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2012 S550 Bi-Turbo 4Matic
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Long time reader, just few posts so far.

Bought a 2003 S500 105k miles for $11,600 today!

I fully enjoyed the first 5 minutes of the drive back home, until "Airmatic-Please visit workshop" 'welcome' message came on.

After reading the Airmatic thread, for me there are only 2 options: Arnott or the MB fix-kit...still debating.

Other than that looking forward for the next 100k miles.
 

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W221 & Audio Moderator
2013 S550
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If the leak is in the upper seals, the kit will work. Anything else, then Arnott's for sure.

If you bought it from any kind of dealer, they will usually give at least a 30-day warranty. If a private sale, no warranty.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Dealer reply

If the leak is in the upper seals, the kit will work. Anything else, then Arnott's for sure.

If you bought it from any kind of dealer, they will usually give at least a 30-day warranty. If a private sale, no warranty.
It was a "dealers only" auction, and i had time to inspect the car before i gave him the green light to bid on it , up to my limit.

Will confirm a dealer appointment next week to have the Airmatic diagnosed as well as a "tapping" noise from the driver's side of the engine.

Then, after i get the estimate, will start looking at Arnotts, Autohaus AZ and the like.

What i was pleasantly surprise about, is the response i got from the dealer on my first contact.

Let's hope the final bill will be on the same tone...

Good morning,

Thank you for your recent inquiry regarding service on your 2003 S500. The cost for PA inspections and emissions here is $87.50. With regards to the airmatic error our diagnostic rate (labor rate) is $104/hr. We are delighted to hear that we came highly recommended and we are looking forward to earning your business.

Our service department offers several options when scheduling service. You can drop your vehicle off, we can perform the services as you wait, we can loan you a vehicle while yours is in the shop or we can do a pick up and delivery. With our pick up and delivery option we would send a driver to pick up your vehicle either at your home or place of employment and drop off a Mercedes-Benz loaner vehicles.

If you would like to schedule an appointment please give us a call or you could reach me at extension xxx or if this is your preferred method of contact please respond to this email. We are looking forward to hearing from you.

Thank you,


Business Development Center
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Diagnosed the Airmatic message today and was told compressor and relay need replaced.
Compressor $351
Relay(i hope is Hella, if not got two on the way) $40
2.2 hours of labor $208

Total quoted $620

Was told do not need the hose just compressor and relay.
 

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Replace the air struts in the front with the pump and relay. That is what cause the pump and relay to go bad. That is the first step, you may check on the rear struts afterward.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I do have the driver side upper strut "fixed" meaning, no epoxy, so i will check on how much will it be to have the passenger side changed, because i can see one small hairline crack in the epoxy.

I am just trying really hard for my first repair not to hit $1000.
 

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Unfortunately my friend, with these toys it's pay lots now or pay more later.:crybaby2:
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Unfortunately my friend, with these toys it's pay lots now or pay more later.:crybaby2:
I'll pay more now and when i have enough i'll just buy a Hyunday
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Hella Relay

Got the Hella relay today from AutohausAZ and gave it try before taking it to the dealer to have the pump replaced the same time with the relay.
No go:crybaby2:

The new Hella relay is made in China and the Tyco relay that went bad is made in Portugal.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Some more relay shots

Some more relay shots , new and old
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
$11.6k for an'03 s500 with 105k on it? seems high for a dealer auction...
Not really!
The dealer selling the car at the auction was holding for $13,000.
I followed the car three weeks in a row, and i knew the fourth week they should drop the price, which they did, and i snatched it!
Another pleasant surprise is when i got the title, and saw the previous owner trade it to the dealer for $12,500!

I am sure the dealer made their money on the new car, and lost only $900 on the trade
 

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Zotye Auto 1.5T T600 2016
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After a new pump is fitted they should run all the pneumatic tests using SDS so be sure to ask if they have done so.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
i mean....

1

2

3

4

5


personally i want #4, $10k w. 46k on it. granted all these are 3 years older...
Yes, i see your point...the mileage might be in the 60k miles compared to 105k miles, and the difference in price is like $1,000 ,but as you noticed the difference in years is what makes it cheap.

2003 is the first year they start addressing some of the known issues, even though i still have the Airmatic problem, but look at the wide nav/command screen and the seats thickens, front Xenon , and some others that escape me at the moment...

Don't get me wrong, I am not knocking down the 2000 models, i did a lot of research and i am very familiar with the website you mentioned, it just seemed that most of the complains on this forum and others were from early 2000 models.

Finally, what might be a good price for me, might be too much for somebody else and the other way around.
I am very happy with my purchase, price, color combination, wheels, carfax, VMI and overall appearance of the car.

Since this is "my dream car" is more emotional purchase than calculated one.
Could i've get a Honda Pilot 4X for the same money, with less miles?Yes, but would i smiled when saw it park in my garage at night?Probably not...

Just my 2 cents:D
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Finally changed airmatic pump and relay, around $600.
SDS pressure test performed, new HELLA relay and 12 months warranty on the pump.
One crack in the upper strut epoxy seal but not leaking yet, according to the tech.
Quoted around $350 for the fix kit.
Debating on throwing the $350 on the kit or save it, and put it towards the $1000 necessary for a pair of Arnott's front struts.
And of course need to consider labor for putting the struts in at a separate indie shop.

What do you guys think?
 

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Outstanding Contributor - Always Remembered, RIP
Zotye Auto 1.5T T600 2016
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Change the struts, is my vote.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Have appointment next week to have the instrument cluster recall done.

Also, seems there are two other recalls out there:

Summary:
ON CERTAIN VEHICLES, CORROSION MAY OCCUR IN THE INNER STEEL PORTIONS OF THE ACTIVE BODY CONTROL'S (ABC) HIGH PRESSURE DISTRIBUTION HOSE DUE TO EXTENSIVE EXPOSURE TO HUMIDITY CAUSING DETERIORATION OF THE HOSE.
Consequence:
THIS MAY RESULT IN ABC HYDRAULIC FLUID LEAKAGE NEAR THE CATALYTIC CONVERTER. LEAKING FLUID MAY COME IN CONTACT WITH HOT ENGINE COMPONENTS AND LEAD TO A POSSIBLE FIRE.
Remedy:
DEALERS WILL INSTALL NEW CORROSION RESISTANT ABC HIGH PRESSURE DISTRIBUTION HOSE. THE RECALL BEGAN ON JULY 2, 2007. OWNERS MAY CONTACT MERCEDES-BENZ AT 1-800-367-6372.
Notes:
MERCEDES-BENZ RECALL NO. 207060002. CUSTOMERS MAY ALSO CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION'S VEHICLE SAFETY HOTLINE AT 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), OR GO TO HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV



Summary:
ON CERTAIN VEHICLES, THE TRUNK LID SPRINGS COULD FAIL IN THE CLOSED TRUNK LID POSITION.
Consequence:
IF THE TRUNK LID IS MANUALLY LIFTED, IT MAY NOT REMAIN IN THE UP POSITION AND COULD CAUSE INJURY IF IT COMES DOWN WHILE SOMEONE IS REACHING INTO THE TRUNK.
Remedy:
DEALERS WILL REPLACE BOTH TRUNK LID SPRINGS. THE RECALL BEGAN AUGUST 17, 2004. OWNERS SHOULD CONTACT MERCEDES- BENZ AT 1-800-367-6372.
Notes:
MERCEDES-BENZ RECALL NO. 2004 050015. CUSTOMERS CAN ALSO CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION AUTO SAFETY HOTLINE AT 1-888-DASH-2-DOT (1-888-327-4236).
 
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