Thinking about upgrading from a 4 cyl. manual to a 6 cyl. auto

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Pretty much 80% of the cars here!
May not sound the best but the torque is there! A V6 Accord must double the annual fuel cost compared to them. Not worth it to me even with our cheaper fuel but YMMV. Go rent something with a really nice engine a day a year? V8 Mustang, twin turbo beemer etc. and save the rest of your money... A 240hp fwd V6 isn't going to be entertaining for too long really IMO
 

FZ1

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For a while i wanted the most basic, reliable and economical car possible that was still confortable enough for long trips and i've been very well served by my old W202. Probably the most dependable car i ever had. Everything is extremely easy to get to and parts are cheap. During three years and 100k km, all i had to replace was a bad MAF, took me maybe 2 minutes and a water pump which was probably a 20 minutes job. Changing spark plugs and coils takes about 15 min and i don't even have to lift the car to change the oil, filter is right on top of the engine and it's a super clean job. It would be just as simple if i had to replace the starter, alternator, AC compressor, PS pump etc. Mileage is around 6.5L/100km (36 US MPG) on gas on the freeway or 8.5L/100km on E85 (28 MPG).

Recently a friend of mine bought a 99 Accord 3.0 V6 automatic coupe and another friend got a Peugeot 406 3.0 V6 automatic coupe. Drove both and loved them. I always prefered automatics but happen to be too distracted when i drive them. The V6 was the best part, they sound good and the torque is much more pleasant. However, both persons are only short trip, agressive drivers and don't care about their cars and do very little if any maintenance at all, the opposite of me.

After all i am a car enthusiast and to me there's no replacement for displacement. I would really like to drive something that sounds a bit nicer and has more torque but am unsure i can have it both ways and find something good on fuel and more importantly, be as easy to work on and reliable as what i currently have. A nice candidate would probably be another Mercedes with a longitudinal V6 like i had for a short time, they were designed to be easy to work on but 12 spark plugs to replace is stupid. What scares me the most is a transverse V6 with a bank of cylinder impossible to get to and requiring to pull the intake along with a bunch of stuff just to replace sparkplugs, diagnose a misfire or replace a gasket. Are they all that bad?

Waiting for your opinions and real life experience on owning cars with both types of engines and transmissions!
Keep what you got! Get it professionally detailed, tires rotated and rebalanced ,and you'll feel better about keeping it
 
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I have no problem with buying something a bit more modern but i don't have much interest in german cars if they're more recent than say 2005. In this case i'm more tempted to get something like a Toyota or a Honda.
Well you've had some E class cars and I drive two of them now. The early 2003-2005 had those 12 spark plugs in the V6 engine. The later engines has bad balance shafts from 2006-2007 so the 2008/2009 models are better. Spark plugs are easy on the M272 but they have an intake manifold problem that probably requires replacement in the 80-140k range, they had decent hp at 268hp. Then the 2012+ had the M276 engine which had 302hp but the spark plugs aren't easy to change, standard shop change is to remove the intake but some people managed to do it without removing the intake manifold. I think the newer W212 from 2010-2016 is more reliable than the older W211 though although I prefer the W211 styling. The transmissions were more reliable in the W212, the older models tended to have the conductor plate go bad. Mercedes tends to be quiet though so you don't really hear the V6 unless you really floor it. Gas mileage is bad on the W211, had a 5 speed automatic, it's a little better on the W212 as they had the 7 speed. Probably 2012+ would be better, those engines were direct injection so no only do you get more hp, you also get better gas mileage.
 
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I’ve had a number of cars and trucks over the years, I wouldn’t be too worried about a transverse V6. Especially a Toyota or Honda because those things are so reliable they won’t break much anyway. Yeah the plugs on Toyota transverse 6 are a pain, but how often would you be doing those? Once every 6-7 years? And the Honda’s aren’t too bad to do at all. I’d choose the Toyota if it were me.

But I’ve owned a Honda CRV, Honda Accord, Toyota Avalon, Lexus LS460, Chevy Silverado, Mercedes ML350, Jeep Liberty, Ford Expediton.

Only one of these ^^ has been a transverse V6, but THAT transverse V6 has been the most reliable and overall capable/versatile of them all. Best fuel economy of all of them, second best acceleration and second best highway power/performance. All my cars have been driven a TON, and all driven through tough conditions. I wouldn’t shy away from a quality transverse V6. Just my opinion.
 

