Hot on the heels of the refreshed Mercedes E-class saloon and estate, Mercedes has facelifted the coupe and cabriolet members of the E-class family. Chief among the changes to the two-door E-classes are a reworked face, new petrol engine technology and slight cabin tweaks.
Bye-bye to the four-eyed E-class...
That's right: for 2013, the coupe and cabriolet E-class have switched to single headlight units, like their saloon brethren. The main grille has morphed from two horizontal bars to one, which, along with the reprofiled lower intakes, gives the car a sportier look, says Mercedes.
From thereon back, you'll be squinting to spot the changes. Indicators are now set lower in the rear lights, and there's a slightly different rear bumper designed to accentuate the car's width. Handsome, or clumsy? Don't forget to leave your comments below.
Unlike the new 2013 E-class saloon, the coupe and cabriolet keep the prominent crease around the rear wheelarch. Mercedes says it has been retained 'as a visible sign of this sporty car's rear-wheel drive'. We say it's thanks to the hefty costs involved in fiddling with the coupe's flank sheet metal – the saloon and estate E-class needed just a simpler change of rear door...
What's the news under the bonnet of the 2013 Mercedes E-class coupe and cabriolet?
The two largest petrol engines have been binned: there's no more E350 V6 or E500 V8. It's that downsizing word again. Petrol duties are left to the E200 and E250 four-cylinder engines, though a new direct-injection powerplant will join the fray later.
The new 'BlueDIRECT' four-pot uses spray-guided direct fuel injection, and what Mercedes calls 'the world's first use of the stratified lean burn process, in combination with exhaust-gas turbocharging and external high-pressure exhaust gas recirculation.' Forget the jargon: what that boils down to is, naturally, super-frugal fuel efficiency. Merc's BlueDIRECT engines already meet EU6 emissions standards, set to come into effect in 2015.
Diesel duties are handled by the four-cylinder E220 CDI and E250 CDI, and the V6 E350 CDI. All engines feature stop/start as standard, and the option of Merc's seven-speed paddle-shift automatic transmission. A six-speed manual is factory-fit on the lesser-powered models.
Any other changes for the facelifted E-class coupe and cabriolet?
Electric power steering means the option of auto-park systems appear for the first time. The tech highlights, many of which are pinched from the forthcoming new 2013 S-class flagship, are shared with the E-class saloon, so expect the usual raft of safety features like collision prevention and lane departure warnings, as well as traffic sign reading and 360-degree camera views.
Keeping occupants unruffled is the 'Aircap' system, now fitted as standard to facelifted E-class cabriolets. The windscreen rail-mounted air deflector rises at 28mph and drops at 9mph, guiding buffeting air flow away from passengers. This works with the rear wind deflector, which now works with the seatbelt system to calculate how many people are on board and adjust its effectiveness. Inside, there's a lightly redesigned instrument cluster, and new trim and leather options.
The new two-door E-class family will reach the UK in summer 2013. Thanks to the more generous gadget bundle, prices will rise across the range: reckon on paying £33-40,000 for a coupe, and £36-46,000 for a soft-top.