Mercedes resale value: Real World experience - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-23-2009, 11:00 AM Thread Starter
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Mercedes resale value: Real World experience

My how MB has fallen. I have owned 7 MBs including a 1970 Euro 300SEL 6.3.

My first MB was an '87 300E purchased in '92 with 38K for $22,500. The same price for a fully loaded '92 Camry XLE

Fast forward today: Within a month or two I will buy an '06 R350 4matic with under 30K miles for $21-22K. Similar values can be had for an E350 well below a the cost of fully loaded Camry.

Think about it, a 3 year old MB with warranty, much higher sticker price, and a devalued dollar for the same money as in 1992.

Times have never been better to buy a used MB. For ten years their reliability has been in the crapper which is reflected in the attitudes of several friends: "lease it for 3 years and turn it in, would love to buy one and keep it but they break too often". I think the reliability is improving but MB may never enjoy the once stellar resale value of the past. Great for the used buyer like me who is not afraid to own an MB (or others that I have owned like Citroen, Peugeot, Alfa, and Merkur).
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-23-2009, 11:57 AM
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Comparing today's cars to 1980s cars is like comparing apples and oranges.

That is, it's futile and irrelevant.

Frankly any Mercedes older than 2005 is obsolete, as the in-car entertainment/phone systems are positively ancient. The 2009 changes may make anything before that soon feel the same.

The fact Lexus came along and BMW got strong means there are now a lot of Mercedes sales to "mainstream" customers meaning there are a lot more used ones out there.

As for R-class, Mercedes has virtually been unable to give them away, as the majority of the market sees them as too-expensive, too-unreliable Honda Odysey competitors. Production is now at under a thousand a month for worldwide demand.

Kent Christensen
Albuquerque
'07 GL320CDI

Last edited by lkchris; 03-23-2009 at 11:59 AM.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-23-2009, 12:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by II kings 920 View Post
My how MB has fallen. I have owned 7 MBs including a 1970 Euro 300SEL 6.3.

My first MB was an '87 300E purchased in '92 with 38K for $22,500. The same price for a fully loaded '92 Camry XLE

Fast forward today: Within a month or two I will buy an '06 R350 4matic with under 30K miles for $21-22K. Similar values can be had for an E350 well below a the cost of fully loaded Camry.

Think about it, a 3 year old MB with warranty, much higher sticker price, and a devalued dollar for the same money as in 1992.

Times have never been better to buy a used MB. For ten years their reliability has been in the crapper which is reflected in the attitudes of several friends: "lease it for 3 years and turn it in, would love to buy one and keep it but they break too often". I think the reliability is improving but MB may never enjoy the once stellar resale value of the past. Great for the used buyer like me who is not afraid to own an MB (or others that I have owned like Citroen, Peugeot, Alfa, and Merkur).
I agree that it is a good time if you are in the market for a mercedes. I am curious though. I assume from your location that you are in Ohio. What peugeot did you own? I have lived in the US for 20 years and in that time I have only seen one. It sat by the side of the road with a sale sign on it for a long time. We used to see it on our trips up north during the summers.

Mike
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-23-2009, 12:36 PM Thread Starter
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-23-2009, 12:40 PM Thread Starter
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I agree that it is a good time if you are in the market for a mercedes. I am curious though. I assume from your location that you are in Ohio. What peugeot did you own? I have lived in the US for 20 years and in that time I have only seen one. It sat by the side of the road with a sale sign on it for a long time. We used to see it on our trips up north during the summers.
Yes, Buckeye Nation Ohio. I owned an 85 Peugeot 505SD as well as an '80 Citroen CX 2500D, both got 35-38mpg on the freeway. Both were very reliable and unique ( I wish I still had both to run on WVO)
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-23-2009, 01:19 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by lkchris View Post
Comparing today's cars to 1980s cars is like comparing apples and oranges.

That is, it's futile and irrelevant.

Frankly any Mercedes older than 2005 is obsolete, as the in-car entertainment/phone systems are positively ancient. The 2009 changes may make anything before that soon feel the same.

The fact Lexus came along and BMW got strong means there are now a lot of Mercedes sales to "mainstream" customers meaning there are a lot more used ones out there.

As for R-class, Mercedes has virtually been unable to give them away, as the majority of the market sees them as too-expensive, too-unreliable Honda Odysey competitors. Production is now at under a thousand a month for worldwide demand.
Not so futile and irrelevant because I am not comparing cars from the 80s to today. rather I am comparing dollars spent on that car compared to today which is not so irrelevant. My point is not to compare the cars but to point out that the poor reliability (as you point out as well) and perhaps the economic times have created deals today that were unthinkable in years past. We all know that the systems and features on today's cars can not be compared to older cars but the dollars spent can be and one gets a lot more car today for less money than in years past that I think we are in agreement on as I read your post.

As I take it that you would avoid an R class? Why should it be any less reliable than an E class with the same engine, trans, AWD, and other major components?

You are correct on the 09 entertainment, my associate has an 09 E350 and the Nav/music is superb- as good as any on the market while the '08 was much worse than a 10 year old Lexus. In fact, his 05 E350 had a DVD nav that was the same as my 00 S430 which used CDs, a really poor excuse of a system that MB has finally brought kicking and screaming into 21st century.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-23-2009, 06:15 PM
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And why exactly would you buy an R class? Is it really that hard to find a vehicle that is better than an R class? Anything else in the CUV market beats it. It's ugly, slow, unreliable, poorly built, and made in America by a bunch of hill billies who are just there to collect a paycheck and could care less about building quality vehicles. Who thought that massive over sized rear doors were a great idea on a car that was designed to transport kids? That is just dumb. Mercedes can hardly give these things away, thus they have no resale value. You can do MUCH better. No need to own this lowly rated vehicle.
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-23-2009, 11:02 PM
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And why exactly would you buy an R class? Is it really that hard to find a vehicle that is better than an R class? Anything else in the CUV market beats it. It's ugly, slow, unreliable, poorly built, and made in America by a bunch of hill billies who are just there to collect a paycheck and could care less about building quality vehicles. Who thought that massive over sized rear doors were a great idea on a car that was designed to transport kids? That is just dumb. Mercedes can hardly give these things away, thus they have no resale value. You can do MUCH better. No need to own this lowly rated vehicle.
Hard to tell how you really feel about the R-Class from this note
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-24-2009, 09:39 AM
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As I take it that you would avoid an R class? Why should it be any less reliable than an E class with the same engine, trans, AWD, and other major components?
No, not me ... if it were the type car I was looking for.

I'd caution to maybe get one with a black dashboard, as there's lots of dash to reflect into the windshield. People are getting by with gray and beige ones, of course.

Another thing is to realize what kind of vehicle you're buying. What the R-class (and ML and GL) are is autobahn-tested and autobahn ready, i.e. performance cars. People actually write to forums complaining about poor tires because they only get 20k miles from them. But, the fact is, they are performance tires and not appliance tires and that's typical.

Kent Christensen
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Last edited by lkchris; 03-24-2009 at 09:41 AM.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-24-2009, 10:15 AM
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Hmmm

I have looked at R Class vehicles lately and the fit and finish is outstanding. My neighbor has one and loves it. I grow tired of people on these forums just bashing Mercedes Benz products with every breath they take. I love my 2 S Class Benz's and enjoy driving them. If you are in the market for a cross over performance related vehicle that is two or three years old a R Class is an outstanding value. You should be able to find a Star Certified one at a good price from a Mercedes Dealer. They are certainly not getting the number of people in the dealerships and seem to be quite aggressive on dealing. Always get up and walk away from the negotiation process a few times. You'll be amazed at how fast the price drops.
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