What started out as a rather ordinary mid-life facelift is turning out to be just as comprehensive as that for the W212 E-Class (the old generation). Mercedes is changing many of the features that define their current E-Class sedan, including the interior and both ends of the car.
This prototype was spied in various forms in Stuttgart late last year, but as the Germans begin their complex winter testing phase, more and more features are being added. Don't be fooled by the state of the car; most such facelifts take between 18 to 24 months to complete, so the debut is probably going to take place in 2020.
Getting back to the facelift, the E-Class sedan is giving up a bit of its identity and borrowing some LED styling from the new CLS-Class, which is ironically derived from it. On earlier prototypes, Mercedes stuck on round provisional lights on the boot lid, saying they are going to stretch the taillights. As a reminder, both the E-Class and the S-Class sedans currently have them to one side, makes for easier access. But LEDs last way longer than standard bulbs, and it's not like Mercedes owners do much DIY maintenance. This kind of design can also be seen on the new generation CLA, which just came out a few weeks ago.