Who is the idiot in charge of design - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-31-2012, 12:07 PM Thread Starter
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Unhappy Who is the idiot in charge of design

My 2008 GL320 came with rain sensing wipers. The huge stalk has 2 intermittent settings, normal and sensitive, which sounds good until put into use. I only use the normal setting as I don't like to see the wipers suddenly come to life.

Have the engineers ever driven in freezing mist? The area where the sensor is located happens to be just behind the LARGE plastic thing that holds the rear view mirror, which happens to block the defroster heat so that ice does not melt off the sensor. Guess what? The wipers are on constantly because the sensor thinks it is wet! So now I have to drive with my left hand on the wiper stalk to turn it on/off.

Same in the summer. Go ahead and hit a grasshopper with the sensor and a dry windshield. I know, I should have turned off the auto wiper but forgot when I pulled into the garage.

What in the heck is wrong with a small dial, like the Japanese cars, to let ME control how fast the wipers go? Cheap, always works, and no more blind spot behind the rearview mirror.

BTW, feel sorry for those with the "S" class. I looked at a 2012 S350 and noticed that you cannot lift the wiper blades without hitting the hood. And the driver's side blade looked to be really small.
Perhaps MB should look at the Ford Escort design: 2 very large blades with the pivot at the fenders, they clean the entire windshield. And the Escort design works for left and right hand drive cars.

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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-31-2012, 02:42 PM
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I think the designer(s) got his hands tied up by the law which said anything mounted on the front windshield must be only in about 7 square inches of the lower right, lower left corners, and a small area above the rear mirror. Anywhere else on the windshield is a violation. So I would not say the designer(s) is/are idiot(s). I've driven in some different weather condition, the rain sensing wiper worked OK. But I think it's an overkill design. MB just wanted you the driver to concentrate on their driving.
I've seen people driving with their GPS unit mounted at the lower center of the windshield. Some cop who got not much to do will stop them to give a ticket.
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-31-2012, 03:00 PM
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Isn't there a setting to disable the rain sensing wiper? My GLK350 has it. The salesman went over it during the delivery presentation.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-31-2012, 03:04 PM
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I have the rain sensing wipers too. When my wipers are in the off position, they are off, period.

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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-31-2012, 03:36 PM Thread Starter
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Part of my problem is that I cannot see the wiper/turn signal stalk while sitting in the driver's seat. Besides, I really hate the high speed that gets selected when passing a semi in the wet. What is wrong with a nice variable wiper setting?
I like to 'drive' my cars, not bothered with phone calls or other distractions like wipers that turn on when it is 15F and the very top of the windshield has ice on it.

Somewhat disillusioned...
This is a great driver's car, except for the comand center and lack of gauges.
The little gremlins come and go at will.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-31-2012, 04:52 PM
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I think MB wiper design covers enough weather scenarios.
Pushing in briefly wipes once.
Push in more deeply, washing fluid squirts and three wipes.
Pushing in deeply and hold, washing fluid squirts continuously and wiping goes on.
0: no wipe.
I: intermittent wipes based on rain sensor inputs.
II: normal wipe speed.
III: fast wipe speed.
You don't really need to look at the stalk for setting the wiper control. The "click" felt by your hand/finger tells you.
Note that MB uses squarish stalks for controls. You can't miss it or slip when your fingers are greasy.
The variable setting may nice but the rain amount is totally random while wind speed, car speed are never constant. Hence variable setting requires adjustment constantly, too. That's distraction in a way like running in a circle to catch an object moving in another circle while the radii change.

Last edited by mbvis; 01-31-2012 at 04:59 PM.
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-31-2012, 08:45 PM
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I'm totally not on board with this gripe. I think the Mercedes design for auto wipers is as good as any and better than most. HOWEVER, I will say that they should have made the automatic headlights feature always turn the headlights on whenever the wipers are in use (except for "mist" and "wash", obviously), regardless of the ambient light level sensor.

In many places, "headlights-on-in-rain" is the law, but it's just good common sense to do so everywhere, and M-B should have conceded to this logic. (Note: I would have liked to have seen this work ONLY in "Auto" headlight mode...leaving manual headlights-on mode as is...independent of the wipers.)

Last edited by ellcapitan; 01-31-2012 at 08:49 PM.
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-31-2012, 09:59 PM Thread Starter
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My GL has 2 intermittent speeds, low and high sensitivity. The problem is when it 'thinks' there is a lot of water on the windshield, it will go to regular and high speed wipes all by itself. When the windshield is 'dry' then the wiper will not wipe - which is good until you forget to turn it off when you remove the key.

Good point about the head lights being on. I would also like to see them lit when ever the wipers are switched on, regardless of speed. Especially for following driver's ability to see your car in the mist.

Somewhat disillusioned...
This is a great driver's car, except for the comand center and lack of gauges.
The little gremlins come and go at will.
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-01-2012, 08:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ellcapitan View Post
In many places, "headlights-on-in-rain" is the law, but it's just good common sense to do so everywhere, and M-B should have conceded to this logic. (Note: I would have liked to have seen this work ONLY in "Auto" headlight mode...leaving manual headlights-on mode as is...independent of the wipers.)
Current MB models with specific DLRs (leds or normal bulbs) activate headlights once it starts raining (once wipers run a few times on auto mode).

Considering the OP and his grasshopper problem, I wonder where in the windshield grasshoppers would not hit the sensor? If he prefers to control everything manually, I assume he prefers the manual transmission and crank windows etc. too.
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-01-2012, 09:47 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Diesel Benz View Post
Considering the OP and his grasshopper problem, I wonder where in the windshield grasshoppers would not hit the sensor? If he prefers to control everything manually, I assume he prefers the manual transmission and crank windows etc. too.
It is the profusion of bugs in the midwest that will cause the wiper to activate in the dry if I forgot to turn off the automatic wiper - mainly because it is dry outside.

Same problem with the rear window wiper when you shift into reverse. The engineers assume that the rear window is wet if the windshield sensor is wet, and the rear wiper grinds the dust, dirt, scratching the glass and the wiper blade.

Because I like to drive with the window slightly open, I do like the MB window switches Vs the auto up/down in some cars. My 1967 has no automatic features and it works great! You can even roll the windows up and lock the car without a key, imagine that! And when at a stop sign and pointed down hill, I can easily start off in 2nd gear. I no longer drive the old car in the rain or snow, so wipers with off/slow/fast switch don't bother me.

I actually like the auto trannies, I would hate to shift 8 gears. BUT, I dislike starting in the stump puller 1st gear every time I get below 5 mph. I remember when MB introduced a tranny that avoided 1st gear at moderate throttle. And the diesel with its exceptional torque does not shift within the torque range when driving with the throttle applied. I have to force an up shift by letting off the pedal and then reapplying pressure because the paddle shifters don't up shift.

Somewhat disillusioned...
This is a great driver's car, except for the comand center and lack of gauges.
The little gremlins come and go at will.
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