“The S350 diesel is more fully realized, an oil barge that offsets its merely ample performance with outlandish torque ratings and range capability.”
I know in America people see diesel passenger cars as slow, dirty, rattly ole’ things. And back in the day…they were. Skip 25 years and surprise (!), they’re not anymore. They’ve been refined, to the point that they are almost imperceptibly different in performance and feel from their gasoline-powered fraternal twins. And…like any re-do, especially one as expensive as a car, changing attitudes is a gradual affair.
I like the idea of the S-class diesel. It’s a seriously indulgent, luxurious, expensive automobile, that signifies many things, least of which is efficiency or economy. With this model, you pay for all of the perks you expect from a $95k vehicle, along with essentially similar power, but you get the added value of an extreme mileage range, which can be practical for those who drive frequently, pay for $4/gallon premium gas, and don’t always have the 10 minutes to stop and fill up.
And, let’s be honest…it’s fun to be different! People will ask you what ‘bluetec’ means. You will cart your friends and family around and they won’t be able to tell that it’s a dirrrty diesel…
Mercedes has always been at the forefront of the diesel market, although in recent years, BMW, Audi, Volkswagen, and Jeep have started to sell diesel versions of their vehicles in the US. Still, the market is small. The Volkswagen Jetta TDI is the cheapest entry into the diesel market with a base price around $20k. I would have gone for the previous iteration of the Jetta…the new one doesn’t cut it in design or quality for me. Shame.
The S-class would do fine, though. If I had a hundred Gs to spare, I would consider it.
“All the S-class virtues remain, but the diesel—cheaper, smarter, and as pleasurable to drive as any S550—brings real rationality and economy to the proceedings. ”
Quotes and photo taken from CarAndDriver.com