Well good luck in the search.
27 times back to the dealer is just an unbelievable record for ANY car, much less one that touts itself as a supposed "Luxury" car. That absolutely beggars the imagination. That thing was The MOTHER of all lemons. It must be hard sometimes to suppress the impulse to just go postal and hose the Mecedes dealer down with an AK 47.
This confirms my long held suspicion and opinion that ANY Mercedes built from 1998-2006 is likely to be a very poor candidate for a GOOD car, by any reasonable measure.
Your car must have been cursed by every diety from Allah to Zeus.
Perhaps it is time to put the whole thing behind you.
The Lemon Law process is one way to do it, but it is, as you know, if you have gone through it, a difficult, at times and teeth grindingly slow and excruciating process. AND you have to keep driving the Lemn in the meantime. (Though I knew what was coming in my case, and stored it as much as I could so the miles were only 7500 in over the one year we had the thing, to keep the mileage deduction low.)
Interesting, and valid points about the private sale option of yours. I would add that also, if you sold a car like this, and if the purchaser went and ran the VMI (Vehicle Master Inquiry) on it at the Mercedes dealer, he would see the 27 warranty claims and realize immediately it was a lemon car, he bought, and then he would probably try to come back and unwind the deal and get his $$$ back from you. THAT you don't need.
So yeah, I guess, trade it in, even at a pretty big loss, at a non Benz dealer, and you are done with the nightmare forever.
And you are done with Mercedes forever, and LOTS of your friends will know why.....
The $40k Volvo C70, after Volvo NA took it back, astonishingly, went cross country, back to Volvo HQ in NJ, as a LEMON branded car, with 7700 miles on it, and 8 months later I accidentally saw it get knocked down on an EBAY auction for just $24k!!!
What depreciation!!! Seller was a used car dealer in same NJ town as Volvo HQ which buys lemon cars from Volvo and resells them, it said in the ad.
The VIN# matched, I recognized the auction picture of the 7,000 mile service booklet stamp at the garage I took it to, so I was sure it was the same car. Unbelievably,the auction picture of the Lemon Law disclosure by Volvo on the title papers said "Customer complained that car wandered on crown of road - unable to replicate - bought back car as goodwill"
Total LIE!!! Car had numerous squeaks and leaks they could NEVER fix.
What LIARS at Volvo NA, buyer beware. I would NEVER buy a branded Lemon Law car, at any savings. Jeezaloo.
Let us know what you buy next, when you do it...