MERCEDES BENZ QUALITY - Mercedes-Benz Forum

 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-27-2005, 01:49 AM Thread Starter
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MERCEDES BENZ QUALITY

I am looking at purchasing a late model used Mercedes. In Australia the "Starmarque" used programme looks to be a safe choice.

I am particularly interested in a '03 to '04
C220CDI. This model appears to have excellent fuel economy, and has a torque figure approaching the C320's. It has also rated well in comparison tests.

However, I keep hearing about quality problems with Mercedes, in particular the later model cars. I questioned my local Merc specialist (I already have a nice 190E 2.6) He told me that diesels seem to have "plenty of problems", as do the later cars in general. He thought I was mad to buy a diesel!

I also have noted MB's latest recall of vehicles, which while noteworthy is perhaps indicative of wider problems with quality in general.
Also the US J.D. Power quality ratings rate the Mercedes well down the list....below even Hyundai!! As my company owns Hyundai fleet vehicles (they are very reliable and problem free) I am starting to wonder if the shine has rubbed off the prestigious three-pointed star??

I would very much appreciate anyone's informed comments as to my proposed purchase.
David E
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-27-2005, 09:20 AM
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RE: MERCEDES BENZ QUALITY

Hi OZE1,
As your in Australia you may like to add this link to your fav's, the MB club of NSW has set up a new forum and you may be able to get some opinions and answers to your questions there.

Regards David
http://www.mbcnsw.org.au/
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-28-2005, 10:50 PM
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RE: MERCEDES BENZ QUALITY

Greetings from across the bigger pond!
If the Mercedes you buy in Australia are manufactured in the same factories as those in the United States, then you're in for a ride.
I own a 99 ML430 that is built in the state in which I live (Alabama). I at first thought the quality problems with mine may be the fact it's a second year model and from a new factory. Not so, as I have discovered from reading the various posts in this forum. It seems the quality problems plague all Mercedes models and the problems vary from engine to engine (harmonic balancer failure in 320's, 430's) and massive electronic problems as well. Just read along these forums and make up your own mind. As for me, I think the shine of that 3 pointed star has lost it's luster. I had always wanted a Mercedes, but after buying this one, I realize that I didn't know what I was getting into with the problems I've had. It remains to be seen if I'll ever own another one. That depends on Mercedes Benz redeeming themselves and acting like they care about their customers for a change. All of my experiences to date have been miserable[xx(]!
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-29-2005, 07:15 AM
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RE: MERCEDES BENZ QUALITY

I have a 2004.5 C 230K SS and it has been fantastic! I, for one, have not had any service problems aside from typical maintenance.

I have roughly 9,000 miles on my car and I love it. I am sure I will have some problems down the road, but that is general with any car.

My whole family drives Toyotas/Hondas, and they are great cars. However, it is like night and day going from my C to a Toyota Avalon. The C handles like a rock and is so much quieter inside. Plus, I feel a lot safer driving the C then my parent's Avalon and my old Camry.

My dealership experiences have all been positive: from the dealer I purchased the car in NJ to my local dealer in PA. They have been much more positive then anytime I took my car to the Toyota dealer.

My advice: if you want prestige and a nice car, despite the 'problems', get the Benz. If you want knockout reliable and car that will last 150K+ miles, get a Honda. No matter what you buy, if it's not new, do a thorough background check on the car and look at it as critically as possible.

Good luck!
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-29-2005, 12:19 PM
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RE: MERCEDES BENZ QUALITY

Agreed with what was said above.

Waiting past 1st model year does not help. My last car was a 95 C280 which was a year after initial production. Eventhough it lasted over 100K miles, it made more trips to the shop than any other cars I've owned.

But I just couldn't pass the gorgeous look of the new E-class. Fool me once, their bad. Fool me twice, my bad. So I have nobody to blame but myself if this new E is as problematic as my old C. So far so good though.

My recommendation to you is, buy as long of warranty as they offer, and plan on selling the car when warranty expires. These Benzs are some of the most expensive cars to fix.

Good luck.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-01-2005, 06:21 PM Thread Starter
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RE: MERCEDES BENZ QUALITY

I would like to extend my thanks to those of you that have taken the trouble to reply!

Even in the last few days since posting, I have continued to read about MB's quality difficulties.

I have now gone very cool on the idea of purchasing one. Whilst I too have been hynotised by the shine and prestige of the three pointed star, I believe the reality is that it has fizzled.

