MERCEDES-AMG E43

The mid­dle man­age­ment Meis­ter

Driven - - Contents - Re­port by BERNIE HELLBERG | Images © MERCEDES-BENZ SOUTH AFRICA

YOU’RE IN THE MAR­KET FOR A FULL-SIZE LUX­URY SEDAN. ONE THAT’S BOTH EN­JOY­ABLE TO DRIVE AND HAS MORE IN­DI­VID­U­AL­ITY THAN AN AUDI S6, FOR EX­AM­PLE, AND IT CAN’T BE EX­OTIC LIKE A JAGUAR XF S, EI­THER, THEN A GOOD, BAL­ANCED-BUT-NOT-DOZY MERCEDES-AMG E43 SHOULD DO THE TRICK. BERNIE HELLBERG SPENT A SAT­IS­FY­ING WEEK DRIV­ING THE MID­DLE MAN­AGE­MENT MEIS­TER.

“YOU’VE MADE IT IN LIFE AND THE TIME HAS COME FOR YOU TO PICK A MORE CLASS AP­PRO­PRI­ATE CAR. BUT THE TIME HAS ALSO AR­RIVED FOR YOU TO DITCH WHAT­EVER FOUR-CYLIN­DER OP­TIONS YOU MAY HAVE CON­SID­ERED BE­FORE, AND GO FOR THE UL­TI­MATE PRIZE – THE EF­FORT­LESS MERCEDES-AMG E43.”

You’ve made it in life and the time has come for you to pick a more class ap­pro­pri­ate car. But the time has also ar­rived for you to ditch what­ever four­cylin­der op­tions you may have con­sid­ered be­fore, and go for the ul­ti­mate prize – the ef­fort­less Mercedes-AMG E43.

In this sce­nario, you leave be­hind the E350, Merc’s top turbo-four op­tion that, if we’re hon­est, be­trays the idea of driv­ing a Mercedes E-Class, some­what, with its en­gine that strains just a tad too much un­der a re­lent­less right foot.

The E43 de­liv­ers the smooth power and ef­fort­less ac­cel­er­a­tion that one ex­pects from an E-Class. Com­bined with a de­lec­ta­ble nine-speed au­to­matic ‘box and a rear-bi­ased (to the tune of 69%) 4Matic all-wheel-drive sys­tem, the re­sult is sublime, if not in­spi­ra­tional.

AN­GRY FROM EV­ERY AN­GLE

Look­ing at the E43, it is clear that the ex­te­rior de­sign is the prod­uct of re­straint. As it should be with this class of car. Tempted, as they must have been to go all-out in styling terms, the engi­neers re­spon­si­ble for keep­ing the clas­sic E-Class lines at the front of the car, have done a fan­tas­tic job.

It was a stroke of ge­nius to opt for the slicker sil­hou­ette of the stan­dard E-Class, rather than the bulging hulk of the E63’s bon­net and GT-like grille de­sign. At the rear too, the bel­li­cose dif­fuser on the big­ger AMG makes way for a more sub­tle rear bumper de­sign on the E43.

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