By KBB.com Editors - Updated Date: 10/1/2012
In the 2013 E-Class, Mercedes-Benz has created a vehicle that is many things to many people. In Sedan form, it's an elegant coach for the business elite, a car that says, "I've arrived, and I have room for three of my friends." In Coupe form, the E-Class makes for a stunning and sporty variant of the Sedan, equally expressive but singing a slightly different tune that says, "I've arrived, and it's just me." The Cabriolet is like the Coupe, only a bit more carefree, while the Wagon conforms to the Sedan's logic but with additional room for the family dog. Be it the hybrid or the diesel or the high-performance AMG, you won't find a more complete luxury car model line than is provided by the 2013 E-Class.
The 2013 E-Class may be the most diverse mid-size luxury car line on the planet. Standard and available features allow custom tailoring to suit each owner's needs, while the E-Class' numerous engine and body style choices have no rival.
You can certainly find many of the E-Class' features in less-expensive sedans from Cadillac, Infiniti and Lexus. Hard-core driving enthusiasts will probably find the BMW 5 Series delivers a more spirited ride than the E-Class.
The 2013 E-Class Coupe and Cabriolet gain mbrace2 telematics, electromechanical steering and heated front seats. The E400 Hybrid Sport Sedan debuts with a 305-horsepower V6 engine mated to a 27-horsepower electric motor.
Despite the vast array of engines offered in the 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class, there will always be faster cars on the road - perhaps some of them not a lot faster. However, few can boast the same blend of comfort, luxury and performance. With individual shock absorbers 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. Those seeking ultimate fuel economy can choose between a clean diesel and hybrid powertrain option. 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 2013 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.
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.
Every 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class comes loaded with standard equipment, providing comfort and convenience that's fully expected from the brand. From burled walnut interior trim accents to 14-way power seats with memory settings to the premium audio system and "mbrace2" navigation system, the E-Class doesn't leave much room for options (though there are some). 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
Combining elements of 1950s sedans and coupes with muscular rear fenders and its signature front-end design, the 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class is both distinctive and recognizably Mercedes. The Coupe's lack of a B-pillar gives it a smooth look and an air of class. The Cabriolet shares the Coupe's modified grille and boasts an elegant soft top that blends nicely into its sharp bodylines with a classic look. The Wagon is an unsung hero. From some vantage points, its roofline appears to carry a descending curve from front to back, while from other spots it almost seems to be a straight line to an expansive rear cargo area.Notable Standard Equipment
All 2013 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 standard equipment includes mbrace2 telematics, an 8-speaker 6-disc CD/DVD system, a 7-inch LCD display and a plethora of comfort and convenience features. Safety features include a full array of airbags plus the LATCH (lower anchors and tethers for children) system. Electronic stability control, long a standard on most Mercedes-Benz cars, is now required by the government to be fitted on all 2013 models.Notable Optional Equipment
Options of note on the 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class models include 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, on all models, the seating is available with heating, ventilation and even massage functions for the driver. Available assistance systems include the Lane Keeping Assist (in both passive and active forms) and Blind Spot Assist.Under the Hood
For 2013, the Mercedes-Benz E-Class has four engine choices and one hybrid gasoline/electric unit. Gasoline engines include 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 7-speed automatic transmission with optional manual paddle shifting. The 4Matic all-wheel-drive system is available with 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 turbodiesel V6 (BlueTEC)
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 (E350)
302 horsepower @ 6,500 rpm
273 lb-ft of torque @ 3,500-5,250 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/30 mpg (Sedan), 19/29 mpg (4Matic), 20/28 mpg (Coupe), 19/28 mpg (Cabriolet), 19/27 mpg (AWD Wagon)
3.5-liter V6/electric motor (Hybrid)
302 horsepower (gasoline engine), 27 hp (electric)
273 lb-ft of torque (gasoline engine), 207 lb-ft of torque (electric)
EPA city/highway fuel economy: NA
4.6-liter twin-turbo V8 (E550)
402 horsepower @ 5,000-5,750 rpm
443 lb-ft of torque @ 1,600-4,750 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/26 mpg (AWD Sedan), 17/27 mpg (Coupe), 16/25 mpg (Cabriolet)
5.5-liter V8 (E63 AMG)
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 mpg (Sedan), 15/23 mpg (Wagon)
The 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class models start with a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of right around $52,000 for the two-door E350 Coupe. The V8-equipped E550 Coupe is near $59,000. The Mercedes-Benz E350 Sedan begins at about $52,000, with 4Matic all-wheel drive adding $2,500 to that. The 2013 E350 BlueTEC diesel starts at around $53,500. The E550 Sedan starts just over $61,000, and is standard with all-wheel drive. The 2013 Mercedes-Benz E350 4Matic Wagon begins at near $59,000. The power-hungry will find the E63 AMG-tuned four-door Sedan at over $90,000. Options and packages can add tens of thousands to the price of any 2012 E-Class. Resale values should be equal to or better than some competitors, such as Audi's A6 and the Cadillac STS, but may fall behind the BMW 5 Series or Infiniti M. As always, be sure to check out the Kelley Blue Book Fair Purchase Price to see what others in your area paying for the 2013 E-Class models.