With the official unveiling of the 2016 Mercedes Benz E-Class a few weeks away, bits and pieces of the car have already begun surfacing on eBay with other components also appearing on other websites.
These two particular components were sourced from an engineering prototype, and appear to have originated from a base model since the gauges are conventional analog units versus the upmarket digital units that are expected to see duty in higher grade models. The gauges themselves are separated by a seven inch color screen, while the center portion receives an 8.4 inch screen to house the infotainment system though it appears to be absent based on the photos that were provided by the seller in question. Another clue that suggests this is from a base model car is the glossy black plastic trim that houses all the gauges. It does not look quite as good as the upper spec trim seen in more premium models and is more utilitarian in appearance.
While there will be a small segment of customers that prefer analog gauges over digital ones, the bulk of base E-Class sales will be located in markets outside the U.S. where the model will primarily be used as a taxi. The E-Class has been a popular choice for taxi conversion, with past generation E-Class models establishing a reputation for their legendary durability as well as the strong pool of spare parts available from both OEM and aftermarket equivalents. It would be interesting if the company would offer a setup that combined the analog gauges with some elements from the higher spec models, but with durability and costs key factors in the taxi market, such an option would be seen as undesirable.
The assembly appears to have been harvested from a tester that was designed to comply with U.S. and British speed limits since it features a “mph” designation versus the metric based kilometer rating used in other European markets. The cluster was also most likely connected to a gasoline engine due to the high 8,000 rpm redline on the tachometer. According to the listing, the parts are located in Hamburg Germany, and were created and developed by Continental.
The eBay sale in question will be ending later today, and currently has four bids with the highest bid standing at $41.81 (€38.50) you can check out the sale here and perhaps add this unique piece of automotive hardware to your collection.