Mercedes E-Class Coupe: New competition for the BMW 3 Series Coupe?

Others | May 5th, 2009 by 29
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It is quite interesting when a large German manufacturer decides to stop competing with the popular midsize-coupes in the premium-segment. Are Audi A5 and BMW …

It is quite interesting when a large German manufacturer decides to stop competing with the popular midsize-coupes in the premium-segment. Are Audi A5 and BMW 3 Series Coupe suddenly share this market among themselves? Is Mercedes really interesting in only watching the game between the two without their own competitor?

If we believe the new nomenclature from Stuttgart then the answer is YES, the E-Class so it seems to have moved away from this market, especially since historically, any models carrying the E-Class badge, have always been directly competing with the 5 Series.

But a big question arises: Is the new E-Class Coupe the successor of the old C-Class based CLK, of course at a much higher price, or is it simply a model derived from the E-Class line dominating a new market?

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Well, let’s see where Mercedes stands on this and take a look at some numbers below.

If we compare the wheelbase of the E-class Coupe with the C-Class sedan and the C-Class T-model with whom the E coupe allegedly has nothing in common, we start to wonder. Is it coincidence that the wheelbase in all three cases is exactly 2,760 mm? Possibly. The E-Class models however have a significantly longer wheelbase, 2,874 mm to be exact.

To go even further with the measurements, if we compare the entire exterior length, we find that the C-Class Sedan is about 12 centimeters shorter than the E-Class Coupe, but the coupe remains nearly 17 centimeters behind the E-Class Sedan. It is very common that the Coupe model is longer than the sedan it is derived from, we see the same thing in the BMW 3 Series as well.

Looking at the width of these cars, we notice that the C-Class Sedan is only ONE centimeter shy of the E-Class Coupe, but the E-Class Coupe is still a whole lot smaller than the E-Class Sedan – seven centimeters is very significant when it comes to the car’s width!

Comparing the Mercedes E-Class Coupe to its counterpart in the Audi line-up, the A5 and the BMW 3 Series Coupe, we determine that the E-Class Coupe is longer than both, but not by much. It is sitting somewhere between the 3er Coupe and the 6 Series Coupe.

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Mercedes claims that there are 60% common parts between E-Class Sedan and the Coupe version, but they don’t tell us how many of these parts can be found in the C-Class as well e.g engine, gearbox.

We believe it would be very interesting to get the percentage of common parts shared between the C-Class Sedan and E-Class Coupe, which could demonstrate even further our theory. We’re no Mercedes-Benz experts, but we strongly believe that there are plenty common parts between the two different models, putting the E-Class Coupe even more in the “minor C-Class league”.

Now let’s focus a little bit on pricing, I’m sure your heads are already spinning from all these measurements. In Europe, the Audi A5 and BMW 3 Series Coupe start at around 34,000 Euros, while the new E-Class Coupe is a whole 10,000 euros higher. A pretty significant difference we would say, don’t you agree?

But the general auto media is not interested in such details, instead, the current issue of the “Auto Straßenverkehr” compares the three cars with each other, simply telling us that the despite the higher price tag, the E-Class Coupe goes after the Audi A5 and especially after the very popular 3 Series Coupe.

But instead of telling their readers that the Merc is a bit too expensive for that segment, they do the exactly the opposite: they are complaining about the price difference between A4 / A5 and 3er sedan / Coupe. And to go even further, next they are praising Mercedes for the very small difference between E-Class Sedan and Coupe.

As long as you intentionally forget to tell your readers about the huge price difference between C-Class Sedan and E-Class Coupe, then it’s safe for everyone to assume that the new “E-Class” Coupe is probably closer to the C than to the E.

Of course, in the end everybody is free to compare any cars however they want to, but in this case, it seems to come to a personal opinion of what market the E-Class Coupe really belongs to.

But in this case one could really think that the only purpose of naming the new “CLK” as the “E-Class Coupe” instead, is the opportunity to sell it at a higher price tag. Since in the end, this is the an E-Class now.

At least by it’s name…