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1999 E320, 2000 E320, 2003 E320 Wagon, 2005 C230K SS, 2010 Accord LX w Eibach & Koni FSD's
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Discussion Starter #1
I'm in the process of refreshing the cooling system on my 2000 E320 and have come across several references to fan clutches. Funny thing is, none of my W210s (1999, 2000, 2003) have fan clutches.

So..........why and which models have them?
 

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2002 E55 AMG Sedan
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The E430, E420, E55 and 96-98 E320 has a mechanical clutch fan as well as two electric fans.

Why... I don't know. Nobody from Mercedes has ever explained this.
 

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1999 E320, 2000 E320, 2003 E320 Wagon, 2005 C230K SS, 2010 Accord LX w Eibach & Koni FSD's
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Discussion Starter #5
Not enough space.
You would think an electric fan would take up less space. I love mine..........it's like a cavern in front of the engine. I can change the thermostat, water pump, hoses, belt and pulleys without any problem!
20200327_191306.jpg
 

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Outstanding Contributor , SDS Guru
1998 MB E300TD, 1997 MB E36 AMG, 2001 MB E55 AMG
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Fan clutch:
96-97 E320 (M104)
97 E420 (M119)
96-99 E300 (OM606)
All E55
All E430
 

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1998 E320 base sedan @ 160kmiles
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They probably tried to use the same M4/3 fan for the facelift cars with longer M113 that require more cooling capacity, and it was not sufficient.
 

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2002 E55 AMG Sedan
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That wouldn't explain why the 96-98 M104 and M112 e320 got the fan clutch then. Nor would it explain why the M113 used in other chassis used the electric fan.
 

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Outstanding Contributor , SDS Guru
1998 MB E300TD, 1997 MB E36 AMG, 2001 MB E55 AMG
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Considering that we had no electric fan option in any MB before 98, and all M104's of that time were mechanical fan.... I figured MB was modernizing the E320.

It does stand to reason that the M113 does have increased cooling needs and an electric fan would not be able to provide it. W220 had a thick radiator to compensate for that.
 

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1998 E320s sedan and wagon
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1998 E320 has a mechanical clutch fan.

Clutch fan flow depends on rpm. An electric fan can blow full tilt at idle. Maybe the thing to do is to fit a clutch fan blade unit to an electric motor.

Sixto
98 E320 wagon 197K miles
 

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1999 E430; 2005 ML500
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When you see MB prices for replacement electric fans and controllers, you'll wish You had a fan clutch.
 

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1998 E320 base sedan @ 160kmiles
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That wouldn't explain why the 96-98 M104 and M112 e320 got the fan clutch then. Nor would it explain why the M113 used in other chassis used the electric fan.
The "other chassis" will explain it. Different design, differing requirements, lessons learnt. We are talking about W210 chassis only.
 

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E320/E250 Bluetec Ford F350 6.7l
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I think main reason for getting rid of triple fans on 3.2l engines in increased efficiency, meaning less heat generated.
I used to drive 1999 E320 (single electric fan) and had in in Las Vegas in 120F temperatures. On several occasions we park the car with engine running for AC and went outside to enjoy the views and take pictures.
Don't recall ever hearing the fan switching to high.
The visco clutches are short-lived per my experience and lot of owners drive with them free spinning and not even knowing till hot day comes.
Deplore might add to my experience of driving E300DT with engine fan blades removed.
The E250 Bluetec I am driving now, won't run the fan on high even in heavy Las Vegas traffic. Actually I don't hear it at all, so I wonder if it is working ;)
 

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1998 E320 base sedan @ 160kmiles
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I think main reason for getting rid of triple fans on 3.2l engines in increased efficiency, meaning less heat generated.
I used to drive 1999 E320 (single electric fan) and had in in Las Vegas in 120F temperatures. On several occasions we park the car with engine running for AC and went outside to enjoy the views and take pictures.
Don't recall ever hearing the fan switching to high.
The visco clutches are short-lived per my experience and lot of owners drive with them free spinning and not even knowing till hot day comes.
Deplore might add to my experience of driving E300DT with engine fan blades removed.
The E250 Bluetec I am driving now, won't run the fan on high even in heavy Las Vegas traffic. Actually I don't hear it at all, so I wonder if it is working ;)
I believe the question was, why did MB switch to a single electric fan for facelift E320s, but not in other post 1999 "W210"s, like E430, E55 ?
 

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E320/E250 Bluetec Ford F350 6.7l
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As I said- better efficiency resulting in less heat generated. 430 and 55 engines generate more heat per design.
Same the same engine mounted in bigger vehicle has more fans.
The 4-cylinder in my Sprinter has 3 fans, including VACUUM-OPERATED clutch on main one.
 

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1998 E320s sedan and wagon
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When you see MB prices for replacement electric fans and controllers, you'll wish You had a fan clutch.
Yes, if you buy new. I’ve yet to have an electric fan fail other than a Chrysler recall for a controller that hadn’t failed. Working electric fans and controllers are available at wrecking yards for $50-75.

A benefit of electric fans is they’re less likely to chew the radiator like a mechanical fan will if the frail lower radiator support hits a parking barrier. That is if distortion alone doesn’t ruin the radiator.

Sixto
98 E320 wagon 197K miles
 

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2002 E55 AMG Sedan
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The "other chassis" will explain it. Different design, differing requirements, lessons learnt. We are talking about W210 chassis only.
But in your previous comment you said they probably switched because the M113 requires more cooling. But the 98 E320 has the mechanical fan. And nothing changed between 98 and 99 regarding hood design radiator size etc. So it doesn't explain why the switch was made. Same thing with the M104.
 

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E320/E250 Bluetec Ford F350 6.7l
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But in your previous comment you said they probably switched because the M113 requires more cooling. But the 98 E320 has the mechanical fan. And nothing changed between 98 and 99 regarding hood design radiator size etc. So it doesn't explain why the switch was made. Same thing with the M104.
I think there might be 2 factors, although with no info from Stuttgart, this is all educated guess:
1 even it is the same engine block, MB could upgrade software for newer MY
2. MB (unlike BMW) is pretty conservative with new designs. Meaning most likely they took additional year to gain experience how much cooling the new engine require.
So they stayed with old, proven design before new technology introduction.
 

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1998 E320 base sedan @ 160kmiles
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Switching to a single electric fan was an improvisation. Many different manufacturers switched from visco fan to electric fan, possibly to increase efficiency. You need to look at the total cooling capacity visco + aux fans versus a single electric fan. While the previous combo could meet the requirements for all engines, a single M4/3 probably was not sufficient for V8 engines in worst case conditions, and MB did not want invest in a bigger fan design.
 
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