In these consumption conscious times I had been looking to get a 520d touring (as a long time BMW driver). The dealer, who I know well, warned that if I drove a 535 I would buy one.
He was right. Its a lot of money. But its faultless.
Done 18000+ miles in the first 6 months with no major problems, multi cd jammed and mp3’s suddenly becomes unreadable, apart from those nothing else. Generous on overall space. Boot is large and plenty of space under the floor. Front door pockets are shallow and narrow though. Standard kit is adequate but not overly generous. PDC is unrefined. VW has a much more accurate system on Touareg. Build quality is ok but certainly not ahead of my previous Merc as others had been lead me to believe. Excellent fuel consumption when cursing, even good when at speed. Cheap to run for a car in this class.
A joy to drive even when pushing hard. Covers the miles fast and effortlessly. Feels light and manoeuvrable for such a big car with both excellent handling and superb stopping power. Manual box is best if you want to make rapid and safe progress as you need to keep the revs within the limited power band. Combination of autobox and big turbo lag potentially dangerous mix. Autobox seems to get confused in certain situations resulting in lack of acceleration. Minimal torque low down, but get this engine spinning and it will fly. Autobahn speeds of 140+ attained.
The only gripe is not with the car but with the dealers themselves. Some are helpful, other are arrogant. When comes to problems be warned nothing is ever their fault! Pick your dealer carefully. Treated much better by Merc dealers. Would I buy another one? NO but that's more to do with the dealers than the car itself.
Update on the mileage , nearing 2/3rds of a tank gone..... and overall range reading is 670 miles.....
In terms of getting near publisised figures, when going downhill or level road, release the accelerator slightly - this can easily make 10mpg difference!!
I am suprised by some of the negative comments on this car. Runflats are runflats - on some roads there is a lot of noise on others there is silence. I can live with them. The car is perfectly geared but the power is in 3rd, 4th and 5th. Mine is perfection and I love driving it. My one negative is the MPG which is good but not as stunning as advertised. However, 140 MPH at Band E (same as a Corsa)it is an impressive engine.
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