Common Mercedes 4Matic issues and problems

Common Mercedes 4Matic issues and problems

The Mercedes-Benz 4Matic AWD system allows people who live in slippery or snowy areas to drive their cars smoothly and peacefully. However, this system also has some challenges. So, what are some of the setbacks of the Mercedes 4Matic system?

The Mercedes-Benz 4Matic all-wheel-drive system has several issues and challenges. Some of these include poor fuel economy, torque converter issues, oil leaks, weak viscous couplings, transmission problems, rust, and a cracked driveshaft causing vibrations. Note that these problems vary with the model and year of manufacture.

Common Mercedes 4Matic problems 

Weak viscous couplings

One of the main problems of the Mercedes 4Matic system vehicles is the weak viscous couplings. Since the 4Matic system causes a difference in speed between the front and rear axle, this can weaken the viscous couplings.

Some of the signs of a bad or failed viscous coupling include shuddering, a rough ride on tight turns, and the drivetrain may lock up completely. If you see one of these signs, you may need to visit the mechanic to replace the bad viscous couplings.

Poor fuel economy

Most Mercedes-Benz models are known to be fuel guzzlers. However, models with 4Matic systems are even worse. This is because more power is used to control and handle the car compared to RWD or FWD systems. More power used leads to more fuel used.

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Transmission issues 

This is a common problem with all Mercedes-Benz models. Even though Mercedes is known for having one of the best transmissions on the market, the components within the transmission tend to have problems. The biggest culprits are the 13-pin connector and the transmission valve body that cause transmission fluid to leak.

This problem is more pronounced in Mercedes 4Matic models, especially those fitted with the 7G Tronic 4Matic. The differential on this model goes badly very quickly. So, you may be forced to replace this part after every few years, which is quite costly.

Some of the signs of a bad transmission system include a dragging clutch, burning smell, check engine light, grinding, neutral noises, leaking fluid, bad torque converter, and refusal to change gears. If you notice one of these signs, you should have your transmission checked.


Regardless of what Mercedes make or model you drive, you should expect some parts to rust way quicker than expected. This includes Mercedes models with a 4Matic AWD system. Rust on Mercedes usually occurs around the bumpers, behind the license plate, along the floorboards, and on the front fenders.

Worn out catalytic converter

After your 4Matic Mercedes covers at least 60,000 miles, you should be ready to change its catalytic converter. Mercedes catalytic converters have been known to become ineffective after covering 60k miles and they can also suffer from clogging.

Oil leaks

All Mercedes models manufactured after 1995 feature an electronic transmission system. Even though this system is advanced, it usually leads to graphite build-up caused by an oil leak. This problem is more common in Mercedes 4Matic models, which lead to Mercedes recalling thousands of 2014 to 2015 and 2018 to 2019 Mercedes E-Class, S-Class, and G-Class 4Matic models.

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Cracked driveshaft causing vibrations

This problem is not present in all Mercedes 4Matic models. It mostly found in C300 4Matic models made before 2012. The driver may experience vibrations, which are caused by cracked driveshaft flex discs. Make sure you fix this problem before it damages the transmission.

How does the Mercedes 4Matic AWD system work?

The Mercedes 4Matic is an advanced all-wheel-drive system. What makes 4Matic special is that it integrates with the drivetrain and the various safety and assistance systems that are featured on Mercedes-Benz vehicles.

The system works by detecting the driving conditions and changing as required, in order to provide the driver with exceptional traction and confidence as they cruise. When the road conditions are okay, the system directs the engine’s torque to the front and rear wheels via a center differential, for outstanding balance and handling.

However, if the road conditions are not favorable, the 4Matic AWD system responds immediately by directing power to the wheels that need it most. This gives the driver full control in adverse conditions and is why Mercedes with a 4Matic system are ideal for slippery or snowy areas.


What are the benefits of the Mercedes 4Matic all-wheel-drive?

The Mercedes 4Matic system offers the driver many benefits, including exceptional handling, improved acceleration, and outstanding performance. It also helps with traction and towing. These are features that you may not find on Mercedes with a standard AWD system.

Is Mercedes reliable after 100,000 miles?

The reliability of your Mercedes depends on many things, including your model, driving habits, and how you maintain the car. When properly maintained, your Mercedes should last over 150,000 miles without any challenge. However, some models develop issues after 80,000 miles.

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Do Mercedes-Benz have a lot of problems?

No, they don’t. However, as your car gets older, you may start to face various car problems. Also, it depends on the Mercedes model you own. Some models experience issues faster than others. But you should expect some common Mercedes issues like oil leaks, rust, bad catalytic converter, transmission problems, and engine misfire.

Why is Mercedes-Benz so unreliable?

Being a luxurious brand, Mercedes-Benz is not one of the most reliable brands on the market. This is mainly because of the highly advanced technology that the car comes with. As a result, a small mishap can cause the owner to pay a high price to repair the car.

Older Mercedes models are much more reliable than the most recent models with advanced technology. Also, certain models like the E-Class are some of the most reliable luxury vehicles on the market.

It’s still worth it

If you intend to buy a Mercedes-Benz with a 4Matic system, there are a few setbacks that you should be prepared to deal with. The challenges include transmission problems, weak viscous couplings, poor fuel economy, oil leaks, rust, and weak catalytic converter.

Generally, the advantages of the Mercedes 4Matic system outweigh the downsides. This system is crucial for driving smoothly in tough conditions, such as snowy areas and slippery surfaces. Make sure to have a scheduled Mercedes maintenance service to avoid encountering some of the Benz 4Matic challenges.

Common Mercedes 4Matic issues and problems

Edwin Odipo

Why do you love writing about cars? Cars make our lives easy. You can visit your distant friend, relative or even rush to the grocery store a few miles from your home with a lot of ease. Imagine how life was before the invention of cars?? To me, cars are a blessing that made life more convenient.

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