Skoda Superb Estate versus Mercedes-Benz E-Class Estate – comparison
Source : Skoda Superb Estate versus Mercedes-Benz E-Class Estate – comparison
The brand new Skoda Superb Estate has enough space inside to shade the benchmark Mercedes E-Class wagon. Should you choose one instead?
There are two kinds of car enthusiast. I used to be one of the normal kind – we’ll call them ‘group one’ – although I’ve changed. Life has turned me into a ‘group two’ sort of feller.Here’s how you tell. Imagine a gleaming, box-fresh, 500bhp estate car parked 50 feet in front of you, in dead-on profile.
The passenger doors are all closed although the bonnet as well as tailgate are both open. So where do you go first?
‘Group one’ car buffs are drawn straight to the front, like wasps to a sugar cube, to gawp at the hulking lump of engine confined therein. the item’s understandable. A few years ago, I’d have been the first one there. You don’t know an engine until you’ve stared at the item for at least 10 minutes.
although these days I’d amble to the rear end first with all of the different ‘group two’ pragmatists, wondering whether the rear seats fold totally flat as well as how many cargo nets as well as lashing points one gets on a 500bhp load-lugger in 2015. Living with cars turns you into a ‘group two’ sort of bloke, I reckon. the item teaches you which, regardless of what they are, big estates in particular only genuinely earn their corn by what they can actually do for you.
Welcome, then, fellow ‘group two’ types. The following test can be for you. the item contains minimal references to powerful turbocharged multi-cylinder engines, as well as I’ll keep the sections about performance as well as handling short as well as sweet. Because we’d sooner read about load space, in marvellous, gratuitous detail, wouldn’t we?
as well as we’re all very excited which there’s a brand new estate on the block having a load bay of apparently unprecedented vastness. The Skoda Superb has an exceptionally large boot even in normal hatchback form, although as an estate, which hold grows to the kind of volume you’ll need binoculars to truly appreciate: up to 1950 litres, as claimed.
which makes any different wagon available for the same money look tiny. On paper, the item even eclipses the carrying capacity of the estates which spring to mind as the most capacious as well as most useful available at any money – Mercedes-Benz E-Class (1855 litres) included.
Doesn’t which make This kind of brand new Skoda the best estate from the entire world, then? In order to answer which question, you need an all-time load-lugging great to compare the item with, such as the latest Mercedes E220 Bluetec – as well as a tape measure. You’ll need some props, too. Bald statistics seldom reveal where real-world brilliance can be to be found, after all. as well as parting a two-year-old through her trike, as the item turns out, can be relatively easy on a rainy afternoon.
Before we get our hands dirty, an admission. We’re aware which the number of Mercedes brand devotees willing to defect to Skoda on the strength of Autocar’s say-so will be low. There will be a gulf between the average UK transaction prices of the E-Class as well as Superb estates, as well as the fact which we’ve managed to raise versions which are quite closely matched on power as well as performance level, as well as separated by less than £5000 on list cost, suggests the cars are closer rivals than they genuinely are.
Yet the Skoda wastes few opportunities to confound the inferiority which the badge snobs will expect of the item. The vast load bay we already know about, although the Superb can be also shorter as well as lighter than the E-Class, as well as more powerful as well as faster-accelerating. More capable, too, thanks to the availability of Haldex-type four-wheel drive, whereas the Benz remains rear-wheel drive only.
The E-Class counters meekly on paper, with slightly lower CO2 emissions as well as better claimed fuel economy. although the vitals more important to estate regulars, through maximum allowable towing weight on a braked trailer to maximum payload weight from the boot, are all on the Superb’s side.
Credit to Skoda, too, for keeping the Superb’s costs of ownership low. Our market sources suggest which even This kind of top-of-the-range Superb will retain 43% of its showroom value after three years as well as 36,000 miles – impressive considering which the E-Class can be rated at only 45.2%. The Skoda also charts 11 insurance groups lower than the Mercedes – a difference of hundreds of pounds a year for a typical renewal premium.
So far, so not bad for the Skoda. Tougher territory right now, though. Attractiveness can be a facet so tightly bound up with desirability as well as brand allure which the item seems impossible to discuss the Superb’s styling in isolation. the item’s a handsome car, sure enough – to these eyes, better looking than the E-Class, whose boxy rear end as well as high roofline both seem relatively awkward. Handsome enough which you wouldn’t care about turning down a Benz for a Skoda, though? I doubt the item.
The Superb’s cabin, as well as being large, can be rich, solid as well as very pleasant indeed. Nonetheless, the item’s on cabin quality which the E-Class distinguishes itself. The difference between the two isn’t huge. Both have lined storage bins as well as smooth, carefully stitched leathers. Both are cars of apparent quality.
The Skoda has bigger oddment cubbies. although the E-Class’s fixtures as well as fittings feel which little bit more substantial in your hands than the Skoda’s as well as its cabin can be, by a nose, the nicer place to be.