Mercedes it would seem has sucessfully transformed itself from a manufacturer of the best cars in the world to one that makes technically advanced but chronically overpriced cars. Mercedes Benz were made to a standard, not a price. The pursuit of volume, and profit has won, and quality has suffered as a result.

I for one am prepared to wait and see before I spend my hard earned cash. I am not swayed by the promises to improve quality..I want to actually see what happens. When Mercedes is on the top of the quality listings, and can justify the premium price, I will re-consider.

In the meantime there will be a lot of cars out there that will be likely to give very expensive problems sometime in the future. I am sure that I don't want to buy a car that will be likely to become an expensive headache, even if it is a Mercedes.
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-01-2005, 06:41 PM
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RE: MERCEDES BENZ QUALITY

Hi All,

Just thought I’d share my experience so far with a 2000 CLK55 with just 43,000 km's on the clock when I purchased it in November 2004....with a "Starmarque Warranty".

Within 4 months the car has been returned something like 6 times, these are some of the problems I’ve had.

!. Exterior Trim needed refitting.

2. Inspection /access flap hanging down from front passenger side.

3. No tool kit...Was told by the dealership the car didn't come with one so I supplied the part number and it was ordered.

4. Hesitation at around 1,000 rpm on steady throttle causing the car "Kangaroo" between 1,000 rpm and 1,700 rpm first time misdiagnosed as a MAF sensor turns out it was something to do with the EGR valve, still not 100% but I can live with it.

5. Some of the pixels in the instrument display not working.

6. Noisey rear brakes.

7. Damaged (cracked) front spoiler.

A second 116 point check was then requested.

8. Wheel wobble at + 90 km's...dealership rebalanced the wheels, still had the wobble, dealership rebalanced again, still had the wobble dealership replaced the front tyres, still had the wobble....so I jacked the front of the car up myself and checked for excessive movement and found the steering linkage to be worn!!!! this was found after a second 116 point check mind you.

9. Car broke down at dealership.....turns out only 2 strands of wire were attached on the earth cable between the gear box and the chassis.

10. Broken Fog light bracket.

11. Air Conditioner Compressor leaking

Most of these things have been fixed, but now I have a rattle/knocking in the engine at around 1700 rpm, not diagnosed yet, oh boy!!! and this, with a car that was something like $200,000 new and has travelled less than 50,000 km's.

This is the second Benz I have owned the first a ’98 E320 was traded in on this car after about 8 months of ownership because of problems.

As they say .....Buyer Beware regardless of promises made and by whom.

Regards David

Previous cars....930 Turbo bullet proof, WRX ok but no character, XYGT nice sound at 5500, Austin 1800 don’t laugh they were great cars, the others not noteworthy enough to mention.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 06:48 PM Thread Starter
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RE: MERCEDES BENZ QUALITY

Well!!
If I had your experience it would probably make the front page!!
I'm starting to wonder if we have got to the odd situation where even Jaguar builds it's cars better than Mercedes.

When one spends a very considerable premium, I do not believe it is asking too much to expect the best quality. It IS NOT a reasonable excuse for the manufacturer to say it is a Mercedes as if the prestige and "snob value" can make it all worthwhile!

I maintain my position that Mercedes has lost its way.
It is trading on its PREVIOUS reputation for quality.
I should point out that my '87 190E 2.6 is a nice smooth old bus, and was obviously built to a standard not a price. It is starting to show the odd glitch, but is very reliable. I love the old Merc's...they were bulit when engineering excellence actually meant something.

In the meantime....buy a Hyundai!
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 09:18 PM
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RE: MERCEDES BENZ QUALITY


Well let me add something.


Besides the E320(w211) that I have my family also owns a Lexus and a BMW. They all have their fair share of problems. Lexus nav malfunctions,brake problems, BMW endless number of annoying minor problems such as noises and AC problem. As for the Mercedes there were 2 problems, crankshaft malfunctioned and transmission but they are all fixed. So far my experience with Benz have been positive even with those two problems. Service was great for me, and mostly the car is fun to drive so that really matters.
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-03-2005, 05:59 AM
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RE: MERCEDES BENZ QUALITY

Hi, I just joined in and read some of the comments. For sure none of the brands produce any more cars they used to produce ten years ago. But look at what the industry is going to - every year each brand is coming with 3, 4 or five new models. Cars have become like mobile phones. People want to cahnge them too often. The price to that - all the problems you talk about. You will laugh, but I have a MB E250 made in 1994. And it's so lovely, so free of problems and so comfortable inside.
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