Mercedes-Benz

E-Class - Used Car

Review

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

I NEVER really hankered after a Mercedes E-Class except for just one model - the beautiful cabriolet - which has to be the loveliest four seat open tourer on the market.

But many people would love to own one of these consummate cruisers, and many others - mainly business users - get to drive one on a regular basis.

As well as the saloon and the cabriolet, there are estate, coupe and sporting AMG versions available, but if your choice is the AMG, make sure you can live with the stiffer suspension, which does affect comfort.

We all know that Mercedes is synonymous with descriptions like up-market, quality and refinement.

And we also know that the E-Class is a mainstay for the company - so many taxi drivers across Europe can't be wrong.

All of the last series built between 2009 and 2016 have a very stylish design both inside and out, and of course as long as you get full service history, longer mileages don't seem to be a problem. I would never buy such a complicated car secondhand without it.

Petrol engine choices start with a 1.8 turbo that has 181bhp and go up through a 2.0-litre with the same output, to a 3.5-litre with 290 to 300 and a 5.5 with 380bhp.

Diesel is represented by the venerable 2.1-litre, with power ranging from 134 through 167 to 201bhp in different models, or a 3.0-litre with between 208 and 265bhp.

Performance is good in all, with even the 1.8 capable of 0 to 60 miles an hour in around eight seconds. The 3.5 V6 petrol covers the same sprint in a scorching 6.1 seconds.

But many of the cars available will be diesels and most of them will be the 2.2, which in E200 form takes 9.9 seconds for the 60mph sprint and in E250 form takes a much better 7.3 seconds.

This model is the economy champ, with a government figure of 64mpg, apart from the rare diesel/electric hybrid, which manages 68 with just 110g/km emissions.

Almost all with be fitted with Mercedes' excellent seven speed tiptronic automatic gearbox, although a few lower order cars come with a six-speed manual as standard.

The E-Class is a car built for long distance comfort and hushed cruising, at which it excels, but it still takes the corners with plenty of grip and not too much roll and the steering has good feedback for the driver.

There was a major facelift in 2013 with a completely redesigned front end and headlights and the number of trim levels being reduced to just two, but still with a myriad of options.

Even the engines were given a boost in efficiency, with improved emissions and economy.

Avantgarde spec gives you heated leather seats electrically adjusted in the front, traction control, alarm system, audio remote control, parking sensors and loads of seat and column adjustment.

Most will probably have had sat nav added to that by the original owners, but if you go for an AMG Sport model, it comes as standard, together with a CD and DVD player, sports seats, sat nav and cruise.

There is a bewildering range of engine, gearbox, trim and extra trim combinations so just make sure the one you aim to buy has all the kit you want.

Pay about £9,700 for a '13 13-reg E200 CDi SE automatic, or £19,250 for a '15 15-reg E200 AMG Sport automatic.

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