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  #1  
Old 02-11-2013, 08:49 PM
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best years for the w211?

Didn't this chassis start in 2003.. and end about 2008? what are the years to avoid? What are the issues? I heard the brakes are expensive if they go out- is that common? Anything to watch for with the 320 engine? how about the 500? Does the 500 get decent fuel economy? Any 4matic issues? Does the 4matic get significantly worse mileage? Any downside to a 4matic?

I'd like to upgrade my wagon to a newer model and I'm not to keen on the w210 looks...

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  #2  
Old 02-11-2013, 09:38 PM
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The W211 started in 03 and ran until 09(In North America) the best years are the post facelift models from 07-09. The 09's can be had for very cheap now. I have seen many for around only $25,000. From 07-09 you can get a E350 4Matic wagon or sedan or a E550 4Matic wagon and of course the E63 I was set on a 09 E550 but now I changed and I want the W212 now.
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  #3  
Old 02-11-2013, 09:42 PM
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The SBC brakes have a 10 year, unlimited mileage warranty. You will have to check on 03 and 04s that were sold in 2003 to see if they are out of that 10 year range. You can also check any dealer if any warranty work was done on them. The big failure is the sbc pump. I think its around $3k.

These pumps came programmed with a wear counter. At some point the pump knows its had too much use and triggers a fault code. Turns out these pumps start saying they're worn out much faster than MB thought they would, and initially they would replace them. Now fix is to re-program the pump to think it will last longer. When they fail you have something like 30% braking efficiency and a red warning light in the gauge.

So, alot of them do get replaced, some don't. If you buy a SBC equipped car it may not ever be a problem. Mine was reprogrammed almost a year ago and the pump is still fine. 60k on the car.

SBC was done away with after the 2006 model year. So 2007s have somewhat normal brakes.

The only other big ticket item is if the car is equipped with airmatic suspension. It is a wonderful system, but struts do wear out and cost $300 per rebuilt strut to replace. $1000+ a strut new from Mercedes. I hear pumps go out but have never seen one first hand.

So, if you want the least complicated W211. I guess the 2007-2009 E350 would be the way to go, as airmatic was optional. They are alot more expensive than a 2004-2005 E500 Wagon, which I think is alot more fun, but you have SBC and airmatic to contend with. 2004-2005 E320 wagons airmatic is optional.

4matics are very good. No problems. Do cost a couple of MPGs. E500 does drink alot more gas in the city, but I can eek 25MPG on the highway.

You might also look for a 203 chassis C320 wagon. They are very, very simple cars, good cargo, and great MPG. Real easy to top 30MPG with those.
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  #4  
Old 02-11-2013, 09:47 PM
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My uncle has had a 2007 E350 4matic since new and hasn't done a thing to it other than regular maintenance.

My attorney buys a new E class every 2 years and never does a thing to them including regular maintenance.

Just figure out what you want to spend and go buy the best example you can, can't go wrong.
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  #5  
Old 02-11-2013, 10:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C280 Sport View Post
The W211 started in 03 and ran until 09(In North America) the best years are the post facelift models from 07-09. The 09's can be had for very cheap now. I have seen many for around only $25,000. From 07-09 you can get a E350 4Matic wagon or sedan or a E550 4Matic wagon and of course the E63 I was set on a 09 E550 but now I changed and I want the W212 now.
I wish I could think of $25,000 as very cheap! I think if I ad up all the cars I've owned in my life it wouldn't total $25k.
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  #6  
Old 02-11-2013, 11:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MTUpower View Post
Didn't this chassis start in 2003.. and end about 2008? what are the years to avoid? What are the issues? I heard the brakes are expensive if they go out- is that common? Anything to watch for with the 320 engine? how about the 500? Does the 500 get decent fuel economy? Any 4matic issues? Does the 4matic get significantly worse mileage? Any downside to a 4matic?

I'd like to upgrade my wagon to a newer model and I'm not to keen on the w210 looks...
I'd let Tyler guide me on the purchase of a W211 wagon.

