Is the Mercedes E320 a good car?

This article will answer the following questions: Is the Mercedes E320 a good car? Which engine was used in the E 320 launched in 2003? What are the features of the E class launched in 2003?

Is the Mercedes E320 a good car?

Yes, the Mercedes E 320 is a good car because it is the most reliable model in the Mercedes Benz E class line-up. Since its launch in 2003, there were no major issues in the car reported by customers. It improved the image of Mercedes Benz, especially in the international market.

The specifications of the Mercedes E 320 are as follows

It is a 4-door full-size sedan in the Mercedes Benz lineup. The E class sits perfectly in the middle of the C class and the S class. It is also the most technologically advanced car after the Mercedes Benz S Class.

The Mercedes Benz E class range is available with different body styles like estate, convertible and AMG sports models. Mercedes Benz launched the third generation of the E class with model series W211. It was sold between 2002 to 2009. 

The overall design was completely changed from the previous generation, the car looked more modern with the double-barrel headlights and even today the third generation of the E class looks better than many new models available in the market.

The 2003 E 320 model also had sensotronic brake control which is a fly by wire brake system and Mercedes Benz used a faster CAN network in the vehicle’s onboard electrical systems.

The third generation of the E class also got reversible tensioning retractors for the front seats and ETR for the rear seat. Mercedes Benz used multiple-stage airbags for the driver as well as the front passenger. The driver authorization system was the third generation in the W 211.

The majority of the W 211 production took place in Germany and Mercedes Benz also shipped the car to international markets like India, China and USA. In Germany, Mercedes Benz sold a stripped-down version of the standard model that was mainly used as a Taxi.

The taxi version of the E class was exclusively sold in Germany and the cost of the car in the international market was already very high due to the shipping and taxes collected by local authorities.

Which engine was used in the E 320 launched in 2003?

The E 320 available in 2003 was powered by a petrol V 6 M112 engine. The power produced by the 3.2 litres M112 was 220 horsepower and 315 NM of torque. Mercedes Benz continued to use steel in the construction of the body in the third generation of the E class so the car is slightly heavy.

The car felt slightly underpowered as the M112 was naturally aspirated and made its peak torque more linearly. This problem was not there in the E350 that was powered by M272 with a variable intake manifold and variable valve timing.

The M112 had three valves per cylinder and used only a single overhead camshaft driven by a timing chain connected to the crankshaft. Cylinder charging was improved because it had only three valves which allowed the exhaust gases to exit more quickly due to the scavenging effect.

What are the features of the 2003 Mercedes Benz E320?

Following are some of the key features of the 2003 Mercedes Benz E 320:

  • Automatic climate control

The E320 had multi-zone thermotronic air conditioning systems with a PTC heater booster as an optional extra. Multiple zone climate control allowed the driver and front passenger to set different individual temperatures inside the vehicle. Two sun sensors located on the front dashboard and rear parcel tray automatically adjusted to refrigerant pressure to maintain the cooling inside the vehicle. Air Conditioning housing had more than 12 individual motors to control the blending air flaps and the air quality sensor ensured that no harmful fumes entered the cabin by closing the air recirculation flap automatically.

  • SBC

The sensotronic brake control is a fly-by-wire braking system developed by Mercedes Benz and originally used in the formula 1 racing car. A travel sensor located on the brake pedal measures the travel and likewise determines the braking force applied on the brakes.

SBC reduced the stopping distance hugely compared to the models with adaptive brake control units. There was no need for the brake booster and the driver can easily apply maximum brake force without exerting too much force on the pedal.

SBC also dried the brakes in heavy rain or snow conditions by briefly applying the brakes and cleaning the pads. The entire system was very advanced and powered by a separate battery. As it is used as the main service brake of the vehicle, failure in the SBC can result in a greater stopping distance. Mercedes Benz offers a lifetime warranty on the SBC units used in the E class.

  • Parktronic

Parktronic uses proximity sensors located on the front and rear bumpers. The driver can check the distance to the obstacle with the help of LED indicator lights on the front dashboard and the rear roof trim.

  • Cruise control

Vehicle speed can be set to cruise on the highways with the help of a cruise control selector lever. The driver must be aware of the surroundings as there is no active brake assist or radar sensor.

  • Electronic stability system (ESP)

The Electronic stability programme helps to maintain vehicle stability and it can cut power to the wheels to prevent oversteer and understeer of the vehicle. The signal from  Four wheel speed sensors which constantly measure wheel speeds and the vehicle acceleration sensor located on the body along with the throttle position sensor helps to ensure the vehicle always has optimum traction. Anti-lock brakes are a standard feature in ESP.

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The 2003 E 320 was slightly underpowered but it was very reliable and the engine can easily do 100,000km without any major repair work. The 5-speed automatic gearbox was slow but gearshifts were comfortable with summer and winter driving modes. There is a huge demand for the third generation in the user can market even today.

FAQs: What is a Mercedes Benz E Class?

Is the E 320 a reliable car?

Yes the Mercedes Benz E 320 is very reliable, Mercedes Benz even offers a lifetime warranty on the SBC unit if there are any malfunctions. All the critical electronic components were located inside the vehicle so E 320 had very few electrical faults due to corrosion or water damage. Min battery was loaded in the luggage compartment far from the engine compartment, this meant that the battery could last longer as it was not subjected to the extreme temperature of the internal combustion engine.

What does E 320 mean?

The E 320 is a new form of nomenclature adopted by Mercedes Benz since the launch of the first generation of the E class in 1993. E stands for E class, it represents the class in Mercedes Benz and the 320 stands for the engine displacement. The 320 is a 3.2-litre engine but this number will become representative of the actual engine displacement as the power output starts increasing with the use of forced air injection.