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Hi everyone,

Can you advice me what car is better in terms of reliability, performance, maintenance. My favorite choices are:

Lexus GS hybrid

Mercedes E class 350 CDI

Will be grateful for your advice!

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Hands down reliability goes to Lexus. Merc doesn't come close in this regard, especially the E class model you have mentioned.

Performance - Again goes to the Lexus. Specs say it does 0-60mph in 5.9s whereas the E350 CDI is 6.9s. What the specs dont tell you is that the Lexus has progressive power the higher you go up in the rev range. The Merc is turbocharged which means it runs out of puff higher up in the rev range. The Merc will probably feel more lively due to the huge torque figures but the Lexus is more relaxed and is actually faster.

Maintenance - Best bet is to check servicing prices at dealers. Some people are still scared of buying a hybrid - dont really see why as there have hardly been any problems with them whatsoever.

All in all if you do high mileage - maybe 20k a year, get the Merc as it'll have better economy over long distances. The GS450H is built for the city where you'll get great economy and a more relaxed drive + the engine is silky smooth!

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I owned a 2005 GS 300SE for 6 years before going for the E350 CDI BlueEfficiency Sport which is now coming to 4 years of ownership.



Refinement, toys and reliability

Quiet as a mouse engine

Quick acceleration


Changed both wing mirrors after 4 years (Expensive)

Changed one of the headlamp unit due to condensation

Had to change the Xenon bulb after 3 and half years

Heavy on fuel

Poor build quality.



Rock solid build quality

4 years of ownership and touch wood nothing broken

Lights are much brighter and better at night to use considering I live in the sticks

Better residual value


No reverse Camera

Parking sensors are very slow to react

Suspension is stiff (maybe sport version)

Sat Nav is fiddly and can be distructive

Overall, I prefer the Merc but it really depends on what you want. I haven't tried the latest GS but I guess they will be nice to drive

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  • the GS is quicker but not by much depending on which year and model of the 350CDI you go for..
  • both models will have most toys you would need i.e. parking sensors, xenons, reverse camera, folding mirrors , DVD, CD,cup holders, cruise control, Bluetooth, mp3?? unless one is quite fussy both models will have all one needs for thier driving pleasure.
  • if you will be using the car for majority motorway journeys then 350CDI wins in terms of mpg..maybe 8-10mpg more.
  • no difference in mpg for both model in town driving so one wont save much if they went diesel.
  • Lexus is smooth refined and less noisy compared to some idling 2014 diesel's i have heard at the traffic lights.
  • not a lot in it for road tax if one went 350cdi over 450h
  • worth comparing servicing cost of both models thats if you will be using dealers
  • petrol is cheaper than diesel at the pumps
  • lexus is know for thier reliabilty of petrol/hybrid engines. how far DPF,turbo and injector issues on diesel models has improved over the years i cant tell but these three are well know common issues on diesel cars.
  • Lexus is exclusive on the roads Merc is not they are every where.
  • check if the boot space on the GS450h will be enough for your needs as its smaller for some.

if you ask me i'll say test drive both and decision is yours to make all cars have something they lack when compared to another competitor but will all boil down to which faults you can live with.

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Forgot to mention: - Lexus customer service is A+ compared to those arrogant Merc dealers.

Servicing on the Diesel is pricey. Have you considered the E350 CGI (Petrol)

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E class handles much better than GS.
But i would go for 450h with my eyes closed.

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I have just gone from a GS450h to a E220 CDI ( only because Lexus offered me almost nothing for my dying GS, Mercedes paid more than double!)

Yes the Merc is slower making my licence is much safer but in never drops below 52 MPG and hits the 60s on a motorway, road fund licence is a mere £30 after the 1st free year and service contract is around half the Lexus charge.

I don't feel the same pride or interest in the Merc but that GS450h cost me a lot of money and I feel was just too complicated as no other garage would try to repair it.

Good luck with your decision.

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  • 309 Hybrid Reliability

    1. 1. If you were to consider buying a Hybrid model over 5 years old, would you be worried about the reliability of the Hybrid system?

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