Mercedes-Benz has updated the two-door versions of its main mid-size model, adding more tech and mild hybrid systems.
What is good for four, is good for two. Mercedes updated the sedan and wagon versions of its stalwart E-Class back in March. Now, with the weather warming up, it’s turned its attention to the more stylish two-door versions. Say hello to the updated 2021 Mercedes E-Class coupe and cabriolet.
In typical Merc fashion, the visual differences are slight. The all-LED headlights are smaller and flatter, giving the E more of a squint. The German automaker has essentially flipped the grille around too: it’s now wider at the bottom instead of the top, underscoring the E’s width. A set of new taillights, also LED, round out the changes outside. Four new paint options—two silvers, a grey, and a red—join the colour palette as well. Like we said, modest stuff.
The E Class adopts Mercedes’ latest MBUX infotainment system, which debuted in the latest A-Class (a car we thoroughly enjoyed earlier this year). A set of 12.3-inch screens handle all the display duties, including the gauges. Merc has also fitted a new “smart” steering wheel. It uses capacitive touch sensors in the rim to ensure the driver is holding the wheel. Previously, the system required steering movement. With the new system, if the driver doesn’t have their hands on the wheel after a certain time, the car will set off a warning. Still nothing? It will automatically brake itself.
SEE ALSO: 2019 Mercedes-Benz A-Class Sedan Review
For the cabrio in particular, Merc is offering two very welcome features: Aircap and Airscarf. The former is a wind deflector, while the latter uses vents in the seats to pipe warm air directly over occupants necks. Toasty.
Arguably the biggest news is under the hood, where the whole two-door range is going (mild) hybrid. The E 450 uses a turbocharged inline-six engine bolstered by a 48-volt electric system. The EQ Boost feature can add up to 21 hp and 184 lb-ft for short bursts, for a combined system output of 362 hp and 369 lb-ft. Power runs through Mercedes’ nine-speed automatic transmission, either to the rear wheels or all four via 4MATIC.
The AMG E53 coupe and cabriolet use a pumped up version of the same engine. With the added power from an electrically-driven supercharger, the Affalterbach-fettled two-doors produce a headier 429 hp and 384 lb-ft of torque. 4MATIC is standard on these two, as are 19-inch, five-twin-spoke wheels. AMG models get a unique grille with vertical slats, AMG brakes, a flat-bottom steering wheel, and the choice of two new exterior shades.
E 450 and E 53 models will arrive in dealerships late 2020. Expect pricing and other figures closer to that time.