Customers can look forward to a particularly immersive entertainment experience in the new E‑Class. Music, games and streaming content can be experienced in the car with almost all the senses. Thanks to digital innovations in the interior, the E-Class is now more intelligent, achieving a new dimension of personalisation and interaction. At the same time, the electronic architecture is more software-driven and less hardware-driven. This forms the basis for more individual updating of the interior systems in the future.
The computing functions of previously separate domains take place in a single processor. Screens and the MBUX infotainment system thus share a new, very powerful central onboard computer. This form of networking improves performance, as the data streams can be transmitted significantly faster.
The Entertainment package (MBUX Entertainment Plus) will be available for the new E-Class. It includes hardware, Mercedes me connect services and a data package from a third-party provider. Depending on the market, a communication module with 5G as the transmission technology is used. The mobile phone standard 5G makes much faster data rates possible than LTE/UMTS.
The E-Class launch starts with the Saloon model. The first models of the 214 series will arrive at the European dealerships in summer 2023. In the USA, the market launch will take place in autumn 2023.
With the new Active Ambient Lighting with Sound Visualisation, occupants in the new E-Class can experience music with three senses: pieces of music and the sound from films or apps can be heard (with Dolby Atmos® technology if desired), felt (by means of sound resonating transducers in the optional Burmester® 4D surround sound system) and now also “seen”. Visualisation takes place on the light strip of the Active Ambient Lighting (optional extra). For the first time, this applies throughout in the E-Class. For example, fast sequences of beats can cause rapid light changes, while flowing rhythms can create softly merging lighting moods.
The entertainment experience for the front passenger is always impressive. On his/her optional screen, the front passenger can watch dynamic content such as TV or video streaming1 even when the driver at the wheel is looking over at them. This is because the display is switchable. The advanced camera-based visual shield function reduces its brightness and thus reduces the risk of distraction for the driver.
The entertainment programme in the E-Class is more interactive than ever. The software experts at Mercedes-Benz have developed a new compatibility layer that allows the installation of third-party apps. The following apps are available on the central display on the launch of the E-Class: the entertainment platform “TikTok”, the game “Angry Birds”, the collaboration application “Webex”, the office application “Zoom” and the browser “Vivaldi”. In addition, the ZYNC entertainment portal (optionally) offers video streaming, on-demand content, interactive experiences, local video programmes, sports, news, games and much more on the central and passenger displays, via one user interface.
Another new feature is a selfie and video camera (part of the optional MBUX Superscreen) on top of the dashboard. When the vehicle is stationary, the driver can participate in online video conferences via e.g. Webex, and take personal photos and videos.
More operating convenience is also available with MBUX. With the “Just Talk” function, the intelligent voice control can now be activated without the keyword “Hey Mercedes”. When the function is activated, a red microphone symbol appears in the display. This indicates that the vehicle is ready and waiting for commands.
Added day-to-day convenience: the routines
Mercedes-Benz is working on using artificial intelligence (AI) so that the car learns which comfort systems vehicle occupants use repeatedly. Given the same circumstances, the aim is for AI to automate such functions. The result is personalised automation. Mercedes-Benz uses the term “routine” for this innovation, the development of which is already well advanced.
On the launch of the new E-Class, customers will be able to use templates for standard routines. They also have the option of creating routines themselves. In doing so, the occupants can link several functions and conditions. For example, “Switch on the seat heating and set the ambient lighting to warm orange if the interior temperature is below twelve degrees Celsius”.
For enhanced well-being: ENERGIZING COMFORT and THERMOTRONIC with Digital Vent Control (both optional)
Soothing sounds, mobilising massage, activating light – Mercedes-Benz offers a comprehensive wellness programme with the variously configured ENERGIZING COMFORT programmes and the individual recommendations of the ENERGIZING COACH. The E-Class brings the debut of a new feature: The Motion sickness prevention programme of ENERGIZING COMFORT helps affected passengers to alleviate the symptoms. A bio‑feedback function10 is planned for the ENERGIZING COACH in the medium term. This can reduce the feeling of stress with breathing exercises.
With THERMOTRONIC automatic climate control (optional extra), Digital Vent Control enhances the comfort experience. It automatically adjusts the front air vents to a desired ventilation scenario. This can be done via the user profile on a seat-by-seat basis, for example. However, the nozzles can also be aligned by hand as usual.
MBUX Superscreen with a large glass surface and newly designed icons: the interior design
Sporty, high-quality, digital – these three attributes describe the interior design. The instrument panel shapes the digital experience in the interior. If the E-Class is equipped with the optional front passenger screen, a large glass surface extends to the central display. Visually detached from this is the high-resolution instrument cluster display in the driver’s field of vision.
The main icons on the central and optional passenger displays are now simpler, and also colour-coded to match smartphone tiles. This enables the driver to recognise them even more intuitively.
“The heart of the brand” for over 75 years: history
With more than 17 million vehicles delivered since 1946, the E-Class and its predecessors are the best-selling model series in the history of Mercedes-Benz. Many perceive it as the “heart of the brand”. The E-Class’s heritage dates back to the very early days of the brand. Even in the early years of the 20th century, the predecessor companies of today’s Mercedes-Benz AG dominated this segment: vehicles positioned below the luxury class but above the small car class are an integral part of the model portfolio of Mercedes-Benz and the original brands. Since the 1930s, the models have had designations that still sound familiar today: for example the 200 (1933) and 230 (1936), as well as the diesel variant 260 D (W 138, 1936) – the world’s first diesel-powered passenger car.