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Mercedes-Benz E-Class vs. Ford Explorer Sport Trac Reliability by Model Generation

Results are for year ending December 31, 2016. Only successfully completed repairs are currently included in the analysis. Routine maintenance, most wear items, recalls, and problems fixed with just a reflash or warning light reset are not included.
Year and Model Percent of Average  
2014 - 2016 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
95.1428571429% Best 204% Worst
See problems for this generation
2010 - 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
50.5714285714% Best 126% Worst
See problems for this generation
2007 - 2009 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
58.5714285714% Best 140% Worst
See problems for this generation
2003 - 2006 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
61.4285714286% Best 145% Worst
See problems for this generation

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What Our Members Are Saying about the Reliability And Durability of the Mercedes-Benz E-Class

Mercedes-Benz E-Class Reliability And Durability: Pros
YearBody/PowertrainComment
2008 4dr Sedan 268-horsepower 3.5L V6
7-speed shiftable automatic RWD
The 2008 E-Class is far more reliable than previous E-Class models, many of which are plagued by quirky electronic issues. No such issues with this model. Perhaps the most reliable model thus far. full 2008 Mercedes-Benz E-Class review
2007 4dr Sedan 268-horsepower 3.5L V6
7-speed shiftable automatic RWD
They are not known for being inexpensive to maintain. While the scheduled maintenance trips are not cheap, so far I have had virtually no problems with the car. trips that are not but they are known for having full 2007 Mercedes-Benz E-Class review
2005 4dr Sedan turbocharged 201hp 3.2L I6 Diesel
5-speed shiftable automatic RWD
Mercedes has long been known for reliability full 2005 Mercedes-Benz E-Class review
2003 4dr Sedan 302-horsepower 5.0L V8
5-speed shiftable automatic RWD
The car still drives like a solid new car at 94000 miles full 2003 Mercedes-Benz E-Class review
Mercedes-Benz E-Class Reliability And Durability: Cons
YearBody/PowertrainComment
2008 4dr Sedan 268-horsepower 3.5L V6
5-speed shiftable automatic AWD
Driver side mirror cracked in the cold in the first 2 months. Piece of driver door trim came loose after a couple of months. full 2008 Mercedes-Benz E-Class review
2008 4dr Sedan 268-horsepower 3.5L V6
5-speed shiftable automatic AWD
Poor reliability in the past 5-10 years full 2008 Mercedes-Benz E-Class review
2007 4dr Sedan 507-horsepower 6.2L V8
7-speed shiftable automatic RWD
It never works right. There is always some sort of other problem. Problem after problem after problem, it never ends. full 2007 Mercedes-Benz E-Class review
2005 4dr Sedan supercharged 469hp 5.4L V8
5-speed shiftable automatic RWD
Materials look & feel great, and seem well put together, but durability is questionable. E.g., glovebox door soft close craps out, as do the tweeter "triangle" housings in the forward door corners). Airmatic suspension is known problem area. full 2005 Mercedes-Benz E-Class review
2004 4dr Sedan 221-horsepower 3.2L V6
5-speed shiftable automatic RWD
My repairs are mostly for simple things that should last longer. Engine and Trans are stellar. full 2004 Mercedes-Benz E-Class review
2003 4dr Sedan supercharged 469hp 5.4L V8
5-speed shiftable automatic RWD
The W211 E class is just a mess of problems waiting to happen. Probably the biggest is the tendency of the fuel tank and two fuel senders (underneath the back seat, by the way) to leak with no fix other than to replace them at a high cost (over $3,500). The fuel sender leak happens to be right around some electrical connections as well, so it is a wonder there haven't been any notable fire incidents. This is a known issue and there is an NTSB ongoing investigation (PE12001, which has been upgraded to the next level of action) because of the high number of vehicles affected. The fact that Mercedes doesn't own up to this issue after several iterations of re-engineered parts and continued failures is the main reason I will never buy another Mercedes. I have had to have this repair done, so I speak from experience. full 2003 Mercedes-Benz E-Class review
2003 4dr Sedan supercharged 469hp 5.4L V8
5-speed shiftable automatic RWD
The second major issue that owners of the W211 can expect to have is the SBC brake system. This was implemented on the '03 - '06 W211 and it was changed on subsequent years in 2007. The SBC unit, pressure reservoir, and the other parts of the brake system can alert you to a fault and minutes later leave you without brakes. This is unacceptable. Mercedes did put out a 10 year unlimited mileage warranty on the SBC unit itself, but I'll give you one guess as to when the fault will happen! If the pressure reservoir goes out, you won't even be able to get the car out of park, even just to get it in to neutral to get a tow. The brake sensors seem to be finicky and the brake switch as well. Knowing what I know now about the failed application of SBC, I'd never purchase an E class Mercedes between the years of 2003-2006. If I were to ever look in to purchasing a Mercedes again, I would do my homework on the types of systems in place. I have had to do this repair and others on the brakes, so I speak from experience. full 2003 Mercedes-Benz E-Class review
2003 4dr Sedan supercharged 469hp 5.4L V8
5-speed shiftable automatic RWD
The third major issue the W211's have is the airmatic system. A common fault is for the airmatic struts to leak, which requires replacement. One replacement cost is $1600. If you aren't under warranty, the bill could add up quickly if more than one goes out. The airmatic system is nice in principle, but in practice this is a common ailment. I had my left front go bad, so I speak from experience. full 2003 Mercedes-Benz E-Class review
2003 4dr Sedan supercharged 469hp 5.4L V8
5-speed shiftable automatic RWD
The W211's, and many other models of Mercedes, have two batteries. One main batter for starting, and an accessory battery for running convenience features, your brakes, etc. This is a definite source of trouble. When you have certain functions fail, the obvious place to look at a secondary battery isn't the first thing that comes to mind. A secondary battery that is slightly low on voltage can start to create havoc in your electronics. I have faced this a number of times, and actually, it is now one of the first things I check when something odd is occurring. full 2003 Mercedes-Benz E-Class review
2003 4dr Sedan 302-horsepower 5.0L V8
5-speed shiftable automatic RWD
TOO many !@#$# trips to the dealer for ball joints, ignition key failure, Total brake failure of EBS, and $1000/visit oil change full 2003 Mercedes-Benz E-Class review
 

What Our Members Are Saying about the Reliability And Durability of the Ford Explorer Sport Trac

Ford Explorer Sport Trac Reliability And Durability: Pros
YearBody/PowertrainComment
2002 4dr SUT 203-horsepower 4.0L V6
5-speed automatic RWD
In 7 yrs of ownership-it has had to have a side viw mirror motor replaced under warranty-and besides oil changes and tire changes-thats it. full 2002 Ford Explorer Sport Trac review