The Mercedes-Benz W210 is an executive car which was produced by the German automaker Mercedes-Benz from 1995 through 2002 (production of the wagon variant (codenamed S210) carried over to the 2003 model year). They were sold under the E-Class model names in both sedan (saloon) and station wagon (estate) body types. W210 development started in 1988, three years after the W124’s introduction. The W210 E-class’s appearance, which was designed by Steve Mattin under design chief Bruno Sacco between 1989 and 1991, heralded a new design idiom for Mercedes, which would continue until the W209 CLK. W210 design work was frozen in May 1992 and developed for a show vehicle by late 1992. This design was previewed on the 1993 Coupé Concept shown at the Geneva Auto Show in March 1993. Design patents for both the Coupé Concept and the W210 E-Class were filed on 25 February 1993 in Germany and 25 August 1993 in the US.
On 21 July 1998, design patents were filed on an updated W210 (designed in 1997). As a result, for the 2000 model year, a new multi-function information system was incorporated into the instrument cluster below the speedometer, and the introduction of steering wheel controls for the audio/navigation/phone system. In addition, the 5-speed automatic transmission introduced “Touch Shift,” which used the +/- gate positions for semi-manual control of the gearbox. This electronic system replaced the previous gated shift arrangement and simplified gear changes. Exterior changes included a revised front with a steeper rake, similar to the CLK, and restyled bumpers and lower body trim; additionally, sedans received new taillights, while the wagon’s tailgate was redesigned, moving the CHMSL from the base of the rear window to directly above it in the underside of a small integral spoiler lip. The final W210 production included the E320 and E430 special editions released in two exterior colors – quartz silver (limited edition), obsidian black, and with Xenon lights, 17-inch alloy wheels and black maple walnut trim. Estate cars (sedans optionally) had Citroen-like self-leveling rear suspension with suspension struts rather than shock absorbers, gas-filled suspension spheres to provide damping and an under bonnet pressurizing pump. Unlike the traditional Citroën application Mercedes opted for a fixed ride height and employed rear coil springs to maintain the static ride height when parked.
It was the first Mercedes-Benz production car featuring Xenon headlamps (including dynamic headlamp range control, only low beam). / Wikipedia