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Old 07-29-2002, 04:02 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Central Oregon
Posts: 91
4matic - Yes or No

I'm looking at a 99 E320 4matic sedan with 28k from a dealer. Obviously in great condition - some new tread b4 winter is about all I can find.

Okay, okay - the transfer case problems are well documented for the older versions. But the MB sales/service guys are telling me that the newer cars do not have the same problems (starting in 97/98?), and that this 99 version is at least as reliable as a non-4matic E-class.

This car is a perfect match for my driving needs, but then again I could buy a brand new Subaru instead, and never worry about the transfer case for 120k+ miles.

Any tech's out there that can set me straight.

Thanks much - Michael
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Old 07-29-2002, 04:50 PM
blackmercedes's Avatar
Just a guy
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: St. Albert, Alberta, Canada
Posts: 3,492
The new 4-matic system has been in use since MY1998 on the ML and W210 E-Class. To date, it seems very reliable. ML's are a big seller here, and 4-matic problems don't even seem to be on the radar.

I would buy one in a second.
John Shellenberg
1998 C230 "Black Betty" 240K
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Old 07-30-2002, 11:25 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Central Oregon
Posts: 91
Lot's of ML's here too. Especially in winter on Mt. Bachelor. I already have the ski rig, but really need a second car that can get around town reliably once the snow flies.

I haven't heard many negatives about ML's either. They do seem to depreciate quickly though (guess that coud be said about most newer MB's).

I know I will not get any fantastic price from the MB dealer, but this car is like new.
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Old 07-31-2002, 12:25 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: CT
Posts: 185
Yes, you could buy a new Subaru and you would likely find it very reliable, but'd have a Subaru instead of a MB.
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Old 07-31-2002, 11:31 PM
Gilly's Avatar
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Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Evansville WI
Posts: 9,616
I'd say go for it, very few problems, nothing expensive like the old 4 Matic transfer cases. Very rarely the seal for the front diff, and of course as with any other 4 wheel or even front wheel drive vehicle there is the extra set of CV boots up front. I'd buy one if it seemed like a fair deal.
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Old 08-01-2002, 11:03 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Central Oregon
Posts: 91
Thanks all.

I am going to see if I can work a deal this weekend.
Time to get my poker game face ready !!!!
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Old 08-01-2002, 12:38 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Bend, Oregon
Posts: 112
Hi Michael-

I'm from Central Oregon too!!!

One of my co-workers drives a 99 or 00 4 matic and loves it! She's had great luck with it.

I'm thinking about one too when I replace my ML at the end of the lease next July!
2002 G500
2003 Audi Allroad
1999 Range Rover
1992 500SL (sold)
1999 ML320 (sold)
1989 300SE (sold)
1987 560SL (sold)
1986 300E (sold)
1983 300SD (sold)
1982 300D Turbo (sold)
1980 300D (sold)
1973 450SL (sold)
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