Originally posted by Piotr
3) any persistent probs with that particular model?
It depends on what year the car is. If it is a 1998, then it is not a Kompressor car, and there are no long term worries about the supercharger. If it is a 1999, then you get the extra horsepower of the blown engine, but the engine is not as refined and there are some concerns about over100K-mile reliability of the Eaton supercharger.
The M111 engine itself (either in M111.974 form in the 1998 or M111.975 form in the 1999) is durable. No headgasket problems, or anything else engine related.
There are some things that are pretty common to all W202 1996- M111 equipped cars:
1. Belt tensioner and shock needs replacing every 4-5 years.
2. Blower motor needs replacing every 4-5 years.
3. In areas with really bad roads, front lower ball joints wear out every 4-5 years.
4. As in most late model MB's, final drive seals may leak.
And that's about it. Overall, the 1996- W202 cars are Japanese like in their reliability.