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w212 common problems reliablity

Overview W212 E-Class Reliability, Common Problems

2010-2016 E-Class W212

The first, second, and third Benz generations were exquisite. The fourth generation has had wonderful and state-of-the-art features for several years. You may be wondering how the E-Class W212 may have been holding up. The W212 E-Class, the successor of W211, is among the cars you must check if you are in the market for a used luxury car. The series includes the iconic S212 station wagon and the AMG version. We looked at several W212 E-Class Mercedes-Benz cars with over 100k miles to see how these cars are holding up. Our goal is to give you a brief overview of the features of the W212 and include some common problems and weak spots that you may want to consider before buying this generation of E-Class.MB MERCEDES E350 E550 RELIABLITY PROBLEMS INTERIOR

The E-Class W212 has a lot to offer and may be the one model that has restored the reputation of Mercedes-Benz. 2000-2010 were some rough years for MB, but the W212 has been a game changer. With the W212 E-Class, safety and reliability were the focus with features such as blind spot trackers and assists for Night vision and lane maintenance.

The W212 design looks solid and feels very stable while driving.

Common W212 E-Class problems

  • Air suspension problems – in models such as the E550, components could fail including the air compressor and the rear air suspension springs.
  • Cabin rattling sounds caused by loose interior trim parts may start developing over 100k miles, especially if the car did a lot of city driving.
  • Interior trim may fade over time or if you tend to park your W212 under direct sunlight.
    W212 E-Class Faded Driver Seat

    On high mileage W212, the seats may start to wear out, and in some cases, they can tear. If that happens to you, you don’t need to get the whole seat replaced; you should be able to change the seat cover. The dealer should carry a seat cover that matches your seats, including the color.

    E-Class W212 Driver’s Seat Leather Torn.

    Overall the majority of the 2010,20111,2012,2013 E-Class W212 that we looked at had over 100k; the interior was holding up very well. Unlike the previous model W211 in which the interior shows its age once over 100k miles. Several high mileage W212 had seats that still looked like new, and you could tell the previous owner had taken good care of the car.

  • The wiper blade motor could fail. They may start to move and then return to the stowed position. That’s because the window wiper motor draws too much current, and in some cases, it may even burn the fuse.
  • Once you put some miles on the W212, you may notice steering wheel vibration. While this could be due to several reasons, it could also be because the engine mounts are starting to wear out, allowing the engine vibrations to be transmitted to the cabin. If you buy a Mercedes-Benz with a steering wheel or cabin vibration, you should replace all three mounts. There are two engine mounts and one transmission mount, which you could buy as a set online. As you can see in this listing W212 Engine Mount Set on Amazon, they are quite inexpensive and will make your E-Class feel like new again.
  • W212 window auto close problemWindow Auto Close may malfunction if the window regulator motor draws too much current when the window is closing. This safety feature allows the windows to roll down if it detects a stuck object in the window while being closed. It also can cause malfunctions if the window rails get misaligned. Removing the door panel to lubricate the track and inspecting the window tracks should be all you may need to do to fix this problem.
  • If the W212 is left parked for extended periods, you may notice that the transmission shifts are delayed at first. This is nothing to worry about unless this problem continues even after the car has been driven for at least half an hour. Overall the 7-speed automatic transmission (code name 722.9) is very reliable. This transmission has been around since 2005, and most problems experienced with this transmission, such as limp mode delayed shifting or valve body issues, were resolved by 2010.
  • The cup holder cover may get stuck. The automatic close function of the cup holder may not work properly. With that said, what Mercedes doesn’t have problems with the cup holder?
  • Diesel engines may need the fuel injectors replaced much sooner than expected.

Mercedes E-Class W212 Features

This Benz model enjoys the best technologies that any other car could offer in 2010. With the W212 chassis, Mercedes-Benz has taken automation to another level. Here are a few features that you should be aware of.

Braking system

The car has sensors all over for Pre-Safe Brake and Pre-Safe Plus. These sensors monitor the car’s front, side, and rear to detect humans crossing in front of the car and trigger automatic braking. However, the car must be below 30 mph to initiate this safety process.

