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Mercedes-Benz E-Class Sedans



  • linardlinard Posts: 59
    Just a quick clarification issue, I'm absolutely sure that MB uses leather for the whole seat in cars with full leather. The exception are the ones that have part leather standard (e.g. the C240 and the E320 wagon).
  • I have a 2000 E320, and I bought Yokohama AVS dB 255/55ZR16 tires from Tire Rack for $101. I love them - they are fantastic! They are one of the quietest performance tires you can buy (dB). Check them out here:
  • linard is correct about the full leather with a couple of exceptions. Along with the E320 wagon, the E300 diesels also had the non-leather (MBTex) as standard. For what its worth, its pretty damn hard to tell the difference, the MBTex is the best "fake leather" I've seen. And, my local dealer claims it has better wear properties, so it's in the wagon as a more "rugged" surface.
  • mbdrivermbdriver Posts: 426
    linard, jawanda -- thanks for the info. Makes sense.
  • I've got a 2003 E320 on order. I'm considering the larger 245/45 R17 H tires for it that come standard with the E500. I'd stay with the standard dual spoke rims as opposed to the 5-spoke.

    Does anyone know of a reason why this would be problematic? Note that I'm not getting the airmatic suspension.

    My desire for the larger tires is purely cosmetic. They appear to fill the tire well better than the 225/55 R16s that come standard with the E320. My only concern is that they will somehow negatively impact the ride.

    By the way, I'm not talking about the optional high performance tires. Anyone have any insight?
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    I might be concerned about the difference in ride quality and treadlife of the larger low profile tires. I say "might" because I do not own or have specific experience with the new E-class. However, in the case of the old E-class, a friend has a 2001 E430 "Sport" and he has complained about the short treadlife of the larger tires that came with the sport package. Apparently, Mercedes did not upgrade the suspension and the lower profile tires tend to wear on the edges because of body roll. In the case of BMW's "sport" packages on the 5-series, the suspension is upgraded as well, not just the tires.

    Perhaps the new E class suspension produces less body roll than the old one so that the tire upgrade you are considering would be OK.

    I would also be a little concerned about the difference in ride quality, given that the E320 is a "luxury" car. My Honda S2000 uses "50" series W-rated tires on the rear and although that's great for a sports car, it's not the ride I would want with a luxury sedan.
  • stvirstvir Posts: 13
    A tire's treadlife depends on its treadwear rating and not on its size/profile. For example, a high-performance/sport "W" rated tire will wear much faster than an "H" rated tire of the same size/profile.

    When buying a tire, look for it's treadwear rating ... the higher, the better.
  • So if both tires are H rated, with one being the 245/45 R17 H and the other the 225/55 R16 H, I should expect similar wear?

    Is there any other reason, assuming no difference in wear in the tires above, that the larger tires would be undesirable?
  • Like aggie76, I've got a 32" inseam, which I never thought was "short".. Overall I'm 6'3" and have lots of headroom issues with cars, mostly the luxury ones.! I fit fine in my 96 E but cannot sit properly in the new S or the new E with a sunroof. The newer BMW 5 is comfy but the Audi A4 is a joke. I can't even get far enough into it to sit down. The Infiniti G35 is line to line with my noggin, but the Nissan Altima is fine. Thumbs down on the XJ6 and the BMW's from the mid 90's. However, I have tons of room in my wife's Matrix and a Neon and many other small cars including the prior chassis C-Class (the new C is marginal like the E and S). So what vehicles do the pro football and basketball players buy with their millions of dollars? They sure don't fit into most luxury cars, so they must all be driving Excursions and Suburbans??
  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 7,611
    The general rule is that the higher the performance rating, the shorter the treadlife.

    A great resource for researching tires is They have lots of information wrt to proper tires for your vehicle and real life consumer feedback.

    As for the ratings listed on the side of the tire, keep in mind that those numbers are valid only within the specific tire manufacturer. A 420 tread life on a Michelin is not equal to a 420 tread life on a Goodyear. Also, tread life is dependent on proper tire care, inflation pressure, road conditions, and your style of driving.

