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  #16  
Old 03-12-2012, 01:42 PM
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Honestly I know most people on here think that the OM648 is a longer lasting engine but the electronics are not. For longevity I would go with the M272. You really can't beat it for cost of maintenance and fuel. They are bullet proof engines! OM648 Have issues its really not a reliable diesel engine anymore when it has more electronics than a gas engine. I do love a good OM648 though
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  #17  
Old 03-12-2012, 05:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spark3542 View Post
I have a friend with the V6 E350. He got a couple engine codes (P0016 and 17 I believe), and turns out to be the balance shaft destroys itself. MB hasn't signed up to it, and are charging $6k or so to fix.
This balance shaft issue is an important thing to consider. MB is not consistent in their treatment of owners when there is a failure; it is my understanding that the repair usually runs more in the $4,000 range if MB decides not to goodwill all, or part, of the repair. There is information on the balance shaft issue on this site, and on benzworld, as well, with tips to determine if the motor in the car you're considering has the potential of this failure (not all cars are impacted).

Another thing to consider is the transmission electronics, especially if the car is equipped with the 722.9 / 7-speed automatic. Both the 5-speed and 7-speed automatics are prone to electronic faults in the valve body, which can cause harsh shifting and "sticking" in gear. With the 5-speed, there is a greater chance that changing out the conductor plate will cure the issues; the 7-speed often requires replacement of the valve body. $900-$2,000 repair.

Some folks also don't like the SBC (electronic brakes). I've never had a problem with them, but some people have reported rather sudden failure with greatly increased stopping distances.

I think there is a W211 buyer's guide on benzworld, and there may be one on this site, as well. It would be worthwhile reading. Catching up on deferred maintenance / repair items on a used W211 that someone has dumped because of one of the above issues can get expensive. The balance shaft problem gives you a CEL only when it has deteriorated to the point of requiring replacement. The transmission doesn't typically trigger a CEL at all, and telltale signs of valve body issues can be quite intermittent. So you can test drive one of these and think it's 100% when in fact it's not.

Not trying to dissuade you...my wife drives a 2006 E350 wagon and I really like the car, and I'm glad we purchased it. It just has not been as trouble-free as I had hoped...
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  #18  
Old 03-12-2012, 07:09 PM
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It sounds like you've got a company car allowance deal and that's why you're in the market...?

Most gas Mercedes that I've seen require midgrade or premium. An E55 would no doubt require at least 92 octane, possibly even 94... but I could be wrong with the 94 part.

Definitely pick the car that you'll be the most happy with. Electronics doesn't always mean less reliable.
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  #19  
Old 03-12-2012, 07:55 PM
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Originally Posted by KarTek View Post
That is the cost of regular gas now. Do the gas cars prefer/require premium? I actually prefer the diesel and it sounds like there are issues with the gas engine's extra complexity.
Both of my w210s state "Premium Only" in many places (gas flap, manual many times). I would assume a bigger engine by Mercedes would state that same thing. Now whether you follow that or not is for another thread. Personally I have only put Premium in both of my gassers as I generally follow their guidelines.

So if you factor in Premium prices the savings in your calculations for the diesel would go up drastically.

If you prefer the diesel and can afford it I see no reason why NOT to go for it. Only reason I bought a gasser was because I wanted a wagon and AWD. The E430 is my wife's. We paid probably about 1/3-1/2 of what a 210 diesel would have cost and she didn't want to spend that much otherwise I'd have all diesels.
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  #20  
Old 03-13-2012, 01:03 PM
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I have had 2 E55 Kompressor cars, a sedan and now a wagon. While they are easy enough to live with and generally reliable, I can also verify they are substantially more expensive to own than a six cylinder 211 car.

The most obvious distinction is fuel economy. A 55 will typically deliver 15MPG. A sedan can maybe touch 21-22 highway, but in generall figure 15 city and 20 highway if you're driving style is not too crazy. The only other normal expense which is significantly different is tires. Figure on $1K as an average cost for a set, and a lifetime of 10K up to perhaps 30K miles at best.

In terms of potential E55 repairs, you have all your standard 211 items. Plus the E55 has airmatic suspension standard, and the air struts definately don't last forever. Rear struts cost $2k to replace at dealer parts/labor prices ($3K for the pair), fronts are a bit more reasonable. Other common issues are supercharger clutches, serpentine/supercharger belt pullies, and intercooler pumps. Some of these are a bit pricey, others not too bad, but it all adds up.

Moving on to other topics, it is my understanding that MB is fully covering the balance shaft issues these days. As well, most '08 models are out of the affected range of engine numbers.

SBC brakes were removed from all 211 models starting with the '07 model year. Lack of SBC would be a cost of ownership advantage of a newer gasoline car over an '06 CDI.

My $.02.
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  #21  
Old 03-13-2012, 02:56 PM
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I'd love one of those AMG's that the Top Gear guy's are drifting around corners. The white smoke billowing from the rear wheel wells is an intoxicating elixir to my immature side.

Alas, the money you guy's are talking about is so far out of my reach, I will have to be satisfied with my lowly W124 diesel.

This video is insane.
Mercedes AMG E55 Burnout
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  #22  
Old 03-13-2012, 05:06 PM
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Originally Posted by jcyuhn View Post
Moving on to other topics, it is my understanding that MB is fully covering the balance shaft issues these days. As well, most '08 models are out of the affected range of engine numbers.

SBC brakes were removed from all 211 models starting with the '07 model year. Lack of SBC would be a cost of ownership advantage of a newer gasoline car over an '06 CDI.

My $.02.
This is correct. Balance shaft is no longer an issue. SBC is also covered by Mercedes if it fails and the replacement SBC units don't seem to fail. 722.9 transmission repairs often now only require a shift plate like the 722.6 which is the integrated control unit and the electronics for much cheaper than the entire valve body. Some cases exist for both where the valve body requires replacement though not common.
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  #23  
Old 03-13-2012, 05:09 PM
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i currently drive a 2006 e320 cdi. i bought it a year ago with 42k on the clock, and have ~65k on it now. drive it to work every day, rain or shine. i highly recommend them. i've had to do fluids/filters/other maintenance items, plus a wheel bearing replacement, and a replacement electrical connector on the transmission. i also had to replace the oe batteries, but i consider that maintenance, to be honest. i drive an ~45 mile one-way commute daily, which is about one-third stop-and-go and two-thirds interstate. i average about 38.5 mpg doing this.

it's an easy car to service - i do the simple stuff myself - fluids, filters, etc. for non-engine related stuff, there are so many e-series machines around that parts are easy to get and independent mechanics are familiar with them.

anyway - just some data for you. hope it helps.
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  #24  
Old 03-13-2012, 05:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oldwolf View Post
I'd love one of those AMG's that the Top Gear guy's are drifting around corners. The white smoke billowing from the rear wheel wells is an intoxicating elixir to my immature side.

Alas, the money you guy's are talking about is so far out of my reach, I will have to be satisfied with my lowly W124 diesel.

This video is insane.
Mercedes AMG E55 Burnout
Perhaps we should start a new social group. Guys that drive lowly 124 diesels.
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  #25  
Old 03-13-2012, 05:18 PM
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Thanks for all the info guys. I'm pretty much settled on a CDI. I really needed a sanity check before I ran out and bought something. I'm really planning on this being a car that I can keep the rest of my life.
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