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E-Class gets engine update

2011-05-05 14:07

NEW POWER: Prospective E-Class owners will soon have the benefit of new petrol V6 and V8 engines.

Merc’s E-Class’s revision for 2011 has been kept fairly low-key, albeit with one big boost in the form of new V6 and V8 engines.

Although the range of engines on offer in Europe has gone under the knife in South Africa, only six and eight-cylinder models will be affected by the changes.

The new petrol V6 and V8 are said to consume up to 20 percent less fuel, while all petrol and turbodiesel engines are now equipped with direct injection. Furthermore, all automatic models are fitted with Merc’s 7G-Tronic Plus seven-speed automatic transmission.

THANKS, BIG BROTHER!

The BlueDirect petrol V6 and V8 in the E350 BlueEfficiency and E500 BlueEfficiency, respectively, filter down to the E-Class after debuting in the S-Class and CL.

Using third-generation direct petrol injection with 200 bar boost, the system’s multi-spark ignition (MSI) system allows four sparks to be triggered within one millisecond. Both the new V6 and V8 engines have aluminium crankcases, pistons and cylinder heads with the crankshaft, connecting rods and valves constructed from special forged steel.

Power on the 3.5-litre V6 has increased from 215 to 225kW with maximum torque increased to 370Nm (previously 365) and available from 3500 to 5250rpm.

Despite output being up, the V6’s fuel consumption dips from 8.5 litres per 100 km to a claimed 7 litres per 100 km. CO2 emissions are down, too; from 199 to 164g/km.

TWIN-TURBO BOOST

The power-hungry E500, on the other hand, uses a smaller displacement V8 (down from 5.4 to 4.6) but adds twin turbochargers (previously reserved for the V12 on the Sand CL) to dramatically boost its performance.  And it’s able to sprint to 100km/h in 5.2 seconds…

Power is up to 300kW from 285 and peak torque is 600Nm (previously 530Nm). Fuel consumption figures and CO2 emissions have, according to Merc, also taken a tumble.
Consumption is down to an average of 8.9 litres/100 km (from 10.8), while CO2 emissions are down from 253 to 209g/km.

ENGINES FIRST: Merc's focus for this update may have been on the E-Class's engine line-up, but there are a few interior changes too.

Each engine is fitted with Merc’s revised 7G-Tronic transmission along with standard BlueEfficiency features, including oil and water pumps with different operation modes that are activated depending on the engines’ demands, brake energy regeneration and aerodynamic improvements.

Thomas Weber, the Daimler board member responsible for corporate research and development at Mercedes-Benz Cars, said: "The new BlueDirect V6 and V8 engines set previously unattained standards in the luxury class. With the new V6 engine in the E350 BlueEfficiency, we are able to realise fuel consumption figures previously only possible for four-cylinder units.

“Mercedes-Benz is not restricting itself to the introduction of highly efficient engines, but also using every conceivable means of saving fuel," Weber continued.

COMING TO SA

Whille the focus is firmly on the new engines, other parts of the E have not been abandoned.

New interior details include a colour display for the instrument cluster that is now able to show 3D images and a standard selector lever for the automatic transmission on the steering column along with steering wheel gearshift paddles.

The revised E-Class will be in South Africa from October, 2011.
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