The next-generation Mercedes-Benz E-Class has been caught by our spy photographers during some real world testing.
Unlike previous spy photos of the new E-Class, these latest prototype vehicles aren't adorned with any shape-obfuscating cladding or false grilles and lights, although it is still wearing plenty of swirly camouflage.
Under the deliberately distracting disguise, the E-Class sports a rounder body that resembles either a scaled up C-Class or shrunken S-Class. Details, such as the headlights and tail-lights, don't seem to stray far from the template laid out by those two models.
Beneath the skin the E-Class is said to ride on a stretched and widened version of the "MRA" rear- and all-wheel drive platform that underpins the current C-Class.
It's expected that the new E-Class will be both wider and longer than the current model, which debuted back in 2009. Despite that, the next-generation vehicle should be lighter, thanks to the extensive use of aluminium and high-strength steel.
The new E-Class is expected debut early in 2016 in sedan form, with a wagon, and then a coupe and convertible following months down the track.
There will be an assortment of turbocharged four-, six- and eight-cylinder petrol and diesel drivetrains to choose from, as well as hybrid and plug-in hybrid models later on. It's also possible that a 48V battery system and the company's next-generation of four-cylinder engines will debut with the new E-Class.