Buying a used Mercedes S-class W220 – 1998-2006, Full Review with Common Issues

Buying a used Mercedes S-class W220 – 1998-2006, Full Review with Common Issues

[Music] welcome everybody to a used car review from different car review today I’m gonna take a look at the famous or the infamous mercedes-benz s-class w222 president sir of this car was the legendary w 140 which was famous for great reliability and absolutely fantastic quality so someone would think that the newer model the W 220 should be even better in these things well it’s not it’s not because of two important things the first mercedes decided to save costs when building this car and the second they invested the remaining money into new technologies saving costs and inventing new technologies well this may result in a big disaster so is this car a big disaster well not exactly this mercedes s-class was made from 1998 to 2006 the build quality of the car is not the best which means that you can sometimes hear squeaking or rattling noises from the interior mainly in early production models the materials and the leather which is used in the interior can be in a lot of cases more worn than in the previous model the early production models can also have problems with rust mainly on the doors or on defenders there can be also problem with the parking sensors alternator navigation system ESP electrically adjustable seats seat heating soft closed doors keyless entry and the CD changer the s-class standardly equipped with the aromatic adaptive air suspension however the air packs can leak and sometimes one of the height sensors or the air compressor is not working as it should the another suspension in this Mercedes was the optional APC adaptive suspension which when it works properly is fantastic this is a high pressure oil suspension which means that it has a lot of various sensors bumps and parts which can obviously break and fixing the suspension can be really expensive the good thing is that you can test this comp gated suspension why are the original Mercedes diagnostic computer program but if you can’t or don’t want to go to the origin of Mercedes service you can somehow test it also yourself but it’s not the proper test if you know what I’m saying so you can somehow test it by raising the car five or ten times there is a button on the dashboard especially for raising the car the car should raise pretty fast so you can also fill it in the interior then the car should also stand perfectly in level horizontally I would recommend buying this s-class from 2001 or the even better facelifted version from 2002 because the facelifted version has better build quality better materials and more reliable electronic this was probably the most complicated car in 1998 and it was full with new electronics so the optional equipment list was really big this s-class can be equipped with adaptive cruise control navigation system heated and ventilated front and back seats electrically adjustable front and back seats fridge for the back passengers keyless entry double glazed windows soft close doors both optional audio system voice control system and so on we can move on to the engines but first I would like to show you an s-class which have almost 800,000 kilometres so despite of the fact that these cars are not that reliable as the W 140 watts you can with no problem find cars which have more than 400,000 or 500,000 kilometers this particular car is at this time for sale in Germany it was 797 thousand kilometers to be exact and it was made in 2003 and the price of this Mercedes is three thousand and nine hundred euro it’s not my car so don’t ask me questions about it I just wanted to show you an example of a high mileage s-class so the engines all the petrol engines are usually alright however they can of course have regular problems [Music] [Applause] [Music] [Applause] the diesel engines are also usually reliable enough however I would not recommend the 4 litre v8 diesel engine [Music] all the engines have timing chain but it can sometimes be worn after or even before three hundred thousand kilometers you can choose only the 5-speed or the newer 7 speed automatic gearbox in this car the gearbox can have electronic or marketing problems so you have to check it before buying you should change the oil in the automatic gearbox every 60,000 kilometers before buying check the suspension parts electronic parts the car should ride really quietly and smoothly so we shouldn’t make rattling squeaking or humming noises mainly from the suspension also check the gaps between the body panels they should be even on the left and on the right side – I hope that this information are helpful enough if you have some questions write them into comments don’t forget to Like subscribe or comment thanks for watching

About the Author: Michael Flood


  1. Man 😀 when you will make vide like this about
    1. BMW 5 F10
    2. Jaguar XE
    3. Land Rover Evoque
    No one who have brain will not buy 15 year old S class? 😀 Its not cheap for reapirs at all…

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  3. The car you show in your Video got an new engine at 550.000Km and it was an Taxi. Taxi companys in germany change the Transmissionfluid all 50k km an the engine is always running 😉

  4. Please friends I need help, I really do not know already what do I have a Mercedes S Klass 2000 and my original system. She. Boss sample with an optical fiber. I bought the Android system and the new system is no entry in my original optical fiber. There are some adapter / converter that I can buy for not cancel my original optical fiber ?? because what I've seen on the Internet has only 2004 models adapter / converter. And I'm really at a loss Please Help !! 🙁

  5. I own a 2005 S-Class since 2014, it has 96,500 miles on it, and here are the things I've had to replace

    1.Motor mounts (2) ($45)
    2. Transmission mount ($25)
    3. 1 Airsping ($400)

    It's been a great car, and I have logged about 40,000 miles since I got it. Engine is pretty reliable, just replaced the serpentine belt and a idler pulley. Highly recommend a 2003-2005 if you are up for the matainence.

