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2012 Mercedes-Benz E-Class

Overview
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2012 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 7.7

The 2012 Mercedes-Benz E-Class continues its reputation as the "everything to everybody" mid-size luxury vehicle. With the recent addition of the 2-door E-Class Coupe, the E-Class Wagon and the 2-door E-Class Cabriolet convertible, it's possible for the consumer to get a Mercedes-Benz E-Class in a surprisingly large number of flavors. No matter which 2012 E-Class variant is chosen, drivers can expect nothing less than the definitive Mercedes-Benz experience, with ride quality, luxury and comfort standing out in a segment that is among the most competitive in the auto industry today.

You'll Like This Car If...

The 2012 Mercedes-Benz E-Class is like a well-tailored suit; it will always look good, feel right and be in style. The wealth of standard features plus the sheer number of base-model options means there's something for everyone in the E-Class lineup.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If the prestige value of owning a Mercedes-Benz is of no importance to you, you may find competitors such as Cadillac, Infiniti and Lexus offer lower-priced vehicles that fully suit your needs.

What's New for 2012

The 2012 E-Class now boasts an E63 AMG Wagon, while the rest of the line features a set of new engines with substantial improvements in both power and fuel economy. The BlueTEC diesel engine is the only carryover from 2011. Along with some option and package changes, the 2012 E-Class brings a revised 7-speed transmission and minor design tweaks.

Driving the E-Class

Driving Impressions Despite vastly improved power for 2012, there will always be faster cars on the road than those in the Mercedes-Benz E-Class line. However, few can boast the same blend of...

comfort, luxury and performance. With individual shocks constantly adjusting to road surface changes and driver demands, the car is both firm and responsive through tight bends and smooth on the highway. Its suspension inspires confidence and the steering is reasonably informative. All this helps make the E-Class a remarkably enjoyable and comfortable vehicle to drive. If you'd like to step out closer to the edge, the E63 AMG brings an upgraded engine, suspension and transmission to bear with giggle-inducing speed and precision. The 2012 E63 AMG is available as either a Sedan or Wagon.

Distronic Plus Safety Package
It's tough to get excited about safety features, but the Distronic Plus Safety Package's features are truly special. The Pre-Safe Brake system uses radar to warn the driver of imminent collision and even applies the brakes to minimize impact.

Sport Package
Ok, so the Sport Package only shows outwardly with bigger wheels and comes with a swanky contrasting interior. You should buy it for the stiffened (and lowered) suspension, which properly livens up the car's handling.

2012 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Details
Interior

Every 2012 Mercedes-Benz E-Class comes rich with standard equipment, providing comfort and convenience expected from the marque. From burled walnut interior trim accents to 14-way power seats with memory settings to the premium audio system and "mbrace" navigation system, the E-Class doesn't leave much room for options (though there are some). New available assistance systems, such as the Lane Keeping Assist (in both passive and active forms) and Blind Spot Assist, take a bow for 2012. Also new in the 2012 E-Class cabin are the steering wheel and instrument cluster display. Front head and legroom is very good on all models. The rear seats, however, can be a bit cramped in the Coupe and Cabriolet but are very nice in the Sedan and Wagon. Luggage space is impressive across the line, even in the Cabriolet, which has ample usable trunk space.

Exterior

Visually, the 2010 revamp of the Mercedes-Benz E-Class was a "love it or hate it" affair, sparking strong argument from both sides. Combining elements of 1950s sedans and coupes with muscular rear fenders, not to mention its now-signature front-end design, the latest generation of the Mercedes-Benz E-Class is both distinctive and recognizably Mercedes. The two-door Coupe's lack of a B-pillar gives it a smooth aesthetic and an air of class. The Cabriolet convertible shares the Coupe's modified grille and boasts an elegant soft top that blends nicely into its sharp bodylines. The soft-top look is classic and weighs a lot less than a hardtop. The Wagon is an unsung hero. From some vantage points, its roofline appears to carry a descending angle from front to back, while from locations it seems a straight line to an expansive rear cargo area. New for 2012 are standard LED daytime running lights, a design touch pioneered by Audi and now practically mandatory market-wide.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

All 2012 E-Class models come with an impressive list of standard features. Electronic Brake Assist is standard across the line, as is the 7-speed transmission with paddle shifters fitted to the new multifunction steering wheel. Other standards include the 8-speaker, 6-disc CD/DVD system, a 7-inch LCD display and a plethora of comfort and convenience features. Safety features include a litany of airbags plus the LATCH (lower anchors and tethers for children) system. Electronic stability control, long a standard on most Mercedes-Benz, is now required by the government to be fitted on all 2012 cars.

Optional Equipment

Options of note on the 2012 Mercedes-Benz E-Class models include both Sport and Luxury Design Packages, the Distronic Plus Package with Pre-Safe Braking and Parktronic parking assist and Premium Packages offering Bluetooth connectivity, iPod/MP3 capability, HD radio and more. For the sedan and wagon, leather upholstery is optional and across the line seating is available with heating, ventilation and even massage functionality for the driver.

