Good car, but be ready to spend..
I bought a few months ago an E240 with 120000 KMS (around 75K miles) from my neighbor, who took great care of this car. I could see from her receipts the latest repairs: tune-up, engine mounts, ball joints, brakes, new battery, etc.
The car has no rust whatsoever, and everything is working fine, even the genuine Becker cassette-radio, which I love. It comes with 8 speakers, and the sound is amazing.
A few weeks ago I changed the engine coolant with the genuine MB, and some O-rings next to the oil filter housing to stop an oil leak.
A month ago, the belt tensioner pulley broke (just the pulley), leaving me in the middle of nowhere December 31 afternoon... You have to buy the whole part ($80-$400 depending of the brand), because the dealer does not sell just the pulley, but it's an easy job. Seems this is pretty common on those V6 engines.
I am planning to change the auto box fluid, and send the 6 fuel injectors (easy to get off) to be cleaned. Perhaps a new engine radiator soon to avoid any autobox fluid get mixed with the engine coolant (from all the posts I have read, I am getting a little concerned about this model, mostly about the autobox problems). My family owns a Mercedes 300E 1990, a 190E 1987, a 230E 1982 and a E220 1993, and those cars need maintenance indeed (mostly by myself), but the autoboxes seems to be bullet proof as long you change the fluid regularly.
This car is really comfortable, even more than my former 1990 300E. It's roomier, silent, and the interior, after 12 years, still looks like new.
The only flaw is the dash, that is beginning to crack because of the sun and summer heat.
This car is heavy and the engine (170HP) is adequate and smooth, but not as powerful as my older 300E.
My other regret is the missing legendary "thump" when you close the door. This sound is gone with the W124.
If you are looking for an E-Class, I would recommend to go for the E320. It has more power, and I read that the fuel economy is the same.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 5th February, 2010