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Old 07-11-2011, 02:30 AM   #1
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E220 cdi gearbox problem?

I've recently bought my first Mercedes which is an E Class 220 CDI Auto (2008). Despite being not very impressed with the gearbox on the test drive I bought the car anyway because I'm starting a chauffeur business, and I thought there would be no better car than a merc for the job. But the gearbox is awful! The worst auto i've ever driven (and I used to own a '94 Vauxhall Belmont auto!!!)

The changes are hesitant and not very smooth and it always seems to be in the wrong gear. Going round a normal 90 degree turn it always goes down into first then rears when you touch the accelerator because it should have stayed in 2nd. When going up a hill, I'm half way up before it realises it needs to drop a gear and bucks down a gear after slowing considerably.

I've taken the car back to mercedes twice telling them there is something wrong and apparently their technicians could not fault it on a test drive. So is it just the worst gearbox ever fitted to a car?... or is this particular mercedes dealership useless? I'm not particularly confident in them since the last time I took it back I also queried why the fog lights were coming on when I indicated. I was told there was a faulty connection!!... Apparently mercedes technicians are not aware of the cornering lights I recently learned about in the handbook!!!

Back on to point, the gearbox really is terrible. I'm actually considering taking the car back because I don't think I could live with it.

Any thoughts??
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Old 07-11-2011, 08:40 AM   #2
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Car: 2006 S211 E220 CDI auto
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Without knowing what the dealer actually did, have you had the gearbox fluid (ATF) level checked? The fluid should be changed at 37,500 miles (once only is the official line, popular opinion is that regular changes every 50k or so are wise).

I've had mine for 2 months now, and love the auto box. In "normal" driving, it just gets out of the way and does its job. On windy, hilly roads I often use the +/- where it cannot anticipate an upcoming steep hairpin; and I sometimes downshift manually for engine braking, but other than that I just leave it in D and let it get on with it.

This is my first auto box and I'm a stickler for smoothness in gearchanges. My only disappointment is in very low speed manoeuvres, where it seems to make more hassle of moving off than it should.

If yours is as bad as you suggest, and you have the option to return the car, I would if I were you.

I've tried once to get my cornering lights turned off. You need to find someone (dealer or independent) who can program the front SAM, which is where the feature is controlled. Sounds like your dealer isn't up to much if they diagnosed a faulty connection where the actual problem is a silly design working as it should.
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Old 07-11-2011, 02:38 PM   #3
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I have driven my last 2 E220's each for 312k miles with no gearbox issues over the last 7 years. The key is the ATF changes, I did mine every 60k miles and the gear changes were always smooth up and down the box.

I would recommend doing that first, if the box is ok it should make a big difference, if not you will know you most likely have a gearbox issue.

How many miles has yours done, and do you know when the oil was last changed?

Customers were always telling me I had a fog light out, you will get used to it.
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Old 05-12-2011, 07:31 PM   #4
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Thanks for your responses guys.

Since my original post I've had the car back to mercedes 3 times about the gearbox and they insist there is nothing wrong. The ATF was changed just before I bought the car.

I seriously can't live with it. Apart from cruising on the motorway it's actually in the wrong gear ALL THE TIME!!

This is my first Merc and will almost certainly be my last. I think I'm going to go back to the garage and see how much money I can salvage.
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Old 05-12-2011, 07:36 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stigofthedump View Post
Thanks for your responses guys.

Since my original post I've had the car back to mercedes 3 times about the gearbox and they insist there is nothing wrong. The ATF was changed just before I bought the car.

I seriously can't live with it. Apart from cruising on the motorway it's actually in the wrong gear ALL THE TIME!!

This is my first Merc and will almost certainly be my last. I think I'm going to go back to the garage and see how much money I can salvage.
Sorry to hear of your bad experience of mb ownership,before biting the bullit why don't you see if the dealer has a simular car you can take out & compare the gearbox to,yours doesn't sound right.
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Old 05-12-2011, 07:46 PM   #6
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Which area are you based?
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