Shock and awe, shucks
2007 Mercedes-Benz E-ClassThere’s something to be said for a re-skin. Many people, especially in areas such as Southern California, go in for a mid-cycle refresher all the time. It makes ‘em beautiful again, at least for a little while, and besides, once the botox or the tan or the lift wears down, one can easily go in and get another round of re-skinning done. Mercedes-Benz is onboard with this type of thinking. In fact, they just got back from the automotive plastic surgeon, and they showed off the new “them” at the 2006 New York International Auto Show.
It was a shock – literally. With models juking around the new 2007 E-Class wearing chain metal suits – who knew chain metal could be so sexy -- and passing streams of electric energy back, forth and through the car, all the assembled journalists left the press conference with a sudden boost in brain power.
That’s too bad for Mercedes-Benz, if true, because many of these smarter scribes will likely write shoppers of the 2007 Mercedes-Benz E-Class should wait a model year or two, and get a thoroughly revised model – reportedly due to debut this summer. For those who just can’t wait, the 2007 model gets a mild freshening to bumpers, grille, headlights and tail lights, and the addition of another two models: the E550, featuring a 5.5-liter V8 delivering 382 horsepower and 391 lb.-ft. of torque, and the E63 AMG, which will be powered by a new 6.3-liter V8 that makes 503 horsepower and 465 lb.-ft. of torque. The E-Class will also get a bevy of S-Class technology, including Pre-Safe, the proactive safety feature that prepares the car and its occupants for an impact by setting into motion pretensioners, head restraints and other devices. Also standard on the 2007 E-Class will be Mercedes’ innovative intelligent headlamps, which sense the type of roadway and adjust accordingly.
Unfortunately, this technology is not yet available in the U.S. New standard equipment on the E-Class includes an upgraded stereo with six-disc CD changer, a new steering wheel, and a larger sunroof. Mercedes-Benz also announced plans to launch the E320 BLUETEC, which they claim to be the cleanest diesel passenger car in its class.
Photos by Ron Perry