From £29,0359

Price, fuel economy and range, finance and depreciation

The C300e’s official electric range figure is 68 miles: close enough to the magic 70-mile threshold (which would have made it about the only 5% benefit-in-kind PHEV executive saloon of its type) to make a fleet driver roll their eyes in exasperation.

Even so, and qualifying as it does for BIK tax at just 8% of its list price, the hybrid Mercedes C-Class still has a relative annual running cost advantage over most PHEV rivals, worth about £720 a year.

Buyers in other markets can order 55kW DC charging capability as an option, but it’s not on the UK price list, for reasons unknown. Public rapid charging capability would be a big selling point of a PHEV for me.

Our testing suggests that, in real-world use, you might only see better than 50 miles from a charge if you stick to slower intra-urban driving; and a range in the high 40s is more likely at greater speeds. Even so, that’s still strong enough to be a big relative motivator in a class in which only 25 miles of actual electric range is still probably the norm.

The car’s showroom price (more reasonable than what Peugeot, DS and Volvo are asking for their equivalent models) and strong residuals should help fuel its sales success, too. The standard equipment level is also generous enough (although you can spend a lot on extras if you choose to).

For longer-range drivers, or those who can’t charge often, extended-range fuel economy, as verified on our 70mph touring economy test, is a very creditable 49mpg.