The Mercedes-Benz E-Class Estate has always been a strong tow car, and the latest model continues to make a stable and extremely practical vehicle.
If the Jaguar XF Sportbrake puts style ahead of ultimate luggage capacity, the E-Class does the opposite. It’s simply huge inside: 695 litres of load space with the seats upright and 1950 litres with them folded down. If you bring the kitchen sink with you on caravanning trips, this is the car.
It drives well, too. At the legal limit and beyond there was little movement from the E-Class unless it was hit by a particularly strong gust. In the lane-change test the caravan swayed around – even going up on one wheel on the fastest run through the cones. But the E-Class always pulled the caravan straight again.
There’s no shortage of muscle to pull any suitable match. The four-cylinder 2.1-litre diesel musters 368lb.ft of torque, enough to haul car and caravan from 30-60mph in just 11.4 seconds. It’s a shame the engine isn’t quieter and smoother, though.
The more powerful six-cylinder diesel is much more refined, but it pushes the price tag up even further. Although the E-Class is an excellent load-carrier and tow car, £40k is serious money.