Under the Hood

The Mercedes-Benz E-Class line continues to feature four engines, three of which are new for 2012: The 210-horsepower, turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 BlueTEC diesel; a 302-horsepower, 3.5-liter V6 in E350 variants; a 402-horsepower, 4.6-liter V8 for the E550 cars and the monster 518-horsepower, 5.5-liter V8 in the E63 AMG sedan and wagon. All E-Class engines run through a freshly revised 7-speed automatic transmission with optional manual paddle shifting. The 4MATIC all-wheel-drive (AWD) system can be mated to either the 3.5-liter V6 or the 4.6-liter V8. The E63 AMG cars are equipped with the tuner's Speedshift transmission with Race Start and rev matching.

3.0-liter V6 Turbodiesel
210 horsepower @ 3,400 rpm
400 lb-ft of torque @ 1,600-2,400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 21/32

3.5-liter V6
302 horsepower @ 6,500 rpm
273 lb-ft of torque @ 3,500-5,250 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/30 (Sedan), 19/28 (Coupe), 18/28 (Cabriolet), 19/27 (AWD Wagon)

4.6-liter V8 Twin-Turbo
402 horsepower @ 5,000-5,750 rpm
443 lb-ft of torque @ 1,600-4,750 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/26 (AWD Sedan), 17/27 (Coupe), 16/25 (Cabriolet)

5.5-liter V8
518 horsepower @ 5,250-5,750 rpm (550 horsepower optional)
516 lb-ft of torque @ 1,700-5,000 rpm (590 lb-ft of torque optional)
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/24 (Sedan), 15/23 (Wagon)

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2012 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
9.1
Out of 10

Based on 120 Ratings for the 2010 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.9/10
    Quality
    9.3/10
  • Reliability
    9.3/10
    Performance
    9.2/10
  • Comfort
    9.3/10
    Styling
    9.5/10

Limo that drives like a sports car

By on Friday, December 12, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 27,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Extreme power, great handling, smooth ride"

Cons: "None"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Purchased a 2010 Mercedes E63 as a CPO vehicle after reading reviews and having owned several other models and am love driving this car daily! It is like riding in a limo but has the power to blow sports cars away which makes it the perfect combination of luxury and power in a vehicle. The car came fully loaded but one of my favorite features include the dynamic driver's seat which hugs you as yo take corners and massages you while having to sit in traffic. The bi-Xenon headlights with adaptive highbeams also great for night driving. The ride is smooth, but press the pedal to the floor and passengers experience G-force that makes the heart race because this car can go from calm cruising to flying into a rage without hesitation. Definitely one of the best models that Mercedes and AMG has ever made and glad that I was able to find one to enjoy."

5 people out of 7 found this review helpful

4th Benz, 2nd wagon, Best Yet

By on Thursday, September 25, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 3,600

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Safety, performance, COMAND system, versatile"

Cons: "All that glass needs tinting / time to cool inside"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Ordered this special and it took 6 mos. to get. It was worth the wait. Cannot believe the handling considering the size of this car. I'm a DIY guy, and the trips to Home Depot are easy when the entire rear area (incl. back seats) are folded flat. MB made the task of expanding the immense cargo area even easier than before. The looks of this car are elegant yet understated - as a friend of mine said, "E-Class Wagon - that's a statement car!" It means you can afford a lot of other cars and toys out there, but you're smart enough to get luxury, utility and performance in one package. And the kids love the rear-facing jump-seat. They beg to sit back there. I have yet to find a flaw. Single complaint is I would love the hatch to close via the key button that opens it, like it does on the ML."

7 people out of 13 found this review helpful

Sleek looking hard to find MB station wagon.

By on Monday, September 08, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 18,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Safe, responsible, and stylish station wagon."

Cons: "None"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Black like-new low mileage station wagon with optional equipment package. Extended warranty. Versatile. Great for families and for carrying bikes and kayaks. Very comfortable on the open road or city driving."

20 people out of 39 found this review helpful

Tremendous power

By on Wednesday, September 03, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 29,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
6/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Power and handling"

Cons: "Rough ride"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"My 2nd AMG. This one has so much power it will not hook up the tires till 60 mph. Rougher ride then my 2004 E55 but handles and preforms much better. A little loud at the mufflers. Fuel economy is great at 24 average. Not holding its value like I expected."

2 people out of 5 found this review helpful

Ouystanding value by Mercedes Benz

By on Wednesday, August 27, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 40,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Great price great value and fun to drive."

Cons: "MB service pricing for maintenance."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This is a pleasure to drive. Extremely smooth acceleration and you feel very safe in vehicle. Technology is easy to use and provides plenty of information. Design is bold and edgy and finish is impeccable. Was able to buy a 2 year old model @ 50% off list. Makes this to me an outstanding value."

16 people out of 23 found this review helpful

Very safe 5500 Lb car gets 42-43mpg at 70-75 mph

By on Sunday, August 24, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 31,400

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
9/10

Cons: "Steering wheel blocks turn signal indicators"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"Turbo diesel Bluetec has great pickup, quiet, no diesel smell or fumes/soot of old ones, great mileage, large 20 gal fuel tank that will outlast my bladder going ~800 miles on a single tank...! Prefer the 2006-2009 euro style with bug eye oval headlites vs the "slant-eyed" looking headlites, more like the asian vehicles ( toyota, nissan, lexus, infiniti, etc...), than this taller, bigger bulkier current version. Probably so more overweight Americans can get into them... Backup camera fantastic...accurate to park within ~2 inches. Need one for the front that turns on under 5mph...instead of the yellow/red proximity LEDs. Get rid of steering wheel shift paddles or make console shifter an option."

4 people out of 7 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?