Parkers overall rating: 4.6 out of 5 4.6

Miles per pound (mpp) Miles per pound (mpp)

Petrol engines 4.9 - 8.3 mpp
Diesel engines 7.6 - 10.8 mpp
Plug-in hybrid petrol engines 28.7 - 37.7 mpp
Plug-in hybrid diesel engines 35.6 - 47.5 mpp
Low figures relate to the least economical version; high to the most economical. Based on WLTP combined fuel economy for versions of this car made since September 2017 only, and typical current fuel or electricity costs.
Based on "Weighted" mpg; figures depend on the proportion of miles driven in pure electric mode and may vary widely

Fuel economy

Petrol engines 22.8 - 38.7 mpg
Diesel engines 37.7 - 53.3 mpg
Plug-in hybrid petrol engines 134.5 - 176.6 mpg
Plug-in hybrid diesel engines 176.6 - 235.4 mpg
  • Diesel models offer fuel economy in the 40s and 50s
  • Plug-in hybrids have capacity to be amazingly efficient
  • Steer clear of AMG models unless you have deep pockets

The E-Class has an impressively diverse range of engines, and fuel economy spans a similar range of figures, with miles per pound ranging from 4.9 - 47.5 .

The lower-powered petrols and most of the diesel range offer really good economy for such a large car, with the basic E 220 d capable of 53.3mpg. If you want the six-cylinder E 400 d this drops to 42.2mpg, which is still a good figure when you consider the vast torque on offer. As ever with diesel engines, you'll find the best economy comes on steady, long journeys - these cars have the capacity to even exceed their WLTP estimates on a lengthy motorway cruise. The nine-speed gearbox with its ultra-long top ratio helps out here, as the engine's barely ticking over at 70mph.

But you don't necessarily have to opt for a diesel, as even the petrol engine can return decent numbers. The E 200 can give up to 38.7mpg.

These figures are broadly in line with those you'd see on rivals such as the Audi A6 and Jaguar XF. Certain variants of the BMW 5 Series can perform even better, though, such as the 56.5mpg of the 520d.

Fuel-sipping plug-in hybrid models

Opt for the E 300 e or the E 300 de - both plug-in hybrids - and you'll likely be drawn in by their incredibly impressive headline fuel economy figures of 176.6mpg and 235.5mpg respectively.. Of course, these figures don't tell the whole story, and it's very much weighted on how you drive them. 

Both of these models can be topped up from a home charge point, a public charger or, at a pinch, a three-pin plug socket, and doing so will allow for around 30 miles of pure-electric range. With most commutes in the UK being shorter than that, and increasing numbers of workplaces installing charging points of their own, it's totally possible that you may go for days or even weeks without ever troubling the combustion engine.

Of course, if you head out on a longer journey, the batteries will help out but soon become depleted, at which point the cars become less efficient than the conventional models on which they're based - as they still have heavy battery packs and electric motors to lug around. At this point you're more likely to see figures of around the 40-50mpg mark from the diesel and 30-40mpg from the petrol - still not bad at all.

... and fuel-chugging AMG ones, too

At the other end of the scale you'll find the AMG E 53 and E 63. Both offer truly ballistic performance at the expense of fuel economy, with the former returning an acceptable 30.4mpg but the latter, with its 4.0-litre twin-turbocharged V8, returning a challenging 23.2mpg. Obviously, if you drive the cars as they're intended, those figures will tumble, too.

CO2 emissions

Carbon dioxide emissions mirror the fuel economy, with the best results coming from the lower-powered diesels. An E 220 d emits just 139g/km, making it a great company car choice.

Of course, for the very lowest emissions, the 33g/km E 300 de and 37g/km E 300 e plug-in hybrids should be your first port of call. Meanwhile, the 277g/km E 63 is best avoided by company car users, and attracts a hefty first year's tax bill for private buyers, too.

Is it reliable?

  • Quite a few official recalls
  • Mercedes products tend to feel well put-together
  • Wide-ranging and well-rated dealer network

Apart from a difficult period in the mid 1990s and early 2000s, Mercedes has been known for building quality cars that feel well put-together. The same is true of the E-Class, which feels solid as a rock wherever you look.

Despite this, it's been subject to quite a few official recalls, including two related to the seatbelts, one to the airbag, and one relating to an oil leak from the turbocharger's feed pipe. It's definitely worth making sure these issues have been dealt with if you're buying a used model.

Ongoing running costs

Road tax (12 months) £0 - £475
See tax rates for all versions
Insurance group 28 - 49
How much is it to insure?