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E-Class (W212) 2010-present: E 350, E 550

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Old 04-01-2010, 08:33 PM   #1
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S550 VS E550

Hello everyone!

Just as the title states, does anyone have any recommendations.

I'm well aware the price between the cars is $35,000. Besides the price does anyone want to tell me why I should go for the S550 or the E550. Your help will be GREATLY appreciated.


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Old 04-02-2010, 01:20 AM   #2
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Funny, I've thought of this very same scenario in the case that I got rid of my E-Class for whatever reason.

I've gone back and forth, but it's heart VS brain situation.

S550 is better in every which way, interior absolutely slaughters the harder, more industrial/plebeian material/plastic interior of the E's, exterior is subjective, but the S's has a sense of class, grace, and "sense of occasion" that the E's doesn't to me, it's also a bit curvier, but not as sharp/boxy like if that's your thing. Ride and comfort go in favor of the S.

E has its strong points of course. However really, where the E wins is, although it does cost the same (New) as a nice CPO '07 S-Class with 40-50K Miles, which is $40K more car, is that it's a brand new design (if that matters to you) VS one that is a few years away from a redesign, and it's a newer car, so less miles, more Warranty, less things to break, and less of a nightmare in case things start breaking, if you're out of Warranty with the S.

I'd probably follow my heart and go with the S. But the brain always makes its case.
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Old 04-02-2010, 03:17 PM   #3
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I was faced with a similar decision. I didn't see the value in the added cost. The E550 has what is important to me, luxury, comfort, speed/acceleration, better handling and the size is right. I didn't need the bigger trunk or back seat leg room. My E550 is perfect for my needs. When my kids are 6ft 4" maybe I'll need the bigger car??
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Old 04-02-2010, 04:18 PM   #4
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S550 is one of the nicest luxury cars on the market, imho. The S65 is what you should be really aiming for

Aside from price considerations (and let's assume that has no bearing on your choice) the S Class is a big car. It's a much tighter fit in parking lots, a much tighter fit in the garage at home etc.. It's a big piece of car.

But it shines on the freeway. It's the epitome of the autobahn cruiser. It's the ultimate long distance comfort car.

You might want to consider the S and then maybe get a daily beater (maybe a BMW 3 series wagon or Audi Avant.) Then you wouldn't have to drive the S in situations where it might be an inconvenience (like super crowded places or crappy neighborhoods.)

But if you have the space and don't live in an Italian medieval city with narrow streets, etc., I say the S class wins by a long shot. Plus the design is a million times nicer than the W212.
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Old 04-02-2010, 07:59 PM   #5
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Werd^^.

I've been really lusting after the S550 lately. I love my E, and to just think that the S takes it, and steps it up to another level, is intoxicating.

I'm really thinking about buying a new car, but am leaning towards keeping my E, and replacing my DD with a nicer/cooler car, as I think it'll outweigh me having an S550 for example, and a, albeit great car, Malibu as a DD.

I agree though, the size of the S550 is something to consider, I already have a tough enough time getting my car perfectly fitting into spots for ding-less treatment, and already complain enough when it's time to wash/wax it, so I think an S might lose its appeal to me in that regard after a while. All in all, the 221 is a car that I've always loved, but have grown to really admire. I've always considered the 211 to be my personal favorite all around Sedan by M-B, but no doubt I'd put only the 221 over it at this point.
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Old 04-03-2010, 03:47 PM   #6
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Werd^^.

I've been really lusting after the S550 lately. I love my E, and to just think that the S takes it, and steps it up to another level, is intoxicating.

I'm really thinking about buying a new car, but am leaning towards keeping my E, and replacing my DD with a nicer/cooler car, as I think it'll outweigh me having an S550 for example, and a, albeit great car, Malibu as a DD.

I agree though, the size of the S550 is something to consider, I already have a tough enough time getting my car perfectly fitting into spots for ding-less treatment, and already complain enough when it's time to wash/wax it, so I think an S might lose its appeal to me in that regard after a while. All in all, the 221 is a car that I've always loved, but have grown to really admire. I've always considered the 211 to be my personal favorite all around Sedan by M-B, but no doubt I'd put only the 221 over it at this point.
When i began my MB shopping first thing on my mind was the S, but after careful consideration I felt that the S was a little to big and wouldnt really suit me, Im 29years old I didn't think the S really fit me. people would probably think im driving daddy's car. just looks like a car i would buy maybe in 7-10years.
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Old 04-03-2010, 07:34 PM   #7
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I know what you mean by the size, and what you're saying. One S Owner put it very well though, "The size is a part of the S owning experience". I kinda understand what that means. When I drove a 221, it felt weird, as I felt I should be chauffering somebody/people. However, I think that huge airy size is all part of the experience of owning one, for better or worse I guess, depending on who you ask.

