The 2012 Mercedes-Benz E Class lineup includes some class-leading active-safety features, but it doesn't at all forget about traditional luxury-car equipment.
Cruise control, interior ambient lighting, dual-zone climate control, a multi-function instrument panel display, and rain-sensing wipers, are all among the base E350's standard equipment.
Sedans are offered in either Luxury or Sport guise. Luxury versions feature standard 17-inch wheels; COMAND infotainment and climate control; cruise control; sunroof; power doors, locks, and mirrors; and surprisingly, vinyl seats. Sport versions get larger 18-inch wheels; unique gauges; and stylized exhaust outlets. Optional upgrades include voice-controlled navigation; Sirius and HD Radio; rearview camera; heated seats; numerous electronic safety assists; massaging seats; Bluetooth; an upgraded, 610-watt audio system; and much more.
Wagons include a power tailgate and rear air suspension, in addition to the Sedans' equipment--plus, of course, the temporary-duty, rear-facing third-row seat.
Two premium packages, a driver assistance package, a sport package, and a wheel package divide up most of these options into convenient groups. Many options can be had a la carte, as well, though it may be tough for those with peculiar tastes to find the exact combo they're looking for on a dealer lot.
For 2012, the media interface, for auxiliary input, USB, or iPods, has been relocated to the center console.Stepping up to the $89,775 E63 AMG gets you upgraded materials throughout, plus AMG badges and performance-tuned stability and traction electronics--in addition to a high-performance transmission and the AMG-built 518-hp V-8.