The vehicle driven is the Mercedes-Benz E200 Elegance
BlueEfficiency finished in Palladium silver with black ARTICO trim.
The Mercedes-Benz E class is now in its ninth
generation, known as the W212, with the traditions of the E class dating
back to the 136 series in 1947. The 136 series was the first passenger car
built by Mercedes-Benz post war. The W212 is now the fourth generation
bearing the E class name.
The W212 arrived on Australian shores in
mid-2009, with the E200 joining the range in 2012.
Variants & Prices
The E class sedan is available in 8 variants
with 3 diesel engines and 5 petrol engines.
The E200 is the entry
level variant for the Mercedes-Benz E Class and is priced from $79,900*. The
test car is painted Palladium Silver which costs $2,100*, bringing the cost
before on road costs to $82,000*.
At the top end of the range is the
high performance E63 AMG priced from $240,985*.
Driving the E200
The E200 is surprising competent, accelerating at a decent pace from
start and when overtaking. The noise levels are suitably low, particularly
when cruising and at idle. Over approximately 750 kms I drove at an easy
relaxed pace hoping to maximise economy with most driving being completed
around city streets.
Mercedes-Benz claim the E200 will accelerate
from 0-100 km/h in 7.9 seconds Ė a very reasonable time considering the
vehicle & engine sizes. The electronically limited top speed of 210 km/h
will never be relevant to Australian E200 buyers.
Gear changes from
the 7 speed automatic transmission are smooth and noise levels in the cabin
are reasonably low ensuring a refined and peaceful experience.
Mercedes-Benz like to place the gear shift on the steering column which
takes a little time adjusting to but I find it more convenient than a
typical centrally mounted gear stick thanks to its proximity to the steering
wheel. Although it seems like a step back in time, it is very simple with
only three options, drive, reverse and park and is on the right side of the
steering column. The E200 also gets paddle shifters behind the steering
wheel if you want to select gears yourself.
Still on the steering
column, it is very busy with levers covering (generally) indicators, cruise
control, gear shifters and wipers but is easy to become familiar with all
The park brake system is a little odd as its foot operated
to turn on and hand operated via a different lever to release. It works fine
but just doesnít seem right in a car at this price. The lever is located to
the right of the steering wheel below the ignition key slot. The placement
of the ignition key, the gear lever and park brake release in such close
proximity is so simple but it is amazing that more manufacturers donít do
The ride in the E200 is smooth and it corners wilfully. Steering
is aided by variable electronically controlled power steering which is
precise when cornering and comfortable when parking.
Living with the
On the outside, the W212 E200 sedan appears largely conservative
but is given a welcome boost by LED daytime running lights. The twin spoke
alloys are 17 inch.
The E200 interior is finished to a high standard
with conservative, functional styling. The seats are trimmed with man-made
leather upholstery called Artico. Artico feels firmer than real leather but
it is comfortable and looks the part. The dash and console are finished with
a combination of wood trim and plastics. The steering wheel is leather
wrapped. Fronts seats are electrically adjustable.
The dash and
console layout is well organised and dominated by the COMAND multimedia
system which includes satellite navigation, Bluetooth telephone controls and
music controls. The system is controlled by the dial on the centre console
and features a 17.8cm colour screen. COMAND is programmed logically and is
simple to use. That said, a little guidance from an experienced user will
help. Music options are very good with Bluetooth playback of MP3ís simple
and there is a 10GB hard drive to save music directly to the car. The
Bluetooth telephone connection and user interface is simple and effective.
The E class will accommodate five adults although itís better suited
to four adults for maximum comfort. Most E class models can be built as four
seaters by specifying the Rear Comfort Package option however that option is
not available on the E200.
Boot space is very good at 540 litres,
easily accommodating the golf clubs and a push buggy with room enough for
another golf bag. The rear seats also fold to expand the cargo area further.
Parking the E200 is assisted by the Parktronic systems comprising front
and rear sensors. The system gives audible warnings as well as displaying
lights. If anything, the sensors were a little too enthusiastic at times.
The E200 is powered by a 1.8 litre, direct
injection, turbocharged 4 cylinder petrol engine which produces 135kW of
power at 5,250 rpm and peak torque of 270Nm between 1,800 rpm and 4,600 rpm.
All E class sedans sold in Australia are rear wheel drive and fitted
with 7 speed automatic transmissions.
built a reputation for innovation in vehicle safety and, unsurprisingly, the
E class scores a 5 star ANCAP safety rating, the maximum available for
vehicles sold in Australia. The test was conducted by Euro NCAP.
With eleven airbags, there is protection almost everywhere. The airbags
included are front airbags, pelvis bags and window bags for the driver and
front passenger, side airbags both front and rear, plus a kneebag for the
The front seats are fitted with electric pre tensioners
which I eventually turned off as they were quite unnerving to a pregnant
passenger and understandably so. The system retracts the front belts on
start up to a point where sufficient tension is detected.
safety systems incorporated include anti lock braking, brake assist and
adaptive braking. Electronic stability program (ESP) ensures traction.
Front passengers are further protected by crash-responsive head
restraints and the driver is protected by a collapsible steering column and
crash optimised pedals.
Fuel and emissions
The E200 is the
equal most economical of the petrol engine E class variants Ė the slightly
faster and substantially more expensive E250 sedan will consume the same
amount of fuel.
Mercedes-Benz claim the E200 will use 6.6 litres of
unleaded per 100 kilometres driven on a combined cycle. We didnít get close,
but over our last 400 kilometres we achieved a reasonable 8.1 litres per 100
kilometres on a mix of city and highway driving.
The E200 is fitted
with stop/start technology to minimise fuel consumption and emissions when
the vehicle is stationary. Itís a good concept and the E200 starts up
promptly when you release the brake pedal. The only complaint is that the
start a bit rough when the ďECOĒ stop/start function kicks in and isnít in
keeping with the overall high levels of refinement in the E class. The ďECOĒ
stop/start function can be switched off easily if you wish however my
preference was to leave it on despite the rough starts.
A fuel tank
of 80 litres ensures a reasonable trip distance however you need to budget
for premium unleaded. As with many European cars, the E200 requires fuel
with minimum of 95 RON.
Combined CO2 emissions are 154g per km.
Width: 2,071 mm (including side mirrors)
Height: 1,471 mm
Weight: 1,615 kg
Boot capacity: 540 litres
The standard Mercedes-Benz passenger vehicle
warranty applies to the E class and is valid, with conditions, for three
years from delivery date or date of first registration if registered for
Mercedes-Benz does not impose a limit on
kilometres travelled during the warranty period. Roadside assistance is
provided for the full warranty period at no additional cost.
intervals are 25,000 km or 1 year.
The main competitors for this car are the
BMW 5 series, Audi A6, Lexus GS and Jaguar XF. Infiniti have also just
launched in Australia with its M sedan which may take some market share away
from Lexus and the established Europeans.
Despite being the
entry level variant, the E200 Elegance is a very credible model in the E
Class range and is well suited to drivers not
seeking a thrill from speed or exhaust noise. Its price (compared to other E
Class variants) could be its most compelling feature as people look to
replace older models and reduce the changeover cost. The price also keeps
Mercedes-Benz on pace with the rivals in this segment.
More Mercedes-Benz News .....
NOTE: * Manufacturer's
List Price (MLP) excludes dealer delivery fees and the numerous statutory
charges (commonly known as on-road costs). Additionally, please note that
all prices, fees and charges are subject to change without notice, as are
the specifications. Luxury Car Tax (LCT) is effected when options are added
to the car. E&OE.
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