What's the best of the "worst" Mercedes-Benz? - Page 2 - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #11 of 40 (permalink) Old 10-05-2016, 07:36 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Kajtek1 View Post
I might also be the first person you meet that beside warranty and recalls never let professional mechanic to lay a finger on the car
W163 being break-thru technology got lot of bad wrap from people who did not know how to service it.
Same apply to W220 from what I see.
Howcome you can buy good condition car who over the years went from $120,000 down to $3,000 ?
So you're saying the secret to a reliable first gen ML and W220 is to never take it to the dealer for service? Interesting. Who do you let work on it?

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Originally Posted by cmitch View Post
After owning 3 ML's, 2 of which were W163's and the other a W164, I can say the 2006 ML350 was the absolute worst Mercedes I ever owned. I had it less than 6 months and was glad it was gone when I traded it. My W220 was phenominal and would've been stellar had it not been for the previous owner's blunder of putting staggered wheels on it. A no no for a 4 matic.
6 months?!?!? Wow. What all was wrong with it? I thought the second gen ML was an averagely good car.
You say your W220 was a good car? I've never heard of anyone having one with my problems. Ws it pre-FL or post-FL?

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Originally Posted by Harv81 View Post
How isn't the W203 the winner here? God awful everything on those cars from the design, the engines, the build quality. Only W203 worth a damn is the C55.
Yeah, I've heard a lot of bad stuff about the 2005-2006 C class shaft balance thing.

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post #12 of 40 (permalink) Old 10-05-2016, 08:20 AM
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Originally Posted by ath20wj View Post
So you're saying the secret to a reliable first gen ML and W220 is to never take it to the dealer for service? Interesting. Who do you let work on it?
.
You should know old wisdom.
"You want the job done right >>>> DIY"
Michael Pillay likes this.

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post #13 of 40 (permalink) Old 10-05-2016, 10:54 AM
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Originally Posted by ath20wj View Post
6 months?!?!? Wow. What all was wrong with it? I thought the second gen ML was an averagely good car.
You say your W220 was a good car? I've never heard of anyone having one with my problems. Ws it pre-FL or post-FL?
Power seat motor, wheel speed sensor, transmission valve body replacement, front differential replacement, telescoping steering column replacement, rear hatch struts, all in less than 6 months. When I learned of balance shaft issue, I traded it in with $500 cash for the F150.

My W220 was 2005 S430 4Matic.

2005 S430 4Matic 'Morton' W220.183 • 722.671 Rest in Peace

Bells and whistles are thorns and thistles.
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post #14 of 40 (permalink) Old 10-05-2016, 01:00 PM
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Originally Posted by ath20wj View Post
The 210 diesels would fall outside of the MY2000-2006 though. I have heard nightmares about the first gen ML's though.

Are you saying the R230 and W220 are runner ups for best, worst, or both?

That would be true if we were talking about US W210. I'm talking worldwide -- there are 2000+ MY W210 with OM606 or OM613 engines.

R230 and W220 are runner up for the worst.... and I should know about the first gen ML's being a nightmare -- I have one taking up space in my garage right now. AAM and ECU, plus who knows what else. Headache car.

--1997 MB E320 161k
--1998 MB E300TD 280k
--2004 Dodge Ram 5.7L 212k and holding (damn gas guzzler)
--2011 Suzuki DL650 42k
--2007 Honda Rebel CMX250 8k. Crashed, now totalled. Gone...
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post #15 of 40 (permalink) Old 10-05-2016, 01:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Kajtek1 View Post
Well... our 1999 ML320 (W163 body) spend 13 years with my family.
During those 13 years it had couple of parts failing.
Total cost of new parts about $350 or less than $30 a year.
How you take that for one of the worst MB?
When MB did have few oops over the years, from top of my head I recall only 2 big ones.
You got off lucky though -- 1998-1999 and very early 2000 ML had one gigantic glaring flaw in it -- they used a central computer for damn near everything, from AC to door locking/unlocking to remote receiver to immobilizer to windows, alarm, etc etc etc... and it's called AAM. AAM likes to fail, and fail often.