    Good Luck.
  • So if both tires are H rated, with one being the 245/45 R17 H and the other the 225/55 R16 H, I should expect similar wear?

    Is there any other reason, assuming no difference in wear in the tires above, that the larger tires would be undesirable?
  • hpilot1:

    I had the AVS db's on my 96E last year and, when new, were the quietest tires I've ever owned. But by the time they turned 10K miles they were almost as noisy as my snow tires. Yokohama let me trade them in for the AVID V rated model which now have almost 10K and are still very quiet. I've noticed no difference in performance either.

    How many miles do you have on the AVS db's so far? Please let us know if you have the same problem I had.

    Did you buy 255's or 215's ??
  • microrepair,

    Sorry to hear about the problems you have had with the dBs. I only have about 2000 miles on them so far, so now I am afraid I will have the same problem as you later on. Sorry about the typo on the size - I have 225s. Here is a quote from the Tire Rack that may explain the situation:

    "The directional tread design combines several key design elements which enhance the AVS dB’s capabilities. A continuous center block provides uninterrupted rubber-to-road contact while "tusk" shaped grooves minimize noise and maximize water drainage. Additionally, all of the tread block sizes and shapes are designed specifically to help neutralize one another’s noise patterns when new.

    However, one of the drawbacks of a directional tread design is that it limits the options in the ways that the tires may be rotated. Since directional tires must always roll in one direction to maximize their hydroplaning resistance and wet traction capabilities, without remounting them on their wheels they can only be rotated from front-to-rear on one side of the car. Without rigid adherence to maintaining correct inflation pressures, tire rotation and vehicle alignment, this limitation can lead directional tires, include the AVS dB, to experience irregular "heel and toe" wear which causes the tread blocks to wear unevenly. Heel and to wear will increase the noise level as the miles add up. This condition is typically engineered on vehicles equipped with independent rear suspensions whose alignment setting specifications call for negative camber, such as BMW, Lexus and Mercedes, etc."
  • mbdrivermbdriver Posts: 426
    I upgraded my 2000 E320 to 17" x 7.5 Original Equipment MB Style E wheels (5-spoke beauties)and 235/45ZR-17 Yoko AVS dB tires almost 10,000 miles ago (when the car had about 6,000 miles). I'm completely happy with the results, including appearance (terrific), ride quality (very slightly harsher), handling (noticeably improved), and noise (very quiet).

    I'm due for a tire rotation and have been conscientious about keeping 34 to 36 psi in all four tires -- recommended by many experts to maximize tread wear. I would estimate that I'll get at least 15,000 miles more on the tires for a total of at least 25,000, and possibly much more. I don't take corners at break-neck speeds, but I occasionally drive 70 to 90 mph on Interstates.

    Hope this helps.
  • footiefootie Posts: 636
    E Class inventory at one dealership in Boston continues to creep up, offering nearby shoppers a chance to wheel and deal and not fall prey to the MSRP trap by ordering a car.

    The best overhang seems to continues to be at Herb Chambers ( $1 billion sales group selling about everything including MB ).

    They now have 65 E Class cars showing in online inventory on their two lots. There are 34 new 2003 320 E's and 22 E500's. There appears to be a wide variety of options and colors available, given the spread on pricing. The "short supply, better get your order in now, thank you for the deposit" song is hard to play here.

    The other 9 cars are a few left over 2002 E320 sedans and wagons and a couple of 2003 E320 wagons.

    Given the $4500 profit margin in these cars per Edmunds, there seems to be an awful good chance to get what you are shopping for without waiting for a build and ship and pay well under MSRP. MB had a record month shipping E Class cars to dealers in October, but as these lot inventory bubbles take a while to work themselves out, a sharp buyer can get a new car at a much better price.

    They ran a "Were Dealing' ad in the Sunday paper and leases of $499/mo on new E's. (That must take some fuzzy math, a big tax cut and serious economic incentives to work out).

