There’s one thing splendidly calming about driving the 2021 Mercedes-Benz E 450 4Matic sedan. The world outdoors may be going to hell in a handbasket, however right here, within the cabin of the automobile that in some ways nonetheless defines the Mercedes-Benz model, is a continuity that soothes the soul. Certain, there’s far more visible bling than there was once—the engineers that created the Bauhausian W124 E-Class within the 1980s can be aghast on the glittery ornament adorning its 21st century successor, in and out. However they’d acknowledge the easy competence of its powertrain, the studied confidence of its chassis, and the quiet effectivity with which its know-how lends the driving force a serving to hand.
The E 450 4Matic is high canine in a four-model lineup of the face-lifted W213 E-Class Mercedes-Benz scheduled to reach in U.S. sellers later this yr. Aside from new inside trim, exterior paint, and wheel choices, the 2021 mannequin yr visible upgrades embody a brand new hood—with twin energy domes that recall iconic Mercedes sports activities automobiles of the ’50s—and a brand new entrance fascia with a extra aggressively formed grille. On the rear is a brand new trunklid with a vestigial lip spoiler, new taillights, and a brand new rear bumper with the now compulsory pretend exhaust retailers.
The redesigned panels have eradicated a number of the flaccid surfacing of the present E-Class and subtly modified its proportions. The revised hood and forward-leaning grille aperture, mixed with the brand new trunk that eliminates the awkward droopiness of the earlier automobile, give the redesigned E-Class a extra assured gesture that works higher with the lengthy dash-to-axle.
Inside is a brand new sprint with the MBUX instrument and infotainment shows on a pair of co-located 12.3-inch touchscreens, a brand new touchpad management on the middle console, and a brand new steering wheel, too, with touch-control buttons on the spokes. Commonplace tools contains Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration and heated entrance seats with reminiscence adjustment.
Accessible choices embody augmented video navigation, which overlays directions on a dwell video feed from the entrance of the automobile, and a driver help bundle that features a route-based velocity adaptation system that enables the adaptive cruise management to robotically modify the velocity of the automobile by referencing map information. Luxurious choices embody a panoramic roof, Burmester audio system, and massaging seats.
Whereas the entry-level 2021 E 350 and E 350 4Matic sedans are powered by the identical 255-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter I-Four engine because the outgoing fashions, the E 450 4Matic has the brand new mild-hybrid M256 3.0-liter turbocharged I-6 beneath its double-bubble hood. The identical powertrain used within the CLS 450, GLE 450 and GLS 450, in E-Class spec it delivers 362 hp from 5,500 rpm to six,100 rpm, and 369 lb-ft from 1,600 rpm to 4,000 rpm, the identical peak outputs because the outgoing twin-turbo 3.0-liter V-6.
Though Daimler has but to launch official numbers, count on the Zero to 60 mph acceleration time to be proper on the V-6-powered automobile’s 5.Zero seconds, and search for a noticeable enchancment in gas effectivity, particularly round city. The 48-volt system means the air-conditioning compressor is electrically pushed, so the cease/begin system can hold the engine off for longer durations.
The M256’s inline structure and the utmost of 21 hp and 184 lb-ft of e-motor help supplied by Daimler’s EQ Enhance system makes the redesigned E 450 a silkier automobile to drive than its V-6 predecessor. It begins from the second you press the beginning button: The 2021 E 450 wakes up slightly than fires up. Shift to drive, launch the brake, squeeze the gasoline pedal, and the Mercedes glides away, the inner combustion engine buzzing easily into life.
Whereas cruising, the EQ Enhance system permits the E 450 4Matic to coast while you carry off the gasoline. And while you wish to hustle, it helps sharpen the powertrain’s response to torque demand, bettering acceleration in gears and out of corners. Outdated-school German inline-sixes had been all about top-end chunk and wanted to be revved to really feel their finest. This one luxuriates in a heat ocean of midrange torque that stretches from 2,000 rpm to five,000 rpm. It nonetheless revs, although, fortunately kissing the 6,250 rpm redline, a stunning muted snarl audible from 4,000 rpm up.
Commonplace wheels are 18-inchers with run-flat all-season tires, which is why U.S.-spec E 450 4Matics are electronically restricted to 130 mph. Our German-registered tester was on 18-inch alloys shod with 245/45 Pirelli Cinturato P7 summer season tires, which, regardless of one of the best efforts of the elective air suspension, often thumped noticeably on the tough British again roads on our drive route. With their softer tread blocks, the all-seasons must be a bit of extra forgiving of imperfections on U.S. roads.
As with all trendy Benzes, the E 450 4Matic presents a menu of drive modes: Eco, Consolation, Sport, Sport+, and Particular person, which permits enthusiastic drivers to combine and match powertrain, transmission, and suspension settings the way in which they need. Consolation is the default mode, and in reality, it is the automobile’s completely satisfied place, particularly when it comes to all-around trip high quality. Sport mode is a pleasant all-around compromise for a heaving, winding again street; it simply takes the sting off the secondary physique motions and crisps up the powertrain’s responses. Sport+ makes the trip too lumpy.
In order for you a sportier E-Class, purchase the 2021 Mercedes-AMG E 53 with its 429-hp model of the M256 engine and AMG-massaged transmission, 4Matic all-wheel-drive system, and air suspension. However that does not imply the E 450 4Matic is boring to drive. Certainly, just like the previous W124, that is an E-Class that can reward an enthusiastic driver; the extra you ask of it, the extra it offers again, revealing ever extra layers of calm functionality. And for individuals who do not ask, it is completely satisfied to quietly and comfortably mooch alongside.
The Mercedes-Benz lineup may be awash with SUVs today, however the E-Class sedan stays on the coronary heart of the three-pointed star. Daimler has constructed sedans like this since 1946—greater than 14 million of them—and though fashions and applied sciences have advanced, the basics haven’t. The 2021 Mercedes-Benz E 450 4Matic is a snug and achieved four-door that feels constructed to final.
|SPECIFICATIONS||2020 Mercedes-Benz E 450 4Matic Sedan|
|BASE PRICE||$63,000 (MT est)|
|LAYOUT||Entrance-engine, AWD, 5-pass, 4-door sedan|
|ENGINE||3.0L/362-hp/369-lb-ft turbo DOHC 24-valve I-6, plus 21-hp/184-lb-ft electrical motor; 362 hp/369 lb-ft mixed|
|CURB WEIGHT||4,500 lb (MT est)|
|L x W x H||194.5 x 73.7 x 57.eight in|
|0-60 MPH||4.5 sec (MT est)|
|EPA FUEL ECON||21/28/24 mpg (MT est)|
|ENERGY CONSUMPTION, CITY/HWY||169/120 kW-hrs/100 miles|
|CO2 EMISSIONS, COMB||0.82 lb/mile|
|ON SALE||Late 2020|