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New E55 owner first impressions

 
Old 01-29-2019, 02:04 PM
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New E55 owner first impressions

As a long time lurker and finally a first time buyer I figured I’d detail how my ownership has gone so far. I first fell in love with the w211 e55 probably 10 years ago when they cost way more and I was making way less. I still considered making a poor financial decision at the time but luckily came to my senses. I eventually moved into NYC where I was relegated to the subway and citibikes for 8 years and put my car dreams on hold. Fast forward to November and the old lady decided it’s time to get a little more bang for our buck apartment-wise so we moved to a new place in NJ…with parking! I knew instantly I wanted an E55 and within a few weeks I was flying down to Raleigh to pick up my new ride.

The car: Designo grey 2004 E55 AMG 47k miles, distronic, parktronic, dynamic seats, bi-xenon. It’s in immaculate condition for its age. Just completed a B service I believe (air filters, cabin filters, oil change, wipers changed.) Previous owner fixed the power rear sunshade and a had a new cluster installed as the old one was sending a bad signal to the radar cruise control. Full inspection performed by a specialist who I called personally and confirmed the car was as described and the only issues were that it’d need brakes in 5k miles and the rear main seal was seeping. Given the fact that this inspection was carried out just a few months prior to my purchase I passed on getting a PPI. I know, risky, but 5 months and 3k miles later I’ve got no regrets.

There are however, a few unknowns that scare me. The car had 24k miles put on it in its first 10 years of life. My hope is that that means that it was owned by a wealthy guy who only took it out on nice days and spared no expense in its maintenance. Unfortunately, I have no records to corroborate that. A couple things that came up in the VIN decoder that have me wondering are 911 – note for special maj assemblies (press vehicle) and 006 – Experimental press/test. Anyone have info on those codes? Another thing is that the previous owner only had it for 4 months before selling it. According to him he ran into some unexpected home repairs and was selling a couple cars to fund it. Was he feeding me a line of bs and found a large issue with the car? So far, I doubt it. in short, he seemed like the sort of guy you’d want to buy a car from. Very thorough in all communication and spent a few thousand fixing things that honestly, I probably would’ve let go ( $600+ to fix the rear sun shade?? Probably not).


A couple issues I’ve run into in my short ownership are:

1. IC pump. Already purchased the bosch one from FCP EURO and will toss it on once it warms up
2. Leaking sunroof drains – fixed by me. check my post if you’re running into the same issue
3. Fogged up headlights – easy fix in an afternoon
4. Distronic – Sporadically get an “external interference” error and it shuts off. I can go hours with it performing flawlessly and then other times I get the error every 2 minutes. Searched the boards and surprisingly couldn’t find much info on it. One post mentioned that so many new cars have some sort of radar on them these days that it messes with the system. Wondering if this is the issue PO had and tried to remedy with a new cluster.
5. Clunk in the right rear. Did some research and sounds like I may need a new shock. Seems to ride fine and it’s more of an annoyance at this point.
6. Not sure this is even a problem but a lot of the time when I park and get out of the car it just smells “hot”. Not really sure how to describe it but perhaps this is just how a performance car smells? Hoping this is just my imagination.

This Spring I plan to replace the IC pump, CP sensor & brake pads (maybe rotors as well?) and take a closer look into that clunk in the rear. I’m also going to do a full detail and ceramic coating. I’ve got a service D due in about 7k miles so until then I’ll probably just drive it and hope for the best. I also gotta see what this’ll run in the quarter mile

all in all, the E55 is everything I had hoped and more. I just consider myself lucky that my dream car cost Hyundai elantra money


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Old 01-29-2019, 03:43 PM
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WOW. 04 with 47k on it. Nice! Sounds like a nice car. Drive it and enjoy it. And for #4 with all the new electronics on the new cars it could be other vehicles causing interference.
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Old 01-29-2019, 05:23 PM
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insane amount of mileage...i'd like to see pics! i'm sure the car was garaged and looks show room new with such low mileage.
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Old 01-30-2019, 06:02 AM
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The new Toyotas are doing that to the distronic, a few others too. At first i thought it was radar detectors, or radar jammers.
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Old 01-30-2019, 11:51 AM
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Old 01-30-2019, 11:52 AM
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yeh it's a shame the distronic doesn't work better because when it's functioning normally it's quite handy

I absolutely love the color. when i started my search i really wanted push start and pano roof but after seeing this car listed those options no longer mattered. I think these interiors age really well so the difference between mine and one with double the miles probably is negligible. The leather on the center console is wrinkled up like a lot of 03-04 cars and it looks like someone really liked to lock things in the glove box as the key hole surround is pretty beat up. I’m not crazy about the green tint to the designo leather but it was far from a deal breaker.
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Old 01-30-2019, 12:41 PM
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The W211 E55 and E63, really look good for their age. To this day, I have people that ask me how old is my car, and are truly shocked when I tell them it's 12 years old.
I love the Designo Graphic !!!
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Old 01-30-2019, 01:50 PM
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Congratulations, there are still low mile examples around but it must be very rare in north America, you guys travel a lot further on average. I clicked over 29k miles the other day.

