New to MB, requesting (used) purchase tips and advice: CLS, E-Class, CL-Class - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 08-27-2013, 10:38 AM Thread Starter
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New to MB, requesting (used) purchase tips and advice: CLS, E-Class, CL-Class

Hello All,

First, thank you to the mods who maintain this forum, I consider it a privilege to be able to join and have access to a forum such as this. I belong to several other forums for various interests, and I enjoy being a part of each of one of them.

Another newbie, "labguy" recently posted a similar question, but I have some different needs/desires so I didn't want to hi-jack his thread.

I'm looking for a quality used car. I've never owned a German car before, but I'm a Preventative-Maintenance freak with all my vehicles and toys. While I'm not dead-set on MB...yet... I want to do my due diligence to make sure I select a good fit. I don't rotate cars frequently.

While I'm single now, I'm almost 40, and since I'm seeming to date single moms, when the right gal comes along, I'm going to need a car that can fit some kiddos in the back seat. I'm also a larger guy, 6'2", and a fit 235, so I want leg room and head room, and still have room in a back seat for some kiddos, or even an adult couple for the occasional group outing.

My budget: under 25K US

So far, I'm considering:
2006-2007 CLS
These sure look sweet, I sat in one and it fits well.
'07-'09 E class
I sat in one and I do fit in this pretty well.
maybe the CL as well.
haven't sat in one yet, wondering what the back seat is like.
Audi A6 and BMW 5-series
I know this is a MB forum, but I'm also considering them as well

I like the idea of the 2-door cars, the doors are larger, and easier to enter and exit the car, as I'll be the driver, and it'll be my daily driver/commuter, but keeping future family issues in mine, 4-doors is nice. MPG is also a part of my decision; I don't need AWD, as I have a truck for the occasional icy/snowy days, and I would prefer to have better fuel mileage and tire life over the performance of AWD.

I've done a quick internet search on the CLS and found plenty around the country that fit my budget, and most of them that are advertised as 'super clean', are hovering around the 100K mile mark. What kind of concerns should I have with that CLS (and 5 litre motor/drive-train) with that kind of mileage? What is the service interval on the timing belt and any other items? (tranny service, diff svc, etc)

While I'm a fireman by trade, I also used to be a full-time wrench, so I'll be doing my own maintenance and repairs. I still have access to scanners and such for reading codes, and diagnostics.

I'm not dead set on the models I listed, so if anyone has suggestions, I'm totally open.

Thanks in advance, and have a great day,
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 08-30-2013, 10:04 AM
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I would rather put more money into a lower mileage, newer, perhaps CPO vehicle than drop 25K and possibly get someone else's "deferred maintenance" nightmare. The reason you are seeing so many 'super clean' ads is because every seller thinks a deal can be made based on how the car looks. I would even suggest that that is the reason used MBz owners may complain--they bought on looks rather than mechanical condition.

Another alternative would be to put much less money into a slightly older model, either of the same class you are considering or the preceding class. Being driven 100K miles over a period of 10 or more years may prove to be much better than having compiled the same mileage in 4 to 7 years. Just my opinion...
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 08-30-2013, 11:31 AM
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I'm not going to weigh in on any of the specific cars you've listed, since they are all viable options.

However, I would tell you that with MB don't be so encouraged by the 2dr. Yes, it's longer, but it is also lots heavier. And it's only to allow some ingress/egress to the rear set, and you have to move the seat backs, and it's still not that easy to get in and out. Not to mention that the back seat area is more compressed in those coupes.

As you say, you're coming from non-German marques, so maybe your bias is understandable. But the four-door sedans (like the E) are every bit as easy to get in and out of for the front seat passengers -- if not easier, since it's a lighter door -- and they are light years ahead in terms of rear-seat accommodations.

Good luck.

Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy; its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery. (Winston Churchill)
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-02-2013, 11:36 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the tips on the 2-door vs 4-door when considering the MB product. I still haven't had a opportunity to actually sit in the 2-door, and your points are well-received!

Also, great points about inheriting someone else's 'deferred maintenance nightmare' as you put it.. Good things to consider. One of the reasons I'm looking so hard at this idea, is I kinda figure that if someone is going to drop the coin on a new MB, they are likely the kind to maintain that investment. Clearly, if I pick up one from a used dealer, I have no idea just how many folks have owned it before me, but since I'm patient, I suspect I may be able to find a one or two owner car, and have a better idea about how it's been taken care of. But, it's a terrific point, and thanks!

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