Used Mercedes-Benz E-Class (W212) - From RM 50k, reputable business sedan at recession-friendly prices
Arvind · Oct 2, 2022 10:00 AM
Across its 5 generations, the Mercedes-Benz E-Class has set the benchmark for understated luxury, comfort, and dependability. It is pretty much the car that started the executive sedan genre.
The fourth generation E-Class, codenamed W212, introduced a new design language and improved technology, whilst addressing build quality and reliability issues, a common dilemma of the preceding W211 generation.
Starting at just a smidge over RM 50k in today’s money, the W212 can be had for roughly the price of a used Toyota Camryof the same production year. Thus, is the W212 E-Class a compelling and stylish option or should you be worried about high maintenance bills later? Let’s find out.
The W212 E-Class range offered in Malaysia
First launched in 2009, the W212 E-Class sedan was initially offered in the sole E300 Avantgarde variant, priced at RM 456k. The E300 was powered by a 3.0-litre naturally aspirated V6 that produced 231 PS and 300 Nm of torque, mated to 7-speed (7G-Tronic) automatic.
The entry-level E200 CGI and mid-range E250 CGI variants joined later in 2010, with a retail price tag of RM 370k and RM 410k respectively.
Both variants were powered by the (M271) 1.8-litre turbocharged four-cylinder that developed 184 PS and 270 Nm in the E200, and 201 PS and 310 Nm in the E250. Power was sent to the rear wheels through a 7-speed automatic.
The facelifted W212 E-Class broke cover in 2013 with the E200 and E250, both in Avantgarde trim. The facelift exercise for the W212 E-Class was considered one of the most significant model revisions ever by Mercedes-Benz.
In addition to the thoroughly redesigned front fascia – doing away with the split headlight design – the facelifted W212 presented newer engines, improved safety features, and a revamped rear end featuring new bodywork on the rear doors and quarter panels.
Both variants featured the new (M274) 2.0-litre turbocharged inline-four which produced a meatier 184 PS and 300 Nm (+30 Nm) in the E200, while the E250 brought a heftier punch with 211 PS and 350 Nm (+10 PS / +40 Nm) of torque.
The E200 Avantgarde was priced at RM 367k while the E250 Avantgarde retailed for RM 406k.
Later that year, the range-topping E400 AMG Line joined the W212 range, coming in at RM 494k. The (locally-assembled) most powerful non-AMG W212 featured a 3.0-litre twin-turbo V6 that discharged 333 PS and a whopping 480 Nm of torque.
In 2015, Mercedes-Benz Malaysia up the ante with the locally-assembled E300 BlueTEC Hybrid – the first diesel hybrid to be commercially available in the country at RM 349k. Power was derived from a 201 PS / 500 Nm 2.1-liter turbodiesel aided by a 27 PS / 250 Nm motor sandwiched between the engine and 7-speed automatic transmission.
In 2016, the W212 was succeeded by the W213 E-Class which was launched in four CBU variants, with prices starting at a hefty RM 396k for the entry-level E200, although CKD production eventually dropped prices to between RM 320k for the E200, up to RM 390k for the E300 AMG Line.
2017 Mercedes-Benz E 350 E AMG (CKD) 2.0
2016 Mercedes-Benz E 200 2.0
2016 Mercedes-Benz E 200 2.0
Reasons to get one and the variants of choice
The W212 E-Class can be considered the last of the old guard Mercs, before Mercedes’ paradigm shift to sportier, youth-baiting models – thus W212s are the swansong salute from an era of Teutonic character and stately class.
For one, there’s an analogue clock highlighting the centre of the dashboard, Mercedes just doesn’t do that anymore. Thus, the W212 E-Class typically appeals to an older class of buyers who appreciate its understated prestige, overall refinement and space but aren’t looking for a sporty car to tear down a B-Segment road.
With that said, for those looking to play it safe, the logical options would be the facelifted E200 or the E250 variants for their relatively uncomplicated powertrains. However, pre-facelift E200 CGI, E250 CGI, and E300 V6 variants are still viable options at a lower price point, though requiring more preventive maintenance at the outset.
On the other end of the spectrum is the impressive E300 BlueTEC Hybrid - mountains of torque, extremely fuel efficient and beautifully specified. But the downside, however, is its complex hybrid powertrain that requires no less than three batteries.
The most expensive being the 0.8 kWh lithium-ion traction battery that not only powers the electric motor, but all the 12-volt electrical system – replacing this costs approximately RM 50k. Thus, it’s no surprise that the depreciation hits the E300 BlueTEC the hardest.
Market prices of the W212 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
Prices for pre-facelift 2009 – 2013 units of the E200 CGI range between RM 50k and just under RM 80k, whereas the more powerful E250 CGI start at just above RM 55k and settles in at RM 80k as well.
The E300 units pretty much sit within the same price range and offer a silky smooth naturally-aspirated 3.0-litre V6 if you can stomach the roadtax costs.
The facelifted W212 models from 2013 have a larger price spread, starting around RM100k for earlier E200s and rising up to RM 140k for the (2016) final production year models. You can roughly add a RM 10k premium for a corresponding production year E250.
Arvind can't remember a time when he didn't wheel around a HotWheels car. This love evolved into an interest in Tamiya and RC cars and finally the real deal 1:1 scale stuff. Passion finally lead to formal training in Mechanical Engineering. Instead of the bigger picture, he obsesses with the final drive ratio and spring rates of cars and spends the weekends wondering why a Perodua Myvi is so fast.