Mine makes those ticking noises when you switch gears (but not as loud). Also in the family we've had various other Benzes like the 2008 ML320 CDI, 2011 ML350 Bluetec and 2014 ML350 Bluetec all of which also make those noises.
As for rough downshits - my E550 has developed a rough 5-4 downshift when the car (and the weather) is cold in the morning. The various MLs listed also had some rough downshifts like the 2-1 or 3-2.
Thanks Yazovets. Glad to hear the clicking is normal.
Is your hard downshift while accelerating or decelerating? Mine will happen regardless of temperature, and it's when accelerating.
I spoke with a transmission mechanic today that said when comparing the 7 speeds to the 5 speeds, often the 7 can have harder downshift because it can drop 3 to 4 gears as opposed to the 5 speed which might drop only 1 or 2. He didn't sound that concerned but he didn't see the car. He will do a diagnostic for about $100.
Thinking I might bring it to Mercedes to give me their opinion. I assume their diagnostic will be in the same ballpark price wise.