I had an '01 E430 for the past 5 1/2 years and decided to move away from German cars in general, mostly because how often it needed to be seen by a mechanic (and it is never a cheap visit). Ironically enough, I orginally went to look at the GS first but it took only 1 test drive for me to know the LS was it for me. I looked at pretty much all of the other cars out there, but this was the best deal for the money. Keep in mind, that this car competets with the S Class and 7 Series BMW, but is much cheaper. All of my friends love this car and I get so many complements on its beauty. You are not doing yourself justice if you have the money to spend and don't test drive this one.
Seriously fast car. Gets almost 30 mpg on the highway when you throw it in 8th gear. The amount of leg room in the back seat is amazing My girlfriend has back problems and loves the plush leather seats (she hated the Benz). Gigantic trunk. I swear the car floats when you drive it. Incredible.
There is some wind noise for sure. Having to stop to use the navigation system is also a pain in the butt, but I am not to sure that I want everyone driving 70 mph on the highway while punching keys into the dash at the same time. If only it could be used while someone was in the passenger seat.