He knows them inside out, especially what options and year models to avoid or pass on as too problematic. I was considering one years ago, and was set straight on them, because Tyler had bought and sold a W211 wagon, and learned a bit about them. This was a few (2+ years ago) as I recall.
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  #7  
Old 02-12-2013, 01:09 AM
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I've bought and sold a few more, along with many other W211s. Coming from the auction I see them at their worst... really not that bad..
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  #8  
Old 02-12-2013, 11:15 AM
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FYI in '03 the wagon was still a 210 chassis even though the sedan had transitioned to the 211 chassis. '04 is the first 211 wagon.

The early 211 cars have the M112 3.2 liter V6 and 722.6 5-speed automatic. A very solid combination, they are reliable, durable, and have good power and good economy. Early 320 wagons could be had in either RWD or 4matic. The E500 wagon is 4matic only. Figure on it being a bit thirsty, especially in the city.

The 211 wagons use as standard an air strut based self leveling system at the rear. However this is different than the full airmatic suspension and not nearly as expensive to repair if an air strut fails. An easy way to tell if a car has airmatic is to look for the "raise vehicle" button in the center console, to the rear of the shifter. Either with or without airmatic you may hear a hissing sound upon stopping and exiting the car as the self levelng does its thing - nothing to be concerned about.

Starting in 2006 the E320 was replaced by the E350 (M272 V6) 4matic wagon. MBUSA's product planners think they are competing for SUV buyers, so AWD was made standard. E350 cars from 2006 to early 2008 suffer from the dreaded balance shaft failure. Do make sure you know whether the car you are looking has been repaired and/or falls in the affected range. I expect most cars that are going to experience this fault have had it occur and been repaired. MB has lately been good about paying the full (and very significant) cost. However, if you are the 3rd or 4th owner buying from a non-MB dealer, I would suggest verifying the repair has been performed.

I don't think we ever got an E550 wagon in the U.S. The E500 hung around through the 2006 model year, but after that wagons were V6 only.

Lastly, I am going to disagree with Tyler! I have owned a 203 wagon. I really like the 203, they are nice looking, practical, and great to drive. However, the wagons won't do more than ~26MPG on the highway. My C240 wagon never scored higher than 24.5 on roadtrips of 500 miles or more, though admittedly we drive fast with the a/c blasting down here in Texas. C320 is preferred over C240 because it delivers the same or better fuel economy, has higher equipment levels, and actually makes some torque. Also much harder to find, unfortunately.
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  #9  
Old 02-12-2013, 11:54 AM
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I have had 2 c320s that I've put significant mileage on and managed 30mpg highway. I think Miguel averaged the same average driving one back from Colorado for me.
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  #10  
Old 02-12-2013, 12:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TylerH860 View Post
I have had 2 c320s that I've put significant mileage on and managed 30mpg highway. I think Miguel averaged the same average driving one back from Colorado for me.
Were they wagons? 203 sedan drivers don't seem to have any trouble achieving 30MPG, but I've not yet heard from a wagon driver that got anywhere close.
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  #11  
Old 02-12-2013, 12:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jcyuhn View Post
Were they wagons? 203 sedan drivers don't seem to have any trouble achieving 30MPG, but I've not yet heard from a wagon driver that got anywhere close.
Depending on if you have the 4Matic or not. My friend had a 07 C230 6-Speed for his daily driver(And also for our weekend Auto X car) It would get about 33mpg on a good day. Most I have ever seen with my W203 4Maitc was 29.5mpg(Sedan).(Albany,NY to Verona NY). Get one in RWD and drive with a light foot and propor conditions you will have no issues getting 30+mpg.
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  #12  
Old 02-12-2013, 01:07 PM
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My $.02.. Try to skip the 06/07 with the first of the M273/type 9 transmission. They had some early teething issues with balance shaft sprockets getting eaten, and the type 9 having "gremlins"...

They worked these issues out in 08.


With that said, I had 150k miles on my 03 E55 when I sold it back in August. A friend also has an 03 E500 closing in on 200k miles.

The W211 is very svelte. Loved my E55 quite a bit. She had two personalities - A nice quiet side, with a fantastic ride, isolating you from the outside world. The other - a beast which could rip Corvettes, Ferraris, and Porsches new @S$holes!

And my god, did it look good:

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  #13  
Old 02-12-2013, 03:14 PM
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The 07 E350 4Matic's still used the 722.6 transmission.

4Matic is nice if you plan on driving it in the snow.

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