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2019 Mercedes-Benz E-Class: New Car Review

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ADDITIONAL MODEL INFORMATION

author photo by Autotrader February 2019

The 2019 Mercedes-Benz E-Class range of midsize sedans, coupes, convertibles and wagons is a mountain on the automotive landscape. The few rivals that can come close (like the Audi A6 and the BMW 5 Series) still don't offer this many body styles and they certainly don't have more prestige.

Nor can they provide safety features that are more ingenious and innovative. For example, if a collision is imminent, the E-Class will send a burst of high-frequency noise through the audio system, which has the effect of protecting the occupants' hearing when the inevitable loud bang happens.

The E-Class can be packed with much of the company's newest technology, including features like evasive steering assistance, intelligent cruise control, active lane-keeping assist and active blind spot monitoring. A virtual hand is kept on the controls. Even without such advanced equipment, every E-Class is still desirable and luxurious.

What's New for 2019?

The erstwhile E 400 cars receive more power to become E 450 models. Similarly, the previous AMG E 43 versions have new, more powerful drivetrains and are re-named E 53. A new 3-spoke steering wheel covered in Nappa leather is available with touch pads, so drivers can access various functions without having to take a hand off the wheel. There's also been a rearrangement of features among the options packages.

What We Like

Superb driving manners, quality and technology.

What We Don't

Options can be expensive.

How Much?

$54,495-$109,845

Fuel Economy

The E 300 is propelled by a turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine generating 241 horsepower and 273 lb-ft of torque. This goes through a 9-speed automatic transmission before driving the rear wheels as the default setup, or to the optional all-wheel drive system (known as 4Matic).

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates fuel consumption for the rear-wheel-drive version at 21 miles per gallon in the city, 30 mpg on the highway and 25 mpg in combined driving. With AWD, it returns 21 mpg city/29 mpg hwy/24 mpg combined.

The E 450 variants all use a twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 with 362 hp and 369 lb-ft of torque. This is also linked to a 9-speed automatic transmission. AWD is standard in the sedan and wagon, optional in the coupe and convertible. The EPA puts fuel use at 20 mpg city/28 mpg hwy/23 mpg combined (sedan) and 19 mpg city/26 mpg hwy/22 mpg combined (wagon).

The RWD E 450 coupe is rated at 20 mpg city/28 mpg hwy/23 mpg combined, while the 4Matic version achieves 19 mpg city/26 mpg hwy/22 mpg combined. The RWD E 450 Cabriolet returns 20 mpg city/27 mpg hwy/23 mpg combined, with AWD changing that to 19 mpg city/26 mpg hwy/22 mpg combined.

The new-for-2019 Mercedes-AMG E 53 sedan has a turbocharged 3.0-liter inline six that develops 429 hp and 384 lb-ft of torque. This is augmented by an electric motor and a lithium-ion battery that adds a temporary boost of 21 hp. It's also at the heart of a 48-volt system that powers things like water pumps (eliminating the need for belt drives), the engine stop/start feature and the adaptive suspension. A 9-speed automatic transmission and AWD is standard. Fuel consumption is 21 mpg city/28 mpg hwy/24 mpg combined. The coupe version runs to 21 mpg city/28 mpg hwy/23 mpg combined, and the cabriolet manages 20 mpg city/26 mpg hwy/23 mpg combined.

The AMG E63 S 4Matic sedan and wagon have a twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 making a considerable 603 hp and 627 lb-ft of torque. Once again, a 9-speed automatic transmission is deployed, sending drive to all four wheels (although a Drift Mode enables the E 63 S to be 100-percent RWD). The result is 15 mpg city/23 mpg hwy/18 mpg combined (sedan) or 16 mpg city/23 mpg hwy/19 mpg combined (wagon).

Standard Features & Options

The 2019 Mercedes-Benz E-Class range encompasses sedan, wagon, coupe and convertible (Cabriolet) body styles.

The E 300 sedan ($54,495), E 450 4Matic sedan ($60,945) and E 450 4Matic wagon ($65,195) share similar equipment levels.

