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Mercedes-Benz E-Class Maintenance and Repair



  • I posted this messagee on another board, but it might be more appropriate here.

    Just got my e320 back from the dealership after 6 days in the shop. My complaints were:

    1. Loud vibration from the brake pump. First I was told this sound was normal. After my insistence that this noise (incessant every time I released the brake pedal)was obviously not even remotely within the range of normal even for a new type of brake system, I got results. A new pump, several new lines and some kind of dampening were installed and the brakes now sound fine. A minimal rumble is all I hear. I can be more specific on what was done if there is interest.

    2. My wife, whose hearing on the high frequencies is better than mine, complained of a high pitched whistle when the brakes were applied. On a test drive the shop foreman also heard the noise, said there was a service bulletin about that and applied the fix.

    So far 2 for 2

    3. After the first 500 miles, my engine began to sound like a cross between diesel and a sowing machine at idle and low revs. After listening to several other e320's at the dealership, we are convinced that our car is louder than the others we've heard. The dealership says the car sounds normal, but has agreed to bring the matter up with a MB rep next week.

    My experience with MB factory reps has been positive in the past. My 2000 e320 was running rough, and after several weeks of diagnosis, they replaced my engine and reimbursed me for the equivalent of month's lease payment. So we'll see.

    After this long winded intro, My question is this:

    Has anyone else experienced this loud ticking noise from the e320 engine, and what fix if any is out there.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 57,371
    CROSSCW--The wiper chatter is probably happening because the wiper blade in not aligned properly in the perpendicular to the other words, the "angle of attack" of the rubber blade tip is wrong. So the problem is in the steel arm that holds the blade, not the blade itself.

    NCVOL---this is called "hydro-lock" and any car that is driven too rapidly through a pile of water, even a puddle that isn't all that deep, can suffer this. Cars are not submarines and when you see those TV commercials with SUVS crashing through creeks or luxury cars thrashing through rainstorms and pushing up waves of water, you should protest to the ad agency, because they are inviting disaster. This is why the ads always say, in microscopic letters "professional driver on closed course. Do not attempt these maneuvers".

    The only sure preventative for this would be a snorkel that sucks in air for the engine from the very top of the car's roof---not a pretty sight on a Benz!

    A few cars are somewhat notorious for hydro-lock, such as the pretty little 280SLs of the early 1970s. The air intake is way too low on those cars.

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  • The issue for me is how to even get close to the 16 city mpg that is advertised?! I drive like "an ol' lady" not using/enjoying the V8 and I still best 10 to 12 mpg on city? Anyone else had this experience - the dealer tells me to keep on running in the motor...?

    I have had my car since May 2003 and wish I had known of this site before I (foolishly) purchased this car based on the bad reliability reports I see from you fellow owners. Although I have only got 2500 miles on the car I have not had any bad luck of note other than less then excellent workmanship on fit & finish.
  • jg69jg69 Posts: 2
    I have not had any problems with mileage. In fact around the city the car is consistently above 16 mpg and on the highway is runs around 25 mpg. Of course I have an E500. I would think that the e320 would get even better mileage? Maybe the V8 is more efficient.
  • We're contemplating shipping our '95 E320 cabriolet to London to may parents' house. Can anyone recommend a shipping service for overseas? Car will be shipped from Los Angeles. The last time we shipped a car the radio and other items were stolen, and the E320 is in immaculate condition (only 25K miles) with all the accessories. Any suggestions?
  • I am experiecing the same loud sound from my 2002 E320 started a couple weeks ago. It happens after I drive a while and when the car is in the first gear (less than 10 mph) and the moment I release accel padel. Does any other 2002 E owner experience the same problem?
  • ncvolncvol Posts: 196
    Thanks Mr. Shiftright. I knew that you can't get engines wet, but from the tone of the post I had read, it made it sound like the E-Class had something peculiar about it that made it extra-susceptible.
  • cduongcduong Posts: 70
    What is the required interval for trans. fluid change? every 30K or 60K? Your input please.Thanks
  • Just recently I have been hearing a moaning/droning/rumbling sound when I brake at very low speeds, 5 to 10 mph. It stops soon before I come to a full stop. No squeaking. Took it to the dealer today and they said it is nominal and normal. Right... It is very annoying. HELP!
  • allygallyg Posts: 18
    I have had my 2003 E320 for over a month now and with only 500 miles on it. I have already experienced some problems. First the headlights were not angled right. I couldn't see anything when driving at night. The car was in the shop for two days for that. Today I noticed that my passenger site doesn't have warm air. It only blows cold air no matter how low the temperature is in the car! The driver side is fine. Now it has to go back to the dealer again. Also I have noticed the louder than expected rumbling of brakes, especially when I am backing my car out of my garage. I am going to have that checked out while the car is in the shop. I will let everybody know how it goes. Now I am seriously considering the extended warranty.
  • I am thinking of buying a '04 E320; does anyone know if MB has corrected the electrical and other problems that I read about in the '03 model? I emailed MBUSA but have not heard from them. Any information would be greatly appreciated
  • I am thinking of buying a '04 E320; does anyone know if MB has corrected the electrical and other problems that I read about in the '03 model? I emailed MBUSA but have not heard from them. Any information would be greatly appreciated
  • q45manq45man Posts: 416
    Required interval to maintain warranty and OPTIMUM interval to maximize life into the 200,000 mile range is quite different!
    Most ATF has color sensitive organic dyes, which fade under excessive temperatures [when they exceed the 176F optimum operating temperature.

