Experts say working from home has many advantages, chief of which is the time saved from having to drive to and from the office.
Not needing to drive to work also means your blood pressure can be lower, since you won’t have to deal with traffic or road rage.
There are many other perks, too. These include being able to wake up later and for those with kids, more time to tend to them. The time saved means you can also exercise, have breakfast or both.
You also do not have to dress up for meetings. Well, not really. Nobody has to know that although you’ve got a jacket and tie on, you are actually not wearing any pants under the table.
But there are two huge downsides to working from home. Firstly, the blurring of lines between your residence and office – where does one end and the other begin?
Secondly, those of us who enjoy driving cannot indulge in it. The drive back home is a chance to begin disconnecting/detaching your mind from work so you can focus on the family. It is a break that many of us no longer enjoy.
If it is a respite you need, then the latest Mercedes-Benz E-Class might be the car you need to take your mind off things.
MERCEDES-BENZ E-CLASS: NOT JUST ENHANCED
The Mercedes-Benz E-Class is a perennial favourite – and not just in Singapore. Globally, it is the best-selling model in the carmaker’s history.
There are many reasons for its success. The model’s badge is synonymous with success, and the resale value is solid. Its advanced safety functions and numerous features have further burnished its appeal.
You would imagine that with the E-Class’ success, Mercedes may have limited the update to minor cosmetic changes. But as they say, that’s not how Germans do things.
New LED headlights have appeared, along with a new grille and front bumper. Mercedes went even further with the rear end, whose bumper, boot lid and tail-lights are all new.
Settle into the driver’s seat and you’ll find that the Mercedes-Benz User Experience (MBUX) now has dual 12.3-inch displays as standard. This has been further upgraded with the inclusion of Mercedes me connect, which is designed to help you get the most out of the car.
Through the app, drivers can access a multitude of features that include seeing the car’s status (doors, windows, fluid levels), remote locking/unlocking and one-touch emergency calls.
I like the design of the new E-Class’ steering wheel, which has larger touch pads for scrolling through the menus and selecting functions. However, I found these new pads to be less responsive and more cumbersome than the smaller ones.
More convenient than before, on the other hand, is the driver’s seat adjustment. You input your height into the system, and it automatically adjusts the seat and steering wheel. Then, all you need to do is some fine-tuning.
Beneath the E200’s bonnet is a turbocharged 2-litre 4-cylinder capable of 194hp (197PS) and 320Nm. Paired to a 9-speed automatic, the sedan hits 100km/h from rest in 7.5 seconds.
Performance is relatively respectable, as the E200 will have no issue merging and out-accelerating most cars here.
However, though punchy, the engine needs more refinement. Four-cylinders are not known for being smooth, but roughness is not the problem in the E200. The issue is its gruff vocals.
In fact, the powerplant’s vocals are jarring in the context of the otherwise quiet cabin. You must refrain from driving hard, or the workmanlike soundtrack will make itself heard.
But whether you are driving it gently or driving it hard, the one constant is the cushy ride. The Mercedes-Benz E-Class has always been known for its refined ride, and that quality is again present here.
The suspension does a swell job in ironing out bumps and imperfections. This is something you want, especially when potholes seem to multiply like fruit flies following prolonged wet weather.
Naturally, this means that sporty handling is not in the E-Class’ repertoire – at least not in the E200 Exclusive model. This car wants to be driven in an unhurried manner, so that you can comfortably enjoy its numerous amenities and features.
That sounds like an ideal respite from the stresses of the job. Getting behind the wheel of an E-Class is a good way to disconnect from the office – even if you are working from home.
Mercedes-Benz E-Class E200 Exclusive 2.0 (A)
ENGINE 1991cc, 16-valves, inline-4, turbocharged
MAX POWER 194hp (197PS) at 5500-6100rpm
MAX TORQUE 320Nm at 1650-4000rpm
POWER TO WEIGHT 114.1hp per tonne
GEARBOX 9-speed automatic with manual select
0-100KM/H 7.5 seconds
TOP SPEED 240km/h (governed)
CONSUMPTION 12.7km/L (combined)
PRICE INCL. COE From $290,888 (after $10k VES surcharge)
AGENT Cycle & Carriage Industries