Overview

Overview

The 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class is a midsize luxury line of vehicles that includes sedan, coupe, convertible and wagon variants. Exceptionally well-built and filled with high-tech safety features, the E-Class makes do with the new hybrid, an updated mbrace telematics system and the addition of electromechanical power steering this year. A significantly refreshed E-Class is coming for the 2014 model year.

What Experts Think

For years, when it came to considerations of best-in-class luxury sedans, the Mercedes-Benz brand consistently led the pack. While the current versions may be a little long in the tooth, style-wise, all that is about to change for the 2014 model year. For now, though, automotive reviewers don't have too many quibbles about the 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class.

Consumer Reports finds the E-Class to be a "well-finished, substantial-feeling luxury car," calling it one of the better choices among midsize luxury sedans. Noting that handling is "agile and secure," editors also comment that the interior is "plush, with excellent seats and fit and finish."

"Year after year, the Mercedes-Benz E-Class exemplifies excellence... It's a benchmark for refined ride, quality, confident handling, meticulous craftsmanship, clever innovation and sophisticated comfort." (Edmunds)

Kelley Blue Book editors say the 2013 E-Class may be the "most diverse midsize luxury car line on the planet." Hailing its standard and available features the "allow custom tailoring to suit each owner's needs," KBB says the E-Class's numerous engines and body style choices "have no rival."

"This is an unusually well-built vehicle with excellent safety and technology features, and the E-Class has gained respect from enthusiast drivers." (Automobile)

Motor Trend calls the overall price tag high, but adds that "build quality is difficult to beat." The overall judgment: "the Mercedes-Benz offers everything except affordability."

"Rock-solid structure, classy cabin, prolific powertrains," but simultaneously "dull and awkward styling, prices climb quickly when equipped with popular options." (Car and Driver)

What Owners Say

Owners are nearly universal in their praise of the 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class, whether their purchase was the sedan, coupe, convertible or hybrid.

Sample comments on sites such as Cars.com, Kelley Blue Book, Edmunds, Yahoo Autos, and AOL Autos include: "turbo-diesel a dream car," "typical German excellence and safety," "best ragtop I have ever owned," and comments about the car having all the comforts and bells and whistles.

Other owner pluses include comfort, fuel economy, appearance, toys, stereo, reliability, and the best car to drive for the money.

The most-frequent complaint: the price - too much, especially when choosing many of the more popular options. Some owners also noted that no parking sensors are included as standard features.

Model/Trim Lineup

Among the motoring press, the 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class is considered to have a wealth of models to please most any luxury car buyer. For 2013, no less than six sedan models are available: E350, the diesel-powered E350 BlueTEC, the all-wheel-drive E350 4MATIC, E550 4MATIC, the high-performance E63 AMG, and the new E400 Hybrid.

The coupe comes as an E350, E350 4MATIC, and E550. The convertible is offered as the E350 and E550, and the wagon is available as the E350 4MATIC and E63 AMG.

With such a long list of models, it's probably best to detail what's standard on all E350 models first: dual-zone automatic climate control, power tilt/telescoping steering wheel, mbrace2 telematics system, 14-way power-adjustable front seats, automatic day/night rearview mirror, wireless cellphone link, universal garage door opener, and automatic suspension control.

The E350 sedan and wagon have vinyl upholstery, while the coupe and convertible are outfitted in leather. The sedan and wagon also have a sunroof, while the coupe comes with a panoramic sunroof.  The wagon adds a third-row folding rear-facing seat and the convertible features a power soft-top and a wind blocker. Seventeen-inch wheels are standard, except for the 18-inchers on the coupe.

The E400 Hybrid is similarly equipped, but adds uprated rakes. E550 models get heated front seats, leather upholstery, and 18-inch wheels.

The top-of-the-line E63 AMG, as befits a crème-de-la-crème luxury vehicle, throws in the works with the following standard equipment list: 19-inch wheels, sport-tuned driver-adjustable suspension, uprated brakes, self-dimming and steering-linked adaptive bi-xenon headlights with washers, keyless access and start, engine-idle start/stop, rearview camera, heated/ventilated multi-contour and massaging front seats, harman/kardon sound system, satellite radio, high-definition radio, iPod interface, and navigation system with voice recognition.

An AMG Performance package for E63 models increases horsepower to 550 and also adds a performance-tuned suspension, a carbon-fiber engine cover, a 185 mph speed limiter, and a sport steering wheel.

The AIRSCARE neck-level heating system is available for convertibles. A Sport package includes larger wheels, a sport-tuned suspension, limited-slip differential, rear DVD entertainment, a Band and Olufsen sound system, and heated and ventilated front seats.

Performance

Auto critics say there's no lack of power available to propel the 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class down the road. Depending on the model chosen, there's ample horsepower and torque to more than get the job done - in style.

E350 models are equipped with a 302-horsepower 3.5-liter V6 mated with a seven-speed automatic transmission. Rear-wheel drive is standard on all but the wagon, which has all-wheel drive (4MATIC), also available for the sedan. Fuel economy is estimated by the EPA at 20 mpg city/30 mpg highway/23 mpg combined for the rear-wheel drive E350 sedan. Other models see a 1 or 2 mpg drop in each of the respective driving cycles.

The same 3.5-liter V6 powers the E400 Hybrid, along with a seven-speed automatic transmission and an electric motor that adds another 27 horsepower and 207 pound-feet of torque. The E400 Hybrid is only available as a rear-wheel drive sedan. Fuel economy is estimated at 24 mpg city/31 mpg highway.