As for looks, I think the car looks more glammy than the 212, and a bit more youthful design-wise (not as boxy, and a little curvier), with the AMG Package, I don't think it gives off the "Dads Car" vibe so much from outside. Then again, that's up to the person you ask too, and yes, it is a little funny for a young-ish guy to own one (as well an impressive statement, which can be a bad or good thing). Many people think the E-Class is a "Parents Car" as well (I always thought "S = Dads, "E" = Moms, as around here at least, TONS of older women drive E's, and yes, the streets are filling up with Mommies in 212's.
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Old 04-03-2010, 10:52 PM   #8
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you can't really compare the two imo. the S just has so much presence, more than many cars out on the road (including 750, LS, A8, etc). it really matters what your after. i myself owned a w140 s420 for 2 years. it was big. very solid though. the E is way more practical. lot easier to fit in places, and still good looking. i mean if you go for a e550 you have the same engine and suspension too. the E to me is the best sized MB, not to big not too small. just wish it had a little more legroom in the back, that's it.

it's your call.
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Old 04-04-2010, 06:48 PM   #9
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Thank you soooo much for all the replies everyone...yet I still can't decide.
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Old 04-05-2010, 12:41 AM   #10
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Thank you soooo much for all the replies everyone...yet I still can't decide.
go drive both. should help with the decision.
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Old 04-07-2010, 07:44 PM   #11
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Most of these guys may be offering a camparison between the 211 vs the S more so than the 212 vs the S. The 212 sure closes the gap and has a much larger presence than the 211 can offer. I like the S but It just doesn't do it for me the way the new E class does. IMHO the 212 looks way better!!! That is more of a factor in my purchase than the comfort of an S550 over the E550. The E550 is extremely plush!!
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Old 04-07-2010, 08:12 PM   #12
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I'm definitely using the 212, and considering it's the 212 section, I'm sure everyone else is. In essence, I find the S to do over the 212 everything it does over the 211, and I personally feel the 212's interior downgrades more towards C Class level, than S-Class level, in comparison with the 211, IMO.

Where I'd say the 212 closes the gap in, is solidity and latest safety/tech features, where it actually out-does the S in some aspects.

Looks wise the 212 has a bigger and busier look than the 211 of course, however I kind of find the 221 sits in between the 2 now stylistically. It has the rounder/curvier/relaxed vibe of the 211, with the sharper, angular look of the 212, yet not as fussy or angular/sharp, and definitely more fussy and "extreme" per-se, than the 211.
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Old 04-07-2010, 09:03 PM   #13
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I couldn't agree with you more on your comparison other than the interiors maybe, if I understood you correctly. The w211's interior is really nice but MB improved it in the 212 in quality, design, comfort, fit and finish, ergonomics etc... That being said I have mb-tex in the 211 and the feel is quite different than the 550's leather. I use to think the mb-tex was close to leather and fools a lot of people but the comfort and quality feel between the two material is not really close in comparison. I've owned the 211 for 6 yrs and thought it was and still is a great riding driving comfortable car. It is defintely Mercedes Benz all the way and could not imagine MB improving the new E that much. As quoting the dealer " they are night and day" and after putting 1100 miles on the 212 I couldn't agree more. I kept my 211 because I have loved that car for so many years and did not want to get rid of a car I've loved for so long. It is for the most part still one of the top luxury cars on the road today compared to anything else but it's replacement. I always thought the 211 was comfy but the 212 is comfier and roomier where it counts, especially leg room for those backseat passengers and more lateral leg room for the front passengers.

The only thing I can honestly say I miss from the 211 is being able to leave the sunroof shade closed with the sunroof open for ventilation purposes. I actually used that quite a bit.
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Old 04-07-2010, 09:25 PM   #14
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I couldn't agree with you more on your comparison other than the interiors maybe, if I understood you correctly. The w211's interior is really nice but MB improved it in the 212 in quality, design, comfort, fit and finish, ergonomics etc... That being said I have mb-tex in the 211 and the feel is quite different than the 550's leather. I use to think the mb-tex was close to leather and fools a lot of people but the comfort and quality feel between the two material is not really close in comparison. I've owned the 211 for 6 yrs and thought it was and still is a great riding driving comfortable car. It is defintely Mercedes Benz all the way and could not imagine MB improving the new E that much. As quoting the dealer " they are night and day" and after putting 1100 miles on the 212 I couldn't agree more. I kept my 211 because I have loved that car for so many years and did not want to get rid of a car I've loved for so long. It is for the most part still one of the top luxury cars on the road today compared to anything else but it's replacement. I always thought the 211 was comfy but the 212 is comfier and roomier where it counts, especially leg room for those backseat passengers and more lateral leg room for the front passengers.

