The latest Mercedes E-Class comes in a sedan and a wagon variant, but the U.S. will not be getting the traditional wagon. What we get may just be better, an Outback-style lifted wagon ready for light off-roading. This is the latest E-Class All-Terrain.
Just as you might expect, the E-Class All-Terrain looks like a slightly more capable version of the E-Class wagon the U.S. will not be getting. Mercedes says that it "makes easy work of light terrain, such as dirt or gravel roads," making this more of a solution for the unpaved roads one might find between themselves and the beginning of a hike rather than a wagon ready to attack trails meant for capable half-ton trucks.
Capability and comfort are both aided by a standard single-chamber air suspension, which combines with adaptive dampers. Wheel-by-wheel control keeps the car relatively stable over rough terrain, while the air suspension also lowers the car when traveling above 75 MPH in smoother conditions. If you do come across a more difficult challenge, the car's off-road mode can display both a 360 degree camera and a "transparent hood" that projects a virtual view of what would sit beneath the wagon's hood onto one of its many screens.
The All-Terrain is wider and taller than the sedan variant, but it retains the same length as the sedan. It is also wider and longer than the outgoing E-Class All-Terrain, which Mercedes says will increase comfort for second-row passengers. If you need to haul a mid-size wagon's worth of cargo, that second row can also be laid flat.
Like the E-Class sedan, the All-Terrain is built around heavy tech integrations of questionable value. Your Apple Watch can now be your key, your music can be visualized along active ambient lighting strips, and, if for some reason this is an absolute necessity, you can use TikTok directly from your car's infotainment screen. If you opt for the full-width Superscreen, your go-most-places wagon will also come with a selfie camera and the ability for the driver to use Zoom on the car's interfaces.
Optional ADAS systems include a lane keep assist, active steering assist, and distance assist, all part of one Driver Assistance Package. All of those things play into the current Mercedes focus on leading in technology, and only about half of them are part of their campaign to lead the car market in frivolous technology.
Unlike the sedan, the All-Terrain is available only with a mild hybrid inline-6 powertrain. The 375 hp engine combines with a 23 hp electric motor to produce just under 400 hp, enough to get this tall wagon to 60 in 4.6 seconds on its way to an electronically limited top speed of 130 MPH. No AMG product has been announced for either the E-Class sedan or any of its wagon variants, but rumors indicate a powerful combination of an inline-six and a hybrid system will eventually be offered for the sedan.
The E-Class All-Terrain arrives at dealers next year. With the typical wagon limited to the European market and the E-Class coupe replaced by the incoming CLE, Mercedes says that the more capable wagon completes the W214-generation E-Class lineup.
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