2018 Mercedes Benz E400 4Matic Coupe Review: A Hardtop Built To Cruise And Flatter

Jan. 21--Just my luck: Mercedes-Benz sent us a gorgeous E400 Cabriolet on the coldest week of the year.

It was 3 degrees one recent morning on Signal Mountain when I went out to fire up M-B's classy convertible -- not exactly a temp that makes you want to drop the top and let your hair tousle in the wind.

To their credit, Mercedes-Benz engineers have done everything possible to make the E400 Cabriolet an all-season ride. On the traction side, our Diamond White Metallic tester comes equipped with the carmaker's 4MATIC all-wheel-drive system that snickered at a recent half-inch snowfall.

In addition to the requisite seat warmers, the M-B E400 Cabrio has optional neck warmers built into the headrests and armrest heaters to keep your forearms toasty warm. Still, no amount of furniture warmers can nullify sub-zero wind chills; so an open-air review will have to wait.

That's OK. Mercedes has fortified the all-season soft-top on the E-series Cabrio to the point that it's almost as quiet inside as a hardtop. That cabin isolation compliments the car's sublime drive-train and luxury touches. Seat massagers or aroma therapy anyone?

THE BASICS

The Mercedes-Benz E400 4MATIC Cabriolet is an all-wheel-drive, four passenger convertible with a 3.0-liter, V-6, turbocharged engine. It competes in the luxury convertible segment with the BMW 4-series convertible.

In the real world, the E400 Cabriolet is often a fun-and-sun vehicle for affluent buyers who already have a big SUV in the garage and want a sporty, drop-top to enjoy during the spring, summer and fall.

The E400 Cabrio shares a host of upgrades with the 2018 E-class sedan and wagon. For starters, it is five inches longer than before which translates to more interior volume. Still, the back seats are not built for long-haul trips with full-size adults.

The 329-horsepower engine, meanwhile, launches the E400 from zero to 60 miles per hour in 5.5 seconds.

WORTHWHILE OPTION: OK, maybe it's a bit over the top, but there is really no reason to turn down the $950, multi-contour, massaging front seats. If you are going to spend almost $90,000 for a car, why leave this indulgent option off the table.

IT'S GOOD FOR CHATTANOOGA BUYERS BECAUSE: There are few places in North America as well-suited for scenic, top-down driving as the Tennessee Valley. From the mountaintops to the Sequatchie Valley the area abounds in gorgeous, day-trip routes.

HOW MUCH: The base price of our tester is $68,800, but a host of options and packages boost the bottom line to $89,160. Mercedes-Benz at Long of Chattanooga at 6035 International Drive is the area dealer.

COOL STUFF: It's hard to top neck heaters, but we also like the remote-start feature that allows you to warm up your M-B in the driveway (careful, though, not the garage) without ever leaving your house.

WE WISH FOR: A retest in September.

WHILE YOU ARE LOOKING: Pay a visit to your local BMW dealer for other luxury convertible options.

Contact Mark Kennedy at [email protected]

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Quick Spin: Mercedes-Benz E400 Cabrio a drop-dead gorgeous drop-top
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