Here’s What To Look For When Buying A W211 Mercedes E55 AMG

Back when it first came out in 2003 (unveiled at the 2002 Paris Auto Show), the Mercedes-Benz E55 AMG was the fastest production sedan in the world.

With credentials like that, it’s no wonder that now, so many years later, people are still considering it as a solid used purchase. What makes it so appealing is of course the 5.4-liter supercharged V8 engine, good for 476 PS (469 HP) and 700 Nm (520 lb-ft) of torque, officially.

The E55 proved to be so popular that it became the best selling AMG model, until Mercedes released the C63 AMG. So then what do you need to look for in a used E55?

According to AMGmeister, it all starts with checking if the radiator has been replaced on early 2003 versions. Also, you want to check the air suspension thoroughly, before and after you drive the car, followed by a close inspection of all the electrical features inside.

Another thing you should do is make sure the transmission fluid has been changed, while being really attentive with the way the car shifts gears, as you should be with how much the engine itself moves during revving – don’t forget, this thing has a lot of torque.

Of course, if you happen to stumble upon a tuned E55, odds are it’s better if you walked away, since those cars are more likely to have been driven harder than stock E55s.


  • Christian Wimmer

    Any high performance car will be high maintenance, no matter where it comes from. The air suspensions are not unreliable, but certain components simply wear out faster. If you’re going to buy a Mercedes’ with Airmatic then you need to be on the ball about maintenance. Go to YouTube and look up “Kent Bergsma / MercedesSource”, because that guy gives you excellent tips on how to cost effectively, yet reliably, maintain your Benz, old or new.

    That being said back in 2005 when I worked for a Mercedes-Benz dealership I was able to drive one of these. Wow. Just wow. The power, the torque, the wheel spinning abilities… I loved the car. Back in the day that car was seriously fast (still is). As a whole I enjoyed the W211 range, my favorites being the E500 and the E320 CDI (diesel).

    • javelinjoe

      Fabulous automobiles.

  • psiqtas

    Let me guess…rust, rust and even more rust?

    • javelinjoe

      Actually, my 2004 is spotless. As with any car, it all depends on the treatment they receive over the years and exposure to the elements.

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