Mercedes-Benz has sought to plug another tiny gap in its otherwise all-encompassing range, with the unveiling a new ruggedized wagon version of the E-Class.
Called the E-Class All-Terrain, the jacked-up wagon will ensure Benz has a competitor for the likes of Volkswagen’s Passat Alltrack, the Audi A6 Allroad, Volvo’s new V90 Cross Country, the Subaru Outback and even Skoda’s Octavia Scout.
Like its competitors, the All-Terrain comes with all-wheel-drive, a raised ride-height, protective cladding under the body and on the wheel arches along with appropriate styling enhancements.
The All-Terrain will be offered initially in only one spec - the E 220 d 4MATIC.
Power comes from a 2.0 litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine making 143kW and 400Nm, matched with a nine-speed automatic transmission. A six-cylinder diesel model, also with nine-speed auto, is set to follow at a later stage.
The 0-100km/h sprint in the E 220 d takes eight seconds flat with a top speed of 232km/h. Fuel consumption is rated at 5.1 l/100km.
Three sets of alloy wheels have been made available exclusively for All-Terrain customers, ranging in size from 19- to 20-inch.
Inside, the All-Terrain’s ‘active’ nature is enhanced with a 40/20/40 split folding rear seat, stainless steel sports pedals and floor mats. Benz says all E-Class safety, comfort and convenience features will be available in the All-Terrain.
While the All-Terrain is no mud-munching 4WD, Benz has equipped it with a five-mode selectable driving program borrowed from the GLE-Class SUV.
One driving mode matches the vehicle’s name, and raises the ride-height by 20mm at speeds of up to 35km/h - but then the ride-height can be manually readjusted to between 0mm and 35mm higher than ‘normal’. Maximum ground clearance is 156mm.
"No E-Class has ever been as versatile as the All‑Terrain - the new model combines a striking look in SUV style with the intelligent space concept of the estate,” Daimler’s Ola Källenius said.
“This is coupled with lots of innovative safety features and the multi-award-winning E‑Class interior. With 4MATIC all‑wheel drive as a standard feature and increased ground clearance thanks to the AIR BODY CONTROL multi-chamber air suspension the All‑Terrain is a flexible all‑rounder – for unpaved roads, family and leisure time."
The 2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class All-Terrain will make its official debut at the Paris Motor Show, with sales to begin in overseas markets next year. The new model is also under consideration for Australia - stay tuned to TMR for more.
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