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Hello all. I need some advice on purchasing an E500. I found one in great condition with 70,000 miles for $13,995. Is this considered a good price?

Also, how reliable are they? What can I expect as far as common issues with the car? Are there any specific questions to ask the dealer about the car?

Of course, I will have my mechanic check it out first but I wanted to see if it was worth my while to inquire about it.

Thanks for your help.
 

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2008 C300, 1970 280se convertible,2010 e350
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Beautiful car, lots of power, comfortable and fun to drive,handeling is great as well, but a very high maint, car. expensive to maintain. 2003 is a first year of this model and you have to expect spending $. Mine is a 2003 and every month there is something needing repair/attention.
 

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2003 e500 W211
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I had my 03 for about a year and a half now. Compared to my previous car ( 2006 Pontiac GTO ), this one is not as much fun to drive but definitely a lot more reliable. I bought it with about 45k miles and now have 71k.
Luckily i didnt have many problems with my car like meran has with his. I did have to replace the front and rear battery recently which cost about 700$...other than that nothing really note worthy.
With that mileage and that price, I think its a good price. If you can, maybe look into the 2005 e500, as I believe they have a newer/better/easier technology setup...I might be wrong though.
 

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E500
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Hello all. I need some advice on purchasing an E500. I found one in great condition with 70,000 miles for $13,995. Is this considered a good price?

Also, how reliable are they? What can I expect as far as common issues with the car? Are there any specific questions to ask the dealer about the car?

Of course, I will have my mechanic check it out first but I wanted to see if it was worth my while to inquire about it.

Thanks for your help.
If it's anything like my 2003 E500 bought new ,,,,, RUN

Problems you might have


SBC failure
Ball Joints wearout
Ignition key failure
door locks
rear air springs
air suspension compressor
hot water valve to a/c , heat
engine mounts
transmission sensor
idle pulley
pulling to one to one side install adjustors
brakes every 40,000 miles

and the list goes on too long to list. wish I had never bought the MB.
 

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2005 E55 & 2002 S500
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44 Posts
If it's anything like my 2003 E500 bought new ,,,,, RUN

Problems you might have


SBC failure
Ball Joints wearout
Ignition key failure
door locks
rear air springs
air suspension compressor
hot water valve to a/c , heat
engine mounts
transmission sensor
idle pulley
pulling to one to one side install adjustors
brakes every 40,000 miles

and the list goes on too long to list. wish I had never bought the MB.
sounds like you got a bit of a dud, mine is 2003 and havent experienced one problem with it however my car is low miles with only 40000miles in 7 yrs.
 

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I did have to replace the front and rear battery recently which cost about 700$
WHAT? $700 for two batteries? That's insane... Is there something I'm missing here (like a proprietary battery)? Especially if it has two batteries, they probably aren't all that big... how on earth could it cost that much, even with installation?
 

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2003 e500 W211
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46 Posts
I don't have the invoice in front of me ( I can check later when I get home )...but if I remember correctly, one battery cost 220 and the other one 270 plus the labor, because they needed to reset and reprogram everything. But like I said, I'll get more details later when I check the invoice.
 

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2009 E63
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If it's anything like my 2003 E500 bought new ,,,,, RUN

Problems you might have


SBC failure
Ball Joints wearout
Ignition key failure
door locks
rear air springs
air suspension compressor
hot water valve to a/c , heat
engine mounts
transmission sensor
idle pulley
pulling to one to one side install adjustors
brakes every 40,000 miles

and the list goes on too long to list. wish I had never bought the MB.

Mercedes. The high cost, high maintenance, automotive version of Hannibal Lecter.
 

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2003 e500 W211
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46 Posts
So I checked the invoice about battery cost...
Front battery: $ 216 + .5 hrs replace ( $ 44.87 )
Rear battery: $ 252 + .8 hrs replace ( $ 71.78 )
Reprogram BCM 1.5hrs ( $134.60 )

Parts: $468
Labor: $ 330.62
Tax: $ 40.95

Total: $760.20
 

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So I checked the invoice about battery cost...
Front battery: $ 216 + .5 hrs replace ( $ 44.87 )
Rear battery: $ 252 + .8 hrs replace ( $ 71.78 )
Reprogram BCM 1.5hrs ( $134.60 )

Parts: $468
Labor: $ 330.62
Tax: $ 40.95

Total: $760.20
Wow... those batteries must be really buried if it takes that long to change them. And 1.5 hours to reprogram the BCM?

The last time I replaced a battery (only one, and not a Merc.), it cost me about $60, and took me 5-10 minutes, max .
 

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99 ML430, 00 ML320, 05 E500 4matic Wagon
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I do not think the BCM needs to be reprogrammed after a battery change. That bill was milked.
 

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I do not think the BCM needs to be reprogrammed after a battery change. That bill was milked.
Particularly if there's two batteries... it would never loose power.

Even if, for some reason, they did unhook them both at the same time, I don't see what would need to be reprogrammed--yeah, your personal settings (seat memories, climate control, etc) would probably need to be re-programmed, but they can't really do that, anyway (unless there's a way to upload it all into a different computer, then download it back to the car--which should take a few minutes, max). Any settings that aren't user selectable (ie. how everything works) should be stored in non-volatile memory, meaning that it doesn't need battery power to be maintained.

The only legit reason for this that I can think of would be if there was an updated version of the BCM firmware that fixed (a) problem(s) or something. In that case, they wouldn't (can't legally) do the update unless you consent to it.
 

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2003 e500 W211
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Wow, thats interesting.
Do you guys think I can call the dealer and find out for a fact if the BCM needs to be reprogrammed or not...before I raise hell at my mechanics?
 

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Wow, thats interesting.
Do you guys think I can call the dealer and find out for a fact if the BCM needs to be reprogrammed or not...before I raise hell at my mechanics?
Oh, this wasn't at the dealer? Unless the mechanic specializes in Mercedes, they wouldn't have the necessary tools to reprogram the BCM, regardless.

I would talk to the service people at the dealer (I wouldn't really explain what happened (they're not going to be as happy to help if they know that they don't have your business)--just ask them if it's necessary to reprogram anything when replacing the batteries).

Did they ask if they could reprogram the BCM? Extra work like that isn't legal unless you authorize it (even if it's necessary). If they refuse to refund you that part of the bill, you should threaten them with a complaint to the BBB, and if that doesn't help, file a complaint (it only takes about 15 minutes, and it will probably get you your money back).
 

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2003 e500 W211
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So I finally had a chance to check in to this a little more. The Guy said that it was a typo. It was supposed to say "Reprogram DME". Which he says is a firmware update. So you were right, sjc246 :).
 

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So I finally had a chance to check in to this a little more. The Guy said that it was a typo. It was supposed to say "Reprogram DME". Which he says is a firmware update. So you were right, sjc246 :).
You still got ripped off. For one thing, it's not typically called a DME in a Mercedes--that's what BMW calls their computers (and Porsche, perhaps), although that's just semantics. However, they charged you for 1.5 hours. If they did it, which is illegal without you telling them to, it should take less than 15 minutes (and based on my personal experience, I'd be very surprised if they actually did it).
 
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