Definitely replace the rotors as well. They should ideally be replaced with pads and aren't too expensive if you avoid the dealer.
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Old 01-30-2019, 03:46 PM
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Yuille36 I'm sure we're all biased here, but goddamn these are nice looking cars! The honeymoon will wear off eventually but for now, i still gotta look back at er after parking

tw2 wow 29k is crazy low! With the roadtrip back from Raleigh and a couple trips to see the family in Rochester at the holidays I'm already over 50k. i don't drive to work so i'm guessing 7k miles/year

regarding those highway trips, one of the most impressive feats of strength is the top gear acceleration from say 60-90. any other car i've been in would need to downshift and be screaming along at 7k rpm to accelerate at that rate but the e55 just chugs along at 2-2.5k rpm like it's nothing
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Old 01-30-2019, 03:51 PM
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Man that car is nice, I really like that color and the white myself. You found a low mileage car, rare!
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Old 01-30-2019, 06:23 PM
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That’s funny because every time I park my car and look back at it for one last look . And say damn that car is nice. 🤔
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Old 01-30-2019, 07:51 PM
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Originally Posted by kiluminati616 View Post


That is a nice clean car for sure. The first pic cracks me up. Cold, snow on the ground but sunroof open! Lol
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Old 01-30-2019, 10:21 PM
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ah yeh I’ve always liked to keep the sunroof cracked no matter the weather - just keep those seat heaters going and you’re good to go!
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Old 01-30-2019, 10:31 PM
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I notice the smell too and have wondered. I think it's normal though. My s-class smells the same.
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Old 01-31-2019, 07:49 AM
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Originally Posted by kiluminati616 View Post
yeh it's a shame the distronic doesn't work better because when it's functioning normally it's quite handy

I absolutely love the color. when i started my search i really wanted push start and pano roof but after seeing this car listed those options no longer mattered. I think these interiors age really well so the difference between mine and one with double the miles probably is negligible. The leather on the center console is wrinkled up like a lot of 03-04 cars and it looks like someone really liked to lock things in the glove box as the key hole surround is pretty beat up. I’m not crazy about the green tint to the designo leather but it was far from a deal breaker.

Glad to see another Design Graphite! according to my build the leather is called avocado....

Here's mine


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Old 01-31-2019, 09:59 AM
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in the weeds love it

i wish our cars came with the same sand colored leather as the mocha designo. always loved that grey/caramel combo found on the e39 m5
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Old 02-18-2019, 03:21 PM
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i'm looking to do my brakes soon and see that it'll run me around $750 for all parts on fcp euro (zimmerman rotors, akebono pads, sensors)

is this the go-to combo for most of you? i honestly doubt i'll ever take advantage of the lifetime warranty so i was wondering if there are any other quality options out there for any cheaper
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Old 02-18-2019, 06:44 PM
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It's a great combo. Cheapest is usually meyle which are perfectly fine. Other pads often have more dust. Check out pelican parts and some of the others, FCP is not usually the cheapest due to the amazing warranty.
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Old 02-18-2019, 07:55 PM
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I bought my 04 with 54k miles on in aug 2017. Nothing to be concerned about as long as the condition of the car and the history collaborate.
I have 6 vehicles and so the miles accumulate slowly.

Love your color!
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Old 02-19-2019, 09:42 AM
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thanks guys! pelican has a nice selection so i guess i'll do a little research and go from there

how often do you generally do brakes on these? might be worth going with the fcp euro lifetime pieces if it's often enough
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Old 02-19-2019, 12:54 PM
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That really depends on your driving style, and rather or not you track your car. Brakes usually last me 3-4 years, since its a daily commuter.
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Old 02-19-2019, 01:15 PM
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Originally Posted by kiluminati616 View Post
thanks guys! pelican has a nice selection so i guess i'll do a little research and go from there

how often do you generally do brakes on these? might be worth going with the fcp euro lifetime pieces if it's often enough
If you’re gonna keep the car and drive it a good bit. Go with FCP Euro.
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Old 02-19-2019, 01:47 PM
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If you are not daily driving or it is a short commute they will last year's. The E55 rotors are so cheap in the US anyway it's not a huge deal. Two piece E63 rotors on the other hand...
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Old 02-19-2019, 02:00 PM
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yeh it's tough to say how long i'll have this car but my hope is that when i go full suburbanite in a few years i buy something more economical as a daily and keep this in the stable for fun

fcp euro it is
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Old 02-20-2019, 10:19 PM
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Originally Posted by knvs View Post
Glad to see another Design Graphite! according to my build the leather is called avocado....

Here's mine
Looks good! I especially like the black background center caps, really makes those AMG wheels pop.

But um, is it slammed on purpose or are you having Airmatic issues? Just wondering because I'm troubleshooting some myself right now, royal PITA.
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