Last Chance To Buy: Mercedes-Benz E-Class


When's it going?

The E-Class is having a midsummer facelift. In the meantime, if you don't think the current one is too ugly, maybe you should consider parking it on your drive.

What's good about it?

The E-Class a few years ago was quite a disappointing package, but it came good in the end. Large, impressive and very sophisticated, as an executive car it sets the standard that everyone else has to follow. Safe, solid and spacious, it oozes quality.

Certainly, the E-Class is up against stiff competition in the executive sector of the market, but it manages to be one of the most appealing. First, it has great presence, the styling reminiscent of the top-of-the-range S-Class. Indeed, the E can almost match the S for gadgetry and equipment. Much of the technology is focused on making the car's handling more sporty, but also on ensuring a very smooth ride - bumps in the road hardly upset progress.

Inside, there's lots of room, although taller rear-seat passengers might find their heads too close to the roof. The boot is massive. The driver has a clear dashboard layout, and the quality of the materials in the interior is first class. A diesel engine is the sensible option, but there are lots of petrol choices too, especially for those who want higher performance.

What's bad about it?

This is another Merc that can break down. Fifteen years ago, it would have been unthinkable to identify any Mercedes as having marginal reliability, but in recent times some models haven't lived up to the old reputation. The over-complicated electronics and the sometimes average level of customer service have meant that there have been some frustrated owners. So, if you do buy one, make sure you have the manufacturer warranty and pay for a good subsequent warranty to cover breakdowns. Usually those won't be catastrophic engine explosions, but computer chip-related issues.

How much?

In the past, Mercedes discounts were marginal - but not any more. GR8 Car Deals (0845 466 888) could secure a basic E200K Classic that cost £27,025 at the dealer, compared to £23,127 on the road, via that broker. Also, Norwichunioncars.com had an E220CDi Avantgarde at £30,838, saving a useful £2,057 on one of the most popular models in the range.

Any snags?

Reliability issues, of course, plus three recalls since 2002 relating to brakes and one that suggests that the engine might suddenly revert to limp-home mode. Check that the recalls have been carried out.

Fact file

Launched: 2002

Engine sizes: 1.8-litre, 2.2 CDi, 2.6 V6, 2.7CDI, 3.2 V6, 3.2 V6 CDI, 3.5 V6, 5.0 V8, 5.4 V8

Performance: E220CDi; top speed 134mph, 0-60mph 10.1 seconds

Economy: 44.8mpg

Safety: NCAP, five stars

Life and Style
love + sex
Life and Style
Tikka Masala has been overtaken by Jalfrezi as the nation's most popular curry
food + drink
News
people
Voices
A propaganda video shows Isis forces near Tikrit
voicesAdam Walker: The Koran has violent passages, but it also has others that explicitly tells us how to interpret them
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Recruitment Genius: Sales Ledger & Credit Control Assistant

    £14000 - £17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Ledger & Credit Control...

    Recruitment Genius: Project Administrator

    £16000 - £19000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Project Administrator is requ...

    Recruitment Genius: International Trade Advisors - Hertfordshire or Essex

    £30000 - £35379 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The company is based in Welwyn ...

    Recruitment Genius: Operations Controller - Response Centre

    £20000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

    Day In a Page

    Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

    Climate change key in Syrian conflict

    And it will trigger more war in future
    How I outwitted the Gestapo

    How I outwitted the Gestapo

    My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
    The nation's favourite animal revealed

    The nation's favourite animal revealed

    Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
    Is this the way to get young people to vote?

    Getting young people to vote

    From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
    Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

    Poldark star Heida Reed

    'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
    The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

    The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

    Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
    Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

    Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

    Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
    Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

    David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

    The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
    Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

    Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

    Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
    With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

    Money, corruption and drugs

    The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
    America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

    150 years after it was outlawed...

    ... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
    Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

    Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

    The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
    Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

    You won't believe your eyes

    Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
    Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

    Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

    The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
    War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

    The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

    Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn