Anyone gone from E-Class Estate to C-Class Estate?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by kdh, Jun 25, 2017.

  1. kdh

    kdh Active Member

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    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    It's big.

    [​IMG]



    Toying with the idea of down-sizing my W211 E Class 320 cdi Estate to the equivalent age smaller petrol C-Class Estate.

    As it's very hard to get dealers to allow test drives unless you guarantee to buy their car, I'm asking on here for your valued opinions if any of you have made the switch.

    The Pro's on my current car:
    1. Comfortable, fast, feels planted and safe.

    The Cons:
    1. Too big for the wife and especially those narrow Cornish holiday lanes
    2. Not a great fan of diesel.


    My worry is that a C-Class may not feel as comfortable, fast and safe as this big old girl does, but would be easier to poodle around in on a daily basis.

    Any thoughts?



    Many thanks as per.
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2017
  2. developer

    developer MB Enthusiast

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    Unless I'm mistaken, your E is an Elegance - nice and softly sprung - more comfortable all round that other E's.

    I'm not aware of an equivalent C, so you may be sacrificing space and waftability.
     
  3. OP
    OP
    kdh

    kdh Active Member

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    Yes you're right, an Elegance. I tried the Avantgarde version before I bought this and found it too stiff. Didn't really suit the car.

    Space sacrifice wouldn't be a terrible thing but waftability would.
     
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  4. ilunn

    ilunn Active Member

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    Last edited: Jun 25, 2017
  5. OP
    OP
    kdh

    kdh Active Member

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    Thanks, but Hire Company's only have the new stuff?
     
  6. SPX

    SPX MB Club Veteran

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    Are you thinking W203 or W204? The W203 is noticeably more of a compliant ride, even in "Sport" spec.
     
  7. CowleyStJames

    CowleyStJames Active Member

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    I went the other way from a W204 C class estate to a W212 E class estate. Needed the extra room, found the E Class more roomy after the C class especially elbow room at front
     
  8. MikeInWimbledon

    MikeInWimbledon MB Enthusiast

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    It'll only end in tears...

    Once you've "had S211," you can't go back....
     
  9. merc85

    merc85 MB Enthusiast

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    If a Dealer wont allow Test drive to see if you like the car there not worth dealing with.
     
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  10. wu56Shoozz

    wu56Shoozz MB Enthusiast

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  11. jdrrco

    jdrrco MB Enthusiast

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    In my experience of 203/211 and 209/219/212, the difference between the C/CLK and E/CLS is chalk and cheese. I test drove the new C - 205 in both saloon and estate guise before going for a E - 212 and even though it is the "old" model vs the new, it is just streets ahead in terms of quietness, comfort and class, or, to use your term "waftiness". Definitely try before you buy and if any dealer won't allow a test drive, just walk - or even run - away.
     
  12. Mactech

    Mactech MB Enthusiast

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    I have done exactly what you propose, except with a few cars in between.
    I had a number of S211 estates in 2005 to 2008 and found them pretty much as you describe.:cool:
    After a number of other Mercedes cars and then a succession of company cars I needed an 'in between' car at the end of 2014.
    having had a new C180k back in 2004, and knowing what a great little car it was i got an very reasonably priced 07 C180k Estate.
    Yes, it smaller than the 211 and doesn't have the same low end diesel shove of the 320cdi, but it was 'Whatcar' exec. car of the year 2005/6 for a good reason.
    Mine had started life as an Avis rental car:eek: but with already 100k on the clock I put another 25k on it in 2years for cost of just service and a pair of tyres.
    Ride quality on the SE with 16" wheels is fine and the 'Kompessor' engine adequate for the C class, unlike when it tries to haul an E class around.
    If you get a facelift one from 05 onwards with good history, I think you'll be surprised how well they drive.
    Oh! and mine averaged well over 40mpg over 2years.:D
     
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  13. brucemillar

    brucemillar MB Enthusiast

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    It sounds like you need to help the wife instead of yourself.

    I have had several W203 estates (I still have C55 Estate). You will lose the Waftiness but gain the Nipiness. This is good in small lanes (I live in single lane country).

    The W203 is good load lugger and maybe just a bit less refined than the bigger e-class but that can be very subjective. My wife would not drive a BMW 5 Series Estate - finding it just too big but she happily drives a BMW X5 - Go figure?

