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

  • Get to the point
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

    Ashdown Group: Front-End UI Application Developer

    £30000 - £40000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Front-End UI Application ...

    Recruitment Genius: Digital Account Executive

    £18000 - £26000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They work with major vehicle ma...

    Recruitment Genius: Service Engineers - Doncaster / Hull

    £27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Domestic Service Only Engineers are requ...

    Recruitment Genius: Employability / Recruitment Adviser

    £23600 - £27500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The Employability Service withi...

    Day In a Page

    Where the spooks get their coffee fix: The busiest Starbucks in the US is also the most secretive

    The secret CIA Starbucks

    The coffee shop is deep inside the agency's forested Virginia compound
    Revealed: How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Loch Ness Monster 'sighting'

    How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Nessie 'sighting'

    The Natural History Museum's chief scientist was dismissed for declaring he had found the monster
    One million Britons using food banks, according to Trussell Trust

    One million Britons using food banks

    Huge surge in number of families dependent on emergency food aid
    Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths 2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

    2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

    Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths trove
    The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey, 25 years on

    The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey 25 years on

    The space telescope was seen as a costly flop on its first release
    Did Conservative peer Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

    Did Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

    A document seen by The Independent shows that a week after he resigned from the Lords he sold 350,000 shares in an American company - netting him $11.2m
    Apple's ethnic emojis are being used to make racist comments on social media

    Ethnic emojis used in racist comments

    They were intended to promote harmony, but have achieved the opposite
    Sir Kenneth Branagh interview: 'My bones are in the theatre'

    Sir Kenneth Branagh: 'My bones are in the theatre'

    The actor-turned-director’s new company will stage five plays from October – including works by Shakespeare and John Osborne
    The sloth is now the face (and furry body) of three big advertising campaigns

    The sloth is the face of three ad campaigns

    Priya Elan discovers why slow and sleepy wins the race for brands in need of a new image
    How to run a restaurant: As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food

    How to run a restaurant

    As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food
    Record Store Day: Remembering an era when buying and selling discs were labours of love

    Record Store Day: The vinyl countdown

    For Lois Pryce, working in a record shop was a dream job - until the bean counters ruined it
    Usher, Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert as part of the Global Poverty Project

    Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert

    The concert in Washington is part of the Global Citizen project, which aims to encourage young people to donate to charity
    10 best tote bags

    Accessorise with a stylish shopper this spring: 10 best tote bags

    We find carriers with room for all your essentials (and a bit more)
    Paul Scholes column: I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England

    Paul Scholes column

    I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England
    Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

    Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

    The heptathlete has gone from the toast of the nation to being a sleep-deprived mum - but she’s ready to compete again. She just doesn't know how well she'll do...