The only thing I can honestly say I miss from the 211 is being able to leave the sunroof shade closed with the sunroof open for ventilation purposes. I actually used that quite a bit.
That's cool, congrats on having both in your Garage. Do you have any side by side pics BTW?

Yeah, I get what you're saying, it's kinda subjective with the interiors. I do agree the 212's seats are cushier and comfier, but to me personally, the 211 has a bit more of a refined "fancy" vibe inside, due to some softer, and more detail-oriented, seemingly higher quality materials IMO. It would be super nice to have both though!
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Old 04-07-2010, 11:16 PM   #15
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Actually I do not have the pics of the 2 together and actually today was the 1st time I took pics of the 550 you can see on another thread. I will try and do that soon, as I did think about that.

My take on the interiors is this: The 212 has more of a real wood trim look, the grain and feel while wrapped in real aluminum conforming to the curve of the wood is an elegant look. The Nav screen is framed in black piano lacquer finish that looks totally oppulent. The central control station and screen location is much more user friendly. The night time accent lighting that flows and follows the interior trim lines exudes a custom one of a kind touch with style. I have the upgraded steering wheel in the 211 and no comparison to the look and feel of the 212 amg style that I have. I'm also glad the 212 doesn't have the material trim on the step over in the door that would get dirty every time you touched it. I also like the LED readout display for the temp controls of both passenger and driver. My 211 just had the analogue potentiometer controls. Maybe I'm just tired of the 211's interior, it just doesn't seem as flashy to me as it used to. My 212 also has a completely black interior with all black wood and aluminum accents which to me is the best in look for interior colors, this to me sets it apart from anything else I have seen. Another thing I don't like about the 211, and maybe some have noticed it, the seats don't sit at a "comfortable" low point and maybe it's just me, I don't know. I was unable to get the bottom of the seat to sort of recline, meaning a tad higher in the front and lower in the back. It just didn't have the capability like the 212 does. In other words, the 212 has a greater range of user adjustment, at least it does for me and I'm only a 5'8'' frame. Not sure what a tall person in the 211 would say. It may be splitting hairs in some area's but I still feel the 212 wins in the interior department, at least what really counts. The 211 does have the chrome accents as mine has a brushed finish giving the 211 a more "flashy" appearance. Time in the drivers seat of both will tell you which interior is superior and for me it's the 212. I didn't realize it though until I crawled back into the 211 for a short trip.
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Old 04-08-2010, 07:03 AM   #16
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Interesting, thanks for the write-up.

Maybe it's just different preferences. I have no doubts the 212 is more comfy, and easier to operate (Command Knob, etc.). Some people are happy with the plastics that the 212 has that replace carpeting the 211 had, it gives it a more "butch" and durable look and use, however, me personally, I appreciate carpeting used, I'm just not a huge fan of plastic. My Car isn't my DD though, so durability isn't at the top of my preference list.

I dunno, maybe if I lived with both, the 212's perks would win me over. I do know off the first impressions, the 212's inside just didn't seem as "fancy" or "flashy" (in an elegant way) to me as the 211's.

I'd love to drive around in the 212 for a week or so to see how I feel about it after getting back in my 211 though, who knows how I'd feel.

I'm STRONGLY considering getting a 221 right now, but I like my 211 so much I'm having a hard time dealing with the concept of parting with it. I pitted the 212 against the 221 for the hell of it (although I never really considered swapping my E for the 212 all so seriously), and somehow felt the 221 was more of an evolution of the 211 than the 212 is, just with a much bigger size. Styling aside, or pretending that I love the 212's enough to want to put up the $$ difference of it over my 211, I just don't find enough that the 212 offers over the 211 to justify making the jump. Hence my decision of W221 or bust, as I would really feel I'm getting the value of my money, and jumping to a higher level of car, maybe it's because the 212 doesn't really do much for me, but the thought of replacing my E with one evokes feelings of complacency. Of course, the perks of choosing an E over an S is you get a newer car with more Warranty, over a Used one with mileage, and less Warranty. So, again, it's comes down to the buyer.

