Advice on buying an E Class MB

tel254

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I'm coming up to 130K miles in my Passat estate and I'm thinking seriously of replacing it. Strong contenders at the moment are a BMW 520D touring or an MB E220cdi Auto. I cart a lot of gear around from time to time and the large load area and flat floor of the Merc look most suitable.

I've always liked the look of the E class, but I'm a bit worried about the horror stories with respect the reliability issues and the apparent high servicing costs. I'd also appreciate a reasonable appraisal of fuel economy as I'm a high mileage user.

I'm looking at a post 2006 facelift car (2007) and would like opinions as to whether there really has been a significant improvement in quaility and reliability as aresult of the facelift.

For reference, I travel about 20K miles per year and about 14K of these are on the Motorway (M25 unfortunately).

Most of this is not fully loaded.

What can I expect with regards fuel economy for an auto version?
What are likely service intervals (is it fixed or variable on 2007 cars - I'm a pretty steady driver - although not slow)?
With respect the poor reputation of MB dealers (apparently) any recommendations in the Essex/Herts area?
Any other thoughs advice most welcome.

One car I am considering is a 2007 with 17K on the clock. Are there any major servicing needs looming?

Thanks in advance,

Terry
 

jberks

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Terry,
Think no further and buy it.
Early (2002/3) ones had a few niggles. Later ones improved and by 06, they're back to full merc quality. I have a friend who switched from his passat V6 to an E320CDI and 2 years down the track he's still delighted with his decision.
I do around 30kpa in my E270cdi and I can't imagine a car handling it better. 80k now, still no rattles and she's always been very reliable and quick. I'm not saying nothings ever gone, but she's always started first flick of the key and always got me to and from where I've needed to be. And remember, mine is a much earlier one that what you're looking at.

There is nothing serious at 17k. Its probably approaching a major service though.

Intervals keep changing so I don't know what they would be but I doubt you'd need more than 1 a year at that mileage.

MPG should be 40-50 depending on road conditions and driving style. Some claim 50mpg+ but I suspect youd have to emulate granny to achieve that. Its a heavy motor after all.

The BM* will probably handle better but thats not a feature you need on the M25 and the ride and 'ambiance' in the merc makes the opposition pale. You'll also find that other motorists treat you with more respect. Never figured out why, but they do. Not something you'll find in a BM or an Audi.
 
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*Thumper

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The 520, is a good car, but for long distance cruising, I would take an E, any day ......... In fact I'd take a C, over the 520 ................ and do so everyday !
 

turbopete

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i agree with all the above. mines old and tired and giving me a few headaches, but id still have it over a 5 series or an A6 anytime! also the the BM engines (the 2.0 diesels in the 120D, 320D, and 520D) are also very well known for having turbo problems so are best avoided anyhow!
 

carabind

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Terry

I have a 57 220cdi and am very happy with it .To answer your questions:-

What can I expect with regards fuel economy for an auto version?
40-50 mpg, this will improve with mileage as the engine losens up. I have seen 60 mpg a couple of timse on "perfect" runs, but I'd regard 48mpg as quite feasible on motorway runs
What are likely service intervals (is it fixed or variable on 2007 cars - I'm a pretty steady driver - although not slow)? THese appear fixed at around 15k miles
(25k kilometers). At 17k theone yuou quote should have had its first service - check teh assyst readout which will show how long to go till nexct service
With respect the poor reputation of MB dealers (apparently) any recommendations in the Essex/Herts area? - can't comment, I use BMB direct which undercut normal MB dealer rates
Any other thoughs advice most welcome. the post 56 220 gives 170bhp rather than 150bhp and this engine is carried over to the new e class - it is well proven. Go for an avant guarde spec - they're the most common and have nice trim and xenons which really help nite time driving.
 
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hawk20

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I'm coming up to 130K miles in my Passat estate and I'm thinking seriously of replacing it. Strong contenders at the moment are a BMW 520D touring or an MB E220cdi Auto. I cart a lot of gear around from time to time and the large load area and flat floor of the Merc look most suitable.


Terry

Well there are as many tales of unreliability of the 5 series. This year it finished 45th in the JD Power survey (the E class was eighth) and the year before the 5 series came 54th. So not that good on 'customer satisfaction'.

Post facelift you should be fine. Mpg I get somewhere in the forties on most longer journeys.

The E class has a lot more room in the boot than the 5 series.

The 5 series has firmer suspension and runflat tyres. Good if you like hurling it round corners. Not so good for comfort. The E will let you arrive more relaxed and feeling as if you have driven a much shorter distance.

The E is a joy to look at each day and has a style that is timeless IMO. the 5 series has looks that most think are 'controversial' or 'challenging'. Some like, some don't.

The E will do huge miles and not mind. One near me has done over 500k miles and is still on the original engine.

I find servicing costs work out at about 2.5p per mile. On top of that you need pads, discs, tyres etc. I get 25k from a set of tyres, much more from pads.
 

gre1591

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Just something I have noticed with regard to interiors ,especially if the car is to be “used “and kept for a number of years. Go for the dark interior . Light grey or beige may look nice in the showroom but soon looks grubby and the grey steering wheel especially seems to absorbed sweat out of the hands and look horrible in no time. For me its go for black every time ,classier ,easier to keep looking clean and can still look good even after high mileage. It may be considered a bit sombre by some but to me that far outweighs the scruffy look that a light interior soon takes on
 

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It should be on 15.5K fixed services so with luck should have just been serviced.
 

hawk20

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Just something I have noticed with regard to interiors ,especially if the car is to be “used “and kept for a number of years. Go for the dark interior . Light grey or beige may look nice in the showroom but soon looks grubby and the grey steering wheel especially seems to absorbed sweat out of the hands and look horrible in no time. For me its go for black every time ,classier ,easier to keep looking clean and can still look good even after high mileage. It may be considered a bit sombre by some but to me that far outweighs the scruffy look that a light interior soon takes on


I agree with cloth interiors the light grey is a nightmare.