    The W203 looks great as an estate, performs very well in petrol variants and (with the right spec) can be very a very nice place to be. I had an Avantgarde with full black leather. It was a firm ride but not tooth rattling or bone crashing and that was on 18" rims !!!
     
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2017
  14. grober

    grober MB Master

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    What you will be sacricing will be the estate self levelling rear suspension, body weight and the longer wheelbase of the W211 - that's quite a change. That said after a month or so you will adapt [ unless you have a back/neck problem that makes you particularly sensitive to ride quality] If you can stretch to a basic [ for the standard wheels and suspension] W204 estate its slightly bigger than the W203 and might be a good compromise. That said perceptions of ride quality are very subjective so the answer is --- drive it--- get the wife to drive it ---then drive it again yourself--- preferably on roads similar to those you experience on a daily basis.:thumb:
     
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  15. gianton

    gianton Active Member

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    My previous car was an Audi A6 Allroad 3.0 TDI '07 model and took a while to get used to the firmer ride of my S204 C250 CDI 4Matic '13 model (Avantgarde with 17" wheels). Still miss the airmatic ride, bigger engine and larger space of the Allroad, but appreciate the responsiveness and sharper cornering of the S204 as well as the 4l/100km better fuel cosumption. I'm doing 25-30k miles per year and that makes a lot of difference! I've lowered the air pressure to 32psi instead the 36psi MB recommends and that helped a bit.
     
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2017
  16. OP
    OP
    kdh

    kdh Active Member

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    Very helpful, thank you all. I shall try and get a ride in a C Class.
     
  17. MancMike

    MancMike New Member

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    You can get W204 C Class Elegance, like mine. I'm sure it's probably not as soft a ride as that big old E but it's in no way sporty, especially on it's 16 inch alloys.
     
  18. OP
    OP
    kdh

    kdh Active Member

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    Yes I think that's the way I'll go - I do like the Elegance model
     
  19. Pontoneer

    Pontoneer Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Having come from a succession of W123 and W124 estates , always top of range six cylinder petrol models , then subsequently had a S203 C270CDI , I would characterise the differences as follows :

    First and foremost , if you have an estate because you need to carry goods or equipment ( mine was always being used to carry photo/video equipment ) then both the size of the load area and its weight carrying capacity is significantly greater in an E Class ; it really takes a lot less to fill the boot of a C Class than an E .

    All E Class cars have self levelling suspension , so the car stays level regardless of load , and they remain stable and handle just the same when laden as they do unladen . Self levelling was an option on the C Class which few cars have .

    SLS is also an advantage if you're going to tow : it keeps the outfit level , and with their greater mass , E Class estates make great towcars .

    Interior space is ample and comfortable in an E , with adequate room for rear seat passengers to travel long distances in reasonable comfort . In a C Class , space for front seat passengers is still adequate , but noticeably 'cosier' with less space around you ; in the back it is nothing but cramped for adults , who would find it uncomfortable on longer journeys , although fine for smaller children .

    Another huge difference is in outward visibility , due to the closeness and thickness of A pillars in a C , it is possible to lose whole cars behind them at junctions ! I was caught out more than once in mine , although thankfully due to diligence , never came out of a junction into anyone's path . The narrower cabin , smaller windows , closer furnishings and lower roofline all combine towards a feeling that C Class perhaps stands for Claustrophobia Class ...

    Small cars don't need to be like that : due to other issues with my C , I went back to a W201 190E , which I now alternate between driving with my SL . Compared to the C , the 190 is light , airy , roomy , easy to see out of , nimble in handling , and with the 2.3L engine I fitted , much 'nippier' and more responsive than the 2.7L Diesel in my C was , even if it does drink more fuel . Objectively , the 270 would be faster , but one lighter 190 feels the faster car . Although outwardly both models are about the same size , there is more interior space in a 190 , although , as with the W203 compared to its sibling , the W201 did compromise on rear passenger space compared to a W123 or W124 , but at the same time , matched the W126 for passive safety in the event of a collision .

    What the differences mean to you depends on what you need from the car .
     
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  20. OP
    OP
    kdh

    kdh Active Member

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    Thanks Derek, that's incredibly helpful.

    My son and his bird are both nearing 6ft and we take them both on trips, so it sounds that a C-class would have them whingeing about legroom in the back. I would not want to sacrifice any legroom.

    Totally agree with you on the 190. I had one ages ago and absolutely loved it. Must be great with a 2.3 engine.

    Very helpful post, thank you. I'll be sticking with the Big E.
     

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