The Mercedes-Benz E-Class is one of the most established and respected midsize luxury models currently available. So much so that the model 2021 was just named MotorTrend’s Car of the Year. One of the E-Class‘s greatest strengths is its versatility. You can have it as a sedan, convertible, coupe, or station wagon with various engines available. From a 255-hp turbo-four to a 603-hp turbo V8, there is enough power to go around. According to MotorTrend, the 2021 Mercedes-Benz E-Class beat both the BMW 8 Series Gran Coupe and Porsche Taycan to win the respected award.
Here’s what makes the 2021 Mercedes-Benz E-Class great
Unusually, this year’s Car of the Year isn’t an all-new model. Instead, the 2021 Mercedes-Benz E-Class is a refreshed version of the fifth-generation model that debuted in 2017. Despite this, MotorTrend claims that the development team went above and beyond to improve the model significantly.
According to MotorTrend, the fifth-gen E-Class’s first iteration felt inconsistent, delivering noticeable body-roll and understeer during corners. As a result, MotorTrend claims the E-Class didn’t excel at any one thing. In contrast, MotorTrend claims the updated model is a night and day difference. MotorTrend notes the 2021 Mercedes-Benz E-Class’s dynamic driving modes allow it to competently carry passengers in comfort or aggressively charge up twisty roads.
In terms of engines, the refined new powertrain options are also a welcomed addition, says MotorTrend. The most impressive was the 3.0-liter turbocharged hybrid inline-six engine developing 362 hp and 396 lb-ft of torque. MotorTrend states the inline-six accelerates like a V8 yet returns high-fuel efficiency thanks to its hybrid design. As a result, the 2021 E-Class is way more than just a refresh.
You can have a 603-hp twin-turbo V8
If we’re talking engines, then you’re absolutely spoiled for choice. That’s because the 2021 Mercedes-Benz E-Class offers a wide variety of engine outputs. For starters, the base E 350 Sedan features a turbocharged four-cylinder engine pumping out 255 hp and 273 lb-ft. From there, you can upgrade to the aforementioned 3.0-liter inline-six and its mild-hybrid system.
If performance is more your style, the 2021 Mercedes-Benz E-Class offers two performance variants. The first is the AMG E 53 and its 3.0-liter inline-six with a mild hybrid system. Unlike the normal E-Class engine, the AMG variant delivers 429-hp and 384 lb-ft of torque. However, the undisputed champ of the E-Class family is the 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 developing 603-hp found in the AMG E 63 S. The result is a 0-60 time of around 3.3 seconds, making it one of the fastest sedans and station wagons available.
You can have a convertible, sedan, coupe or wagon
Speaking of variety, the 2021 Mercedes-Benz E-Class is available in four different body styles. While the E-Class sedan is likely the most popular, you can also have it as a convertible, coupe, or station wagon. According to MotorTrend, one of the E-Class’s major draws is that you don’t have to sacrifice performance when opting for different models. MotorTrend notes that previous generations of these different body styles performed quite differently, with the sedan reigning supreme. For 2021 however, all of the E-Class models perform well.
Unfortunately, greatness comes at a price, and the 2021 Mercedes-Benz E-Class can go from pricey to outrageous very quickly. In base trim, the cheapest E-Class has a base price of $54,250. From there, you can easily surpass six-figures with the range-topping AMG E 63 S Wagon and its $111,750 base price. Regardless of which E-Class you go for, MotorTrend’s testing reveals they’re all likely great buys.