2002 Mercedes-Benz E-Class E320 Wagon 4Matic 3.2 V6 from North America
The best utility car if you hate minivans
Idler pulley making lots of noise.
Tensioner pulley bearing broke.
Steering high pressure line rust and leak.
Window regulator broke.
Front driveshaft u-joint broke.
The doors locks, when it's very cold, don't work or get stuck. One of the rear doors has to be unlocked manually.
I had the wagon, and if it wasn't the wagon, I don't think I'd have bought this car. Let me start with the good stuff:
- This V6 has good power, and especially passing power on the highway.
- The best 7 seater car :) And the seats can all be down in seconds. That's why I bought this car. I need a 7 seater, but no minivans.
- 4Matic is amazing for snow. Never ever got stuck in snow, no matter how deep and icy.
- The dash and interior are nice and good quality.
- Amazing handling and steering response for a big car. I mean really amazing. I took it to the racing track.
The bad things:
It rusts so bad.
Very expensive parts, and only from the dealer. When the u-joint broke for the front 4Matic shaft, I couldn't fix the u-joint. Could only replace the whole shaft, and only from a dealer for 1000s of dollars. I ended up getting one from a junk yard.
Tensioner pulley was over $200. Ended up buying a made in China one for $80.
All rear sub frame bushings are bad, and the car bangs on bumps.
Overall it's a cheap used car. Very good for a winter beater, and very good if not the best seat configuration in a car ever. I will always buy used E Wagons for the future. You get a lot for the money.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 17th January, 2015
20th Jan 2015, 18:38
Don't go cheap on parts, if you can't find an "inexpensive" one. Never on a drivetrain part. There's a reason good parts are dear.
6th Jun 2015, 13:37
Had the same U-joint problem with my 2001 E-class 4-Matic. Shaft with the U-joint (as it was correctly stated, the whole assembly needs to be replaced) was $1,996 (Canadian currency), and the US was the same, not even any exchange benefit!
Bought a brand new aftermarket from a US manufacturer for $350. Fits perfectly, except the O.D. of the housing (a non-functional dimension) was larger. Not a problem during the installation of the unit, however was noticed (thanks God and others) by the technician who had to slightly grind the aluminum body of the engine. Without that minute customization we (or predominantly I) would be talking a major damage $. I've so far put 50,000 km on it and not the smallest problem with the u-joint has occurred.
In my opinion, the aftermarket unit is actually better than the original one, as it (the aftermarket) has old style lubrication (grease) ports. A do it your self service that takes 5 minutes every year or two.
The OEM unit did not have the lube ports, which caused its premature demise.
Another case of Mercedes designed obsolescence. Remember the (sealed for life) transmission fluid issue? Exactly the same. Sealed for life it is. However the OEM does not tell you how short that life will be.