  6. Great review. I have the rare ABC suspension that was about 60% rebuilt by the prev. owner at dealership under extended warranty. My car thus has many ABC components from the W221 which are more durable. I have also spent thousands of USD myself on the system. Worth every penny for that million dollar ride!

  7. I recently bought a s430 that I really love will put mi imum into until can buy a 2006 maybe. Have not seen to many issues except abit of rust but rolls down the interstate so well at 120 mph lol.

  8. Feel that I would never feel satified with smaller models, so many people look at this car and yet its 17 years old.

  9. I love my 2005 W220. 170,000 mi. Very reliable, but front end chips can happen on the paint if you keep it above 100 mph too often. If you buy one, concentrate on a good maintenance history over mileage, Also, the early models can rust, my 2005 hasn't a speck of rust on it driving in Minnesota winters.

  10. I have a S 320 W220 1999, the right shock is coming out air. Do I need to replace it or can it be reconditioned. Its so expensive to buy a new one, its costing R24000 just for one

  11. Great review ! Much useful information but your accent … you have to work on it 😉 keep it going 👌🏼✔️😄

  12. Mercedes did not decide to save money on the w220. They just started to use recycled materials and non-rare wood for the interior. They also started with water based colour for the body. It is the new painjob that caused the first models to rust, just like the W202 and w210 from that era. Facelift version of the W202, W210, W220 and also the CLK, SLK… have much improved rust resistence.

    W140 (just like any Mercedes-Benz from 1991-1997) had biodegradable wiring harness, that caused severe damage to the engine control management and throttle bodies (check how much a ECU and throttle body costs for a W140), with intermittent issues of all sorts and the engine could just stop randomly, for instance when going off the highway, downhill…. When the engine stops, you get no power steering, no power brakes, good luck.

  13. Is it worth buying an s350 2000 at about 9000 euros? This is by far the best deals I have seen is an s class (the rest are 13000 EUR +)

  14. is the 2002 s500 with 200,000 mile on it a good car to buy please help I don't know about cars

  15. A great ride extreme comfort with the air suspensions, quiet, great handling on turns, very reliable engine, noise reduced with double glass, luxury and quality interior, enough amount of technology.
    However the airmatic suspensions are so smooth but so sensitive too, in a country with Bad roads you better replace them with normal ones.
    Crank shaft disks also might cause noise on acceleration when it's loose. If you change all rubber parts when you buy a used one, you won't have any issues with all MB cars and models such as,

    Ball joints
    Control arms
    Engine / transmission mounts
    Crank shaft front and rear desks
    New tires also

    Then you will have a perfect ride, make sure to change the oil on time mobil one is highly recommended, but do change it at least 2000km before is time to maintain a great performance.
    An amazing car for real. But don't play much with it as you might cause damages while looking around for upgrades or treating it as brand new car.
    Important note DO NOT MAKE a holes in the body for the rear plate number as this will cause a huge electrical issue where the cluster instrument will go dead and the trunk will lock, and won't open unless you disconnect the cluster instrument ( 2 min work to do that)

  16. my 03 s500 sport was my favorite car I ever owned. put 236k miles on it. a few issues but nothing catastrophic, excellent vehicles

  17. Please do yourselves a favor and stay away from this car. It's literally a nightmare on wheels thats after your savings account.

  18. Nice vids! I have an 06 s500 rwd. I love the car. It's great to drive and a super smooth ride. She will easily go over 90 mph with the engine is chilling at like 2200 rpm lolol. but when it needs repairs it's horrible. This year I had clogged drainage holes that caused electrical problems and an a/c issue. Ended up costing about 8400. Luckily ins paid about 6000 of it. I'm scared to get another German car lmao thinking about an Audi or Volvo. Any advice on xc70?

  19. Thanks I do love your reviews….I found a beautiful but bargain w220 on Saturday……hmmm I'll keep my old Saab!

  20. I buy my S600 (2000) IN 2012 at 100 000 miles…ALL BIG REPAIRING WAS EFFECTUED…now 6 years and 40 000 miles later ALL RIGHT except alternator and accus NO PROBLEM

  21. Cars are as reliable as you know how to maintain them as well as how much you can afford to maintain them.

  22. anyone do you know how to lower the rear head rest manually?? my switch to lower them stopped working after i pulled them up manually. thanks

  23. i own a s600 with a renntech tune and fully built under, i have new billet turbos, installed new pistons and rods, new injectors and full new amg exhaust, also has 2 step. I have huge 315 volk wheels, with michellin tires, im pushing about 800 to the wheels, with a new lsd diff and a full titanium driveshaft, Its the most amazing build i have seen, and it shreds the tires like its on ice

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