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Parkers overall rating: 4 out of 5 4.0
  • Very similar to other E-Classes
  • Loaded with latest technology

Stainless steel sports pedals, bespoke floor mats and All-Terrain-exclusive brushed aluminium trim aside, there's nothing here to differentiate the All-Terrain cabin from that of a standard E-Class Estate. And that, largely, is a good thing.

Half of the upper dashboard is occupied by twin 12.3-inch LCD driver's instrument and infotainment screens which, bizarrely, simultaneously consign analogue instrumentation to dinosaur status whilst painstakingly aping it. The lower dash is an elegant, air vent-housing curve which may be subject to a range of often dubiously inelegant trim finishes, and the centre console houses inset switchgear panels rather than being designed as an homogenous whole.

Power seat controls inhabit the upper door panel, as usual, as do woefully over-styled high frequency speakers from the fine-sounding Burmester stereo.

Rotary dial control of the multimedia screen is hampered by the placement of a wrist rest directly above, which itself houses duplicates of various buttons already present immediately below. The top of the rest serves as a touch pad which will only bring relief to left-handed owners.

That is, however, one of the very few ergonomic glitches we have unearthed in a driver's environment which is beautifully made, largely elegant and extremely comfortable.

  • Longer suspension travel means extra comfort
  • Even impresses when driven off-road

The All-Terrain may not be a machine which overmuch enjoys being flung around, then, but it is, by contrast, top of its class when it comes to high-speed comfort and quietness.

Abetted by some of the most comfortable seats in the business and ruthlessly hushed engine, road and wind noise, the ride quality of the air suspension is almost excellent. We say almost because air doesn't always manage to smooth away potholes and the rougher road surfaces as adeptly as we'd like, and it may indeed prove that the terrible decay of Britain's road surfaces will highlight occasional shortcomings in this respect.

Thanks to the longer suspension travel offered by the increase in ground clearance, the car's surprisingly comfortable when biffing about off-road too. Lumpen forest tracks are dispatched with easy fluidity, and the All-Terrain mode assists progress with a centre console screen diagram showing steering angle, vehicle level, gradient, tilt angle, the position of the accelerator and brake, and even a compass.