    When the color changes the product is degrading. Simple to see!
  • buster6buster6 Posts: 128
    I am having the same concerns as you. In looking at the other boards, it seems that a lot of MB models are having the same problems as the E. I have a friend who bought a ML (traded in a 4 year old Grand Am), he has had the MB in the shop more in 6 months than the Grand Am was in 4 years. I am looking on the 5 series boards, and finding that some new 04 owners are experiencing electrical problems as well. Let me know what you decide, and if you do pull the trigger how things go in your new E.
  • merrelmerrel Posts: 45
    I have a 2003 E320 and 3 things all stopped at once, controlled by one chip. Auto headight on & off, LED radio screen not changing from backround white to backround black and rain sensor wipers. R/R at 15k miles. Everything is fine now. Still average
    33 mpg hwy w/ac on.
  • 1alex1alex Posts: 1
    Four thousand miles.
    1 Car vibrates and moans when depressing brake pedal-Been in for service five times-cause the SBC pump on the brake system-replaced pump,bracket , bushings , somewhat better still not what to expect from a luxury car
    2 Metallic chunk going over rough road surface- fixed by replacing front arm struts
    Mercedes aware of both problems -bad engineering
  • Karen_SKaren_S Posts: 5,095
    ..just want to give everyone a heads up about some changes taking place in an effort to organize and make it easier for members to find the most appropriate discussion for their question/comment.

    This discussion will soon be combined with the "Mercedes-Benz E-Class Owners: Problems & Solutions", which resides in the Mercedes-Benz E-Class Owners Club. However, the combined topics will also appear here in M&R. If you are subscribed to this discussion, you will need to re-subscribe when the change takes place.

    If you have any questions/concerns, please address them to me in email,

    Edmunds Manager UGC Click on my screen name to send a personal message. Need help navigating? Check out Getting Started in Edmunds Forums.
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  • carnaughtcarnaught 'zonaPosts: 2,330
    After a trip to my friendly MB service dept.,I now have a fix for the 2003 E brake squeak. This problem is worse when the car is cold and best heard inside the car as a "poik". Let me know if you need the info.
  • Any news on when the diesel will be offered, perhaps next summer ? What about mileage estimates, pricing, performance etc /
  • Ever since I drove out of the showroom, my 2003 E Class pulls to the right. After two visits to the dealer (who kept saying the car was "within factory specs" and that the pulling was "acceptable"), a factory technician looked at it and agreed it wasn't. They won't give details, but apparently it has to do with the suspension. The shop manager says they could fine-tune suspensions in older models, but that the new Es come with fixed suspensions. At this point I'm waiting for them to get a special tool from the factory to fix the problem.

