The side exterior of a silver Mercedes-Benz E-Class

Mercedes-Benz E-Class review (2016-2023)

The Mercedes-Benz E-Class offers limo-like levels of luxury and feels truly opulent. There are swathes of beautiful materials inside, the seats are supremely comfortable and legroom is vast.

Pros

  • A luxury limousine look and feel
  • Excellent interiors with loads of rear passenger space
  • Superb technology and connectivity

Cons

  • Not as fun to drive as some rivals
  • Can be expensive to service and maintain
  • Hybrid models have smaller boots

Summary

“If you’re looking for a luxury executive car, the Mercedes-Benz E-Class is likely to tick all your boxes.”

If you’re looking for a luxury executive car, there’s no shortage of options from Audi, BMW and Jaguar. But if you want a car to nip around town, cruise long distances or commute for business, the Mercedes-Benz E-Class is likely to tick all your boxes.

This model, sold new from 2016, is like a smaller version of the top of the range Mercedes-Benz S-Class. It's available as a saloon, a coupe and as an estate, and all offer a fantastic ride and great interior space, particularly for back seat passengers.

There’s also a wide range of models, so there should be an option to suit you.

What's the interior like?

“The Mercedes E-Class isn’t short on opulence and style.”

The Mercedes E-Class isn’t short on opulence and style. There’s an elegant multi-layer look to the dashboard with a wide range of trim choices. The leather seats are comfortable for long journeys and the legroom in the back is vast.

The materials are all high-quality, more than holding their own against the luxurious interiors of rivals like the BMW 5 Series and the Audi A6.

The Comand infotainment system on early cars is a little fiddly and lacks some functionality, but most people will soon get used to it. The E-Class was given an overhaul in 2020 with updated infotainment called MBUX, which was a big improvement.

Boot space is excellent at 540 litres or 640 litres if you opt for the estate, both of which will hold several suitcases. With the diesel-powered plug-in hybrid model, you’ll lose around 100 litres because of the specialist electric technology that takes up space.

What's it like to drive?

“The Mercedes E-Class is all about discreet and effortless power.”

The Mercedes E-Class is all about discreet and effortless power, unless you go for one of the mighty AMG E63 performance cars. The rest of the range offers a relaxed drive, minimal fuss and only the slightest effort if you need to overtake or tackle a hill.

All models have responsive steering, although they don't quite have the agility you'll find in the BMW 5 Series. The suspension cushions most bumps in the road well and even keeps things reasonably level if you push a little harder in the corners. The seating position is good and there are lots of adjustment options, which provides a relaxed ride. External noises are kept to a minimum, even in the very popular diesel models.

Some models have firmer AMG suspension tweaks and adjustable settings, which improves the car's agility through corners, although this can compromise the ride comfort.

Is it cost-efficient to buy and run?

“Prices for the Mercedes E-Class can vary enormously depending on which model you choose.”

Prices for the Mercedes E-Class can vary enormously depending on which model you choose, how old it is and what equipment packs were fitted when new. Depending on mileage, it’s likely you’ll pay slightly more than you would for an equivalent Audi, BMW or Jaguar, but there should be a specification and price to suit your budget.

Running costs at the Mercedes dealer aren’t cheap, so if your car is out of warranty it could be best to shop around for a service or if you need anything fixed. The diesels are generally the cheapest to run if you do more than the average number of miles (12,000) per year. The hybrid models will give you some electric-only range so you’ll save on running costs but they cost more to buy.

An easier way to find or sell a car

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Which one is best for you?

The best Mercedes E-Class engine for you depends on your priorities. For long distances, we'd recommend a diesel, as they can be very economical. There's a wide range of choice, but the E 220d is a good sweet spot of performance, price and fuel economy.

The petrol engines are strong too, with small, efficient units that would be great for around town, all the way up to very powerful models, including the cars from Mercedes-AMG, which is the company's performance division.

When it comes to trims, the AMG-Line models are very popular for their sporty look, but their firmer suspension – which improves agility at the cost of comfort – can be too much for some. If that's the case, SE trim has just about everything that the majority of customers will want.