Mercedes E-Class Coupe review
The Mercedes E-Class Coupe is a more stylish two-door version of proven executive saloon
The Mercedes E-Class Coupe delivers all the class and luxury of the standard E-Class saloon in a more stylish coupe body. It’s a more expensive option than its Audi A5 and BMW 3 Series coupe rivals, and a more mainstream choice than the Infiniti G coupe, but it comes well equipped for the money. There’s a wide range of petrol and diesel engines, with the diesels promising to be cheap to run thanks to their impressive fuel economy and low emissions. And while the E-Class Coupe isn’t quite as sharp to drive as the 3 Series Coupe, most models score on comfort.
Our choice: E350 CDI AMG Sport
The Coupe is arguably the prettiest model in the Mercedes E-Class line-up, with its dramatic sweeping roofline and sharp edges. The rounded headlights and bold grille help the car stand out, while optional stylish LED daytime running lamps help create a real premium feel. There are only two trim levels, but even lower-spec SE versions get 17-inch alloy wheels, heated seats with electric adjustment and dual-zone climate control, while build quality inside is as solid as you would expect from Mercedes. Unlike other models in the Mercedes range, though, there are no performance flagship AMG versions of the E-Class Coupe.
Diesel versions of the E-Class Coupe offer a decent mix of performance and efficiency, with the E350 CDI Coupe delivering the best balance of the two. But drivers looking for the strongest performance should choose from the petrol range, with the top-spec E400 AMG Sport Plus featuring a 3.0-litre biturbo V6 engine and covering 0-62mph in 5.2 seconds. This engine replaces the old 4.7-litre V8-powered E500, and will be introduced in October 2013. Whichever engine you choose, handling is never thrilling because of the numb steering and soft suspension. Nevertheless, ride comfort and refinement are both excellent.
The Mercedes E-Class saloon has performed well in the Auto Express Driver Power satisfaction surveys over the years, and the E-Class Coupe carries over the four-door’s strong reputation for reliability and build quality. It also comes with a long list of safety equipment as standard. Attention Assist provides a warning if sensors detect that the driver might be falling asleep at the wheel, while all models feature an active bonnet, which pops up by 50mm to help protect pedestrians in the event of an accident. Stability control is included as standard, too, as is a tyre pressure monitoring system.
Buyers who choose the E-Class Coupe over the saloon obviously have to compromise on practicality in the pursuit of style – the two-door’s wheelbase is 116mm shorter than the four-door’s, so passengers in the rear don’t have as much room to stretch out in. But there’s still a decent amount of space, while a large glovebox and deep door pockets provide plentiful storage for odds and ends. The rather shallow boot has a capacity of 450 litres – on a par with coupe versions of the 3 Series and A5 – but a tray pulls out from the ceiling of the load area, and folds down to create a handy shopping container.
Although the E-Class Coupe looks expensive to buy when compared to rivals from BMW and Audi, you get plenty of equipment for your money. Plus, every model in the range gets Mercedes BlueEFFICIENCY technology, and as a result promises competitive economy and emissions figures for the class. Even the lower-powered petrol cars are reasonably eco-friendly, but the best choices for green-minded buyers are obviously the diesels: the E220 CDI model claims 60.1mpg economy and 126g/km emissions, while even the much faster E350 CDI returns 49.6mpg and puts out 150g/km of CO2. Servicing costs are higher than for rivals, though.