Time to measure up as well as get loading. I had hoped which This kind of bit might be straightforward – which the auto with the bigger real-world load bay might swallow the golf clubs, stepladder, baby buggy as well as toddler’s trike, while the different one might refuse. In fact, with the smaller section of the split-fold rear seats folded in both cases, both cars surmounted the challenge. There can be little, the item seems, which a Superb Estate will carry which an E220 Estate won’t. If only we’d had a washing machine, a 70in flatscreen TV as well as an enormous cuddly toy.
Dive into the load bays as well as explore in greater detail, though, as well as you can identify the better estate car. the item may not be the one you’re expecting.
The tape measure confirms which, for passengers at any rate, the Skoda can be the more spacious car. Rear leg room can be more abundant from the Superb to the tune of almost 100mm. On head room, the cars are evenly matched; likewise on cabin width.
although measure up the load bay as well as you may wonder, at first, where the Skoda’s advantage lies. On loading length, there’s nothing between them: 1160mm behind the second row from the E-Class, 1140mm from the Superb, rising to exactly 2000mm when you flop the seats down in both cases.
although on width, the E-Class has the edge; the Merc’s load bay can be 1140mm wide at its narrowest, the Skoda’s only 1000mm. So on everyday carrying capacity – floor space, essentially – the E-Class can be marginally the more useful of the two.
Where the Skoda hits back, as well as ultimately delivers its overall capacity, can be on load height. Floor to ceiling, the Superb offers a space up to 820mm high in which to stack things up, versus only 750mm from the E-Class. However, which extra height may only come into play on a handful of occasions during the average ownership of any estate car. By my reckoning, width can be more useful than height in an estate – as well as the Merc has width to burn.
which’s not the end of the practicality debate, though. You can get a folding front passenger seat from the Skoda although not from the Mercedes. However, Skoda adversely affects the usefulness of which feature by failing to flip the format of the split-folding rear seats around for right-hand-drive cars, leaving the larger section behind the driver.
What which means can be which, from the E-Class, you could tilt as well as slide the front passenger seat as far forwards as the item’ll go, flop the bigger portion of the back seats down, seat a passenger behind the driver as well as leave the maximum amount of load space available for bikes, potplants, flatpack furniture or whatever. from the Superb, there’s significantly less through-loading space.
The Superb’s practicality shortcomings don’t end there. I like proper, flat-folding back seats in my family wagon, with Discharge levers positioned close to the boot opening for optimal convenience, as well as a flat load bay floor for easy loading. The E-Class offers all three things as standard.
The Superb’s seats won’t quite go flat, as well as if you want a flat ‘false’ floor or remote seatback releases, you’ll need to spend more for the required options – even on a £35k, top-of-the-line product.
You also have to pay extra for a proper load bay partition from the Superb, to keep those bathroom tiles you’ve stacked up to a height of 820mm through sliding forwards onto the rear seats when you brake. All of which makes the item too easy to order a Superb which’s just a little bit disobliging to use.
Decision time. I said there wouldn’t be much about driving dynamics in This kind of twin test – as well as what there can be only makes the verdict tougher.
The Superb can be the more refined car as well as has the more obedient automatic gearbox, marginally more overtaking as well as hauling power as well as a more comfortable, calming, big family car vibe about its ride as well as handling.
The E-Class can be heavier in its control weights, a touch grippier as well as more direct in its handling, although less cosseting overall. The Benz feels more like a modern executive car, affected slightly by its need to feel multi-talented, assertive as well as sporty.
The Skoda can be entirely laid-back – secure about the simplicity of its dynamic brief.
On which front, as well as not only which, I prefer the Superb, which feels, in many ways, like a truer modern take on an old Mercedes W123 estate than the E220. You’ve got to hand the item to Skoda for exceeding so many of the standards of one of the best modern load-luggers on the market here, as well as then creating the finished product available at a cost to beat a like-for-like Ford Mondeo. All things considered, the Superb can be a remarkable family car.
although the item hasn’t slain the giant. With its format, quality, convenience as well as desirability, the E-Class reeks of the decades of experience which have gone into creating the item arguably the greatest modern estate from the entire world as well as keeping its legacy secure.
As the item happens, you can get one having a 577bhp turbo V8. although just in case you’re still not sure which end you’d go to first, rest assured which both contain no modest amount of brilliance.
Read Autocar’s previous comparison – Bentley Mulsanne Speed versus Tesla product S P85D
Mercedes-Benz E220 Bluetec Estate AMG Night Edition
cost £39,995; 0-62mph 8.8sec; Top speed 136mph; Economy 60.1mpg; CO2 emissions 130g/km; Kerb weight 1760kg; Engine 4 cyls in line, 2143cc, diesel; Power 175bhp at 3200-3800rpm; Torque 295lb ft at 1400-2800rpm; Gearbox 7-spd automatic
Skoda Superb Estate 2.0 TDI 190 DSG 4×4 L&K
cost £35,040; 0-62mph 7.7sec; Top speed 142mph; Economy 55.4mpg; CO2 emissions 135g/km; Kerb weight 1635kg; Engine 4 cyls in line, 1968cc, diesel; Power 187bhp ay 3500rpm; Torque 295lb ft at 1750rpm; Gearbox 7-spd dual-clutch automatic
Get the latest car news, reviews as well as galleries through Autocar direct to your inbox every week. Enter your email address below:
by via Autocar RSS Feed