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QUALITY | 9 out of 10
Subjectively, interior volume is about the same as the previous generation's
Car and Driver
Brand finally emerges from its build-quality funk
Wind and road noise are well suppressed in all models
The Mercedes-Benz cachet has lost some ground in recent years, as cost-cutting measures dented the brand's image for quality. For 2010, the E-Class recaptures much of the fit and feel of old and, based on reviews read by TheCarConnection.com, takes big steps to returning the brand to the top of the luxury class.
The interior of the E-Class 2010 lineup is quite comfortable, even when filled with five occupants. Although the latest Mercedes E-Class is slightly larger than its predecessor, Car and Driver reports that, "subjectively, interior volume seems about the same," with a "few fractions of an inch" more headroom and slightly more rear legroom. Similar dimensions aren't necessarily bad, however, as ConsumerGuide reviewers find that "headroom and legroom are ample" up front, "even for taller or longer-legged drivers." The 2010 Mercedes-Benz E-Class offers an optional sunroof, but unlike with most glass tops, ConsumerGuide says the E-Class 2010's version "moves up and back over the top of the car, so sacrifice of headroom is required." The front seats are a hit with reviewers, and Motor Trend is particularly fond of the buckets, claiming they are "shaped for a perfect long-distance driving position." The rear seats earn similar praise, with ConsumerGuide vouching that "two adults fit nicely across the rear seat," which boasts "a comfortable seat back angle and good headroom."
The extra volume afforded by the 2010 Mercedes-Benz E-Class's larger exterior has to manifest itself somewhere, and Car and Driver reviewers find that Mercedes boosts the trunk capacity "up 2.2 cubic feet to 19.1." That expansive rear compartment is now more accessible as well, since Cars.com states that the "optional folding rear seats no longer require you to flip the cushions forward first." If 19.1 cubic feet doesn't quite get the Mercedes E-Class to the top of the class, it is sufficiently large for most applications. Interior storage is impressive as well on the E-Class; ConsumerGuide reports that front passengers will get "a console box with a split top that can be accessed from either the driver of passenger side."
As mentioned earlier, Mercedes takes serious steps with the 2010 Mercedes-Benz E-Class to improve the sense of quality and upgrade the finishes in the sedan. Car and Driver says "the quality of the materials are all very close to what is found in the" more upscale S-Class, and the "new seats have more padding and feel more supple and richer than the previous car's thrones." Automobile Magazine has charted Mercedes' quality decline over the years, but with the new car, they assert that "the brand finally emerges from its build-quality funk," noting that Mercedes "was the only European automaker to win quality awards from J.D. Power & Associates in 2008." Even the conservative reviewers at ConsumerGuide declare that the 2010 Mercedes-Benz E-Class is "made up of top-grade materials," with "wood and metal highlights [that] raise the chic factor."
One noteworthy improvement over some Mercedes-Benz models from earlier this decade comes in the category of cabin noise. ConsumerGuide reports "wind and road noise are well suppressed in all models," and even "when the optional panoramic sunroof is open, wind rush is well contained up to about 70 mph." TheCarConnection.com's editors notice that the only real noise coming into the cabin during their test drives is the sound of the engine, which growls nicely under acceleration.
For 2010, Mercedes-Benz upgrades the E-Class' interior room a little bit, and its quality feel nearly to S-Class standards.