From £28,360
Excellent E 350 CDI cabriolet addresses many of the complaints we had about the E 250 CGI model

Our Verdict

Mercedes-Benz E-Class
The E-class more than lives up to traditional Mercedes values

The E-Class is a refined and relaxing return to old Mercedes qualities

2 August 2010

What is it?

When we This, then, the E 350 CDI Cabriolet, with its 3.0-litre diesel engine mated to Mercedes’ seven-speed 7G-Tronic auto ’box (the standard accompaniment to the V6 oil-burner) comprehensively addresses our earlier concerns.

See the first drive pics of the Mercedes E 350 CDI Cabriolet

What’s it like?

Taken on its own merit, the E 350 CDI Convertible is a fine example of the breed. Dynamically, it suffers little for the removal of its roof, with only minor chassis protestations detectable when pushed over rough surfaces. And compared to the E 250 CGI, it’s a big improvement.

The E 350 only offers an extra 27bhp over the E 250 (228bhp to 201bhp), but the 3.0-litre diesel delivers a whopping 398lb ft to the 2.0-litre petrol’s 229lb ft. And this linear surge of torque is far better suited to the E-class’s nature, making for easy, relaxed cruising with ample shove for overtaking and more spirited driving when the mood takes.

The seven-speed ’box is superior too, with barley detectable shifts both up and down. Its only drawback is the now familiar hesitation to respond to throttle movement at low speed and under certain conditions. It’s hard to define exactly when this may or may not happen, and it’s this inconsistency of behaviour that makes the trait most annoying.

We’re already familiar with the rest of the latest E-class’s attributes as a convertible. The cabin is roomy and comfortable and, with the optional leather upholstery and Memory Package electrically adjustable seats, almost luxuriously well appointed.

Mercedes’ wind-deflecting Aircap system helps keep turbulent air out of the cabin – and its occupants’ hair – at speed, while the Airscarf (a £320 option that should be fitted as standard) directs warm air out of the bottom of the front seats’ headrests and around the driver’s and passenger’s neck to further improve roof-down comfort in less than ideal conditions.

Should I buy one?

If you’re in the market for a quality convertible with a premium badge then the E 350 CDI should be on your shopping list. Certainly in 3.0-litre V6 diesel guise, and relative to the E 250 CGI, it feels like a more complete car, with performance to match, rather than feel belittled by, its dynamic capabilities.

Of course, the extra straightline go and torquey diesel muscle don’t come free of charge, with the base price for the E 350 starting a full £5k higher than that of the E 250. It’s still not the most involving driver’s car – a 3-series convertible does a better job of that – but as a comfortable, effortless and semi-opulent form of open-top transport, the E 350 makes a strong case for itself.

Mercedes-Benz E 350 CDI BlueEfficiency Sport cabriolet

Price: £40,780; Price as tested: £51,030; 0-62 mph: 6.9sec; Top speed: 155mph; Kerbweight 1845kg; Economy: 40.4mpg; CO2: 189g/km; Engine: V6, 2987cc, turbodiesel; Power: 228bhp at 3800rpm; Torque 398lb ft at 1600-2400rpm

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Join the debate

Comments
8

6 August 2010

The seven-speed ’box is superior too, with barley detectable shifts both up and down. Its only drawback is the now familiar hesitation to respond to throttle movement at low speed and under certain conditions. It’s hard to define exactly when this may or may not happen, and it’s this inconsistency of behaviour that makes the trait most annoying.

i'm not english , but come on this is taking the ...... lol or were you thinking of some robinson's drinks ? lolllll

ps: barely

6 August 2010

That's a slippery slope saifman. Be careful....:-)

DKW

9 August 2010

Autocar - I can't see the text for this article (at work or home) - only the pictures. Other articles are fine.

9 August 2010

Love the car but it would look much nicer in white then this horrible light blue!

9 August 2010

"semi-opulent"? I would say its quite opulent!

9 August 2010

Curious comment on one of the photos,

"The cabin is roomy and comfortable and, with some options, almost luxuriously well appointed"

I should flipping hope so, it is a 'luxury' car after all.... Mercedes-Benz wouldn't be too happy.

10 August 2010

[quote RicardoJ]

Curious comment on one of the photos,

"The cabin is roomy and comfortable and, with some options, almost luxuriously well appointed"

I should flipping hope so, it is a 'luxury' car after all.... Mercedes-Benz wouldn't be too happy.

[/quote]

I think what they meant to say is that it almost feels like a luxury car like the S-Class...

 

- Follow your own star -

11 August 2010

One of the few cars that look better in pictures than in real life, rear 3/4 is horrible! makes the car look like its running 13's also 230 brake from a blown V6?? for an extra 5k?? try chipping a 250 cdi wont give same torque but will be close.

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