Best Family Luxury Coupes: 2011 Mercedes-Benz E-Class

November 15, 2010
Concluding our week-long series on the best family luxury coupes, it’s only fitting that Family Car Guide includes a full-size luxury model. Today we take an in-depth look at the 2011 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Coupe. For some consumers looking for first-class luxury in every aspect of a family coupe, nothing comes close to a Mercedes-Benz. In the full-size luxury coupe category, the 2011 Mercedes-Benz E-Class coupes deliver.

Completely redesigned inside and out last year, for 2011 the four-seat, two-door, rear-wheel drive (RWD) luxury sports coupe is available in E350 and E550 models, with manufacturer’s suggested retail prices (MSRPs) starting at $48,850 and $55,450, respectively. The former is V-6-powered, while the latter delivers sportier performance from a V-8 engine.

In a review of the 2010 Mercedes-Benz E-Class coupe, The Car Connection gave it an overall 8.6 (out of 10) rating, including 10 for features, 9 for safety, and 8 for styling, performance and quality. The 2011 E-Class coupe has not yet been reviewed by TCC.

2010 Mercedes-Benz E-350 Coupe

2010 Mercedes-Benz E-350 Coupe

Performance and Fuel Economy

The V-6-powered 2011 Mercedes-Benz E350 has a 3.5-liter dual overhead cam (DOHC) V-6 engine that produces 268 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of peak torque. Step up to the E550 model and power comes from a 5.5-liter V-8 engine delivering 382 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 391 pound-feet of peak torque. Both models have standard seven-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters.

Fuel economy for such performance is an EPA-estimated 17 mpg city/26 mpg highway (E350) and 17 mpg city/23 mpg highway (E550).

Technology

The 2011 Mercedes-Benz E-Class coupe is loaded with standard or optional technology features (some bundled in packages). Standard audio, navigation and communication technology includes seven-inch COMAND display screen, Bluetooth interface, eight-speaker audio system, six-disc CD/DVD in-dash CD changer with video playback when in park position, and memory card slot.

In the Premium 1 package, buyers get the COMAND system with hard-drive navigation, Zagat restaurant guide and Gracenote database, harman/kardon LOGIC7 surround-sound system with Dolby Digital 5.1, enhanced voice control, 6GB music register, Sirius Satellite Radio with real-time traffic, iPod/MP3 media interface, HD digital radio, rear-view camera, power rear sunshade, and heated rear seats.

Premium 2 package adds heated and ventilated active front seats, headlamp washing system, bi-xenon headlamp system with active curve illumination, adaptive highbeam assist, LED daytime running lights, LED front turn indicators, and Keyless-Go.

The Distronic Plus package includes Distronic Plus with Pre-Safe brake system and parktronic with parking guidance.

 

2011 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Coupe

Safety

Standard safety features in the 2011 Mercedes-Benz E-Class coupe include antilock disc brakes, electronic stability and traction control, auto-dimming mirrors, LED taillamps, rain-sensing wipers, anti-theft alarm with remote panic feature, and full complement of 11 airbags. Rear-side airbags are optional.

There’s also the Mercedes-Benz Pre-Safe System, which better helps protect occupants if the system senses a possible accident by adjusting the seat belt tensioning, adjusting the front passenger seat for better airbag deployment and seat belt effectiveness, closing the side windows and sunroof (if a potential rollover is detected). Attention Assist tracks the driver’s behavior for the first 20 minutes, noting behavior changes. If the driver’s attention wanes, the system sounds a warning chime and flashes an icon on the speedometer.

Optional safety features (some included in packages) include Distronic Plus with Pre-Safe brake system and parktronic with parking guidance.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) awarded the 2011 Mercedes-Benz E-Class a Top Safety Pick. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has not tested the 2011 E-Class coupe, nor did it test the 2010 coupe.

Summing Up

With its superb balance of ride and handling, classic exterior styling, opulent cabin, and extensive array of innovative technology and safety features, the 2011 Mercedes-Benz E-Class coupe should be included in the consideration list for consumers in search of the best family luxury coupes.

[IIHS]

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