2003 Mercedes-Benz E-Class E500 Sedan Consumer Reviews | Edmunds
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2003 Mercedes-benz E-class - Consumer Reviews

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2003 E-Class Consumer Reviews

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Poorly design and manufactured vehicle
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By duel1013
on

Vehicle

2003 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Sedan E500 Rwd 4dr Sedan (5.0L 8cyl 5A)


Review

Nothing but failures, suspension, AC/Heat, computer, sensors, on and on. When running the car is a joy to drive. However, the maintenance expense before and after the warranty is the worst I have ever experienced in all my years of owning cars. The experienced has been nothing but a let down of my expectations of owning a certified pre-owned vehicle with less than 20,000 miles when I purchased it. Definitely has lowered my opinion of the franchise.


Favorite Features

Ride and drive was great, when running.


Suggested Improvements

No many to mention. Better parts would be a definite start.


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Worst time for Mercedes?
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By freddys555
on

Vehicle

2003 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Sedan E500 Rwd 4dr Sedan (5.0L 8cyl 5A)


Review

I regret to say that this was the worst Mercedes I have ever owned. It seemed that something went wrong with it every other week. The digital read-outs on main display failed causing to lose the ability to use particular options, HVAC system completely failed and needed total replacement, window regulator failures, side mirror motor failures, seat heater failures, seat adjustment motor failure, trunk release failure, fluid leaks, engine mounts needed replacement (@ 60K miles!), and many more malfunctions. Despite this being Mercedes, nobody should be experiencing this many problems with a car costing this much. It is by far the worst car I have ever owned.


Favorite Features

V8 engine, suspension, interior comfort


Suggested Improvements

This was the 2nd Mercedes I bought. Regretfully, my experience with this model has discouraged me from ever buying another Mercedes product. I certainly hope the newer Mercedes models have improved, especially with their electronics.


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one year into owning...never again
5 of 18 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By damnnn
on

Vehicle

2003 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Sedan E500 Rwd 4dr Sedan (5.0L 8cyl 5A)


Review

Bought mine with miliage 90k, car was 7 years old. I enjoyed it for a few months, and then prolems started to appear. First, transmission started to give me headache, and a month later it completely broke, next: radiator, pheumatic pump, sensors. all together about 6,000 in repairs...a little costly for one year into ownership... Although beautfull and fun to drive but (only in a straight, about 150). At the conclusion, my lesson learned, for germans "only lease"!!!!


Favorite Features

power, big torque, comfort, contols, feeling of being in the spaceship


Suggested Improvements

reliability and cost efficiency for used cars


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Love my car when it works
3 of 9 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By joerider72
on

Vehicle

2003 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Sedan E500 Rwd 4dr Sedan (5.0L 8cyl 5A)


Review

DO NOT BUY! I currently average about $6,000/yr or $500/month in repairs to drive this car. The quality of the parts is shoddy, primarily due to poor engineering (it's not engineered for longevity). The bottom line is that the car has WAY too much electronics that control and monitor everything. Those electronics do not have the life expectancy of the mechanical parts. Here's my list of repairs; front struts, rear's are leaking, radiator, (damaged transmission - see TSB), control unit for tranny, suspension compressor, air hoses relating to suspension, tires because suspension was messed up. What I still need: brake accumulator, new motor mounts,new tranny or torque converter, rear struts


Favorite Features

Heated seats (only half of the heat works on my passenger seat), individual climate control, engine power, ride quality when air suspension works properly.


Suggested Improvements

This is a 3yr car or as long as you can get a bumper to bumper warranty for. Since they no longer sell this model new...don't waste your money!


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Great car for a long time
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By ST
on

Vehicle

2003 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Sedan E500 Rwd 4dr Sedan (5.0L 8cyl 5A)


Review

I still love this car, even after 6 years. Drives, handles great for a luxury sedan, and I tend to drive fast. Air suspension allows changing suspension for different driving conditions. It really works. Only problems have been electronic and happened in first 15K mi. None since; just normal maintenance. Car still looks and drives like new at 80,000 miles.


Favorite Features

Handling, Air suspension, HK sound system w/6CD player.


Suggested Improvements

Don't make the customer be the beta tester for electronics.


