C-Class Estate, W205

C-Class Estate, W205

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8bit

Original Poster:

3,038 posts

115 months

Monday 26th October
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Following on from my recent thread on W212 E-Class models, we've driven one of those last week and while very nice it really is too big for our needs. We drove a few other things, amongst which was a W205 C-Class estate. There appears to be a good number of these on Autotrader which tick all the boxes, what are these like for reliability? Regards the C350e, what is the PHEV system like, in terms of reliability, extra service considerations, battery lifespan etc.? Any other input on these at all?

alishutc

47 posts

9 months

Wednesday 28th October
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I have a 2016 C350e estate.

I can't really comment on reliability because sample size of 1, but I've had no issues with it so far (I bought it used about 2 years ago). Overall I'm happy with it - it's pretty quick with the electric and battery power combined otherwise quiet and comfortable with the air suspension. As far as plug in hybrids go it really is at the bottom end in terms of electric only range - this time of year it won't get into double figures. It works for my purposes (I live in London and am either making pretty short journeys or else driving much further afield to visit family etc). I also have off street parking so was able to install a charger. I'm averaging about 60mpg over the time I've had it.

You do lose a bit of boot space over the regular estate, but I can still fit a couple of small kids bikes back there, for example. I have the sport trim and the infotainment system/nav are pretty crap, I tend to just use Google Maps on my phone these days. I may get an aftermarket Android Auto / CarPlay system fitted, just researching the possibilities now.

Depending on what age you are looking at it is worth noting the the tax rules for PHEVs changed around 2017 I think, so mine is tax exempt but a slightly newer model wouldn't be. I also qualify for the London congestion charge exemption - though only for another year or so before they stop this for PHEVs.

8bit

Original Poster:

3,038 posts

115 months

Wednesday 28th October
quotequote all
alishutc said:
I have a 2016 C350e estate.

I can't really comment on reliability because sample size of 1, but I've had no issues with it so far (I bought it used about 2 years ago). Overall I'm happy with it - it's pretty quick with the electric and battery power combined otherwise quiet and comfortable with the air suspension. As far as plug in hybrids go it really is at the bottom end in terms of electric only range - this time of year it won't get into double figures. It works for my purposes (I live in London and am either making pretty short journeys or else driving much further afield to visit family etc). I also have off street parking so was able to install a charger. I'm averaging about 60mpg over the time I've had it.

You do lose a bit of boot space over the regular estate, but I can still fit a couple of small kids bikes back there, for example. I have the sport trim and the infotainment system/nav are pretty crap, I tend to just use Google Maps on my phone these days. I may get an aftermarket Android Auto / CarPlay system fitted, just researching the possibilities now.

Depending on what age you are looking at it is worth noting the the tax rules for PHEVs changed around 2017 I think, so mine is tax exempt but a slightly newer model wouldn't be. I also qualify for the London congestion charge exemption - though only for another year or so before they stop this for PHEVs.
That's great insight, thanks very much for that smile

So like you we have off-street parking so a charger install is an option for us - mind if I ask what you went for and how much you paid? Our usage is largely trips up to about 10 or 15 miles with occasional (i.e. once a month or so) longer runs so I guess we should benefit from a PHEV in terms of low fuel usage and tax. My wife's current car is a 2008 ML320 and mine is a Jaguar XKR so whatever the navigation system in a W205 looks like will feel positively space-age in comparison but we do tend to use Google Maps too.

How much boot space are we talking about losing?

a8hex

5,262 posts

183 months

Wednesday 28th October
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8bit said:
My wife's current car is a 2008 ML320 and mine is a Jaguar XKR so whatever the navigation system in a W205 looks like will feel positively space-age in comparison but we do tend to use Google Maps too.
My Wife currently has a 2020 Merc on loan. The appearance of the sat nav is "positively space-age in comparison" to the XKR's one. However I don't know whether it's been setup to avoid certain types of roads but when we tried using it the other day it took us way out of our way, often going round two sides of triangle where there was a perfectly good direct route on roads which weren't really any smaller. I think we'll be sticking to Google maps in future. Hopefully we won't have the car long enough to be worth digging through the satnav's settings to see whether it can be persuade to take better routes.
Also in comparison to the XKR's satnav the feature of the Jag's system I most like and often use in addition to Google maps is the count down to junctions you get in the middle of the main dash. This loaner (GLE) doesn't do that by default, I know the middle of the dash is reconfigurable, but haven't gone there yet as we're hoping to give it back soon.

alishutc

47 posts

9 months

Wednesday 28th October
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8bit said:
mind if I ask what you went for and how much you paid?
I went for a pod point - paid about £400, that was after the £500 government grant, but that may be lower now? It's fine but a bit clunky looking compared to some newer ones, I think if I was buying again I'd pay more for something a bit smarter.

8bit said:
How much boot space are we talking about losing?
Reviews say it's dropped to ~350 litres from 490- basically the floor is a bit higher up to accommodate the battery. There is a little under floor compartment where you can at least stash a charging cable and few tools.

quinny100

500 posts

146 months

Friday 30th October
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I had a 67 plate C350e saloon for 2 years and didn't have any issues with it at all. My colleague had a 65 plate and the airmatic pump failed which was replaced under warranty. There is an known issue with water ingress into the pump and wiring harness which burns the pump out and I've read of one case where this occurred out of warranty and repair bill was well over a grand. The other thing to watch out for is the charging flap is pretty flimsy, it's just at the right height to whack with your knee and at one time if you broke the door you have to replace the entire charging port assembly which comes with the inverter hardwired to it - very minor bumper damage can easily result in a £2k bill and I don't know if this has changed.

I averaged 46MPG over 30K which I was happy with - my usage at the time didn't suit a PHEV as I had a 60 mile round trip commute with no charging at work and I did a lot of motorway miles for business where - stop start traffic aside - the PHEV system is just ballast.

The C350e is generally reliable but if it goes wrong you're potentially looking at big money because nobody really understands these systems - including within the dealer network. MB do an insured warranty which is well worth having if it covers the hybrid bits - I was quoted about £900 for 2 years for my E Class but a C Class should be cheaper than that.

8bit

Original Poster:

3,038 posts

115 months

Friday 30th October
quotequote all
Thanks again all, very useful. PH delivers smile

Regards the hybridy bits - what's the manufacturer warranty on batteries, is that ten years like some other brands? Does that only cover the battery packs or does it extend to the charging and drive systems too (I'm guessing not)?