Our Fleet Test Drive: Mercedes C200 CDI - 6th Report
08 May 2008
 The trip computer claimed an average 42.4mpg across 671 miles
One of the longest trips any football fan will make this season gave me the chance to give our C200 CDI a proper run.
The League One clash between Carlisle United and my beloved Brighton and Hove Albion meant a three-up  670-mile round trip from London.
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There's little danger of premature tiredness with the Merc, and the comfy cruiser lapped up the M40 and almost the entire length of the M6. In fact, we were in the northern reaches of England far enough ahead of kick-off to pop a further 10 miles north and over the border into Scotland for a spot of lunch in Gretna .
Following a disappointing and not a little referee-influenced defeat, our saloon effortlessly cruised the 300-plus miles home, and I was safely back on the sofa in time to catch most of Match of the Day. The trip computer claimed an average 42.4mpg across 671 miles  and more than 10 hours of driving, with the one complete fill-up - we got as far as Stoke on the way back on the one tank - from the day working out at 40.4mpg.
We've also sampled some more of Mercedes' excellent dealer service at the Orpington aftersales centre, though the cynic in me now thinks they've flagged our car as the BusinessCar test vehicle after earlier praise was published, so it would be interesting to hear any more reader experiences.
The C-class decided of its own accord that it needed a service, despite being the best part of 4000 miles short of the 15,500 first service point. It turned out our car was built 12 months ago, and the system should have been reset when it was first registered in the UK. As that didn't happen, our 57-plate car thought it had hit the 12-month service interval. It took somewhere in the region of 10 minutes to fix, and that included a wash that disposed of the layers of motorway grime on our behalf.
Alas, the end is near, and we'll struggle to get far beyond 12,000 miles before the man comes knocking on the office door for the keys. Stay tuned for a full final report in a few weeks' time.