Written on: 16/03/2012 by photoman (62 reviews written)
Most of car manufacturers switched over the years from rear wheel drive to front wheel drive. Rear wheel drive is more expensive to manufacture and requires great weight distribution and car balance in order to be stable on the road as well as driver skills. When rear wheel drive car is built and engineered correctly it will be much more pleasure to drive even if you are not a fan of drifts.
Separation of driving wheels from steering wheels benefits with clean feel of traction and very small turning radius. Unfortunately not many drivers can appreciate this today or even feel the difference. For me these benefits are critical.
Mercedes Benz is one of not many companies still manufacturing traditional rear wheel drive cars. I'll review here my Mercedes E class with body W211 2007.
Car has very impressive exterior and interior design. When you are looking at this car you always can recognize a real Mercedes with beautiful family specific front grille and clean traditional body lines. I love Mercedes design from my childhood.
Interior is very functional, there are many places to store your stuff, all buttons and switches are placed so it is easy to find them, all operates very smooth. There is special aura in Mercedes design - the three beams star on the bonnet and on the steering wheel are also contributing to the overall atmosphere, especially the feel is strong with wood and leather trim, it feels very comfortable.
All materials are very long lasting and durable, my car after more than 500,000km and the interior is still looks good almost like new.
The car is very clever, it will turn headlights for you automatically when it is dark, it will operate automatically windscreen wipers when it is raining and much more, Mercedes E is a car that takes care about its driver, while about many cars from other brands I can tell that driver needs to care about the car.
Very good insulation of all noise sources, it is very quiet even with a Diesel engine. Ride is very smooth, suspension is soft and comfortable - exactly as I like it. Road handling is good, steering wheel is very informative (far better than W210).
Mercedes is a very durable car, it serves in many countries as a taxi and after that survives to have the second life as a private car (like in does my case). Even with a high mileage everything is still working perfectly, transmission shifts smooth and the engine runs like new. Good car is always good, even when it is old and has high millage. The reputation of Mercedes Benz is consistently proven many years by cars that still running even after 30 years.
E220CDI is the smallest Diesel engine available for this car. There is E200CDI model which shares the same 2.1L engine with lower power output. Usually E220CDI has 170HP, taxi version has 150HP and about 35kgm of torque on low rpm. This four cylinder Diesel is surprisingly smooth and quiet. 150hp might sound not much for a heavy car, but it fully satisfies cruising between cities on legal speeds and for heavy urban traffic. When pressing pedal to the metal it rapidly accelerates like it was a bigger engine and can overtake almost any standard family car (in our country family cars usually have 1.6L engine) on the semaphore. In Diesel engine what important is the torque, because it is the factor that actually drives your car. And E220CDI has plenty of torque.
If you drive genteelly you may feel some lack of power, because for good performance need to rev hard this engine. I prefer to drive gently on low rev and think that for more enthusiastic driving bigger engine is required, at least 3 liter six cylinder.
You may ask if this car is so good as I describe it, why I don't recommend it to a friend? In our country Mercedes Benz cars are extremely expensive when new, and very expensive as used. Less expensive cars were used as taxi and have very high mileage (and even then 5 years old Merc is still expensive as a brand new small family car), their condition also depends on how car was serviced and where.
Summary: Mercedes E220 CDI is a fantastic car, exceptional smoothness of the ride, great comfort, very fine drive ability and is a very good looker (I think W211 most beautiful E class ever built). Almost every person can appreciate most of its values, and some will appreciate technical characteristics, including outstanding balance and rear wheel drive. Also more powerful engine would be welcome.
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