Ease of en­try

The E200 opens up Benz’s ex­ec­u­tive sedan range to new buy­ers

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Prestige -

next A3 will tran­scend its es­sen­tial Golf­ness? Or maybe Volk­swa­gen won’t be so up­pity as to in­trude on the ter­rain of one of the two least ‘‘ Audi’’ Audis.

Now it’s reached the point where the Ger­man trio’s big cars, the ones that con­vey to the im­pres­sion­able that the he or she at the wheel has made it, can be spo­ken of in the same sen­tence as ‘‘ value’’.

Hence Mercedes’s new E-class en­tree.


Pre­vi­ously you’d have strug­gled to find a new E-class at $79,990 even at run-out. Yet that’s the sticker price for the E200, the handy part of $5K un­der the least ex­pen­sive diesel E.

It’s no stripper. Stan­dard are that uber-smooth seven-speed auto, Co­mand mul­ti­ple me­dia sys­tem with sat­nav and Blue­tooth, prox­im­ity sen­sors and faux leather up­hol­stery. When you’ve forked out the ad­mit­tedly brazen $2100 for de­cent paint, the E200 looks and feels like a proper E-class and— un­like pre­vi­ous mod­els at this end of the range— it goes like a proper E-class.

At this price, it’s also a fea­si­ble choice for the punter who’s leas­ing an op­tioned-up C-class. It’s ap­pre­cia­bly big­ger, a bit more limo-like and— more of this in a mo­ment— eas­ier on the juice.

Some of the C-class’s re­mark­able dom­i­nance of the mid-size im­port seg­ment (a range start­ing near $60K eas­ily out­sells the likes of Honda’s

Higher tone: It may be priced at the lower end of the scale but the E200 is still a pres­tige buy

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