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Unreliable
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By JohnF
on

Vehicle

2003 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Sedan E500 Rwd 4dr Sedan (5.0L 8cyl 5A)


Review

I am waiting for a tow truck to pick up my E500 again as I write thie review. This is an awesome driving car, with great looks and lots of power, but man have I been in the shop way too much. This time the air suspension went out (again) and the extended warranty plan doesn't cover this as it's considered a shock, so there goes $1000. Previous problems included the radiator split, causing the transmission cooling lines that run through it to get coolant mixed in with my transmission fluid, which means the tranny was replaced.


Favorite Features

Fun to drive and great looking.


Suggested Improvements

It's a Mercedes it's not supposed to break, it needs better reliability.


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Electrical Nightmare
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Petersons
on

Vehicle

2003 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Sedan E500 Rwd 4dr Sedan (5.0L 8cyl 5A)


Review

We bought this certified pre-owned E500 2 months ago, and it has been in the shop 4 times for electrical error messages (SRS and SOS Disabled, electrical consumers switched off message, and more). Today my car caught on fire with me and my 2 children buckled in carseats in the backseat. The entire inside of the car filled with thick white smoke and smelled of burning. The electrical system fried, caught fire,and didn't allow me to open any doors to get my kids out. I ripped them out of their seats, fire trucks put out the fire, we are safe, but a total loss. After the key was taken out the clock and speedometer were spinning, radio blaring, windshield wipers squirting, everything...scary!!


Favorite Features

Interior is great, fun to drive, great pick up.


Suggested Improvements

Electrical system! This is totally unacceptable from MB. Brakes have also had a lot of trouble.


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An excellent alternative to the BMW 5
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Peter Jackson
on

Vehicle

2003 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Sedan E500 Rwd 4dr Sedan (5.0L 8cyl 5A)


Review

I have owned this vehicle for 2 years and was a dedicated BMW driver. The latest BMW 5 series drove me away from them. The new E series is a great looking vehicle with adequate space and a superb V8 which pulls well from low revs. Apart from the ubiquitous sound system software issue, I have only had the recall on the brakes to deal with. The car has a dual personality, the "easy drive in traffic mode" and the "give me the pedal and let me go mode". Fussy interior is distracting and lack of GPS irritating (not available when I bought her). Roomy and classy looking. Handles well but you need to push it. Not very "chuckable" due to the disconnect between the car and the driver.


Favorite Features

Superb torque of the V8. Classy looks, good space for a mid size, and comfortable seats. Excellent handling, dual personality (drive aggressively or waft you from place to place)


Suggested Improvements

Numb steering, too many electronics between you and the car (there is a great chassis waiting to escape the control systems), fussy controls.


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Proceed with caution
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By good info.
on

Vehicle

2003 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Sedan E500 Rwd 4dr Sedan (5.0L 8cyl 5A)


Review

This is a wonderful machine in terms of handling. It is eye pleasing and driving fatigue on long trips is zero. But, it is an electrical NIGHTMARE. Don't waste your money underwriting mercedez R&D. I know the company knows of the drastic electrical problems yet they keep offering the cars for sell without warning. This is not like the Mercedez of old. Hey...who owns this company these days...certainly not a company that cares about the consumer. In 16 months my car has been in the shop more than 10 times for major electrical problems. I think more consumers aren't complaining because they are embarassed to tell that a car with this reputation is soo poor.


Favorite Features

Everything is awesome. But, everything keeps breaking and malfunctioning.


Suggested Improvements

This car is a rolling computer. Fix the whole dog-gone system before selling anymore.


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5th and Best MB I've ever had
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Katcat
on

Vehicle

2003 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Sedan E500 Rwd 4dr Sedan (5.0L 8cyl 5A)


Review

I've had two other E's (good cars), an S500 (expensive junk), and an ML (less expensive junk), and my E500 is the best MB I've had yet. It has renewed my faith in this company. The sport pkg was worth it; the car handles like a dream. The Command system is intuitive - easy to use. MB customer service was exceptional in this case. My car was one of the 1st in 2002, and didn't have a nav, but I bought one to be installed when it was ready. The nav that was designed couldn't fit the configuration of my car (ridiculous design error), so guess what? MB gave me a brand new car with nav after 6 months of use!


Favorite Features

Love just about everything...the appearance, speed, and handling. The keyless go feature is fantastic.


Suggested Improvements

The nav is not as specific as the one in my 01 ML. I'd like to see it give earlier direction, such as which way I'll be turning next instead of just street name. Retracting sideview mirrors would be convenient. Just a little more leg room for back passengers would also be nice.


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