Review

Mercedes E-Class saloon

Price  £34,870 - £46,670

Mercedes E-Class saloon

reviewed by Carbuyer

Pros
  • Lots of engine choices
  • High-quality interior
  • Very safe and quiet
Cons
  • Interior is quite reserved
  • AMG models expensive to run
  • Not as much fun as a BMW 5 Series

At a glance

The greenest
E220d SE 4dr £35,935
The cheapest
E220d SE 4dr £35,935
The fastest
E350d AMG Line 4dr £47,425
Top of the range
E350d AMG Line Premium Plus 4dr £51,320

"Impressive comfort and quality help make the Mercedes E-Class one of the world's best-selling executive cars."

The Mercedes E-Class is a long-established name in the executive saloon class and a firm favourite with company-car and business users. Its key rivals are equally well-known: the BMW 5 Series, Audi A6 and Jaguar XF, along with the Lexus GS and soon-to-be-replaced Volvo S80.

Early 2015 saw the E-Class get a ‘nip and tuck’ visual facelift, some more standard equipment and improved engines to keep it on terms with the competition. It's still not quite as involving to drive as the 5 Series, but perhaps strikes a better balance in terms of everyday comfort and smoothness.

Ride quality is very good on the standard suspension, but some of the sportier, higher-spec models stiffen things up a bit in a bid to become more BMW-like. There are just two main trim levels to choose from: SE and AMG Night Edition. Settling for SE doesn’t mean skimping on kit, though: DAB digital radio, sat nav and climate control are all standard. AMG Sport makes mainly visual changes, giving the car a sportier, more aggressive profile.

Diesel will be the engine of choice for most E-Class buyers, with impressive economy figures claimed by the less powerful options. Those who want something different from a four-door saloon should be aware that the car is also available as the Mercedes E-Class estate, Mercedes E-Class coupe and Mercedes E-Class cabriolet – all of which we’ve reviewed seperately. There's also the hugely powerful Mercedes-AMG E 63 and Mercedes-AMG E 63 S high-performance versions.

Whatever bodystyle you go for, there's no denying the E-Class is an expensive bit of kit, but you can be confident you’re getting what you pay for – the big Mercedes is reliable and holds its value on the used market pretty well. The entry-level E220 BlueTEC SE gives you all you could realistically need for a shade over £34,000, while upgrading to AMG Night Edition costs roughly another £3,000.

MPG, running costs & CO2

3.8 / 5

Entry-level Mercedes E-Class engines offer tax-friendly CO2 emissions

Engines, drive & performance

3.8 / 5

The driving experience in the Mercedes E-Class can be anything from mild to wild depending on which model you choose

Interior & comfort

4.4 / 5

All seats are comfortable in the E-Class – the driver’s seat is highly adjustable, and the rear seats are slightly reclined

Practicality & boot space

4 / 5

Rear-seat passengers in the Mercedes E-Class saloon have loads of head and legroom, while storage inside is decent

Reliability & safety

3.5 / 5

The Mercedes E-Class offers a vast and impressive list of safety equipment

What the others say

3.7 / 5
based on 3 reviews
4 / 5
"Although the Mercedes has a classy appearance, it's not quite as good looking as the Audi A6 or as good to drive as the BMW 5 Series. If you're after a car that puts comfort above driving dynamics, however, the E-Class is well worth a look. It is relatively expensive, though."
4 / 5
"With most of the engine choices, there's barely a whisper from under the bonnet when cruising, while wind and road noise are sealed out with ruthless efficiency. It makes for laid back driving mood in the Merc."
3 / 5
"The materials in your eyeline are pleasant and there's a sense of solidity. Look elsewhere, however, and the quality and finish of some panels are disappointing compared with some rivals."
What owners say 
4.368
4.4 /5 based on 100 reviews
72%
 of people would recommend this car to a friend
Last updated 
22 Dec 2015
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