Mid-sized saloons are one of the more popular segments in the luxury space that has been a consistent performer for most luxury car manufacturers. Ruled by the Mercedes E-Class for the longest time in the country, the new Germans and a Brit have also been performing well off late. However, while the competition had 6-cylinder engines to boast off, Mercedes was lagging behind by 2-cylinders. Now, with the Stuttgart based giant bringing back the V6 powered E350 CDI launched earlier this week, the competition is only going to get exciting in the segment with every manufacturer offering something special.
Therefore, we compare the specs of the Mercedes E350 CDI with the BMW 530d, Audi A6 3.0 TDI and Jaguar XF 3.0 to know which European triumphs in the segment.
Powertrain – On the outset, all the models in question come with a 3.0-litre heart with six-cylinders, however what makes it different is the the way they have been tuned. The Jaguar XF certainly comes with the best in class horsepower offering 275 HP at 4000 RPM, while the newest launch, the Mercedes E350 CDI manages 14 HP less with 261 HP of power, but at 3800 RPM. While both these models come with a V6, the odd-ball here happens to be the BMW 530d Sport that comes with an in-line 6-cylinder engine. Nonetheless, the 530d makes 258 HP of power, while the lowest output in class comes from the A6 producing 246 HP from a V6 engine.
In terms of torque, the V6 diesel E-Class beats the competition by a hefty margin offering best in class output of 620 Nm. Moreover, you get most of it kicking in at a low 1600 RPM, which makes it incredibly responsive. The closest to come to that figure is the Jaguar XF with 600 Nm of torque at 2000 RPM, while the 530d and A6 produce 560 Nm at 1500 RPM and 500 Nm at 1400 RPM respectively.
Dimensions – The Jaguar XF is the lengthiest of the lot, but has the shortest wheelbase compared to rivals. The XF measures 4961 mm in length, however the wheelbase is just 2109 mm. In comparison, the A6 wins a by a heft margin with a wheelbase of 2912 mm. The Audi offers good legroom and headroom with all the tricks and treat around. The other German E350 CDI is the more luxurious one to be seated in with a wheelbase of 2874 mm and a bunch of gadgetry to keep you comfortable. The 5-Series on the other hand triumphs the E-Class with a wheelbase of 2968 mm, but the length does not really translate into real world space. While legroom isn’t an issue, the headroom may seem limited to a few at the rear on the Beemer.
Design – While design maybe subjective, there are a few factors that we would like to point out. The Jaguar XF is easily the best looking sedan here, followed by the BMW 5-Series that looks more modern of the German trio. The Mercedes E350 appears bolder now with the flashy new grille, but still has the conservativeness in its silhouette. The Audi here is the one that may strike as the most conservative trying to balance between style and design longevity.
Price – The Jaguar XF is the most inexpensive model in the segment to have a V6 heart, priced at Rs. 54.81 lakhs. What you miss out on though are several features, but not on the driving pleasure. However, Mercedes manages to give all of that and then some more with the best in class torque at a competitive price of Rs. 57.42 lakhs. BMW on the other hand might not offer similar power output, but does provide great handling and braking which makes up for the loss around corners. Priced at Rs. 59.20 lakhs, its not too much of a deal breaker either for the performance hungry enthusiasts. Coming to the most expensive, the Audi A6 is priced at a hefty Rs. 63.13 lakhs that will give you a tonne of features and is also the only car in the segment to get all-wheel drive, being equipped with Audi’s quattro system (all prices ex-showroom, Delhi).
Verdict – As we told you at the beginning of this post, all the saloons are good in their own might and offer something for everyone. So if you have around Rs. 70 lakhs (including taxes) to spare; and if its power, luxury and snob value that you crave, the Mercedes provides that plentiful and is not too expensive either. However, if you are young at heart and driving pleasure is what you seek, head to the nearest BMW showroom. But if styling is your priority, nobody does it better than Jaguar while also providing some exceptional levels of performance. You do miss out on features though, but you also end up paying less. Nonetheless, if you want a little of everything and can leave some, the Audi A6 is the right choice for you. In either cases, all we are trying to say is you won’t go wrong with any of them.