Astro14

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I would keep driving “the most dependable car I’ve ever had”. The V-6 isn’t an upgrade at your cost for fuel and maintenance.
 

M119

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Thanks everyone. I realize there are better options than V6s if i want more torque and still maintain decent fuel mileage. While the 3.0 V6 Accord produces 265 nm of torque at 4700 rpm, if i stay within the cars i know, the W202 C230 Kompressor which is a 2.3 4 banger makes 280 nm from 2500 to 4800 rpm. Even better, the 5 cylinder 20 valves 2.5 turbo diesel in the C250 makes 280 nm at only 1800 rpm and revs higher than most diesels and MPG is excellent. The CDIs in the W203 and W211 are even better.
 
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how high does it rev? my fiat diesel has a 4500 rpm redline but doesn't blink an eye about going to 5000 rpm and does more if the rev limiter is removed, I know some that run over 6000.
 
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Well you've had some E class cars and I drive two of them now. The early 2003-2005 had those 12 spark plugs in the V6 engine. The later engines has bad balance shafts from 2006-2007 so the 2008/2009 models are better. Spark plugs are easy on the M272 but they have an intake manifold problem that probably requires replacement in the 80-140k range, they had decent hp at 268hp. Then the 2012+ had the M276 engine which had 302hp but the spark plugs aren't easy to change, standard shop change is to remove the intake but some people managed to do it without removing the intake manifold. I think the newer W212 from 2010-2016 is more reliable than the older W211 though although I prefer the W211 styling. The transmissions were more reliable in the W212, the older models tended to have the conductor plate go bad. Mercedes tends to be quiet though so you don't really hear the V6 unless you really floor it. Gas mileage is bad on the W211, had a 5 speed automatic, it's a little better on the W212 as they had the 7 speed. Probably 2012+ would be better, those engines were direct injection so no only do you get more hp, you also get better gas mileage.
Yep this!
On the W211s, basically 2008-09 with the 4Matic (722.6 trans) are pretty much bullet proof and are a joy. The intake manifold flaps issue needs to be dealt with once but there’s a great write up on one of the MB forums. Better yet get a W211 CDI instead of the M272!
The early W212s had some issues I believe and most folks recommended the looking at 2013+ vehicles which are very nice. But they cost quite a bit more than the 2008-09 W211s
 

M119

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how high does it rev? my fiat diesel has a 4500 rpm redline but doesn't blink an eye about going to 5000 rpm and does more if the rev limiter is removed, I know some that run over 6000.
I have the 5 cylinder 20 valve OM605 in my W124 but N/A. It drives more like a gas engine, the higher the rev, the faster it goes. It doesn't "choke" after 3500 or 4000 rpm like diesels usually do.
Yep this!
On the W211s, basically 2008-09 with the 4Matic (722.6 trans) are pretty much bullet proof and are a joy. The intake manifold flaps issue needs to be dealt with once but there’s a great write up on one of the MB forums. Better yet get a W211 CDI instead of the M272!
The early W212s had some issues I believe and most folks recommended the looking at 2013+ vehicles which are very nice. But they cost quite a bit more than the 2008-09 W211s
LOVED my 722.6 when i had it. I wasn't too keen on automatics before owning this one and to this day, this is still my favorite transmission. It does just what you want when you want and becomes an extension of yourself just like a manual would. The earlier 722.3/4 weren't bad either. Didn't like other automatics as much but the ones i sometimes drive are very recent (2019 onwards).
 
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Lot of good 4 cylinder autos out there with plenty of power if you’re not hauling anything more than people. Especially if you’re ok with turbos.

I’m starting to not see much use for the NA V6 anymore. That’s me though.
 
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Lot of good 4 cylinder autos out there with plenty of power if you’re not hauling anything more than people. Especially if you’re ok with turbos.

I’m starting to not see much use for the NA V6 anymore. That’s me though.
Well that's due to gas mileage requirement which are even worse in Europe than the US, they get smaller engines over there that we don't even get in the US. Last year for the W212 was 2016 and that was also the last year for the 3.5 V6 in the US. In 2017, they went with a turbo 4 cylinder as the basic E300. They did have an E400 and E450, but those were also smaller turbo 3.0L V6 engine and they didn't sell a lot of them so they're hard to find used but it's easy to find a used 2016 E350 as that was very common.

