What are the common problems in the 2000 S500?

This blog will explain the common problems in the 2000 S 500 and answer the following questions: what are the technical specifications of the 2000 S 500? How fast is the 2000 S 500?

What are the common problems in the 2000 S500?

The common problems in the 2000 S500 are given below:

  • Soft close inoperative
  • Vehicle level too low
  • Engine not starting 
  • Battery drain

Let’s take a closer look at each problem

Soft close inoperative

Mercedes Benz introduced the soft closing door in the fourth generation of the S class. Micro switches in the door detect that the door is about to close. The locking motor can then pull the door in and close it completely.

Soft close is an excellent feature as it helps the door to securely close and there is no need to slam it. But the actuator and locking motors are pneumatically operated, leaks develop in the vacuum cells and hoses and the actuators cannot work even if the vacuum pump is working.

This is the most common problem in the 2000 S 500 as all the door actuators are connected to the pneumatic pump. In some cars, the doors also do not lock if there is a fault in the pneumatic system.

The PSE or pneumatic system equipment pump can also stop working in vehicles with high age and mileage. If the pump fails then the lumbar support in the seats, rear trunk lid lock, and extraction and retraction of the rear trunk lid lock do not function. 

Vehicle level too low

The 2000 S 500 has airmatic suspension, it uses airmatic bellows on top of the suspension struts to increase or decrease the height. The electrical compressor generates the required air pressure for all four suspension struts.

Pneumatic lines connected to the airmatic valve body supply the sir to the different struts. If there is a minor leak in the system then the vehicle level drops after a few hours of parking the car.

The airmatic control unit also uses level sensors on the front as well as a rear axle to measure the vehicle level. If there is an incorrect signal from either the front or rear level sensor then the airmatic control unit will also not function correctly.

It can be very expensive to fix the fault in the airmatic system of the 2000 S 500 as the airmatic struts get weaker over time and leak a small quantity of air. Mercedes Benz also makes an adapter kit if there is a leak in the airmatic line. However, repairs to the airmatic struts are no longer permitted in order to maintain reliability.

If the vehicle height does not rise even after starting the engine, the airmatic compressor is faulty. It is operated by a relay and when the new compressor is installed the airmatic fuse and relay are renewed with it.

Engine not starting 

The 200 S 500 is powered by M113 V 8 engine, the engine does not start when the crankshaft position sensor malfunctions. This fault also occurs when the engine reaches operating temperature. 

The engine control unit cannot detect the position of the crankshaft and start the fuel injection. Therefore, the starter motor keeps turning the engine but it does not start. Replacing the crankshaft position sensor will solve the problem. 

Battery drain

The 2000 S 500 has two batteries, one battery is dedicated to starting the engine and the main battery is located in the trunk. The main battery provides a power supply to the entire vehicle.

The starter battery is charged from the main battery when the vehicle is running. 

The 2000 S 500 has a very common problem of battery drain especially if the vehicle is not used every day.

There are lots of computers onboard and due to age, the electronic components drain the battery even when the vehicle is locked. Similarly, if the starter battery is bad it will drain the main battery as it is connected to it via a starter battery relay.

The cost of replacing both the batteries is very high and if there is battery drain due to any control unit, that control unit will also need replacement. The cost of the control units in 2000 S500 is also very high.

What are the technical specifications of the 2000 S 500?

The technical specifications of the 2000 S 500 are given in the table below:

Technical specifications2000 S 500
Engine 5.0 L V8 M113 
transmission5 G Tronic (5 speed fully automatic)
Wheelbase 116.54 in
Width 73.23 in
Height 56.69 in
Trunk capacity500 L
Curb weight1775 Kg

The 2000 S 500 is powered by the M113.960 V 8 engine. It is based on the M112 that replaced the M104 engine. The design and construction are identical to the M112 but there are two more cylinders and a longer crankshaft in the M113.960.

All the cylinders have 3 valves, there is a twin smaller exhaust valve in order to facilitate scavenging of the exhaust gasses. The intake valve is single but the size is big. All the valves are operated by a single overhead camshaft.

The fuel system uses electronic fuel injectors controlled by the engine control unit. The engine control unit is designed by Bosh. The M113.960  in the 2000 S 500 is a naturally aspirated engine Although there is a supercharged version of the M113, Mercedes Benz decided to use the non-supercharged version because of its smoother power delivery. The compression ratio is also reduced to 9.0:1 to keep the noise level low.

The transmission in the 2000 S500 is 5 G-Tronic, it is capable of transmitting up to 330 Nm of torque. The transmission also allows two driving modes W/S, in the W model the transmission control unit will select the second gear instead of the first gear. 

As the grip is reduced in snow and slippery conditions, the W mode can be helpful to maneuver the car. In S mode the car sets off in the first gear as the traction available at the rear wheel is sufficient to transmit the torque in the first gear.


This blog explained the common problems in the 2000 S 500 and listed the technical specifications. The fourth generation of the S class W220 lasted for many years and the 2000 S 500 is one of the best models in the S Class. It can last for more than 200,000 miles with proper maintenance. If you are looking for a used S Class then the 2000 S 500 should be avoided as the car is more than 20 years old now.