Mercedes-Benz has revealed the next-generation E-Class Cabriolet, set to hit Australian showrooms during the third quarter of this year.
It has grown in size significantly thanks to the Cabriolet now sharing the current-gen E-Class' underpinnings, whereas the outgoing model borrowed its platform from the previous-gen (W204) C-Class.
The new soft-top is 123mm longer, 74mm wider and 30mm taller than before, while its wheelbase stretches by 113mm and track width grows by 67mm up the front and 68mm at the rear.
These gains net rear passengers an extra 102mm of legroom, while those up front will enjoy 15mm more headroom, as well as an additional 50mm of shoulder room and 38mm of elbow room.
Ride height also drops by 15mm when compared to the E-Class sedan, but an optional multi-chambered adjustable air suspension allows drivers to select between Comfort, Eco, Sport, Sport+ and Individual modes.
Opening and closing the roof – engineered to decrease road and wind noise – takes only 20 seconds and can be completed at speeds of up to 50km/h.
When the drop-top is stowed, 75 litres of the E-Class' 385L boot volume is lost, but this can be increased again thanks to the 50/50 folding rear seats, which allow bulkier items to be loaded through.
Four colours are available for the fabric soft-top – which is shared with the S-Class Cabriolet – including dark blue, dark brown, dark red and black.
A new interior, inherited from the rest of the E-Class range, is headlined by a pair of optional 12.3-inch screens, which together create an elongated display area for the instrument cluster and multimedia system.
Turbine-style air vents also carry over from the Coupe version, as well as an expansive wood panel that separates the Cabriolet's dashboard from its leather-appointed cabin.
Open-top driving in cold weather will not be an issue for owners thanks to a pair of optional features, including an Airscarf heating system that blows warm air onto the necks of all passengers.
Meanwhile, a wind deflector module called Aircap helps reduce in-cabin turbulence while on the go.
Safety technologies offered in the E-Class Cabriolet include active brake assist, five airbags with optional curtain airbags and rear side airbags, as well as a roll-over protection system.
Powertrains for the new model have not yet been confirmed by the German manufacturer, but the Coupe's line-up of petrol and diesel-powered four- and six-cylinder engines are expected to be employed.
However, Mercedes-Benz has established that all variants will be fitted with a nine-speed automatic transmission as standard.
This means that European buyers will likely be given the choice of an entry-level 135kW/300Nm turbo-petrol E200, 143kW/400Nm diesel E220d, 180kW/370Nm petrol E300 and a range-topping all-wheel drive 245kW/480Nm V6 petrol E400 4Matic.
The E400's reign as the Cabriolet's flagship is anticipated to be short-lived as a stonking E63 S Mercedes-AMG version packing 450kW/850Nm is almost certain to be on the horizon.
Pricing and local specification details will be unveiled closer to the E-Class Cabriolet's third quarter launch date.
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