Mercedes-Benz is going to launch the extended wheelbase version of the fifth-generation E-Class in the Indian market on 28 February, 2017. While the standard fifth-gen E-Class was first showcased at the 2016 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in January, the long wheelbase version was unveiled at 2016 Auto China in April. The E-Class is one of the highest selling cars in its segment. Here are a few things you should know about the upcoming luxury saloon.
1) India is the first market to get right-hand drive long wheelbase E-Class
Uptil now, the extended wheelbase E-Class was only being sold in the left-hand-drive Chinese market. However, when designing the new generation of the long-wheelbase E-Class, Mercedes also developed a right-hand-drive version specifically for India. This makes India the second country to get the E-Class LWB and the first and only country where the long wheelbase E-Class is being offered in right-hand drive (RHD) configuration.
The prices of the outgoing E-Class start at around the Rs 50 lakh mark while the current S-Class has a price tag of around Rs 1 crore. The new E-Class is expected to be a bit more expensive than the outgoing car, while offering an experience that is closer to the S-Class. Also, the extra wheelbase will help the E-Class steal a march over its rivals like the handsome, feature-packed and competitively priced Volvo S90. Most of the customers in this segment are chauffeur-driven and will certainly appreciate the extra rear space.
2) No standard wheelbase E-Class for now
Mercedes-Benz is only introducing the long wheelbase version of the fifth-gen E-Class (V213), for now. No information regarding the launch of the standard fifth-gen E-Class (W213) is out yet.
3) New E-Class’ wheelbase is longer than the standard S-Class
The upcoming E-Class LWB has a wheelbase of 3,079mm - this is 44mm longer compared to the 3,035mm wheelbase of the standard S-Class. However, Indian S-Class customers need not worry as the S-Class sold in India is the long-wheelbase version which has another 86mm between the wheels!
4) High localisation
Instead of directly importing the complete car as CBU unit, Mercedes-Benz is trying to keep the E-Class competitive with high levels of localisation. Higher the localisation, lesser the price tag. While the chassis is being imported from China, the doors are brought in from Germany. However, the engine and gearbox are completely assembled in India. Other parts like tyres and wiring harness are being sourced from India.
5) Unique Features
The E-Class LWB offers a list of features not seen before in this segment. It has the same 12.3-inch TFT screen from the S-Class, 64-colour ambient lighting, touch-sensitive controls on the steering wheel, a 13-speaker surround sound system by Burmester, as in the S-Class.
6) It offers adaptable air suspension
When it comes to comfort, air suspension is the best suspension you can bet your money on. Apart from the best in segment comfort, the E-Class LWB's air suspension also features a lift mode, which allows you to raise the ground clearance by 15mm. This will certainly come handy to tackle the rough roads in the country.
7) It will go from 0-100kmph in 6.6s
The E-Class LWB is being offered with two engine options, a 3.0-litre diesel and a 2.0-litre petrol. While the petrol mill produces 183PS of power and 300Nm of torque, the 3.0-litre V6 diesel engine offers more power and torque putting out 258PS/ 620Nm. This diesel version of the E-Class is claimed to do 0-100kmph in 6.6s and with a top speed of 250kmph. The petrol can do the 0-100kmph sprint in 8.5 seconds and has a top speed of 240kmph.
8) Seven-speed automatic transmission replaced by 9-speed automatic
While the engines are being carried forward from the outgoing E-Class, the gearbox is completely new. The outgoing, fourth-gen E-Class had a seven-speed automatic transmission. However, both the diesel and petrol version of the E-Class LWB feature a new 9-speed automatic transmission. This makes the car quick to respond to driver inputs and improves mileage as well.