10 October 2017

Mercedes-Benz E350 e PHEV 2017 car review

By Cade Wilson

If you think a luxury vehicle is expensive to run, think again... The Mercedes E-Class gets a plug-in hybrid option for the first time! Boasting outstanding fuel economy results, while still maintaining the elegance that draws attention to the MB product in the first place. 

Styling
5.0 / 5
Safety
5.0 / 5
Innovation
5.0 / 5
Practicality
4.5 / 5
Value
5.0 / 5

AA expert rating

4.9 / 5

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Unlike conventional hybrid-drive vehicles, a Plug-in hybrid can be recharged at a conventional power outlet, at home, at work or at certain public charging stations. In conjunction with a special Mercedes-Benz Wallbox charging station, the recharging time is further shortened from three to one-and-a-half hours. This allows a claimed distance of up to 33kms to be driven at speeds of up to 100km in total engine silence. I was using all the features a normal drive would and managed only 17 km before the engine switched on, so not quite a one-way trip from work to home. Needless to say I need a few lessons on how to drive an EV efficiently. 

Powered by a 4-cylinder petrol engine, producing 155 kW (basically the same output from a standard C250) with an added electric motor which delivers 60 kW. For an optimum weight distribution the high-voltage battery is installed in a particularly compact manner in the vehicle rear. The intelligent interaction between the two power units opens up a broad range of possibilities for electricity-powered motoring: Smooth acceleration and fascinatingly silent gliding mean a lot more than just efficiency; it spells out motoring refinement of the highest level.

The new E350 e employs Intelligent HYBRID, the anticipatory operating strategy for Mercedes-Benz hybrid vehicles. Intelligent HYBRID takes into account the course of the road and the traffic situation to enable the electric drive system to be used with maximum efficiency, for instance through radar-supported energy recuperation, an anticipatory gear shifting strategy and the haptic accelerator pedal (think gaming controllers). The pedal has effectively two halves in its travel, the initial movement operates the electric motor and further acceleration past this resistance/actuation point activates the petrol engine.

The interior features the usual E-Class goodies, a Burmester® 13 speaker surround sound system, pre-entry climate control, and my favourite trim open pore ash woodgrain finish. Also included as standard is Head-up display with virtual image windscreen projection, panoramic glass roof with roller blind and heat-insulating glass.

At a glance  
Models  E350 e PHEV
Engine 1,991cc 4-Cylinder Turbo + Electric Motor
 Price From $143,500
 ANCAP safety rating 5-Star ANCAP
 Power 155kW, 350Nm Torque
 Transmission 9G-Tronic transmission
 Fuel economy 2.4L/100km
Towing capacity  N/A
2WD/4WD/AWD   2WD
Seating capacity   5
Luggage capacity / payload  575kg
 Safety systems 
 9-Airbags ESP, ABS, ASR
Adaptive Brake and Brake Assist Attention Assist

 Pre-Safe® Impulse side

 Driving Assistance Package

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