    Good luck and good shopping.
  • kbharris--try to figure out if the car has leather or MB Tex, since the MB Tex was cheaper (you want to have an accurate value on it). Although if it does have the MB Tex, don't be disappointed, I have a 1990 190E with MB Tex seats, and they are indestructible. No tears or wear spots, no discoloration (they're dark blue), and they come clean with a damp soapy cloth, I've even used Formula 409 on them for stubborn marks.
  • footiefootie Posts: 636
    This sounds like a good example of a great technology from MB that they now intentionally keep out of their cars since it BOTH costs less and lasts longer.

    If you go to the MB world wide English language web site for E-class and look at the three different trim levels, there's no mention of a 'leather' interior even in the highest-level Avant Garde models. I am sure it's available, but apparently elsewhere you have a much better choice on interior coverings.

    I can just hear the MB marketing bumpkin now: "Why, customers in America demand our fine cow hides in every car we sell".

    Get the mirror, say "Duh?"
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    I am surprised that there is an "H" rated 245/45 17" tire available for the E320. "H" is essentially the lowest speed rating available for modern luxury / sport sedans. Yet "45" is a quite low profile that is normally associated with performance tires. Seems like an odd tire specification.

    As a previous poster suggested, the previous E class suspension was not really designed to handle very low profile tires. "Enthusiastic" driving around corners or on twisty roads could cause edge wear and significantly reduce the life of the tire. It doesn't matter what the speed rating is. A "45" series tire has considerably less sidewall flex than a 55 or 60 series and the "lean" or body roll of the car around corners will cause the edge wear. You don't need to take corners at "breakneck" speed, either. If you can feel the body roll, you are likely wearing the edge of 45 series tires. In the old E, I felt body roll come on around corners and curves considerably sooner than in my former 540i 6-speed. I haven't driven the new E320 without the airmatic suspension, but the E500 with it seemed like a decent improvement. In the case of my current M5, I expect to get close to 25,000 miles out of my 40 & 35 series "Z" rated tires because the suspension does a very good job of keeping the car flat. Putting those kind of tires on a standard (i.e. non-sport) 5-series or E class would spell disaster. The most severe example I am aware of was the Lexus GS400. When it first came out, many buyers (like a business associate of mine) opted for the 17" wheel and low profile tire package for looks. The car's suspension was simply not up to the task. Many GS400 owners were getting less than 10,000 miles out of the optional tires due to edge wear.

    If you drive relatively conservatively, you should be fine. But still do not expect to get the same life out of 245/45's that you would have out of 225/55's no matter what the speed ratings or treadwear indexes are.
  • hpilot1:

    Thanks for posting that paragraph; it was interesting reading. The tire dealer suggested that alignment was the problem without explaining why. And in mounting my 3 year old Nokian directional snow tires yesterday, noticed that the lugs on them also had the same sawtooth wear pattern as the db's.. I didn't mount the snows last year, (really warm winter up here) but had an alignment done about 2 months before getting rid of the db's last spring. Apparently there was an alignment problem, aggravated by directional tires. The new AVID's are wearing just fine, but they are not directional tires.
  • mbdrivermbdriver Posts: 426
    epn2 makes lots of sense in his post about tire wear with a 45 series tire, but my experience as related in post # 4300 has been quite different regarding wear. As I'd mentioned, I have 235/45 ZR-17 Yoko AVS dB tires on my 2000 E320 and they're wearing very well. Occasionally I do drive aggressively on twisting roads, but most of my travel is a mix of urban and highway driving.

    The 245/45 17" tires are a mere 10 millimeters wider than my 235s, so there shouldn't be much difference. Also, with an "H" speed rated tire, the rubber compound should not be as soft and therefore should wear better than a "Z" speed rated tire.

    My advice -- go for the 17" wheels if that's what you want. The difference in tire wear should be acceptable unless you drive extremely aggressively.
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