Here’s the latest car to slot into Mercedes’ ever-expanding line-up – the E-Class Coupe. Coming as a smaller version of the decadent S-Class Coupe but larger than the C-Class Coupe, it aims to give drivers all of the luxury associated with the German manufacturer’s highest-specification cars but with a sleek, raked-back design.
Inside, the E-Class Coupe uses the same infotainment system as the standard saloon but that’s no bad thing – we loved it in that car and it looks just as good here. However, there are some touches that aren’t included in the E-Class. The vents, for instance, are completely new in design and they help to give the interior a bespoke look.
The exterior is a real triumph. Pillar less and raked, it’s exactly what you want in a large, executive coupe.
Looks and image
As mentioned earlier, the exterior of the car is a thing of real beauty. There’s just one trim – AMG Line – but that does help to keep things simple. All cars come with large 19-inch alloy wheels plus LED headlights and taillights, which help give the E-Class a distinctive visual appeal.
However, the E-Class Coupe doesn’t just benefit from unique styling touches. It’s also 143mm longer than the car it replaces, as well as 74mm wider. What does that mean though? It helps the car to look hunkered-down and squat on the road, and certainly gives it a far sportier appearance than the previous-generation E-Class Coupe.
Space and practicality
As a coupe, you’d expect practicality in the E-Class to be pretty limited. However, those in the back get 74mm more legroom than those in the car it replaces, while headroom isn’t bad either – though very tall passengers may have a bit of trouble thanks to the car’s sloping roofline. The boot is a decent size too, and can be expanded thanks to folding rear seats.
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Up front, there’s a good amount of room. The entire cabin has a great sense of space about it, owing in part to large, pillarless windows and the sunroof. It’s a relaxing place to be, and one that certainly feels worthy of the Mercedes-Benz badge.
Behind the wheel
Large luxurious coupes such as the E-Class have a difficult job on their hands. They need to be cossetting and relaxing to drive, but involving and sporty when you want them to be. The E-Class Coupe actually does an admirable job of ticking the vast majority of those boxes. On standard springs, it rides very well. Yes, at slower speeds it can be a touch jostling, but when up and running it soaks up bumps in the road impressively.
The 2.0-litre diesel engine under the bonnet is a crucial part of the Mercedes-Benz range, and you can see why. It’s really very refined, and settles down nicely at cruising speeds. There are a few grumbles at lower speeds and around town, but that’s to be expected of a small-capacity diesel.
A wider rear track than its predecessor does help the E-Class Coupe corner nicely, though go into the bends too hard and it will be inclined to understeer. That’s understandable though – it makes no claim to be an out-and-out sports car.
Value for money
Prices for the E 220d Coupe start at £40,135. For that, you get parking sensors and a reversing camera, as well as an 8.4-inch infotainment screen with satellite navigation. Though it’s expensive, we’d be inclined to pay £1,495 to upgrade that system to Mercedes’ premium Comand infotainment, which replaces the standard screen with a large 12.3-inch unit. For an additional £495 on top of that, Mercedes will add a second 12.3-inch display, creating a truly widescreen viewing area. It’s an extra that completely transforms the inside of the car, and one we’d pick in a heartbeat.
You also get heated front seats and steering wheel-mounted touchpads included, adding to an already comprehensive equipment list.
Who would buy one?
The E-Class Coupe is ideal for those who want a luxurious, well-specified and premium way of getting around. With three engine choices – and two more on the way – there should be a powertrain for just about everyone, while high levels of standard equipment mean that there shouldn’t be too many boxes to tick when the options list comes out. It’s also a fine car to drive, a fine place to sit and – importantly in this class – a fine vehicle to look at.
FACTS AT A GLANCE
Model: Mercedes-Benz E-Class Coupe
Engine: 2.0-litre turbocharged diesel
Transmission: Nine-speed automatic
Performance: 0 – 60mph in 7.2 seconds, 149mph top speed
Economy: 61.4mpg (combined cycle)
Emissions: 119g/km CO2