12.3-inch high-resolution COMAND display and an optionally available 12.3-inch widescreen instrument cluster, merged under one lens for a widescreen cockpit design that appears to “float in space”.
The angular vents of the past give way to six circular vents described as having a “jet turbine style”.
Hmmm, or maybe weirdly leech-like from another point of view, probably not the comparison they’re looking for. I couldn’t help wondering how the vents would look if they were Mercedes star-faced but, naaah, that’d definitely be design overkill.
Our E 400 tester was upholstered in a handsome Saddle Brown/Black combo, one of six interior colour choices, a palette bolstered by five Nappa leather choices ($1,500) and two quilted “designo” interiors ($3,300), contrasted by metallic highlights or real wood pieces in high-gloss or open pore natural grain textures.
Those interior selections complement 10 standard exterior colours and two special “designo” metallic paints ($1,400 – $1,600).
Inside, the cabin is an elegantly, comfy place to be. The dimensions mentioned add interior space. Yes, the front seats rack back almost into the second row but, with a little compromise, there’s more backseat room than there used to be.
Give me five or six pages and I might list more included content, bolstered here by about $15K worth of options. But a few of the highlights include 64 ambient lighting colour choices, awesome Burmester surround sound and, yes, heated arm rests (which sounds decadently silly until you try them the first time).
The new E 400 loses a bit of cargo space (-25 litres) but there’s still luggage room to spare (425 litres).
There are global variations but Mercedes-Benz Canada has simplified their niche menu selection with a one-choice E 400 model.
And, like the rest of the E-Class lineup in Canada, from sedans to station wagons, cabriolets and SUVs, it is also only available with the 4Matic all-wheel-drive system.
The E 400 4Matic Coupe harnesses a 3.0-litre biturbo V6 engine that makes 329 hp and 354 lb/ft of torque peaking at a low rev range between 1,600 – 4,000 rpm, with that healthy oomph translated via a 9G-Tronic nine-speed automatic transmission.
The driving feel is more grand tourer than pure sports car but there’s enough muscle to butt-haul this beauty from 0-100 km/h in 5.3 seconds, up to a top speed of 210 km/h.
A standard Dynamic Select system allows for transmission modes that include “Comfort,” “ECO,” “Sport,” “Sport +” and “Individual” settings.
A Stop/Start system bolsters the E 400’s fuel economy rating of 11.8/8.9L/100km (city/hwy). And after 600 or so kilometres, my real world results averaged out at 11.5L/100km (comb).
There’s a lot more to learn about the E 400, better explored and experienced behind the wheel of this sleek and sexy coupe, a unique and luxurious sport offering for premium class car customers searching for something just a little out of the ordinary.
2018 Mercedes-Benz E 400 4Matic Coupe
BODY STYLE: Four-passenger, premium coupe.
DRIVE METHOD: Front-engine, all-wheel-drive.
ENGINE: 3.0-litre biturbo V6 (329 hp, 354 lb/ft) with 9G-TRONIC nine-speed automatic.
CARGO VOLUME: 425 litres.
FUEL ECONOMY: 11.8/8.9L/100km (city/hwy); As tested 11.5L/100km (comb)
PRICE: $72,700; As tested $87,200 incl Premium Pkg ($4,000), Intelligent Drive Pkg ($2,700), Sport Pkg ($2,700), Technology Pkg ($2,600), Diamond White Bright Metal ($1,600), Airmatic air suspension ($900)
WEB SITE: Mercedes-benz.ca
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