Buyers opting for the E350 BlueTEC will get a 210 horsepower 3.0-liter V6 turbodiesel that delivers a quite robust 400 pound-feet of torque. Rear-wheel drive is standard. Fuel economy is estimated at 21/32/25 mpg.

In the E550, the powerplant is a 402-horsepower twin-turbo 4.6-liter V8 that produces 443 pound-feet of torque. The E550 sedan has standard 4MATIC, while coupe and Cabriolet have rear-wheel drive standard. EPA-estimated fuel economy here is 16/26/20 mpg for the sedan, while the convertible number is about 1 mpg less at 25 mpg highway and the coupe is about 1 mpg better at 27 mpg highway.

Powering the E63 AMG is a 518-horsepower twin-turbo 5.5-liter V8 that makes 516 pound-feet of torque. The addition of the AMG Performance package increases horsepower to 550 and 590 pound-feet of torque. The AMG seven-speed automated manual transmission and rear-wheel drive are standard. EPA-estimated fuel economy is 16 mpg city/24 mpg highway/19 mpg combined.

Interior

There is universal consensus that the interior of the 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class is exceptionally well-made, as befits its long-standing reputation. Testers note the elegant styling and high-quality materials, regardless of which model is chosen.

The seats are deemed comfortable and supportive with ample head and legroom for front-seat occupants. The sedan has generous space in the rear seat area, but coupe and convertible are less accommodating.

Some auto critics point out that the Mercedes-Benz COMAND infotainment system requires some getting used to, but is still easier to operate than systems in vehicles by competitors Audi and BMW.

One area reviewers don't like is the location of the steering-wheel-mounted cruise control and gear selector stalks, remarking that it's too easy to mistake them for windshield wiper or turn signal controls.

As for cargo capacity, it's 15.9 cubic feet in the sedan, 13.3 cubic feet in the coupe, and 11.5 cubic feet in the convertible. The sedan does not come standard with split-folding rear seats, though, but they are optional.

Safety & Reliability

Mercedes-Benz has long been known for its innovative safety features, and the 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class fully demonstrates what the German automaker offers.

Standard safety features include antilock disc brakes, stability control, traction control, front side airbags, front pelvic airbags, side curtain airbags and a driver knee airbag. In addition, other standard safety equipment includes the updated Mercedes-Benz mbrace emergency telematics service, pre-collision automatic braking and a drowsy driver alert. The E-Class Cabriolet adds automatic rollover hoops.

More safety features are included in various packages. Blind-spot detection and a lane-departure warning/keeping system are in the Lane Tracking package. The Driver Assistance package features adaptive cruise control plus more advanced versions of the Lane Tracking items that can take evasive action if the driver fails to initiate such maneuvers. Rear side airbags are an available standalone option.

In government crash testing by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class sedan and Hybrid received a five-star rating in rollover testing, but neither was rated in any other crash test. The convertible, coupe and wagon were not rated in any category. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), which classifies the E-Class as a large luxury car, gave the coupe and sedan its highest rating of "Good" in frontal, side and roof strength tests (no small overlap front tests were conducted), and named them Top Safety Picks.

In terms of reliability, the 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class earns a four and one-half Power Circle rating in the J.D. Power Predicted Reliability rating. This means that the E-Class ranks between "Better than Most" and "Among the Best" for reliability.

Consumer Reports says that sedan reliability has been average or better, but the convertible version is below average.

 

Trim Style Engine Drive Train MSRP
Convertible - RWD
E 350 E 350 Cabriolet V6 RWD 59070
E 550 E 550 Cabriolet 8 Cylinder RWD 66220
Coupe - AWD
E 350 E 350 4MATIC Coupe V6 AWD 53620
Coupe - RWD
E 350 E 350 Coupe V6 RWD 51120
E 550 E 550 Coupe 8 Cylinder RWD 57960
Sedan - AWD
E 350 Luxury E 350 4MATIC Luxury Sedan V6 AWD 53500
E 350 Sport E 350 4MATIC Sport Sedan V6 AWD 53500
E 550 Sport E 550 4MATIC Sport Sedan 8 Cylinder AWD 60400
Sedan - RWD
E 350 Luxury E 350 Luxury Sedan V6 RWD 51000
E 350 Luxury BlueTEC E 350 BlueTEC Luxury Sedan V6 RWD 52200
E 350 Sport E 350 Sport Sedan V6 RWD 51000
E 350 Sport BlueTEC E 350 BlueTEC Sport Sedan V6 RWD 52200
E 400 Sport E 400 Sport Sedan V6 RWD 55800
E 63 AMG E 63 AMG Sedan 8 Cylinder RWD 89800
Wagon - AWD
E 350 Luxury E 350 4MATIC Luxury Wagon V6 AWD 57700
E 350 Sport E 350 4MATIC Sport Wagon V6 AWD 57700
Wagon - RWD
E 63 AMG E 63 AMG Wagon 8 Cylinder RWD 92400

Comparison of 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class with Similar Cars

2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class MSRP Invoice
2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class $51,000 $47,430
Similar Cars to Consider MSRP Invoice Compare
2013 BMW 5 Series $47,800 $43,975 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class VS 2013 BMW 5 Series
2013 Chevrolet Corvette $49,600 $45,136 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class VS 2013 Chevrolet Corvette
2013 Lexus GS 350 $47,250 $43,945 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class VS 2013 Lexus GS 350
2013 Jaguar XF $46,975 $43,217 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class VS 2013 Jaguar XF
2013 Audi S5 $50,900 $47,338 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class VS 2013 Audi S5

Car Rankings

Interested to see how the 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class ranks against similar cars in terms of key attributes? Here are the 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class rankings for MPG, horsepower, torque, leg room, head room, shoulder room, hip room and so forth.

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