Published on February 27th, 2016 | by Subhash Nair0
New E-Class Now in Production at the Sindelfingen plant in Germany
At the Mercedes-Benz plant Sindelfingen (Germany) series production of the new E-Class has begun. The new E-Class has a unique tradition. With a total of over 13 million E-Class Saloons and Estates sold, the E-Class is the best-selling vehicle in Mercedes-Benz history. To mark the official start of production, Mercedes-Benz gathered examples of the nine predecessor model series at the finishing line of the business saloon in Sindelfingen.
The new E-Class delivers stylish highlights with its distinct, emotive design and high-grade, exclusive interior. It also marks the world premiere of numerous technical innovations. They enable comfortable, safe driving on a new level plus a new dimension in driver assistance – among other things.
The vehicle comes complete with infotainment and control systems offering an all-new experience. Highlights of the optional Driver Assistance package that make the E-Class the most intelligent saloon in its class include the DRIVE PILOT: this system represents Mercedes-Benz’ next step along the road to autonomous driving. As Distance Pilot DISTRONIC on motorways and country roads, it is not only able to keep the correct distance to vehicles in front automatically, for the first time it can also follow them at a speed of up to 210 km/h.
This can make life easier for the driver, who no longer needs to operate the brake or accelerator pedal during normal driving and also receives plenty of effective steering assistance from the Steering Pilot – even on moderate bends. Another unique feature at speeds up to 130 km/h is the fact that, like in a swarm, the system can continue to intervene actively by taking account of surrounding vehicles and parallel structures, even if the lines are unclear or non-existent, like at road works. The system therefore makes driving much easier, especially in traffic jams or heavy congestion.
But it is not just in the vehicle itself that Mercedes-Benz makes use of innovative digital technologies. They are already used in an earlier stage of the product development and ensure an efficient production. For example, the production planning and scheduling team created a digital process chain that simulated the production process from the press plant to final assembly.
For assembly alone, around 4,000 individual processes are examined for technical feasibility long before series production commences. One particularly noteworthy aspect here is virtual assembly: in a room equipped with special cameras, experienced employees fit virtual components to a digitally simulated vehicle.
Carrying out this kind of testing with the avatar allows the team to assess how to best implement work processes long before actual production begins. In this respect, too, the latest E-Class is setting new standards.