But with leather I find AutoGlym keeps it looking fine.
 

Blobcat

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Just something I have noticed with regard to interiors ,especially if the car is to be “used “and kept for a number of years. Go for the dark interior . Light grey or beige may look nice in the showroom but soon looks grubby and the grey steering wheel especially seems to absorbed sweat out of the hands and look horrible in no time. For me its go for black every time ,classier ,easier to keep looking clean and can still look good even after high mileage. It may be considered a bit sombre by some but to me that far outweighs the scruffy look that a light interior soon takes on
Whilst light interiors take a little more looking after dark ones are just as dirty but because you cannot see it it doesn't get cleaned as often. I suppose if you had a black bath you wouldn't have to clean it as often as a white one but I wouldn't fancy using it.
I have had light grey leather in both of my E's and with a little cleaning and care they look great. My previous E had ~130K on when I sold it and the interior looked great, my current one has ~65K and just did a great job as wedding car.
 

gre1591

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Not everyone looks after them

Whilst light interiors take a little more looking after dark ones are just as dirty but because you cannot see it it doesn't get cleaned as often. I suppose if you had a black bath you wouldn't have to clean it as often as a white one but I wouldn't fancy using it.
I have had light grey leather in both of my E's and with a little cleaning and care they look great. My previous E had ~130K on when I sold it and the interior looked great, my current one has ~65K and just did a great job as wedding car.


That’s great if you keep them clean but I have seen some right mobile "Dog Kennels" in the lighter colours especially the sweat and oil from hands on the light wheel which takes some avoiding and also the light carpets soon stain especially if you have kids,give me black every time.
 

Blobcat

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That’s great if you keep them clean but I have seen some right mobile "Dog Kennels" in the lighter colours especially the sweat and oil from hands on the light wheel which takes some avoiding and also the light carpets soon stain especially if you have kids,give me black every time.
My point is that those marks and sweat/grease will be on the black as well just not seen. I've driven some cars with ok looking interiors but steering wheels you stick to which is disgusting.
I know not everyone looks after their cars this can be incorporated into the price and with a professional valet can be made good.
 

gre1591

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I understand what you are saying about the stains still being there on the black steering wheel and carpets but not showing as they do on light colours.

I am just saying my preference is for dark interiors insofar as the stains do not show as much over the long term therefore benefiting and enhancing ones feeling of the interior better over the longer term ownership.So dark colours are worth considering as best in my view.

One other thing that puts me off is that boring beige and grey are “old men’s “colours according to the other half!
 

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Buying an E class

I have an E280 CDI estate on a 55 plate. To be honest I can't fault it. I'm getting around 32 mpg combined and get 45 mpg + on long runs. If your looking for a 220 the figures are about 10 mpg higher. As for load space it's huge apparently the largest capacity estate available at the moment, 1910 litres. I have just come back from a trip to Germany and brought back loads of things including a leather reclining armchair with footstool on top of all our luggage and shopping and I had plenty of space for more. As for horrors stories about main dealers I can only speak from experience. I always go to Mercedes of Bath for any work and I find them fantastic. I have another Merc which I take there also and I have just sold an E300 TD which also went there for anything that needed to be done. I have never had any need to complain + free loan car if needed. To be honest I would go for the E over any alternative. My son has a BMW and has just sold an older one. Sporty and quick yes but not a patch on ride quality and general feeling of well being. Another thing if your car is over 3 years old the dealers give you 20% off labour charges and 40% if over 10 years old. My sisters boyfriend also has an E estate and has the same opinion. Go for the E but make sure it's got history. Happy shopping.
 

jberks

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My point is that those marks and sweat/grease will be on the black as well just not seen. I've driven some cars with ok looking interiors but steering wheels you stick to which is disgusting.
I know not everyone looks after their cars this can be incorporated into the price and with a professional valet can be made good.

I'm with you. I always had black interiors and was a bit wary when I bought my first light one but it makes it a much lighter, less sombre place to be. I don't do much to keep it clean to be honest. The odd wipe down with a chamois and an occasional vac out is about all. If the wheel starts to look grubby a quick wipe down and its back to clean. I spend far too much time in there (30k pa) and I'm too houseproud to tolerate a dirty interior but when I come to change I'll be looking for another light one.
Dark is nice, light is nicer, especially on an avantgarde with the contrasting dark wood.
 

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Light grey is nice. Keeps cooler in the summer and mine has survived a muddy camping trip just great. They are excellent cars and the facelifted 220cdi is a honey. They are remarkably good to chuck about, go for an AG spec as the classic/elegance may be too soft if you press on a bit.

I've sampled a 520d SE and was not impressed. Its a bigger car than the E (marginally) yet doesn't seem as spacious and my AG E class ran rings around the 520d SE on a boys "jolly" in NW Scotland. Comfort and interior fittings were better, and as for looks....
 
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