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Mercedes e500 4 matic

I took the car in since it was leaning to one side and dash panel lights indicated car leaning to one side. Dealer said right strut hydraulics leaking. Replace ment cost 1400 plus labor of 800 looking at 2200. Sounds like a rip off. What do you guys think on replacing strut in E500 model year 2006/

Sounds like normal costs for an E500. For the car to be ‘leaning’, that strut must have some extra features, like variable ride height or active damping or something else. A car won’t lean with just a worn normal strut, the spring holds it up.

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If they are doing both sides the price sounds fair. It is a Mercedes and dealer . The vehicle does not sound safe to drive .

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I don’t know enough about MB suspension system configurations, but
do they actually have a horizontal situation indicator???

ok, 2006. bilstein struts are 500-800. arnott are a bit less. i am sure a used strut is 200-300 if you can find one. 1 bad strut or 2? front left and rear left? now you should replace opposites? so you need 4?

The original post says 2006 and why would you put used struts on anyway.

I assume you have air/hydraulic suspension. You might want to consider a coil spring conversion:

Exactly I would not put used struts.

Yes it does. It has variable height adjustments using hydraulic pressure. When I say strut it includes the hydraulics for maintaining balance for increase and decrese. The dealership says they are replacing the Strut framework. I guess it includes some other parts as well.

Both sides? Suspension items and brakes should be replaced in pairs; front like parts at the same time and rear like parts at the same time. You could get a second opinion, but expect similar costs.

Used Mercedes get cheaper in price as the cars age , the repairs do not. Volume sold cars get lots of less expensive aftermarket parts made for them and u-tube videos to show you how to change them. Expensive cars don;t sell in the volume that will support that.

For a complex suspension system like that, $2200 seems a reasonable price for that job to me. For the front strut with the active suspension option I’m seeing $1500 for the part, and 3.5 hours labor. That’s just for replacing one side front strut, not both. You’re getting a bit of a deal on the part, $100 off, but being charged a little more in labor than I’d expect, on the order of $175 / hour. If that’s all they’re doing, maybe that’s just their standard labor rate. Rich Bavarian air and all. But if they are also replacing other stuff, overall sounds like a completely reasonable price. Even a bargain. It’s the price Mercedes owner’s with the active suspension option pay for the ride quality.

You could possibly switch to the non-active suspension option. Ask about that. You’d have to do that on both sides of course, but the parts price for the non-active strut is only $250 ea. Not sure if that’s possible to do only on the front though, as the back has a self-leveling option from what I can tell too. So you might have to swap the back parts out too. The back non-self leveling strut is $200 ea.

Rock auto has bilstien struts for <800. Why can’t any shop install 1 strut?

Installing one strut will create an imbalance in the car’s handling. Even if the new strut is the same make and model as the old one, struts wear, manufacturing varies, designs get tweaked, and new ones cane be expected to perform differently than old ones.


what did dealer recommend? changing a pair of struts to fix 1 leaky one?

That would be my recommendation.

Excellent question, though. We haven’t heard from the OP exactly what the dealer was quoting.

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A shop can but on that car it’s not a wise decision. Last year a Mercedes with active suspension came in, the car had a leaky LF air strut and the dealer quoted her $1400 to replace it. We inspected the car and said it needed all 4 for $3200 plus an alignment. All the struts were original and the air springs all were at the end of their life. She chose to do just the LF for $900 plus alignment. Over the course of the next 12 months the car came back and we replaced one leaky strut at a time until they were all done. What could have been done in one trip to the shop for $3300 was done over 4 trips for $4000. A poor way to spend time and money.


I do not know if it is an urban legend or has some water in it, but one my relative working on cars a lot told me that wear goes in criss-cross manner, where failing LF will put more strain on RR side, making it to fail next.

anyway, replacing at least in pairs, ideally all 4 is a wise decision, but not everybody looks beyond the bill to get on hands this particular visit

The aftermarket pneumatic suspension assemblies have a much different appearance than OEM, there is a question if the performance is the same.

As for OEM shocks and struts I have replaced a single unit dozens of times without the feared imbalance that would be experienced when replacing one OEM shock absorber on a 1970s vehicle with an aftermarket unit. Manufactures won’t pay for two or four shocks or struts when only one unit has failed.

After the warranty has expired they can be offered to the customer in pairs but at $2000 per corner the rate of declined sales is very high when pushing sets of pneumatic suspension assemblies.

I took delivery of my car last friday and its running great. The service delivery manager explained that in pre 2000 E series models they would do struts in pairs but after pneumatic suspension was introduced the manufacturer has suggested change of any mal functioning strut not necessarily in pairs. Labor will be double if done in pairs. No economy of scale by doing two.