Comfort personified

Mercedes E-Class, 2008, front
Mercedes E-Class, 2008, side
Mercedes E-Class, 2008, rear
Mercedes E-Class, 2008, interior

LUXURY doesn't come much better than the Mercedes E-Class but avoid those with a manual gearbox.

They are much cheaper to buy but no-one wants them when it comes to resale because they are not good to live with.

And when you're buying an expensive car - even secondhand and way down the line - you might as well have all the comforts you would expect.

The E-Class built between 2002 and 2008 is elegant and sophisticated, with superb comfort giving a cossetting ride over all surfaces.

It's not a sporting car, but offers effortless long distance cruising matched only by the Audi A6 and BMW 5-series.

It is not as involving to drive as the BMW but a few years down the line, comes at a more affordable price.

There is a huge range of engines - ranging from two to 5.5-litre petrol and from 2.2 to 3.0-litres diesel. Petrol models are thirsty but bigger ones are very fast.

However, the diesel 2.2 is the best all-rounder giving decent urge along with excellent economy.

As you would expect, everything you might wish for will have been included in most by previous owners and many will have leather. Interior space is large, with plenty of legroom front and rear.

Beware the brakes, which have no mechanical linkage and feel very different to other cars. You will soon get used to this but it must be mentioned.

Pay about £7,490 for an '04 04-reg Classic, £14,000 for an '08 08-reg Elegance

150bhp, 2148cc, 4 cylinder diesel driving the front wheels via a 5 or 7 speed automatic gearbox


9.8 seconds




Audi A6


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