AC stops working? You need new AAM. Windows, or door locks stop working, or car stops turning on, etc? New AAM. and since AAM is a theft relevant part, only dealer and/or locksmith credential mechanic shops can order it.

Dealer's SOP was to bundle new keys and/or new ECU when they ordered AAM, so the final bill often exceeded $3000 when all was said and done. I bought a beater ML -- and it has that problem right now. It's been nothing but headaches, and I'm trying to find out what I can do.

Later ML's they separated the immobilizer from the AAM to its own dedicated module, so when AAM fails, it's not so expensive to fix.

--1997 MB E320 161k
--1998 MB E300TD 280k
--2004 Dodge Ram 5.7L 212k and holding (damn gas guzzler)
--2011 Suzuki DL650 42k
--2007 Honda Rebel CMX250 8k. Crashed, now totalled. Gone...
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post #16 of 40 (permalink) Old 10-05-2016, 02:16 PM
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I have had 2 w163's including a first year one. Between the two, had them for 12 or 13 years and had a combined 320K miles when I sold them. Both were solid vehicles. Just time and living in the rust belt took their toll.

Mike
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post #17 of 40 (permalink) Old 10-05-2016, 05:45 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Kajtek1 View Post
You should know old wisdom.
"You want the job done right >>>> DIY"
Ah, I see.

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Originally Posted by cmitch View Post
Power seat motor, wheel speed sensor, transmission valve body replacement, front differential replacement, telescoping steering column replacement, rear hatch struts, all in less than 6 months. When I learned of balance shaft issue, I traded it in with $500 cash for the F150.

My W220 was 2005 S430 4Matic.
Wow, I don't blame you. That's a lot of issues for a new car.

You say your '05 S430 was a good car. I've always heard bad things about the car. You've had no issues out of it? I was going to buy one but shied away from it.

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Originally Posted by Deplore View Post
That would be true if we were talking about US W210. I'm talking worldwide -- there are 2000+ MY W210 with OM606 or OM613 engines.

R230 and W220 are runner up for the worst.... and I should know about the first gen ML's being a nightmare -- I have one taking up space in my garage right now. AAM and ECU, plus who knows what else. Headache car.
Fair enough. I just assumed you'd be discussing US models seeing as how you and I both live in the US acording to our profiles. My bad.

Never really heard anything bad about the R230, interesting.

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post #18 of 40 (permalink) Old 10-05-2016, 05:47 PM Thread Starter
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I have had 2 w163's including a first year one. Between the two, had them for 12 or 13 years and had a combined 320K miles when I sold them. Both were solid vehicles. Just time and living in the rust belt took their toll.
All of these positive w163 reviews are shocking me.

Love the discussion guys, nice to see everyone's experience.

I don't think it would be a good idea for me to create a signature. It would probably just be some shameless plug about me being a Realtor.
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post #19 of 40 (permalink) Old 10-06-2016, 09:07 PM Thread Starter
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Anyone else have any thoughts?

I don't think it would be a good idea for me to create a signature. It would probably just be some shameless plug about me being a Realtor.
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post #20 of 40 (permalink) Old 10-07-2016, 12:18 AM
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Originally Posted by ath20wj View Post
All of these positive w163 reviews are shocking me.
Check out the popularity of all the models in this forum by numbers of topics, posts, and members, and in the last 20 years W163 comes out on top, and for good reason.

The facelift version of the 1st gen hit the sweet spot for versatility, safety, and reliability. Plenty of tech but not too much. The W164 was plagued with balance shaft problems.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Deplore View Post
It's been nothing but headaches, and I'm trying to find out what I can do.
You can get the $37 key from an MB dealer. That would be too easy, though.

Last edited by DrX; 10-07-2016 at 12:39 AM.
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