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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-17-2010, 10:44 PM Thread Starter
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New Here and Need Purchase Advice - Please Help

I am new here. We are retired and not wealthy. My wife has a older Volvo C70 and is wanting another car - it is low to the ground and getting hard to enter and exit. She has always wanted a MB - so we are looking.

I need help here. We can spend about 30K or so. Nav system is a must. What do you suggest we look at? We need reliability, a Nav system, reasonable repair expenses and regular maintenance costs....Can we get these things in the MB family for 30 grand or so...or should we just go and look at a used Lexus or Ford or something...I am looking at the MB because it would be safe for her to drive and the MB "makes her heart flutter"............

She likes classic styling, a little off the ground because the Volvo C70 is getting hard for us old retired folks to get in and out of, having a Nav system is a deal breaker, she likes bells and whistles and I like reasonable costs and reliability without a lot of dealer shop expenses. Thank you a lot for taking the time to help us. If I could get her one I would like to.
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-17-2010, 11:38 PM
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How about the W211 E-Class that was just replaced by the newer design? W211 E-Class - Benzworld.org - Mercedes-Benz Discussion Forum
I'm not sure how high off the ground they are compared to the Volvo but MB's tend to afford a higher seating position in general. No Mercedes will be low-cost on maintenance but get one under extended factory warranty ("CPO" in Mercedes parlance) and have a good indie repair shop who specializes in the brand for when you're footing the bill, and your regular maintenance will reward your pocketbook.

They are great looking cars that will surely "make her heart flutter". You're a very kind and thoughtful husband, good luck and let us know what you decide.

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Last edited by DirectLA; 04-17-2010 at 11:44 PM.
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-18-2010, 07:14 PM
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You seem to hint at 'reasonable [repair] costs and reliability' several times. That just doesn't describe Mercedes as of late, unless you can do a lot of the work yourself and find a good indy to work on the car. If you only go the dealer, its going to be very expensive. You would honestly be better off looking at a Lexus if you are looking for an oil-change only car.
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-18-2010, 07:53 PM
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I would advise you to give the Lexus LS a look in your process. The advice about the W211 was good; it is a relatively trouble-free car.

We bought a 3 year-old Lexus LS for my wife for about the money you are talking. For another $2,000 or so, we extended the factory warranty to 100,000 miles (her car was still under warranty when we bought it). Since then, we have paid for routine maintenance.

The car sits higher than my W220 (S-class) and is a very comfortable car for her 83 year-old mother (who uses a walker) to get in and out.

I'm not trying to chase you off a Mercedes. If your wife has her heart set, there are lots to choose from in your price range. I have two and neither one has had any repair beyond maintenance in the two years I've owned one and the six months I have owned the other. I can't say if that is typical experience or not.

I suggest you drive a variety of Mercedes models, and have your wife practice her getting in and out. They vary considerably from one to the other.

Good luck.

"Don't pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you."--John Steinbeck
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-18-2010, 08:37 PM
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Like as been mentioned an E class will be the most reliable and economical MB to look at. They are quite nice imo.

Under 40k miles
06 E350 for low $20s
06 E500 for mid to high $20s
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-18-2010, 09:09 PM Thread Starter
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I want to thank everybody that has taken the time to reply. I am able to handle the "normal" routine maintenance costs but don't want to be told that something is going to cost $2000 or $3000 to get it fixed. We have had the Volvo a long time and it has never cost us much and it NEVER breaks and I don't want to buy a money pit. I want a solid reliable car like MB has a reputation for and don't know what to stay away from so I thought I would come here and ask the experts.

She drove the GLK but it didn't seem to be a real MB - lots of plastic and just did not seem like it fit us. I think we could look at the E class....They had a very nice 2006 CLS500 she liked a lot and it was about in the range of our pocketbook but it set too low I think.
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-18-2010, 09:17 PM
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Stick with an E
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-18-2010, 09:55 PM
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I'm a bit biased since I own an E-Class but I agree with the others who recommended that. 2003 was the 1st year for the W211 and I would get at least a 2005 or newer. 2007 was the facelift year and those offer a few advantages not to mention a refreshed look. Ditto to a CPO and MB is offering 1.9% financing on 2007-2008 now.

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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-18-2010, 09:59 PM
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He said he wanted to be under not over $30k
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-19-2010, 06:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PFMCDM View Post
I want to thank everybody that has taken the time to reply. I am able to handle the "normal" routine maintenance costs but don't want to be told that something is going to cost $2000 or $3000 to get it fixed. We have had the Volvo a long time and it has never cost us much and it NEVER breaks and I don't want to buy a money pit. I want a solid reliable car like MB has a reputation for and don't know what to stay away from so I thought I would come here and ask the experts.

She drove the GLK but it didn't seem to be a real MB - lots of plastic and just did not seem like it fit us. I think we could look at the E class....They had a very nice 2006 CLS500 she liked a lot and it was about in the range of our pocketbook but it set too low I think.
MB HAD a reputation for reliability. The key word being had. They now have a reputation for being unreliable thanks to the Chrysler cost cutting fiasco in the late 90's. If you are focused on an E class, then look at 07-09 E350. The later you can afford, the better. Avoid E500/550 and ANY E350 that has (rare on E350) airmatic. This suspension system will give you the $1000-2000 repair bill that you wish to avoid. You should be able to find a nice low mileage well optioned 07 or 08 E350 for under $30k. Make sure it has options, such as HID headlamps, Parktronic, and Nav. The AMG appearance package is also highly desirable. Unless you like low build quality and regular repair bills, you would be best to avoid the 06 CLS500 by at least 10 feet. You should cross that off your list right now.
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