1999 Mercedes-Benz E-Class E320 3.2 petrol from UK and Ireland


Fast, practical, comfortable load carrier and towcar


Not a thing so far, apart from a broken surround on one of the rear seatbelt buckles.

General Comments:

A real joy to drive, and a significant improvement on the old W124 model in this respect.

There are disquieting reports of serious rust problems appearing on various MB owners' web forums, but my car seems mercifully free of this apart from some very minor signs of corrosion underneath the paint around the rear door release handle.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 17th February, 2005

1999 Mercedes-Benz E-Class E320 3.2LV-6 from North America


Wonderful car, feels like an S-Class!


009,468: Rear Fog Lamp shorted out first time I used it. Travel Sensor diaphragm failed. Warranty.

019,429: Steering coupling noises. Lower Control Arm bearing bolt failed. Warranty.

020,116: Interior Dome Lamp/Rading Lamp shorted out, and the driver's Visor/Vanity Mirror went with it. Driver's side power seat switch (mounted in driver's door) failed, lost reclining adjustment. Faulty windshield detergent level was sending a "LOW WASHER FLUID" signal to the car. Warranty.

027,482: Driver's side door handle electronics shorted out, eventually causing dead battery. Replaced both battery and driver's door handle mechanism. Warranty.

037,834: New problem with driver's side power seat switch - now it won't up or down. Replaced the switch (again). Also had a reverse lamp bulb go out and a bad "closing cylinder" in the front door. Warranty.

058,994: Stop Lamp switch shorted out, causing my brake lamps to be on whenever the car was "ON". $150.

067,407: Just before vacation, I went shopping. I left the headlights on when I went into the mall, killed the battery. I asked for a jump-start, but Mall Security wouldn't touch a Mercedes "too many electrical things to go wrong in there", they said. Mercedes Roadside Assistance was out here in less than 45 minutes and got me up and going. Battery and alternator are working properly. No charge for this service.

067,412: Six days (and only five miles) later, just back from vacation, the car wouldn't run. No dead battery this time. Crankshaft pulley was broken, had to be towed to the dealer. $425.00.

079,851: Flat tire (slow leak) while the car was in a parking garage at my office. Mercedes Roadside came out and changed the tire. No charge for this service.

082,435: Ran out of gas on the highway. Mercedes Roadside was there in a half hour, with three (complimentary) gallons of 93 octane. No charge for this service.

082,539: Serpentine (Fan) Belt Tensioner coming loose, had to be replaced, also noticed valve adjustment required. $325.00.

082,632: Dead battery. Mercedes Roadside was there ASAP, and I was on my way in no time. No charge for this service.

096,051: Jump start again. Two problems here. One is that the "key-in-ignition" chime is the same as headlamps on. Two, an automobile in this class should really be equipped with automatic headlamps. If it's standard equipment in a crappy, American car like the Pontiac Sunfire, it should at least be available on a Mercedes. Mercedes Roadside to the rescue again. No charge for this service.

111,088: Suddenly, my car was operating under "right-hand drive" on several electronic functions. For example, the passenger side memory seat also controlled both the outside mirror settings. The dealer had to re-program several mini-computer modules in the car. No clue what caused this. $280.

And now: The Trunk Release and Rear-Seat Headrest Release has stopped working. I have been told by Mercedes Technical Assistance that these two systems not only operate on from the same vacuum source, but also, from the very same vacuum line. Not sure what has gone wrong, but I will be taking it in to the dealer shortly for repair.

And the Cup-holder mechanism does not always work like it's supposed to. The dealer tells me they "cannot get it to duplicate the problem" - typical.

General Comments:

Despite some faults the car is amazing. The power is incredible for a V-6. I drove a VERY trouble-free '91 Mercedes 300SE before this, and I think I like the new 'Benz better in every way. It's not as wide, but through better use of space, it feels like the same amount of legroom (front and rear), and it seems like I even have more headroom. The interior is light and airy during the day, and very well lit at night. My only complaint about that is I really think Mercedes should install under-dash lighting. It makes it much easier to located items that have fallen into the front floor wells.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 31st July, 2004

25th Jun 2008, 07:05

Seems like you had a ton of problems.

26th Oct 2009, 18:39

I have to agree. It seems like this car was prone to a lot of problems. A lot more, in fact, than I've ever had with my "crappy" American cars.