This year we have seen the introduction of various new Eco-friendly Hybrid models across a number of segments. Hybrids are set to offer impressive fuel consumption figures, although we have found the driving experience in some to be rather monotonous and the actual fuel consumption to be rather different to the claimed figure.
Thankfully, the new Mercedes-Benz E 300 BlueTEC Diesel Hybrid bucks the trend somewhat, offering a refined yet engaging drive. Mercedes-Benz has combined a four-cylinder diesel engine with a 20kW electric motor, crucially the lithium-ion battery is located up front in the engine bay, therefore not compromising luggage and passenger space. The electric and diesel units offer a combined power output of 204hp and a vigorous 500Nm of torque. On the move they blend together hormonally, the engine will often cut out and the car will coast solely on electric power therefore saving fuel. If you need to accelerate urgently the diesel engine kicks into life seamlessly and with no delay. The seven-speed 7G-Tronic Plus automatic transmission is a solid unit that suits the relaxed driving style of this car. Similar to other models within the Mercedes-Benz range, the gear selector is positioned on a steering column stalk, it takes no time at all to get used to this arrangement.
Although capable the E-Class Hybrid doesn’t quite have the road-handling prowess of some of its closest competitors, these include the Audi A6 and BMW 5-Series. Where the Mercedes does score highly is on the interior, this is certainly a highlight of all Mercedes-Benz models and this Hybrid variant doesn’t disappoint. The luxurious cosseting leather seats offer support and comfort for all occupants, travelling long distances in this car is a calming experience. The quality of the materials used for the dash and surroundings is top-class. Just some of the standard equipment includes, electric heated front seats, leather upholstery, 17” alloys, air conditioning, comfort suspension, attention assist, Bluetooth connectivity, audio streaming and a media interface.
Mercedes-Benz has demonstrated that efficient motoring is possible without hindering the driving experience, with the introduction of their new E 300 BlueTEC Hybrid.
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