Date registered: Jan 2005
Vehicle: 2000 4Matic Estate E320S4 210.282
Location: New England
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I go for no badges
Debadging is a long well established way of life in Germany and varies in intensity from country to country in western Europe.
Debadging, understood as removing the model designation type, is a factory no cost option, code 260, in the Mercedes. Audi, BMW and Porsche also have had such option for a long time. Even though I do not have official figures, I would say about 80% of Mercedes in Germany are debadged, estimating for what I have observed.
Not knowing exactly what motivates this option to be so popular, this is what I think:
It gives the car a cleaner, symmetrical, and maybe a mysterious look. Also, with such a variety of engines, both gas and Diesel, of which we only see very few in America, why give other drivers reason to speculate as to why you cared to choose one engine over another? Consider also, the badge is a pain to keep clean.
Finally, this is mere speculation on my part, but being the Germans sophisticated consumers, I have the suspicion they consider it not to be of very good taste to wear badges.
Over the years, having visited Germany many times I developed a taste for the debadged look, same thing for Porsches. Most Mercedes I have owned in the last 15 years or so I have debadged, especially in America where option code 260 is not offered, lol. [:D]