10 Things to Know About the 2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class

Beyond the fact that you want one.

 The debut of a new Mercedes always means the announcement of a ton of interesting new features, and the 2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class is no different. These are a few of the cool new features and noteworthy facts about the new bread-and-butter model for the three-pointed star.

01
of 10
None of the body styles are going away.

2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class.

My favorite two E-Class body styles are the two the general public in the USA likes the least: the wagon and the coupe. If you want practical, the wagon does everything the sedan does and far, far more. On the other hand, the coupe's panoramic roof makes the it feel almost as open as the convertible while looking sleeker and not starting to creak or whistle over time. 

Luckily, all of these bodies will still be around for 2017, so the general automotive media can still obsess over the AMG E63.

02
of 10
The new E-Class is looking out for your ears.

2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class.

 If the new E-Class detects that a crash is imminent, the new PRE SAFE SOUND system emits a weird little noise from the speakers. Normally, this wouldn't be such a great thing, but in this case it's engineered to stimulate the smallest skeletal muscle: the stapedius. The stapedius' job is to protect your ear drums from loud noises, and this new system from Mercedes could possibly save your hearing one day.

03
of 10
The center of a car is the safest place, and the E wants you to go there.

2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class.

 Another interesting safety feature is the Pre-Safe Impulse Side. This is an airbag in the seat bolster that deploys before a side-impact crash, moving occupants 2.75" closer to the center of the car. Needless to say, this means said occupants are also 2.75" away from the old Ford Explorer that just ran a red light while the driver eats a Chipotle burrito and tries to explain something to Siri.

04
of 10
The new infotainment system can be operated using just the steering wheel.

2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class.

 That touchpad and command knob that operate Mercedes' infotainment are still present in the E-Class, but new for 2017 is a touch-sensitive input system on the steering wheel itself. A few quick swipes of the thumb and you're modifying settings, browsing radio stations, or tuning the climate control without having to lose your perfect nine and three grip.

05
of 10
The seats were a two-and-a-half-year project.

2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class.

The Mercedes E-Class is paramount to the health of the brand, and luxury is what people are looking for when they test drive an E-Class. While fancy climate control and cool gadgets do say "luxury," the single most important aspect of luxury is comfort. That's why Mercedes-Benz engineers spent just over two-and-a-half years refining the new seats. It took that long to figure out how to make them wider, longer, more adjustable, better cushioned, and also lighter.

06
of 10
It really is "all new."

2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class.

 Most "all new" cars have a bunch of carryover parts from the previous generation, but Mercedes staff are genuinely hard-pressed to think of a single thing that wasn't redesigned for 2017. The E-Class really is an all new car. 

07
of 10
It drives itself on the highway.

2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class.

I love driving, but I hate commuting and interstate driving. There's no engagement, and there's nothing fun about it. While in-town commuting is still a chore (albeit a rather comfortable one) in the new E-Class, interstate driving isn't something the driver has to do anymore. That's right, this car will keep a speed, slow down if the car in front does, stay in its lane up to 130 mph, and change lanes automatically with nothing more than a touch of the turn signal. This is astounding technology.

08
of 10
It also parks itself.

2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class.

After you kick back and let the car drive for a while you can find a parking spot, get out, hit a button on your phone, and watch your fancy new car park itself. It will size up a spot with radar and cameras and do all the work while you say "good boy, Benzie!"

09
of 10
It's the first Car-to-X equipped car.

2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class.

Car-to-X Communication is a new system in which a car can wirelessly communicate with other vehicles and pieces of transportation infrastructure. This means that, for now, it will know the location, heading, and speed of every other 2017 E-Class, but in the near future it will get information like that from a number of other cars as well as warnings about icy roads or other hazards from stop lights, bridges, and the like. The road will get much, much safer. 

10
of 10
There are 64 ambient lighting colors.

2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class.

Because that's totally necessary.