The Pre-Safe Plus is very useful in case of rear collisions. It triggers three systems depending on the impact:

  1. Initiate the Pre-Safe Plus, which reduces the impact on the passengers
  2. Trigger the Pre-Safe Impulse (PSI) that drives the front seats away from the impact
  3. Automatic braking, which prevents front collisions


Over the years, owners have loved the MB steering and the, in particular, tight turning radius of Mercedes-Benz cars. The W212 Mercedes-Benz is very stable and almost self-steering. A combination of Distronic Plus and Steering Assist helps keep the car in the mid of the road while monitoring the movements of cars behind you.

The Assist System protects you from accident causatives from all sides. By sudden braking on the safe side, the Assist sensor of Active Lane Keeping prevents head-on collisions. It is very helpful when using a highway with no separation borders.

Steering through busy areas and parking lots is easy and enjoyable with the all-around View Camera.

Lighting System

Although the previous generations had good lighting, the combination of Intelligent and Adaptive high beams is perfect. The Assist Plus feature suppresses oncoming traffic from the high-beam lights. You do not have to keep dimming lights while in two-way traffic.

The Attention Assist

While driving your W212, you must attest to be in the safest ride. If you start dozing and not concentrating, this assistant will inform you. This assist initiates the Collision Prevention systems since it is at that time that you are like to cause accidents.

Unique safety features and rating

The manufacturer left none of the possible security features while designing the W212. Reviews from the NCAP Euro tests showed good protection of the vehicle’s passengers and the surroundings.

w212 safety
W212 Crash Test Rating by SafeCar.gov

According to NHTSA, the W212 had an overall safety rating of 4 out of 5 stars. Side and rollover received the highest rating possible.

The development of all automated systems, including lights, wipers, and Assists, makes the car self-sufficient. The occupants have adequate protection from the rear, front, and sides with reliable Assists. When rolling over, the W212 has enough impact reduction systems to ensure full protection.

Starting with 2011 models, NHTSA has introduced tougher tests and rigorous new 5-Star Safety Ratings that provide more information about safety feature performance and crash avoidance technologies. Because of the more stringent tests, 2011-newer model ratings are not comparable to 1990–2010 vehicles.

E-Class W211 vs W212 

The W212 (2010-2016) is much more dependable than the previous E-Class W211 (2003-2009). It is built better, feels more solid when driving, and has better reliability. We also loved the W211, but that car did have a few problems that owners had to face, such as the SBC brake system failing, catalytic converter, window regulator, ball joints, and control arms wearing out under 100k miles. The W212 overall was a solid car with a few minor issues mentioned above. A well-maintained W212 could be one of the best luxury cars to own!

Fuel Economy W212

Mercedes-Benz’s fuel economy has been improving over the years. The most gasoline-thirsty version is the E550 4-matic (excluding E63 AMG from comparison). The most economical version is the E250 Bluetec which can achieve 42 MPG in highway driving and 28 MPG in the city. The figure below compares the fuel economy of E350 vs. E550 vs. E350 Bluetec vs. E250 Bluetec as provided by FuelEconomy.gov

w212 e350 e550 fuel economy
Compare fuel economy MPG. Data provided by FuelEconomy.gov


The Mercedes W212 is an executive and luxurious car. It has perfect safety features that assure the driver and pedestrians of their safety. The powerful engine gives the car high acceleration and speeds when necessary. With the advanced Assist system, this car enjoys all that technology can offer to a car.

The W212 was one of the few cars that set the bar higher for the future of automobiles! Occasional servicing and maintenance of your Benz will help increase its service life. It is time to drive a safe, reliable, high-tech car with all the convenient features.

What OBD-II Scanner is the Best for my Mercedes-Benz?

If you’re experiencing problems with your Mercedes-Benz, the YOUCANIC full system diagnostic scanner can be an invaluable tool for troubleshooting and diagnosing the issue. This scanner is designed specifically for use with Mercedes-Benz vehicles, allowing you to access and analyze data from your car’s various systems and modules.

With the YOUCANIC scanner, you can perform various diagnostic functions, including reading and clearing fault codes, monitoring live data, performing component activation tests, and more. This allows you to identify the root cause of the problem and take appropriate action to fix it, whether it involves replacing a faulty component, adjusting to a system setting, or performing more extensive repairs.

By using the YOUCANIC full system diagnostic scanner, you can save time and money by avoiding unnecessary trips to the mechanic and performing repairs yourself. Plus, with the ability to access real-time data and diagnostics, you can stay on top of your vehicle’s maintenance and prevent potential problems before they occur.

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