MERCEDES ON OFFENSIVE

ABOUT 70000 Mercedes-Benz E-class units have been sold since car's international launch in March.

ABOUT 70000 Mercedes-Benz E-class units have been sold since car's international launch in March.

Last week saw the launch of the additional South African models.

The South African launch of the current E-class took place in June. The new additions are the E200 CGI, E250 CDI and E350 CDI.

Driving around Pretoria and Cullinan, the new models demonstrated good performance quality despite higher altitude and the heat.

The ride and drive from a Mercedes-Benz dealership in Menlyn to Cullinan and back was a comfortable one.

The E350 CDI was the first model my co-driver and I hopped into. On the road the E-class felt at home even when we hit the potholes.

Halfway we swapped the E350 CDI for the E200 CGI, which is replacing the Kompressor motor.

The new E200 CGI has the winning formula written all over it in terms of safety and comfort.

Along with innovation, individuality has always been one of the outstanding characteristics of the E-Class. And the new sedan is no exception.

The instrument cluster of the E-class reflects the different characters of the lines: the elegance line has circular instruments with chrome surrounds, white illumination and a black background.

In the avant garde cockpit, meanwhile, the instruments feature a matt-silver painted background and deep, slanting tubes, giving them a sporty, elegant feel.

Fine chrome rings on the faces underline the high-quality impression of both cockpit variants.

The E200 CGI BlueEfficiency model with direct petrol injection has a displacement of 1,8 litres and an output of 135kW.

The E350 CDI BlueEfficiency model develops power output of 170kW with the 7G-tronic seven-speed automatic transmission as standard.

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