Watch out Allroad, the All-Terrain is coming.
Almost two years ago, Mercedes-Benz revealed a wild, off-road variant of the E-Class called the All-Terrain 4x4 Squared. We knew such a creation would have to be toned down if it would ever be put into production, though we were unsure if Mercedes would ever need to offer an off-road version of the E-Class Wagon here in the United States. It seems the introduction of the Audi A6 Allroad has tipped Mercedes' hand with the reveal of the 2021 E 450 4MATIC All-Terrain.
The All-Terrain is based on the newly facelifted 2021 E-Class and uses the wagon body style with All-Terrain-specific body cladding in black matte, a redesigned grille, stylized skid plate, and new headlamp and taillamp designs. The only engine option offered on this off-road-capable E-Class will be the 3.0-liter M256 inline-six-cylinder engine found in all E 450 models, replacing the outgoing twin-turbo V6.
The M256 engine features a turbocharged and mild-hybrid EQ Boost technology, delivering a total output of 362 horsepower and 369 lb-ft of torque going out through a nine-speed automatic transmission to 4MATIC all-wheel-drive. Mercedes says the EQ Boost delivers up to 21 hp and 184 lb-ft of torque all on its own and it should provide smooth, linear acceleration and near-seamless stop-start functionality. Under the skin, changes from the standard E-Class wagon include Air Body Control suspension and Offroad/Offroad+ driving modes with downhill speed regulation.
As standard, the All-Terrain rides on 19-inch wheels with all-season run-flat tires but 20-inch wheels are also available. Mercedes says this version of the E-Class features a more "SUV-like design character" that should make it more appealing to US consumers. Like its key competitor, the A6 Allroad, the All-Terrain will have greater ground clearance for owners who need more versatility than standard wagons can provide.
Inside, the All-Terrain benefits from all of the upgrades found across the facelifted 2021 E-Class range. These include a new MBUX infotainment system with dual 12.3-inch displays, 64-color ambient lighting, and advanced safety features such as Active Distance Assist with Route-Based Speed Adaptation, Active Stop-and-Go Assist, Active Steering Assist, Active Brake Assist with Cross-Traffic Function, Active Speed Limit Assist with Traffic Sign Assist, Active Parking Assist with a 360-degree camera system, and more.
Pricing has not been announced but we estimate it will be more expensive than the 2020 E 450 Wagon, which started at $66,100. For reference, the 2020 Audi A6 Allroad starts at $66,895. Mercedes says the E 450 4MATIC All-Terrain will be arriving at US dealers by late 2020.