UPDATED 8:15pm April 1 with comment from Mercedes-Benz Australia.
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The all-new Mercedes-Benz E-Class Cabriolet will be available in Australia from this month.

The E 350 and E 500 will be the first to arrive, followed by the E 250 CGI BlueEfficiency in May and the E 250 CDI BlueEfficiency in the third quarter of 2010.

Mercedes-Benz Australia's Peter Fadeyev said the first Cabriolets would be delivered next week and said a steady strem will roll onto our shores by the end of the month.

Mr Fadeyev denied that Mercedes has set any sales targets for the E-Class Cabriolet but said it would be fair to compare it to the numbers produced by the CLK, the car it replaces.

Over the past two years the CLK sold less than 300 units per year, but in its prime in 2004-2005 it averaged more than 800 sales. No doubt Mercedes would be very keen to replicate these figures with the new E-Class.

The E 350 starts at $139,950 and is powered by a 200kW/350Nm 3.5-litre V6 petrol engine. Fuel consumption averages out to 9.8 litres/100km while CO2 emissions are 229g/km.

The monster of the range is the E 500 which pounds outs 285kW and 530Nm of torque. The $186,950 5.5-litre V8 races from 0-100km/h in 5.3 seconds and powers on to the electronically limited 210km/h.

Combined cycle CO2 emissions hit 257g/km while fuel consumption averages 11.0 litres/100km. Both models feature a seven-speed automatic transmission and electronically controlled fuel injection.

The BlueEfficiency models are the environmental champions of the range.

The E 250 CGI is powered by a 1.8-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine. Power tops out at 150kW and 310Nm while fuel consumption and CO2 emissions are impressive at 8.3 litres/100km and 192g/km respectively.

The E 250 CDI is even sharper with average consumption as low as 5.6 litres/100km and CO2 emissions around 150g/km. The 2.1-litre four-cylinder diesel unit with its two-stage turbocharger matches the CGI for power but adds another 150Nm for maximum torque of 500Nm.

Both BlueEfficiency models come standard with a five-speed automatic transmission.

The most talked about feature of the new E-Class Cabriolet range is the AirCap automatic draught-stop system which reduces in-cabin turbulence. The windscreen-mounted wind deflector elevates the flow of air at the press of a button and enhances interior comfort by reducing draughts and noise.

AirCap will be fitted to all Australian E-Class Cabriolets as standard while AirScarf – the neck-level heating system integrated into the backrests – will be optional on the BlueEfficiency models.

All models are equipped with nine airbags – the E-Class’s door-panel-housed headbags a first on a Mercedes cabriolet – as well as belt tensioners and force limiters for all seats and driver and passenger crash-responsive head restraints.

Optional safety features include the award-winning Attention Assist drowsiness detector, Pre-Safe anticipatory occupant protection, intelligent light system, active bonnet and Distronic Plus proximity control.

Launching on the doorstep of winter with the motto “four seasons, four passengers”, the all-new Mercedes-Benz E-Class Cabriolet range will get its chance to display its year-round ability with the first deliveries arriving soon.

Note: Prices are manufacturers’ list prices and do not include on road costs and dealer delivery. For drive away price information, consumers should contact dealers.

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