RE: Mercedes lemon and horrible customer experience
I have to say something here. I have always heard that this car is better than that car, this brand is better than that brand, etc, etc. My personal opinion is that most major car makers make some good/reliable vehicles,...and some bad. I have a 1987 Ford E-150 van with 101,000 miles, and it does not leak oil from anywhere(302 V8 EFI), it has the original transmission(4AOD), and it has never failed to deliver me from point A to B in 5 years. She can sit for two-three weeks, and she will start right up, hot or cold, rain or shine. I replaced her alternator, exhaust manifolds, and U-joints(About $300(US)parts). In comparison, I have a 1994 E320(6 cyl/Auto), I have had it for 6 months, and it leaks a ridiulous amount of oil, has since 77,000 miles(has 89,000 miles now), the shop wants $1500(US)to fix it. The Benz dealer said it was fixed the last time they collected their $595 for it, it was not. I did not own the car at the time, it was my sister's, she bitched a little, they did nothing. Now..., knowing something about cars, I would have stormed in there, and they would have made it right, but I did not own the car at the time, and I was unavailable. Since I have had it, I have replaced the MAF, the plug wires($100 for 3 of them), A rear window motor assy(Van has power windows that still work) and it looks like soon, I may need a water pump. This car(E320s) is said to have a transmission problem, I can only hope that was already fixed. All I am saying..., from a relaibility and cost to operate stand point, it appears that my Ford, is a better vehicle than my Mercedes. My girlfriend has a 1988 Audi 90 Quattro(350,000+ miles, no major repairs, original clutch), it is one hell of a car. Her ex-husband said, "she should not let a regular mechanic work on it, because it was a special car". Though it is a special car, it is still only a car, it works in much the same way as any(ANY) other car. I have found nothing on it that this regular guy cannot diagnose/fix. Buying a Mercedes or any other "so-called" super brand, is no garranty of "long term" satisfaction. A "super brand", means as the car ages, it will cost more for parts/service when repaired, than a regular brand.
If there is any doubt that a Ford(others) can compete with/beat(value) a Mercedes, read the review on 200mph+ cars(Automobile mag)>>> http://automobilemag.com/reviews/coupes/0501_200mph_club/index.html >>> . Compare the GT40 to the pack...notice the price! Don't get me wrong, I like this Merdedes, and I may grow to love her yet, but I refuse to accept that they engineer an overall better car than many others. Yes, driving the E is more comfortable than my van, certainly more refined, 8-9 mpg better the the van(though the van has a GVW of 6600lbs), but I have no more confidence in her(89K) delivering me from point a to point b, than I do the van(101K), or for that matter, our 85 F150(130K), the Audi 90Q(350K+), or our Infinity G20(141K). And, in the case of the E & F series, certainly the cost to operate, is going to whip all the others silly. I don't want to make any enemies here, and I do appreciate the differences in engineering. I marvel at many of the techno improvements of the breed, I guess I am a little soured at this time. She does accelerate very well for a non-boosted six cylinder, and I am getting more "looks" from the hotties, than I do in the van,(though the van is handy, when they say yes). :-)