by Adrian-Liviu Dorofte

SPY: The 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Estate FL (S 212) shows heavy camouflaged front fascia

Mercedes-Benz will unveil its new-generation E-Class next year, at the Detroit Motor Show. Testing programme began during winter 2011/2012, with the prototypes being spotted in the Arctic region and Northern Europe so far. Right from the beginning, E-Class development vehicles have worn a thick coat of black tape to cover the major visual changes lying underneath. And this is also the case of the recently scooped pre-series estate version that was just exiting the R&D Centre in Stuttgart when spy cameras went into action.

The classic "four eyes" style will be replaced by a more dynamic attitude with the advent the new single-piece headlights with LED technology, which obey the new design philosophy of the brand. Apart from these, the E-Class Facelift will also receive a new pair of air intakes which express a greater dose of youthfulness and attractiveness, as well as a slightly revamped, more aerodynamic chromed grille to honor the Mercedes-Benz tradition of luxury limousines. By contrast, the rear end will not undergo through consistent aethetics surgery: you'll find a new light arrangement, in GLK way, for the LED lamps and a sharper stance. Another important modification will be the dissappearance of the criticized Ponton crease from the sides of the car, so the profile should now look clean, smooth and more elegant.

The interior will be updated with new technology, new colour combos and premium quality materials. As the 2013 E-Class is launched right after the introduction of the new S-Class (W 222), it should also get some of the impressive innovations its bigger brother is debuting: @yourCOMAND integrated internet-based telematics, Head-Up Display and a new generation of enhanced driver assistants should be available on the options' list of the forthcoming E-Class.

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