BenzWorld Junior Member
Date registered: Jul 2012
Vehicle: 2001 SLK 230 Sport
Location: Mukilteo, used to live in Vilsecl
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My Two Euros On The Subject: MB vs. BMW
I lived in Germany for about three years when I was 18 - 21; we drove every German car on the market from a BMW Glas V8 Factory Tripower to early SL's, 2002's, as well as autobahn-prepped VWs, Opels, and Audis.
There was a saying "...You maintain BMWs, you just drive MBs." The BMWs seemed to need to be in a higher state of tune, all of the time. Just a personal observation. We worked on the BMWs more often because we had to.
I think the Z3 is a fine car, but feel I can out perform one in my SLK 230. I certainly like the MB interior better, and my car has been trouble free. There were a half dozen Z3s at work and all of them had their favorite mechanics. I didn't need one.
As far as MB owners vs. BMW owners: Why should there be a difference? Both companies target more or less the same demographic, although MB are almost always more expensive. Are these buyers more arrogent because they are richer or because of what they bought? If Joe Sixpack saves his penneys and buys the Fine German Auto Of His Dreams they will drive with the same arrogence no matter what they wind up buying. Ever listen to someone who just bought a GTI?
Finally, and again, just an opinion: In the old days I would agree about driving slushboxes but transmissions have improved so much that I would rather drive an automatic than a stick because they shift faster, offer an infinately variable gear ratio, and operate like a piece of hydraulic equipment, rather than mechanical equipment. With a stick one can predict exactly what rpm you are operating at at a given speed in a given gear, but it is not always at an opitmum location on one's torque or horsepower curves. Also, I note a tendicy among stickshift owners to shift up and down like they were on a SCCA track when going to the grocery store. I have been told that they do this to save on brakes, when brake pads are $50 and an hour to change while a new clutch costs a few hundred bucks for parts alone.
There is an elegence in MBs that you just don't find in other cars, and perhaps that is is found in their owners, too.