I've always stayed away from the diesel engines as they tended to run into unusual problems that didn't affect the gas engines and no one else knew how to fix them. But with them being more popular in Europe, maybe it's easier to find them and people who know how to fix them.
 

M119

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Well that's due to gas mileage requirement which are even worse in Europe than the US, they get smaller engines over there that we don't even get in the US. Last year for the W212 was 2016 and that was also the last year for the 3.5 V6 in the US. In 2017, they went with a turbo 4 cylinder as the basic E300. They did have an E400 and E450, but those were also smaller turbo 3.0L V6 engine and they didn't sell a lot of them so they're hard to find used but it's easy to find a used 2016 E350 as that was very common.

I've always stayed away from the diesel engines as they tended to run into unusual problems that didn't affect the gas engines and no one else knew how to fix them. But with them being more popular in Europe, maybe it's easier to find them and people who know how to fix them.
In France most cars are diesel and it's extremely rare to come across a gas W211, i think it's the same with the W212. However hybrids are becoming the norm, gas cars are making a come back.
 
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I have the 5 cylinder 20 valve OM605 in my W124 but N/A. It drives more like a gas engine, the higher the rev, the faster it goes. It doesn't "choke" after 3500 or 4000 rpm like diesels usually do.

I would say that's because of indirect injection. The 2.1 turbo diesel in older peugeots and citroens was like that aswell, ran like a gas engine. Don't expect the same on a direct injection diesel
 
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After having V8s and V6s all my life I still can't get used to buzzy 4 bangers. The gas mileage is incredible, but the acceleration and smoothness of a V8 and V6 can't be topped by a 4 banger, no matter how much power it has.
 
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After having V8s and V6s all my life I still can't get used to buzzy 4 bangers. The gas mileage is incredible, but the acceleration and smoothness of a V8 and V6 can't be topped by a 4 banger, no matter how much power it has.
Yeah, the old saying there's no replacement for displacement is still true. It's too bad Mercedes had to go with a turbo 4 as the base engine in the W213 in the US. But it's all due to gas mileage and now they have to hit even higher numbers so the turbo 4's are here to stay. Very few like to spring for the higher end models with the V6/V8, but even those come with turbos now.
 
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Yeah, the old saying there's no replacement for displacement is still true.

I don't subscribe that. It depends. There's so many great 3.0 l V6 and I6 turbos
today, that easily outperform bigger NA V8s, so many great 4.0 - 4.4 l V8 turbos
easily outperforming bigger NA V8 and V12. And of course many many 2.0 l I4
turbos again often outperforming 3.0 - 3.5 l NA V6 and I6, but granted, a fourpot
doesn't sound as good as a 5, 6 or 8 cylinder engine. However they aren't all the
same in this regard. My Mk5 GTI had a nice tone, while my current Mk7 GTI isn't
even nearly that pleasant.
.
 
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I don't subscribe that. It depends. There's so many great 3.0 l V6 and I6 turbos
today, that easily outperform bigger NA V8s, so many great 4.0 - 4.4 l V8 turbos
easily outperforming bigger NA V8 and V12. And of course many many 2.0 l I4
turbos again often outperforming 3.0 - 3.5 l NA V6 and I6, but granted, a fourpot
doesn't sound as good as a 5, 6 or 8 cylinder engine. However they aren't all the
same in this regard. My Mk5 GTI had a nice tone, while my current Mk7 GTI isn't
even nearly that pleasant.
.
Well in the case of the W213, the 4 cylinder turbo was 241 hp whereas the older 3.5 regular non turbo v6 was 302hp. So they actually went backward in power. The prior engine in the W211/W212 (2006-2011) was the 268hp M272 engine. Although I guess it beats the 2003-2005 E320 which was a 3.2L engine and had 221hp. The V6 turbos do put out more power than their non turbo engines though even though they're slightly smaller. It remains to be seen how long they will last. Usually a regular engine you'd think should be good for 200-400k or more but with turbos, death is usually an unknown and instant. Like I had a turbo back in the 80's, the head gasket blew at the end. Although blowing a head gasket is typical for engine death, but more likely with turbos than non turbos due to the higher boost.
 
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