After countless rounds across the rumor mill and spy shots captured in the wild, the introduction of the E Class executive midsize sedan is ever closer, with Mercedes-Benz deciding to split the news in episodes.
The first one covers the first official pictures with the interior of the 2016 E Class. The comprehensive gallery in high resolution reveals all there is to know about one of the most important parts of the car – and arguably the one the owner will get to see most of the time – the cabin. As far as the dashboard is concerned, we have a fresh take on the one found in the flagship S Class sedan – dual display layout with a fully digitized instrument cluster (both with a 31.2 cm (12.3-inch) screen diagonal and a resolution of 1920 x 720 pixels). We also see there will be detailed modifications with each trim level – a different choice of steering wheels, navigation system, materials, and other amenities.
“With the interior of the new E-Class, we are giving a new interpretation to the concept of contemporary luxury,” comments Hartmut Sinkwitz, the interior design chief. “We have designed a spacious and intelligent interior. True to Mercedes-Benz’s design philosophy of sensual purity, it employs technological innovation and high-grade equipment to create an exceptionally emotive experience for driver and front passenger. The E-Class thus not only sets a new standard in the business class. Alongside a workplace and private environment, it also becomes a “third place” – a living area in which passengers are able to enjoy contemporary luxury.”
The infotainment system gets a massive screen which we were hoping will be standard across all trim levels (it’s not, entry-level gets two tube-type round dials and a 17.8 cm color display cluster of 1000 x 600-pixel resolution with a central 21.3 cm screen with 960 x 540-pixel resolution) and just below sits a set of four elegant round air vents, with the center console housing the climate system controls a clock and that pretty ugly appendicle that is used to control touch inputs and functions of the entertainment system. There are actually two different center consoles – for the automatic and manual version. To the left we have more buttons that have to do with the variety of safety and assistance functions the E Class will be choke full off.
Traditional Mercedes style calls for the electric parking brake to sit on the left as well, while on the door panel we noticed the front seat controls and heating/cooling buttons, as well as speakers for the premium audio systems. We also noticed a more upscale appearance as Mercedes has worked on the material choices, with options ranging from open-pore woods to metal fabric. Energy-saving LEDs are taking care of ambient illumination – there’s a choice of 64 colors – and audio quality will be spectacular thanks to the optional second-generation Burmester high-end 3D surround sound system (first gen seen in the S Class) that even deploys four roof speakers.
The official introduction in front of the public has been scheduled during the 2016 NAIAS in Detroit in January, though Mercedes will probably grant us all a favor and reveal it online ahead of the event’s start.