Standard equipment includes 17-in alloy wheels, dual-zone automatic climate control, remote start, push-button start, a sunroof, an illuminated entry system, rain-sensing wipers, LED exterior lighting, power-folding/heated side mirrors, simulated leather upholstery, power-adjustable front seats with driver's-side memory settings, selectable driving modes, a rearview camera, ambient LED cabin lighting, a 12.3-in infotainment display, navigation, Bluetooth, two USB ports, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto smartphone integration, an 8-speaker audio system and HD radio. The E 450 4Matic wagon also has a powered tailgate and 18-in wheels.

The Premium package includes blind spot monitoring, keyless entry/ignition, hands-free/powered operation of the sedan's trunk lid, wireless charging, a Burmester surround-sound system, heated front seats and satellite radio.

A Parking Assistance package adds rear cross-traffic alert, a 360-degree camera system and a self-parking function.

A Driver Assistance package includes aids such as evasive action assistance, forward cross-traffic alert, rear/side impact preparation, adaptive cruise control with active steering, lane-keeping assist, active blind spot assistance and forward-collision warning.

Other options include an adaptive air suspension, 19-in and 20-in alloy wheels, ventilated front seats, leather upholstery, a panoramic sunroof, fragranced/ionized cabin air system, a head-up display, Wi-Fi, heating for the front armrests and steering wheel, plus a second 12.3-in screen as an instrument cluster.

The E 450 coupe ($60,795) and E 450 Cabriolet ($68,295) enjoy extras like leather upholstery and 18-in wheels. Naturally, the convertible versions have wind deflectors and offer neck-warming vents set into the front seats (Airscarf).

The 2019 Mercedes-AMG E 53 sedan ($73,545) comes with its own drivetrain, AWD, air suspension and braking setup appropriate for a more powerful machine. It has various AMG cosmetic additions as well, plus 19-in alloy wheels. There are also the E 53 coupe ($74,695) and the E 53 Cabriolet ($81,345) versions.

The E 63 S sedan ($107,345) and the E63 S wagon ($109,845) have most of the equipment found in the E 53 and E 450, along with limited-slip rear differentials, special suspensions, strengthened driveline components and high-performance tires. Carbon-ceramic brake discs are an option.

Safety

The E-Class comes standard with 4-wheel anti-lock disc brakes, stability control, driver drowsiness alert and a considerable array of airbags. Rear side airbags, though, are available separately, along with small airbags in the rear seat belts. Optional side impact protection automatically inflates the relevant seat bolster to move a person away from the point of collision.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) gave the E-Class sedan and wagon its top rating of five stars overall, with five stars apiece for front and side impact protection.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) makes the 2019 E-Class a Top Safety Pick Plus, its highest accolade.

Behind the Wheel

The E 53 is just one star in this particular show. It has an authoritative power that sits well in a luxury/sport car and feels unshakably stable, virtually regardless of conditions. Yet its air suspension means it can be just as comfortable as it can be sporty.

E 300 and E 450 cars aren't quite as thrilling, but still have the smooth ride that's a Mercedes-Benz strength. The E63 S versions, on the other hand, are super quick.

Every E-Class also enjoys plenty of Mercedes-Benz specialties, such as exemplary fit and finish, along with superb cabin materials. The coupe and convertible models are 4-seaters.

The sedan's trunk space measures 13.1 cu ft., about enough for three sets of golf clubs, but is eclipsed by the BMW 5 Series' 18.7 cu ft. The wagons are far more commodious, with 35 cu ft. behind the second seating row, and around 64 cu ft. when the second and third rows are folded. The E 450 wagon can also accommodate up to seven with a pair of rear-facing seats that fold flat into the loadspace floor.

Other Cars to Consider

2019 Audi A6 -- Sleek exterior, refined cabin and athletic driving character. All-new for 2019.

2019 BMW 5 Series -- Comes with its own impressive tech features. No slouch to drive either.

2019 Cadillac CTS -- Good enough to be a major consideration.

2019 Jaguar XF -- Supple, smooth and supercharged.

2019 Lexus GS -- Makes a compelling case against German dominance by providing a surprisingly rewarding drive while maintaining that hallmark Lexus-smooth ride.

Used Porsche Panamera -- Luxurious and spacious. And who needs self-driving features when it can drive like a Porsche? Look for a certified pre-owned (CPO) model and rest easy with the extensive warranty.

Autotrader's Advice

Any E-Class is a great choice. The main thing is to choose the options carefully, as it's easy to get carried away.

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This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
2019 Mercedes-Benz E-Class: New Car Review - Autotrader