Used 1997 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Diesel

1997 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
List price range
1997 Mercedes-Benz E-Class


  • Beautiful nose, light-hearted design, rock-solid construction, and the panache of owning a Mercedes. What more could you want?


  • Hmmm... I'd like it more if Mercedes-Benz gave me one to keep.

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Edmunds' Expert Review

vehicle overview

Mercedes-Benz introduced an all-new E-Class for 1996, sporting a distinctive countenance, larger dimensions, door-mounted side-impact airbags and more standard equipment. First out of the blocks was the E320, equipped with a 217-horsepower, 3.2-liter inline six; and the E300 Diesel. Later in the year, an E420 V8 was released, putting 275-horsepower to the ground through the rear wheels.

Styling follows familiar Mercedes themes, but the front end of the E-Class is quite a departure from previous Benz models. Round headlamps, available with new gas-discharge technology, contain low beams as well as parking lights and turn signals. Smaller inner lights serve as high beams. Fog lamps are integrated into the bumper covers. The result is a crisp retro look that gives the E-Class a large dose of personality and presence.

Occupants are treated to a automatic climate control system that can be set for driver and passenger comfort, and filters dust, pollen and odors from the air. The usual burl walnut trim covers the instrument panel, and E320 models come with standard leather seating. A three-position memory feature is standard on all models, and it positions the driver's seat, steering wheel, headrests and side-view mirrors for up to three different drivers. Cupholders are provided front and rear.

E-Class is equipped with improved antilock brakes, new standard traction control systems, child-safety locks on the rear doors, dual airbags and new inflatable restraints in the doors. E420 models can be ordered with an Electronic Stability Program (ESP), which helps drivers keep the car under control in hazardous conditions. An infrared remote security system is standard.

The revamped E-Class should compete very well with the new BMW 5-Series and the Lexus LS400. Its understated elegance, newfound personality, and superb engineering will prove to be an irresistible blend of attributes in the luxury car class.

1997 Highlights

The Mercedes-Benz E300D and E320 receive the driver-adaptable five-speed automatic transmission. The E-Class also has a smart sensor to determine if anyone is sitting in the passenger seat and to determine whether or not to deploy the airbag. The E420 can be had with a Sport Package.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 1997 Mercedes-Benz E-Class.

Overall Consumer Rating

Most helpful consumer reviews

1997 E300 Last Best Mercedes built
Rob webber,03/18/2016
Probably the most underrated diesel out there. 3liter straight 6 Fastest diesel before that cdi/bluetec bullshit (don't buy into those imo) my 1997 E300 NA diesel is fast off the line even for non turbo and is reliable as hell(one less thing to go) Gets 1050km per full tank with shell v power and additive. Big and safe car with side airbags, Esp and abs. The interior is mint and at 220,000km the seats aren't even broken in to lol. What more could you ask for get one before the go up in price which they will cause all the previous diesel benzs sky rocketed in price. OM606 is the best last engine and no maintenance is required, powerful and proven at this point in age. Just look for a rust free one and you can't lose. Finally a cheap costing easy to use high output Mercedes for diesel enthusiasts. W210 for life.
Fuel System Nightmare
D &L,04/28/2004
We love this car BUT, it has had serious fuel system problems. The fuel injector pump has been replaced at 50K and 90K miles. We were stranded in the middle of nowhere when it went out at 90K. A long walk with no cell service in the area.Thank God for the 100K extended warranty we bought or we would have been out over $3K each time. Our previous diesel a 1982 240D ran over 300K miles with no problems. We wanted one of the new CDI diesels but now we are not so sure.
Terrific and classy car - if maintained regularly
Probably the best car I've ever owned! We purchased our 97 E300D with confidence because it was steadily serviced and well maintained by a family member. I would snap up one with that kind of a track record. We purchased with 200K miles. The most notable repairs over the past 20 plus years have been replacing the injector seals and the engine mount. From other reviews I've read, most 210s will need that kind of care. Everything else has been typical maintenance and simple repairs. I have not had problems with the electric transmission or window motors but the service man has done simple preventative things to keep them from failing (replacing the tranny fluid and filter even though it is 'sealed' and periodically lubing the window channels and guides). Just maintain it and drive it sensibly, and it will last another 20 years.
Beware of Starmark
Bought my 1997 Mercedes-Benz E-Class with a Certified Pre-Owned Starmark warranty. After three weeks it would "miss" or hesitate at 45 - 55 MPH. My dealer said that the fuel return hoses clogged. They would not fix this problem under warranty and said it was not part of the Starmark pre-sale inspection. I had it fixed by my independent mechanic at cost of $800. the entire mainfold was fouled with carbon buildup at only 45,000 miles. My mechanic says that this is a common problem on this non-turbo engine. It's a poor design, in his words. The glow plugs were "frozen" in place by this carbon build up. I have corresponded with my selling dealer and Mercedes-Benz USA, both wished me a happy holidays. This is my sixth and last Benz.
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Features & Specs

23 city / 30 hwy
Seats 0
5-speed automatic
134 hp @ 5000 rpm
See all Used 1997 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Diesel features & specs


IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Not Tested
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test

More about the 1997 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
Used 1997 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Diesel Overview

The Used 1997 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Diesel is offered in the following styles: E300D 4dr Sedan.

What's a good price on a Used 1997 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Diesel?

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Can't find a used 1997 Mercedes-Benz E-Class E-Class Diesel you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Mercedes-Benz E-Class for sale - 8 great deals out of 19 listings starting at $22,170.

Find a used Mercedes-Benz for sale - 4 great deals out of 9 listings starting at $23,251.

Find a used certified pre-owned Mercedes-Benz E-Class for sale - 2 great deals out of 11 listings starting at $17,387.

Find a used certified pre-owned Mercedes-Benz for sale - 1 great deals out of 9 listings starting at $19,607.

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Should I lease or buy a 1997 Mercedes-Benz E-Class?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

Check out Mercedes-Benz lease specials
Check out Mercedes-Benz E-Class lease specials