Oh well, to each their own. I'm just driving myself crazy with my own "211 VS 221" debate, I change my mind every second, and am supposed to check out a 221 tomorrow....
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Old 04-08-2010, 07:36 AM   #17
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Yes and the 221 is probably closer in appearance to the 211 with less lines and rounded corners than the 212. I just know from the 1st time I laid eyes on the new 212 I just had to have one. The 211 was always my favorite style car and love the looks but for me the 212 is just more stunning. I'll try to get some side by side pics up later today of the two. On it's own the 211 looks really great, beautiful car, next to the 212 it looks small and dated with much less presence. Everyone has their preference though and I can respect that. Like I said I'll get some side by sides and give those that want some side by side visual comparisons.
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Old 04-08-2010, 01:53 PM   #18
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Cool, that would be awesome! Thanks, I just like seeing both side by side. I know what you mean about them when they're next to each other, and especially if yours isn't an AMG Package (211's need AMG Package IMO) it indeed will look a bit hurt by the more imposing and aggressive 212 Sport next to it. But yeah, I will say, on its own I love the 211, and am not too crazy about, but have my "acceptable" moments with the 212, however when I see them together, certain times I do feel the 211 looks pretty "small" and noticeably less "present", and others I appreciate the clean and classic lines/looks, so far its been about 50/50 I guess.

I think maybe that's why I love the 221 so much, haha, kind of a cross between the two, with many of its own unique and premium elements. Just so friggin' BIG....!
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Old 04-08-2010, 07:15 PM   #19
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Yea I could see the AMG package helping the 211 out. Mine is just the basic model with OEM rims. It's basically my wifes weekend car. I put the 2 together in my other thread though the pics didn't turn out quite as good as I'd like. I needed my sunshade on my lens.
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Old 04-08-2010, 07:28 PM   #20
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Ah, lol. Yeah, the poor early base 211 will need some help indeed against your newer decked out E. I'll check out the other Thread. Respect on having both in the fleet! A true modern E-Class connoisseur.
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Old 04-09-2010, 04:00 AM   #21
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I always thought the 211 was comfy but the 212 is comfier and roomier where it counts, especially leg room for those backseat passengers and more lateral leg room for the front passengers.
W212:
Front leg room: 41.3
Rear leg room: 35.8
Front head room: 37.9
Front shoulder room: 57.8
Rear shoulder room: 56.9
Front hip room: N/A
Rear hip room: N/A

W211:
Front leg room: 41.9
Rear leg room: 35.6
Front head room: 39.1
Front shoulder room: 56.4
Rear shoulder room: 56.1
Front hip room: 57.2
Rear hip room: 57.2

Shoulder room is a bit of improvement, but the leg room seems not much different (slight loss in the front and slight gain in the back.) Loss of one inch head room on the W212. Slighter smaller greenhouse, maybe(?) A gain in shoulder room in the front for the W212.

Couldn't find hip room for the W212 (?)
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Old 04-09-2010, 04:14 AM   #22
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Woaahh, are those for sure right 220s?

I thought the 212 would have a definite head room improvement over the 211? I'm 6'4 and my head is about 1" away from finding it unbearably uncomfortable to sit in, ironically, my big W220 was even worse. Maybe it is the green-house, but I'd personally think anything worse than the 211's head-room is not too great for a tall person. Then again, in regards to the green-house, my Malibu has practically a chop-top look, much slitter greenhouse than the 212, and the head room in it is BETTER than my E. Also, less leg room in the 212 isn't ideal for someone like me either, although head-room if a bigger factor.
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Old 04-09-2010, 01:41 PM   #23
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Woaahh, are those for sure right 220s?
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Old 04-09-2010, 04:39 PM   #24
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Yea those measurements are 1 dimensional and doesn't take into account design ergonomics. My 211 has about 3'' less space between the forward edge of the back seat and the back of the front seat when I'm sitting in my "comfortable spot " in both cars. Reason is the back seat in the w212 is shorter which allows for more leg room in the sense of movement and not maybe actual numbers. The 212 just basically takes the same space and uses it better.
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Old 04-09-2010, 07:05 PM   #25
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Interesting. How about the head-room? That's a pretty huge difference that the 212's goes down in, which is weird to me, as like I said, IMO the 211 has poor headroom for a Sedan with relatively standard dimensions.
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