allroad or A6 avant versus Mercedes c320 or E320 wagon

Audi Allroad, A6 Avant Mercedes C320 wagon or E320 wagon
Within the next few months (November) I will be looking for a replacement for my 2001 Mercedes C320 Sport Wagon. Since it has been a
real lemon, I am loath to go back into the same car.
I would like input good and bad on the Wagons mentioned above (and any others that I may have overlooked.)
What I like:
Versatility to load large stuff (typical home depot run...smaller furniture, boxes, etc) in the back of my car, then convert it into a regular car again.
Speed and acceleration (don't need a hot rod, but 190 HP is too low). Zero to 60 under 8 seconds, and prefer closer to 6 seconds.
Bells and whistles (CD changer, dual climate zones, heated seats, auto wipers, integrated cell phone, power seat memory, leather, nice trim - prefer wood, high powered lights, trip computer, high end stereo, etc...)
Auto with shift capability is nice.
Must handle in a reasonably sporty manner... no boats or sloppy steering.
Would really like all wheel drive (miss my Volvo XC that was pretty good in snow).
storage compartments in rear area.
Traction control, and lateral sway / stability control.
Rear leg room is somewhat important as my kids get older, and to take care of my friends when we go into town.
Safety record, and related stuff like side bags is important.
Athird row seat would be nice..but not essential
Would like to keep it under $55,000... but hey wouldn't we all. Current car cost $47,000.
Service that offers loaners and kisses ass.
Good warranty program that includes everything.
Larger interior than the C320 wagon would be nice.
I dislike:
Things breaking
Sloppy driving cars
Poor acceleration
poorly laid out dash
unintuitive buttons and controls.
cheap trim
Inability to floor it to pass quickly at highway speed.
I realize that no car can meet all of these things...but what comes close...?
I do want a nicer car... status is not really important... but I do want something that is considered a "nice car"... Ford Tauruses need not apply. in other word image is nice, but not all consuming.
I do tend toward european cars instead of american and japanes... but won't rule it out.
i had considered a 5 series BMW, but the wagon is not being produced in that size right now. thanks in advance,
Rich
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E320 wagon - MB E-Class is THE benchmark for station wagons. ------------------------------------------------------------------------
Rich Williamson wrote:

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Problem is that it seems pretty impossible to get one with any features for under $55,000 I tried the online buying tool and found that the car i wanted was stickering for over $62,000... even with negotiating, i can't see getting it into line with my budget.

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[Snip]
I was very happy with my A6 2.7T Avant, which I only changed to upgrade to an RS6 Avant.
I would think that any of the more powerful Audi A6 range would meet most of your requirements. I guess that you are in the US of A, so you won't be able to get the RS6 Avant (which would be well above your price range), but the S6 and 4.2 are worthy cars. Also check out the slightly smaller versions - the 3.0 and 2.7T, if either or both are still available over there.
--
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Neither will be shortly. The 3.0 gets bigger and the 2.7T shouldn't let the door hit it on the way out.
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I don't know about price, but if you want an MB, can you get an E320T 4-matic there?
Personally I would go for a Subaru Liberty (Legacy) GT turbo wagon. Has all or most of the features, performance, reliability, quality and is affordable.
Klaus

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Why not a E class ? Diesel! All that torque makes them fun! Also so that would be more of a competitor with the a-6.
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Why is this being crossposted to a BMW group when one is not even under consideration?

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was hoping someone might tell me that in 2005 the BMW mid sized (5 series) wagon might be back... i figured you BMW guys might know something...
while I have a BMW owner on the line... I am puzzled by the horsepower ratings for the 525 (184-hp) and 535 (225-hp)...which seem a little low when you compare them to cars like the Audis and mercedes.. Do they get up and go? I was always under the impression that BMW were fast sporty cars, and was surprised when i saw them at the car show.
In a automatic, would a large car like the 530 move fast enough on the highway or backroads? what is the 0-60?
the 545 is better on paper but costs a lot more than a comparably HP rated other car.
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myrealbox.com> wrote:

Yes it is back in 2005, but I have heard differing dates for availability. The date that seems most stated is 1st Quarter 2005...that's in US. Europe might see it sooner.
Check some mag sites like www.caranddriver.com or www.automobilemag.com they have pictures and projected dates. To me the wagon looks quite nice (in photos).
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