It’s robust to face out on the more and more crowded forecourt of a Mercedes-Benz dealership, however by some means the 2018 E400 Coupe manages it. Perhaps it’s not probably the most aggressive of the German automaker’s vehicles, or probably the most highly effective, and even the most costly. But it’s a coupe that pulls a direct line again, all the best way to 1968, by means of a wealthy seam of Mercedes heritage. Go determine, then, that when the corporate invited me out to British Columbia to strive it for myself, this grand tourer turned out to completely encapsulate the completely trendy Mercedes.

Paradoxically, for all Mercedes’ niche-filling and segment-crossing – there are presently 83 particular person fashions within the automaker’s vary, with 5 new merchandise due in 2017 alone, together with 15 variants of current vehicles – the E400 Coupe finds itself with not a lot in the best way of direct competitors. The midsize luxurious coupe section is oddly empty nowadays, most automakers preferring to play in both the compact or full-size segments. Mercedes may, you may fear, have phoned issues in with the E400 Coupe because of this.

Don’t fret, German grand tourer-buyer, they didn’t. As an alternative, they utterly rebooted the brand new E400 Coupe, altering the pondering on platform, styling, and nearly the whole lot else. This can be the seventh technology of E-Class Coupe, nevertheless it’s eons away from the vehicles that got here earlier than it.

Greatest distinction is the underlying structure. The 2018 E400 Coupe is predicated on the identical E-Class platform because the sedan; beforehand, and regardless of what the badging may suggest, Mercedes had been utilizing the C-Class platform. Which means a big enhance in size, most of it within the wheelbase – Four.Four-inches of the general Four.Eight-inch enhance go into stretching the cabin – and that, together with a Three-inch enhance in width and roughly an inch higher in top, makes for way more shoulder and head area inside.

The result’s no mere 2+2, with rear seats for less than probably the most vestigial of passengers, however true area for 4. At 5’Eight I had no points within the again, and watched taller colleagues uncover the identical. These rear seats additionally fold with a 40/20/40 break up, opening up the extra capacious trunk whether or not or not it’s for bikes or out of doors gear.

It’s an imposing automotive, nevertheless it wears that progress effectively. “The time of the creases is over,” head designer Gorden Wagener says of Mercedes’ new “sensual purity” type language, getting rid of the generally awkward sharp traces of earlier fashions in favor of modern haunches and fluid power-domes on the hood. AMG-borrowed detailing provides it some sporting edge, whereas the entire thing is lowered, visually and actually, from the sedan by the horizontal traces spanning the diamond-studded grills and the deeper place of the license plate.

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Inside, the already spectacular E-Class cabin is elevated even additional. Every part tech-wise that’s supplied on the sedan can also be out there on the two-door, although the checklist of standard-fit gear is complete. A panoramic roof, leather-based trim, 12.Three-inch widescreen COMAND show, and each Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are current on each trim, as is 64 shade LED inside lighting and a 5 12 months subscription to Mercedes’ mbrace cloud-connected service with its distant unlock, begin, and find options.

It’s a completely comfy place to search out your self. Mercedes has fitted new, turbine-inspired vents to the dashboard to higher distinguish it from the sedan, however additional customization comes right down to the depths of your pockets. Nappa leather-based is a $1,370 choice, as is the automaker’s even finer Designo leather-based and wooden, $Four,200 and $1,300 respectively. Your E400 Coupe cabin could be delicate in open-pore wooden, yacht-tastic with a pinstriped gloss end, or spiral off in additional uncommon instructions with love-it-or-hate-it shade schemes like beige and blue.

Issues actually begin including up whenever you examine the tech bins. You possibly can have a second, enormous show on your instrument cluster, along with DISTRONIC semi-autonomous driving with adaptive cruise management, lane-keeping, and auto-lane-changing (a part of the $9k+ Package deal Three trim). Heated, cooled, and massaging seats are choices, as is a perfume dispenser with a fragrance bottle within the glove compartment. Twin contact pads on the steering wheel navigate independently by means of every dashboard show, although you can too attain down and scroll, swipe, and faucet the mixed wheel and trackpad within the middle console. Fortunately there are shortcut buttons for the widespread options, as a result of the E400 Coupe’s menus are legion.

Crucial management might be the bodily dial for Dynamic Choose, which switches you between Consolation, Eco, Sport, Sport+, and Particular person drive modes. Every has an impression on throttle, steering, transmission, and suspension damping, although the extent will depend on the way you ordered the automotive within the first place.

The $58,900 entry-level E400 Coupe has rear-wheel drive and metal suspension with selective damping (plus $995 vacation spot). The E400 Coupe 4MATIC, with all-wheel drive, begins at $61,400. Air Physique Management, with a trio of air-filled dampers on the rear and two on the entrance, is a $1,900 improve on both mannequin.

Regardless of which you go for, there’s a single engine alternative. That’s Mercedes’ Three.Zero-liter V6 biturbo, good for 329 horsepower and 354 lb-ft. of torque. It’s paired with a 9-speed automated transmission. Official figures are 5.5 seconds Zero-60 mph for the RWD automotive, and 5.2 seconds for the 4MATIC.

On the highway, the coupe feels sooner than what’s on paper. I attempted each the rear-wheel and all-wheel drive variations with air suspension, and it provides the E400 Coupe a poise that matches the close to torque-lag free powertrain completely. In Consolation mode, it wafts serenely, the epitome of a long-distance tourer. Swap as much as Sport mode, in the meantime, and the whole lot companies up, although nonetheless in a really usable, on a regular basis means. Most torque arrives at a mere 1,900 rpm, and mixed with the near-clandestine gear modifications there’s by no means that feeling that you simply’re missing in energy.

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Sport+ is, if something, arguably overkill for the automotive. True, it cranks up the aggression to the max, nevertheless it additionally underscores the lingering physique roll that betrays this as an enormous, luxurious beast. I think it’ll be the mode of alternative for when Mercedes gives an AMG E43 Coupe – they’re not confirming that but, nevertheless it hardly appears unlikely – however for this specific automotive I shortly turned again to Sport mode. Just some particularly tough mountain asphalt lured me into tweaking the Particular person configuration, combining the consolation damping with extra enthusiastic engine and transmission settings.

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Wrap-up

If the E-Class sedan is a technologically superior however buttoned-up instance of Mercedes’ cutting-edge, then the E400 Coupe redresses all of it in a Gucci tuxedo. At its core it’s nonetheless the consummate long-distance cruiser, blessed with ranges of know-how and gadgetry that at one level had us pulling the inch-thick handbook out of the glove compartment, however there’s a restrained playfulness that’s been added with the removing of two of the doorways. To my eyes, it’s the very best instance of Mercedes’ new design language to this point, too, although these for whom even the huge open roof and facet home windows aren’t sufficiently gaping may wish to anticipate the E400 Cabriolet due later within the 12 months.

Its flaws are the identical shared by the sedan, unsurprisingly, and middle on worth. Sure, the 2018 E400 Coupe might begin out at below $60okay, however say sure to the tech that Mercedes is so – rightly – happy with and it’s not exhausting to swell that to north of $90okay. By that time you’re in some very attention-grabbing automotive territory certainly.

Nonetheless, with what can generally look like a scattershot method to its vary, filling each hole regardless of how minuscule, it’s heartening to see that Mercedes nonetheless understands the core of its identification. The midsize luxurious coupe section could also be underpopulated proper now, however I’d warn any rival to convey their A-game in the event that they wish to compete in it. In each tech and refinement, the 2018 Mercedes-Benz E400 Coupe has set the brand new benchmark.

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