Home / Home / Mercedes-Benz E-Class All-Terrain Road Test Review – Breed Between the Lines

 

Mercedes-Benz E-Class All-Terrain

Between the E-Class Estate and the GLE-Class lies a bit of real estate that suits pretty much all applications. Is the E-Class All-Terrain all it’s jacked up to be?

Story: Jim Gorde
Photography: Saurabh Botre

Mixing and matching is something hugely prevalent today. Wherever you go, someone’s mixing shampoo with a conditioner, salt with caramel, even performance with tiny engines. Then there are car-makers bridging gaps with segments. Audi did the Allroad in a couple of sizes. Volvo have been making Cross Country versions of their estates for over 20 years and also did versions for their hatchback and sport sedan. Now Mercedes have entered the fray with what I can only describe as a luxury crossover between the E-Class Estate and GLE-Class: the E-Class All-Terrain.

It’s not been launched yet. They’re still gauging potential and overall interest, considering how people have always wanted car-like handling and luxury with estate-like practicality and SUV-like all-road ability, but were unable to get anything to satisfy all roles. Well, safe to say, there are quite a few choices now and across all budgets: from Maruti Suzuki and Hyundai to even Lamborghini and Rolls-Royce, everyone has one. However, the E A-T will take on the V90 Cross Country and, thus, will be priced in the higher middle region of the seven-figure price plane; about Rs 60-70 lakh. Things do get interesting.

Mercedes-Benz E-Class All-Terrain

Visually, the car looks large and long but not high or intimidating in rear-view mirrors. It’s higher than the E-Class estate model it is based on due to its higher-profile rubber and revised suspension. Air Body Control is standard with air suspension all round. Interestingly enough, it also has three levels, allowing a ride height of between 121 millimetres in Sport mode and up to its maximum of 156 mm in All-Terrain; at speeds of up to 35 km/h. The modes in between ― Eco and Comfort ― have 136 mm. And these are loaded numbers, not unladen.

At just under five metres long, being based on the standard wheelbase E-Class Estate, the E-Class All-Terrain is not a small car by any stretch of the imagination. And, remember, this is the first estate model Mercedes-Benz have ever brought to India, so its styling and badge are something not many are used to seeing. That realization was brought home to me thus. While I was stopped by the side of the road, I was approached by an auto-rickshaw driver who asked me if this model was actually launched or was just being tested. Come to think of it, it did grab more than a few eyeballs. The additional detailing over the E-Class saloon, to suit its intentions, are abundantly clear: meaty front grille accents a la GLE-Class, side cladding, silver roof-rails, large wheels and ― not really telling ― added ride height. Enough speak, time to go.

Keyless Go is not standard, so the car needs to be unlocked using the key fob. There is quite a lot to talk about when it comes to the interior, although it is vastly identical to the E-Class saloon. Our car was equipped with what appeared to be milk-chocolate coloured, supple, perforated leather. The door-handle in matte chrome is highlighted by the violet ambient lighting, with the plastic door lock and unlock buttons in a complementing shade of brown. The wheel is familiar with three stalks on the left ― turn indicators, cruise control, and steering wheel controls ― and one on the right for the gear selector. The start button lies behind them all, out of sight. The centre console has the COMAND system and the Dynamic Select that toggles among Individual, Sport, Comfort, Eco, and All-Terrain ― in that order. All-Terrain was the one to begin with.

Mercedes-Benz E-Class All-Terrain

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About the author: Jim Gorde

 

Automotive Correspondent at Bike India and Car India.
Believes that learning never stops. Loves V8 engines as much as a good breakfast.
t: @BikeIndia / @CarIndia

 

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