This is the Mercedes E-class cabriolet, unveiled today at the Detroit motor show.
The new E-class cabriolet indirectly replaces the CLK cabriolet in Mercedes’ range, although, like its coupé sibling, it will be around five per cent cheaper than the CLK was. That should mean prices will start at around £32,000.
The cabriolet shares the same dimensions as the coupé — it’s 4698mm long and 1786mm wide — but because of the roof, it is slightly taller, at 1402mm high.
Mercedes has managed to reduce the car’s weight compared with the CLK cabriolet’s, and it sticks with a fabric roof. Overall kerb weights start at 1645kg for the 250 CGI petrol model; that’s 30kg less than the CLK but 70kg heavier than the E-class coupé.
The roof folds in 20 seconds, and Mercedes claims that when it’s closed the car’s interior is one of the quietest in its class. The firm says it is possible to have a phone conversation at 125mph.
The soft-top’s design also helps to give the car a Cd of 0.28, 0.4 points more than the coupé (the most aerodynamic production car in the world). But it does make the cabriolet the most aerodynamic convertible in its class. With the top closed, boot space is 390 litres, but this decreases to 300 litres with the roof stowed.
The car features a new kind of wind deflector called AirCap, which is designed to cut turbulence and retain warm air in the cabin. It consists of a six-inch deflector on the top of the windscreen that directs the airflow 20cm over the top of the car. It operates at up to 160mph and Mercedes claims it makes the cabriolet usable in cold climates with the top down. It does, however, increase the Cd figure and fuel consumption.
The engine range reflects the coupé’s, with a V6 and four-cylinder diesels, a V6 and four-cylinder petrols, and a V8 petrol. The car goes on sale in March.
Detroit motor show 2010
Detroit motor show: Hot BMW Z4, Detroit motor show: BMW electric 1-series, Detroit motor show: Buick Regal GS, Detroit motor show: Cadillac CTS-V Coupe, Detroit motor show: Cadillac's new flagship saloon, Detroit motor show: Chevrolet Aveo RS, Detroit motor show: Chrysler 300C, Detroit motor show: electric Fiat 500, New Ford Focus revealed, Detroit motor show: Ford Mustang V8, Detroit motor show: Hyundai Blue-Will, Detroit motor show: Jeep specials, Detroit motor show: Merc E-class cabrio, Detroit motor show: Mini Beachcomber, Detroit motor show: Toyota hybrid concept, Detroit motor show: VW Jetta coupe hybrid concept, Detroit motor show: electric Volvo C30.