    My E also makes the same squealing noise when I apply the brakes, but I've noticed it won't make it for the first 15-20 minutes after I start the car. I'm saving this complaint for my FOURTH visit to the dealer to the get the car aligned.

    Finally, the dashboard keeps flashing a message that one of my parking lights is out, when it isn't. I'm terrified this is the beginning of the electrical problems mentioned by other owners.

    I hadn't seen car quality this poor since the 1987 Hyundai I owned in my college days. Wish I could turn the clock back and have my Honda Legend back. This car is all looks -- lesson learned... stick with Japanese cars.
  • Carnaught, what was causing the noise? my 2003 E makes it too and I'm about to take it to the dealer to have it fixed. Thanks!
  • carnaughtcarnaught 'zonaPosts: 2,330
    was fixed by "replacing the BOU" and "bleeding the hydaulic brake system" order also says "erased DTC,S"...Service codes are 421640, 421641, 421354, and 420653.

    At any rate, seems to have taken care of the annoying but not serious problem, at least for now :o).
  • Thanks. I'll have them look up those service codes. Does your E also pull to the right like mine does?
  • carnaughtcarnaught 'zonaPosts: 2,330
    Your welcome, no problem. No, my E doesn't pull to the right (or left for that matter).
  • My 2003 E320 has approximately 500 miles on it but it has a thumping noise near the gas cap when the engine is running and I am at a stop. Dealer has replaced the charcoal cannister and the relay and says it is operating as designed. They now are going to attempt to put sound proofing around the cannister. The noise can be heard over the air conditioner blower and is irritating. Any one else have this problem? If so, what was done to fix it?
  • I recently had an overnight test drive for a 2004 E-320 sport. I loved everything about the car and was looking forward to purchasing it. On the way back to the dealership the next day I had a total brake failure. Cruising down the highway at 60 MPH all of a sudden alarms started to go off "Stop vehicle, Brake Malfunction" was displayed in the speedometer dial. When I pushed on the brakes, the pedal did not move. There was no braking power. Slowly I coasted to a stop on the shoulder of the highway. After turning the car off and waiting 5 minutes the alarms went off. The speedometer dial now displayed "2 malfunctions". After another 5 Min, I scrolled through the computer menu on the steering wheel and it displayed "ABS Malfunction and ESP Malfunction". As I continued to scroll, the display returned to normal. It seemed the computer had reset itself. I started the car and the brakes were working again. I tested it on the shoulder and it seemed okay. I decided to cautiously continue to drive the car back to the dealership, since I was stuck in the middle of nowhere on the shoulder. Not a safe place to be. But 20 mins later while on the freeway the same malfunction happened again, NO Brakes once more. I took the exit off the freeway and coasted to a stop. Luckily the exit was an incline and so I was able to stop safely. The car had to be towed to the dealership.

    The service manager at the dealership said it was a bad sensor. But I can not find out why this would cause a total brake failure. Apparently, the car is designed to have a back-up brake system, but they don't know how the system works or is designed and why the back-up system did not work. I'm wondering if this problem is a design flaw or just a fluke? If anyone has any ideas, I would be extremely thankful. So far I have not been successful getting any information from Mercedes on why the back-up brake system failed, or why in the first place a bad sensor shut down the brakes. It is a serious safety issue to not have any brakes, and to be told that it is not supposed to happen or it has not been designed that way just does not cut it. Thanks for any help.
  • w210w210 Posts: 188
    And the service manager you talked to?
  • I've had my '01 E for about a month now;I bought it out of state and did a rather cursory test drive, also have an '01 Ml, and have driven E class cars before; with that said. The 250m drive back home was a nightmare!

    The problem was not evident until I got up to 65-70mph. The car can be sent from side to side with the littlest bump or gust of wind and the steering does not seem to give warning or movement. I have had the car thoroughly tested by independent shop they say it is fine, but I think the car is dangerous. I have owned a lot of cars in a lot of price ranges and NONE have been this unstable at speed.

    Love the ride around town, as this was pretty much the test drive with quick highway ride.

    I can not believe that this is normal I have driven too many cars to accept that. Any suggestions of what to look for or tell the shop to look for?
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