The 2021 Mercedes-Benz E-Class sedan, a large luxury car, earns a TOP SAFETY PICK+ award from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety when equipped with an optional front crash prevention system.
To qualify for TOP SAFETY PICK+, vehicles must score good ratings in all six IIHS crashworthiness evaluations, including the driver-side small overlap front, passenger-side small overlap front, moderate overlap front, side, roof strength and head restraint tests. They must also be available with a front crash prevention system that earns advanced or superior ratings in both the vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-pedestrian tests and come equipped with good or acceptable headlights across all trims and packages.
The award for the E-Class applies to vehicles built after November 2020. Models built after that cut-off are available with three headlight variations. The curve-adaptive LED projectors with high beam assist offered with the Exterior Lighting package earn a good rating. The two other variations — static LED projectors with and without high beam assist — earn ratings of acceptable. Earlier, they earned marginal and poor ratings, respectively.
The 2021 E-Class is available with two different front crash prevention systems, but only vehicles outfitted with Active Brake Assist with Cross Traffic Function qualify for the TOP SAFETY PICK+ award. This system earns superior ratings in both the vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-pedestrian evaluations, avoiding collisions or slowing substantially to mitigate the force of impact in all of the test scenarios.
The simpler Active Brake Assist earns a basic rating for pedestrian detection, as it failed to slow in the test designed to simulate an adult walking along the edge of the travel lane.