Tony O'Kane | Jan 5, 2016

We've already had a good look at the 2016 Mercedes-Benz E-Class' courtesy of official teaser images released by the automaker last month, but thanks to German mag Auto-Press we can now gaze upon its S-Class-inspired exterior ahead of its official unveilling at the Detroit Auto Show next week.

Sitting on a brand-new platform, the 2016 W213 E-Class uses the same MRA architecture as the C-Class and S-Class, but scaled to fit its 4.9 metre long dimensions.

4.9 metres? That's right, at 4923mm from bumper to bumper, the new E-Class measures 44mm longer than the soon-to-be-superseded W212. Wheelbase also grows, this time by a substantial 65mm to liberate more passenger room.

Like its interior, the new E-Class' external sheetmetal apes the smooth, organic curves of the company's flagship, the S-Class. Viewed from afar, the differences are relatively subtle.

The most telltale difference is in the character line that runs from the headlamps to the rear of the car. On the S-Class it gradually dips below the door handles and aims for the top of the rear wheelarch. On the E it intersects the door handles and runs right through the tail lamps.

The E-Class' tail lamps are also shorter than those of the S-Class, and its rear number plate recess isn't as deep. Beyond that, the fraternal resemblence is uncanny - headlamp shapes, cutline locations and overall proportions are almost identical.

Beneath the skin, expect a total of four suspension configurations to be offered: a regular coil-spring, fixed damper setup, a 15mm lower version for the Avantgarde grade, a 15mm lower option with firmer sports-tuned dampers for AMG-package models and a high-end air suspension with adaptive dampers.

Like the current E-Class a range of four- and six-cylinder turbo petrol and diesel engines will be available, all featuring a nine-speed automatic and standard rear-wheel drive. 4Matic all-wheel drive will be optionally available in colder climates.

And, of course, expect a hi-po Mercedes-AMG variant to eventuate, with roughly 440kW coming from an uprated version of AMG's existing 4.0 litre twin-turbo V8.

The 2016 E-Class is due to make its first public appearance at the Detroit Auto Show on January 11, with more information set to be released closer to that date.

MORE: Mercedes-Benz E-Class Showroom - Price and Features
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