When the W222 generation Mercedes-Benz debuted in 2014, many automobile journalists (me included) considered it the most technologically advanced luxury sedan available on the market. However, when the 2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class arrives on our shores sometime in the middle of 2016, it will offer a host of new technologically advanced features, which will later be implemented into the S-Class and all other Mercedes-Benz products.
In the 10 Things To Know About series, my goal is to highlight 10 features of a particular automobile that makes it standout among its competitors. In the case of the new 2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class, it features so many technologically advanced features, it not only stands out among its competitors, it stands out in the entire luxury car segment. The new E-Class introduces many features that will make driving in the near future really effortless and more importantly, safe.
So, here are the 10 Things To Know About The 2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class.
1) Autonomous Driving: The tech in the E-Class is more advanced than the ones offered in the S-Class. Mercedes-Benz claims that the system is “semi-autonomous” and it does need a driver behind the controls with both hands on the steering wheel. The system, which is a function of the Distronic Plus adaptive cruise control, can “provide significantly enhanced steering assistance” on highways and secondary roads with no lane marking up to 60 mph. The car maintains its lane by following the traffic in front of it and by scanning for objects like guard rails and buildings at the side of the road. The cruise-control function works at speeds from 0 to 120 mph. It can crawl in stop-and-go traffic, and can adjust a set speed in response to the speed limit signs or speed limit displayed on the navigation system.
2) Automated Parking: The 2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class can park itself with the driver standing outside the vehicle. The driver via the Remote Parking Pilot app tells the car where to park on a Bluetooth paired smartphone. The vehicle can maneuver into a parallel or perpendicular spot, and can pull forward into a garage. The driver starts the maneuver by tracing a circle on the phone screen and must continue the action to keep the car in motion. However, the phone needs to be within 10 ft of the car to remotely park the vehicle.
3) Cell Phone based Car Key: Holding a paired phone to the driver’s door handle unlocks the car, and the connection works via Near Field Communication protocol. Once inside the car, place the phone on the wireless charger to enable the ignition. For the phone based car key to work properly, the device needs to be NEC compatible and have a secured SIM card.
4) Active Braking Assist: It functions as an emergency braking system during congestion. Optical and audible warnings alert the driver during an imminent rear-end collision. If an evasion is impossible, immediate emergency braking is applied to cut the force of the impact.
5) Active Braking Assist and Evasive Steering Assist: The systems are designed to avoid accidents with pedestrians. When the vehicle senses a pedestrian, it alerts the driver with optical audible warning. Next, if the driver applies the brake with minimal pressure, the adaptive brake boosting kicks in. If the driver fails to respond, the car automatically applies the brake. When the driver initiates a steering maneuver to avoid a pedestrian, the evasive steering assist adds torque to the wheel to avoid the pedestrian and aids in straightening the vehicle.
6) Automatic Braking: If the system detects that an evasive maneuver is impossible, the new Mercedes-Benz E-Class can auto brake earlier than normal. The system now operates in more situations including cross traffic while entering an intersection, while backing up, or when a pedestrian steps into the car’s path.
7) Car-to-Car Communication: The E-Class takes the first baby steps towards the concept of car-to-car communications. With the car’s built-in data connection, the driver can push a button on a screen to show a road hazard like an accident, disabled vehicle, or icy roads. The alerts go to a dedicated computer network to get analyzed and sends the alert to similarly optioned Mercedes cars in the area (the message is only sent to those vehicles that are most likely to encounter the hazard, based on their current route). An icon appears on the map to warn the driver, then as the vehicle reaches the danger zone, an audible warning is sent. The system is programmed to automatically receive alerts triggered via airbag deployment or even from cars with their hazard lights on. In the future, the system could receive alerts from emergency vehicles or from other manufacturers’ vehicles.
8) Adaptive LED Matrix Headlights: Mercedes’ Multi beam LED headlamps first appeared on the CLS in 2014, and are enhanced for the 2017 E-Class. The LED count has gone up from 24 to 84 and can be individually controlled, switching between low – and high-beams. The curve following adaptive-lighting functions are entirely controlled via electronics. The light pattern is altered in city driving based on the information from the navigation system.
9) Additional Safety Features: As part of the Pre-Safe collision readiness technology, the active-contour seats inflate the outer bolsters to reduce the impact during a T-bone accident with another vehicle. During an imminent collision, the system sends an emergency broadcast system sounding interference signal to alert the occupants, so that they won’t be startled by the noise of the impact. For 2017, inflatable rear seat belts are available as an option on the E-Class.
10) Availability: The 2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class will debut at the 2016 Detroit Auto Show. The production version will go on sale in the States in summer.
So, there you have it, these are the 10 Things to Know About The 2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class. If these features have you excited, make sure to check back here for any further updates or information about engine, transmission options and pricing.
Information and Image Source: Mercedes-Benz USA