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Used car of the week: Mercedes-Benz B-Class

  • Outgoing version of spacious hatchback
  • Face-lifted car due in November
  • Approved used prices for our favourite model from Β£15,500
Words ByDoug Revolta

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The face-lifted version of the Mercedes-Benz B-Class was unveiled at the Paris Motor Show and will go on sale next month. We were impressed with the new model, but for those who are looking for a bargain before it arrives, the outgoing B-Class is our used car of the week.

Check back later this week to see if the big rival to the B-Class, the new BMW 2 Series Active Tourer, impresses or not.

Ideal model B180 CDI SE ECO
Prices from Β£15,500

Why should I buy a used B-Class?

The B-Class is an incredibly spacious car with a big boot and a luxurious interior. There’s bags of head and legroom in all seats and, with optional sliding rear seats, the boot size can reach 666 litres.

Aside from its practicality and space, the B-Class has a range of good engines that strike a balance between performance and economy.

In the cabin, the soft-touch covering on the dashboard and door trims, as well as the circular metal air vents give the car a very classy feel.

Which model should I choose?

There are two turbocharged 1.6-litre petrols, two 1.8-litre turbodiesels and a 2.1 diesel in the range but we’d recommend going with the entry-level engines. They may be slower but they’re just as flexible and much cheaper to buy and run.

Our pick is the entry-level diesel, which is far more refined than the bigger diesels and offers a claimed fuel economy of 68.9mpg.

SE and Sport trim is available, but we’d stick with SE because it provides alloy wheels, air-conditioning, four electric windows, CD player, USB and even a system that helps you to steer into a parking space.

The Sport models cost a lot more, and the lowered suspension and bigger wheels make for an unforgiving ride.

How much should I pay?

A budget of Β£15,500 could get you a 2012 version of our favourite model with around 15,000 miles on the clock.

Petrol versions from the same year and similar mileage start at around Β£14,500.

What problems should I look out for?

The engine under-tray has caused problems for some owners, so make sure it is in good order before purchasing.

The B-Class is also a capable load-lugger, so check the rear interior for signs of heavy use.

There was a recall in 2012 to repair a fault in the rear back-rest lock, if the B-Class you're looking at is from 2012 check if the work has been done.