Well-written article on Mercedes's problems - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-11-2005, 12:53 AM Thread Starter
ymt
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Well-written article on Mercedes's problems

See the article at the following link...

http://motoring.independent.co.uk/features/article318539.ece
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-11-2005, 01:25 PM
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RE: Well-written article on Mercedes's problems

[8D]

Thanks for posting the link, YMT. That is a well-written non-ranting article.

Unfortunately, restoring consumer perception of quality will take years. The thousands of sub-par cars built in the "bad" years will be around for at least another decade, reminding everybody of the problems.

If M-B is serious about regaining buyer confidence, they will implement a factory-sponsored and subsidized support program for the older models that need it. Otherwise, negative word-of-mouth from disgruntled owners will continue to have an adverse effect.

Cheers!
Dave
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-11-2005, 02:49 PM
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RE: Well-written article on Mercedes's problems

Yeah definitely thanks for the link. I read the Independent nearly every day. Think it's the best newspaper in the world, for intelligent, sober reporting & analysis, generally free of nationalistic or tribalistic slant.

I hope to God that Mercedes quality is on the mend. Resale value is already taking a hit. To squander something as solid and longstanding as Mercedes's traditional reputation for quality would be a crime.
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-11-2005, 07:52 PM
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RE: Well-written article on Mercedes's problems

Mercedes has already taken the first steps to rectifying some of the quality issues. First of all, they have recalled (service campaigned) the harmonic balancers on the 320 and 430 engines. Next, they have done the same with the catalytic converters. While this is promising, it is definitely not enough to restore MY faith in the brand. The transfer case in mine has made annoying noises that are somewhat alleviated with a fluid change. Then there is a mysterious popping noise in the rear that no one is able to find. The list goes on and on. But reliability could be greatly improved if the suppliers of these deficient parts and components were made more liable for their lack of engineering, to say the least.

Then there are the "stupid" things MB has done. The M class is definitely a disaster in engineering. Cars have been built for over 100 years and it never ceases to amaze me and others how manufacturers can't seem to get it right. Who would have thought of designing a steering wheel and building a vehicle around it? But that is exactly what it seems they have done to get us the M class! Maintenance free transmission?? Give me a break! What a fool who thought this would be benchmark setting! Then there is no dip stick to check it! Also, an AAM that can only accept 8 keys in the lifetime of a vehicle. Whoever came up with this brilliant idea should be caned!

There are many more recalls and service campaigns needed. But for now, I guess they have to redeem themselves one step at a time. Me hopes there is light at the end of the tunnel, but the introduction of the hurky-jerky 7 speed automatic tranny installed on the new M's indicates it's a freight train headed for the consumer.

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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-11-2005, 08:03 PM
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RE: Well-written article on Mercedes's problems

I believe that the initial abrupt downshift from 2nd to 1st is when the transmission is learning what the driver wants.

As for the 8 key AAM I have no problem with that, as it is a good anti-theft device. Not to mention that if you lose that many keys then you have some issues.
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-11-2005, 08:21 PM
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RE: Well-written article on Mercedes's problems

The key problem goes much further than that. Keys wear out, as with my case, so I had to buy one. The previous owner had lost 2 keys. That is not to include any that MAY have been replaced under warranty. My M-Class has had 5 keys that I know about. They will not tell me if there are any others available until I order one. I know of vehicles that have exhausted all of their allotment. One case I was told of at the dealer, The owner lost 2 keys in a boating(?) accident and had 4 replaced under warranty. They are down to the last 2! Pity them if one of these fail!![:0]

As for the downshift and gear finding problem, go to the W164 forum and read some of the posts. It is not comforting to know they are having trouble so early in the W164 game.
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-11-2005, 08:35 PM
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RE: Well-written article on Mercedes's problems

“It also coincided with Mercedes expanding its model range, mostly down market, adding the Smart car, the A-class and the 4x4 M-class (the latter - assembled in a brand new, low-cost factory in Alabama - is probably the worst-made car in Mercedes history). “

Take out the ‘probably’ and he’s got it right.

To find their way back DCX needs to cut back on the models, get out of the cheap car business, and insist suppliers provide a quality product.


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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-11-2005, 09:07 PM
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RE: Well-written article on Mercedes's problems

Quote:
jdc1244a - 10/11/2005 10:35 PM

“It also coincided with Mercedes expanding its model range, mostly down market, adding the Smart car, the A-class and the 4x4 M-class (the latter - assembled in a brand new, low-cost factory in Alabama - is probably the worst-made car in Mercedes history). “

Take out the ‘probably’ and he’s got it right.

To find their way back DCX needs to cut back on the models, get out of the cheap car business, and insist suppliers provide a quality product.



20 years ago(in the States):
190 class
300 class
S-Class
(3 classes)

Currently:
Maybach(yes I'm including it)
CLK
SLK,
SL,
CL,
S,
E,
RL,
ML,
SLR,
A,
B,
C,
G, on and on, I can't remember anymore!



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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-11-2005, 09:54 PM
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Mercedes Golden Age…

From 81 to 83 there were just three automobile chassises: 126 - S Class sedan and coupe, 123 – sedan, coupe, wagon, and the 107 – convertible and hardtop. That was it. They were the best-built cars DB manufactured.
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-12-2005, 01:36 AM
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RE: Well-written article on Mercedes's problems

I read an article in the British press over the weekend about Porsche and how over a ten year period it had gone from a very parlous financial state to being the most profitable car maker in the world.

By and large Porsche has stuck to building what it knows best..... sports cars. Umpteen derivations of the 911 and the Boxster. The article primarily concerned itself with the new Porsche two seater sports coupe (name escapes me) and how good it was and how impressive the build quality was.

Worryingly (for Porsche customers) the company has already dipped it`s toe into other segments of the market with the Cayenne and it`s reported that it`s management is considering buying a chunk of VW!

Ultimately the expansion of product lines is about chasing increasing profits and corporate ego that believes that it can transplant success in one area into another.

But like many here I believe that concentrating on fewer models built to higher standards is the way to go initially until you get your processes and suppliers sorted.

Not going to happen though is it?
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