Dip the lid

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Prestige -

madly stylish. For the first time in rel­e­vant his­tory the E-Class coupe starts un­der $80,000 and the cabrio for less than $90K.

Here in Au­gust, two months af­ter the new E sedan and wagon, all two-door vari­ants now rep­re­sent bet­ter value. And look cooler. hand, want for lit­tle. It is only the 10 grand ex­tra on top of the coupe’s $79,900 sticker for the cabrio that seems a lit­tle rich.

Both en­trants, hard and soft top, run the wholly ad­e­quate 2.0-litre turbo petrol four, ride on 18-inch al­loys and come stan­dard with Co­mand mul­ti­me­dia sys­tem with re­vers­ing cam­era, blind-spot in­di­ca­tor and leather trim. It’s the whole pack­age, one likely to draw first-timers to this lush part of the Benz cat­a­logue.

In­deed this duo is priced in such a way as to have buy­ers leap over from the C-Class or not bother wait­ing forBMW’s com­ing 4 Se­ries.

Those re­turn­ing to th­ese pas­tures will grav­i­tate to the E250, which in petrol form is $96,400 and $106,400. Only the 250 coupe comes also as a diesel ($98,900). No one wanted that scent and sound min­gling with open air mo­tor­ing, so the diesel cabrio goes. All 250s get 19-inch art­work for wheels, Drive As­sist ac­tive safety pack­age and LED light­ing. At a price slightly down on the cars they re­place, the added value is reck­oned to be some $15,000

No more V8. No need. The bi-turbo V6 of the E400 runs all of 0.1 sec­ond slower to 100km/h, much leaner and some $50,000 cheaper at $128,900 for the coupe and a cheeky $142,900 in the cabrio. Stan­dard is dig­i­tal ra­dio (hard to do with­out when you’ve be­come as ac­cus­tomed to it as on-de­mand ca­ble TV), 360-de­gree cam­era and, in the coupe, full-length sun roof. So do you re­ally need to drop the ex­tra on the drop-top?

Var­i­ous op­tion pack­ages can be had, though right­fully only the top model should be seen sport­ingAMGkit— a $7100 ask that brings en­hanced dy­nam­ics to match the vis­ual bling. The cabrio’s key ad­di­tion re­mains Airs­carf, which with the top down blows warm air around your neck.

TECH­NOL­OGY

Even in its mildest E200 form the turbo four is mighty im­pres­sive. In full-fat 155kW/ 350Nm tune it con­signs nat­u­rally breath­ing V6s to the dust­bin. Only at 110 miles per

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