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To help members understand the latest automotive technology so they can purchase vehicles that best suit their needs, the Automobile Club of Southern California's Automotive Research Center (ARC) began testing and reviewing vehicles over a decade ago

For the 2022 edition, we include testing and ranking cars and light trucks with the latest technology, including having at least one advanced driver-assistance system (ADAS) feature. In addition to vehicle evaluation, the guide covers a number of pertinent automotive topics in detail—for example, the latest advanced safety features, how to properly maintain your vehicle, and new vehicles coming to market in the next few years.

2021 Mercedes-Benz E450 4Matic All-Terrain

Vehicle Type: SUV/Minivan Gasoline
 overall score
Category Ranking: 8

Vehicle Price

Base Price: $67,600
Price as Tested: $88,260

Fuel Information

Fuel Type: Premium
Fuel Capacity (gal): 21.1
EPA City mpg22
EPA Highway mpg28
EPA Combined mpg24

Advanced Safety Features

  • Adaptive Cruise Control [O]
  • Advanced Headlights [O]
  • Automatic Emergency Braking [S]
  • Blind-Spot Warning [S]
  • Driver Monitoring [S]
  • Forward-Collision Warning [S]
  • Lane-Departure Warning [O]
  • Lane-Keeping Assistance [O]
  • Rear Cross-Traffic Warning [O]
  • Reverse Automatic Emergency Braking [O]
  • [S] Standard, [O] Optional
NHTSA Rating:

Overall Observations

For 2021, the Mercedes-Benz E 450 wagon, with its plastic body cladding and elevated ride height, is now labeled the All-Terrain - though it’s doubtful many owners will take a high-end luxury car like this far from the pavement. Also new is the mild hybrid powertrain that combines a 3.0-liter turbocharged inline 6-cylinder engine (362 hp) with an electric motor, which provides up to 21 hp for a temporary power boost. A 9-speed automatic transmission, multiple drive modes, and all-wheel drive are standard. The E 450 has great acceleration and power, and the everyday ride and handling feel solid, safe, and serene. That said, the car’s elevated stance makes it feel less well-planted over rough pavement. Par for the luxury-car course is the interior’s high-quality materials. The cabin has plenty of available creature comforts and tech, including heated/ventilated front seats with massage. There’s plenty of room in the first 2 rows, but the rear-facing third-row seat is next to useless. LED headlights are standard, but among advanced safety features, only automatic emergency braking, driver monitoring, and blind-spot warning are standard. And did we mention that the E 450 is a bit pricey? Our test car had almost $20,000 in options.
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Strengths and Weaknesses

Strong Points

  • Strong acceleration
  • Smooth, quiet ride
  • Lots of interior space
  • Luxurious fit and finish

Weak Points

  • Steep price tag
  • Third-row jump seat isonly marginally useful
  • Steering wheel touchpadcontrols take somegetting used to

Vehicle Specifications

Model year tested: 2021
Number of passengers (F/R): 2/5
Curb weight (lbs): 4580.0
Exterior L / W / H (in): 194.8 / 73.7 / 58.9
Wheelbase (in): 115.7
Number of air bags: 9
Warranty (months/miles): 48/50,000
Tire manufacturer and model: Michelin Primacy mxm4
Front and rear tire size: 245/45 R19
Max towing capacity (lbs): 4630
Headlight type: LED
Transmission type: Auto 9-speed
Drivetrain type: All wheel
Engine/motor: 3.0L Inline-6 turbo w/ EQ Boost
Engine horsepower @ RPM: 362 @ 6100

Test Data

Test Vehicle Scores

Advanced Safety Features:


Fuel Efficiency:


EPA Emissions Score:








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