You know you’re getting old when you start using “when I was your age” lines on your kids, and that’s exactly what happened to me during my week with the 2018 Mercedes-Benz E400 Wagon. While my 6-year-old daughter was riding in the “backety back” (as she calls the rear-facing third row) of this Mercedes, six-year-old me had to make due from the “way back” of a 1977 Chevrolet Impala station wagon. My parents probably wish they had this Benz during summer road trips with me and my siblings!
Now, unlike my childhood days, there are many more options on the market for family haulers with everything from minivans to a practically limitless variety of crossovers and SUVs. That being said, perhaps station wagons are the ultimate example of a true crossover combining the ride quality of a sedan with the added passenger/cargo space of an SUV. Hot on the heels of our seat time with the Jaguar XF Sportbrake, we were glad to hop behind the wheel of the 2018 Mercedes-Benz E400 Wagon for a week.
2018 Mercedes-Benz E400 Wagon Exterior
The current Mercedes-Benz E-Class is offered in four body styles (sedan, coupe, cabriolet and station wagon), and each one has its own attitude. As much as we loved the E400 Coupe when we reviewed it a few months ago, with its sporty yet utilitarian profile, the wagon might be even cooler looking. The 2018 Mercedes-Benz E400 Wagon has a look that will resonate among car and crossover buyers alike, while doing so with a unique style instantly recognizable as a Mercedes.
Spicing things up a bit more, the $800 Night Package added some dark accents to this wagon including the black window molding, black roof rails, and the two-tone 18-inch AMG five-spoke wheels. All this looks especially good when paired with the Selenite Grey Metallic paint job (a $720 option).
2018 Mercedes-Benz E400 Wagon Interior
Stretching the E-Class’ roofline to create the 2018 Mercedes-Benz E400 Wagon results in a roomy and luxurious cabin that accommodates seven passengers, including the rear-facing, stowable jump seats. With small kids in tow, these seats open up a third-row seating area that is roomier than mid-size, three-row CUVs like the Lexus RX 350L, but you can only access these seats by crawling through the liftgate. These seats cleverly fold into the cargo floor when they aren’t needed, and create a perfectly flat storage area of 35 cubic feet behind the second row and 64 cubic feet with the second-row seats folded down.
Being a mid-size vehicle, the E400 Wagon offers more space than you’ll find in a compact crossover, but the low, sporty roofline prevents it from being as roomy a mid-size CUV. Then again, one thing we love about station wagons is that this segment proves that bigger – and taller – isn’t always better. Kids will love sitting in the rear jump seat, leaving plenty of room for three adults to sit comfortably in the middle row; a unique throwback feature you’re not going to find on other modern wagons.
Mercedes-Benz hit a homerun with the current E-Class interior design, giving the 2018 Mercedes-Benz E400 Wagon a cabin that is as stylish as it is lavish. This tester had the optional $4,900 designo interior that combined Macchiato Beige and Saddle Brown Exclusive Nappa leathers throughout the cabin, and the seats had a beautiful quilted and perforated design. Adding to this was a Natural Grain Black Ash wood (another $150), as well as active multicontour front seats with massage ($1,320), panoramic roof ($1,000), three-zone automatic climate control ($760) and heated and ventilated front seats ($450). The cherry on top was the $10,200 Premium 3 Package that brought a long list of luxury and tech features like the 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, LED Intelligent Light System headlamps, Burmester Surround Sound System, Air Balance cabin-air purification and cabin fragrance system, inductive wireless smartphone charging, head-up display and rear-side window sunshades.
2018 Mercedes-Benz E400 Wagon Powertrain
The 2018 Mercedes-Benz E400 Wagon uses a 3.0-liter twin-turbo V-6 paired to a nine-speed automatic transmission and standard 4MATIC all-wheel drive. If this engine’s 329 horsepower and 354 lb-ft of torque isn’t enough, there’s always the 603-horsepower E63 AMG wagon. Although this tester wasn’t the AMG-tuned model, it still came with drilled front rotors, great cornering abilities and a 0-60 time of 5.3 seconds. Balancing that performance, the E400 Wagon delivers EPA-rated fuel economy estimates of 19 mpg in the city and 25 mpg on the highway**.
If you’re worried about any added weight affecting the wagon’s performance and handling, don’t! The 2018 Mercedes-Benz E400 Wagon weighs a mere 77 pounds more than the E400 4MATIC Coupe, and it handles like a dream. Bottom line, the E400 can handle twisty roads just as well as it can trips to the grocery store.
2018 Mercedes-Benz E400 Wagon Safety
Like the sedan, the 2018 Mercedes-Benz E400 Wagon gets a five-star overall crash rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Most of the cost factored into the pricey Premium 3 Package is in high-tech safety features. These include Active Brake Assist with Cross-Traffic Function, Lane Change Assist, Lane Keeping Assist, Blind Spot Assist, Rear Cross-Traffic Alert, Active Parking Assist, Surround View System and more.
2018 Mercedes-Benz E400 Wagon Overall
Station wagons have definitely come a long way since my parents’ ’77 Chevy Impala, but these cars are still a perfect alternative to the growing number of crossovers and SUVs out there. As a growing numbers of automakers (such as Buick, Porsche and Jaguar) join the station wagon market, the 2018 Mercedes-Benz E400 Wagon only serves to prove that Mercedes-Benz has been mastering this body style for years. You’re just not going to find anything else out there that is as sporty, luxurious and practical as this wagon.
When it comes to the 2018 Mercedes-Benz E-Class lineup, the wagon is priced above the sedan and coupe but lower than the cabriolet with a starting price of $63,050. In true Mercedes fashion, buyers can opt for a wide variety of options and packages, and this test model was about as decked out as they come with an as-tested price of $86,540. At this price, you’re just not going to find anything else out there that is as sporty, luxurious and practical as the E400 Wagon.
Make sure to visit your local AutoNation-affiliated Mercedes-Benz dealership and test drive the 2018 Mercedes-Benz E-Class today!
*MSRP excludes tax, license, registration, destination charge and options. Dealer prices may vary.
**Based on 2018 EPA mileage ratings. Your mileage will vary depending specific vehicle trim, how you drive and maintain your vehicle, driving conditions, and other factors.