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1983 300cd
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Discussion Starter #1
Hello Everyone,

I wanted to share my frustration with the local dealer and also get some input on the problem. Thank you in advance for any responses.
Well here goes,
I took my 2000 sl500 with only 19,750 miles to the local Mercedes Benz dealer here in Alexandria Virginia. I first dropped it off and asked them to fix a slow leak in the right rear and rotate the tires.
I of course got a call back telling me that the car also needed an alignment.
I o.ked the work and $175.00 later I was heading home. When I got back to the house I noticed that the one rim that had a small scratch on it had been changed from the left rear to the right front. I called the dealer and asked why they had not just exchanged front to rear as is required for radial tires.
I was told that it was an "honest mistake" and it should not make a big difference.
Two days later I noticed the left front tire was very low on air. I looked at my receipt and realized that they had not repaired the slow leak and had just aired up the tire and moved it to the left front. I dropped the car back off for the tire repair that I originally stopped in for. I of course got a call back stating that there was a nail in the tire and it was (of course) dangerously close to the sidewall and must be replaced.
$300+ later I picked up my car.

Over the last couple of weeks I have noticed the car pulling to the left.
I was planning on dropping the car of again tomorrow to take another beating.
I took the time to look over the tires this evening (I didn't want to be told that I had another defective tire) and to my surprize found that the tire that they replaced was a different size than the other three. I have (3) 245-45-r-17 and one 245-40-r17 that they installed.

Can someone please tell me the effect that this would have on the car's performance? With one tire 5mm shorter would that cause a pull to that side of the car?

Thanks for letting me vent and I really need your imput.:surrender:
 

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95 SL500, K&N, NEOKEN Ported TB, Custom Intake, RENNtech Sport Exhaust, AMG I Monoblocks
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Can someone please tell me the effect that this would have on the car's performance?
With one tire 5mm shorter would that cause a pull to that side of the car?
A (-5mm) sidewall profile would be sufficient enought to create a pull to that side.
However, please note that the difference in sidewall height between a 245-45 and 245-40 is much more than 5mm.

45 indicates that the tire size's sidewall height is 45% of its tread section width of 245mm, and does not translate to 45mm.
The actual difference in sidewall height between the two profiles are 12.25mm.
 

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Departed 1998 SL500 (and the Pano is in Bogota)
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Car Dealers are usually not a good place for tires as they don't really have the volume so the guy working on it is not a full time 'tire guy'. Also you should check the date code on your new tires as they might have been sitting around for a while.
 

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MB SL600, MB 380SE, Suzuki Grand Vitara, 38' Chris-Craft, Volvo V70XC, and my own two feet...
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Sounds like Mercedes of Daytona, lol...wonder if they're also Sonic Automotive? That'd explain it.
 

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2015 Jaguar XF R Sport Twin Turbo, 1992 500sl Pano, 1999 CBR 1100XX, Super BlackBird, Jaguar X Type
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A (-5mm) sidewall profile would be sufficient enought to create a pull to that side.
However, please note that the difference in sidewall height between a 245-45 and 245-40 is much more than 5mm.

45 indicates that the tire size's sidewall height is 45% of its tread section width of 245mm, and does not translate to 45mm.
The actual difference in sidewall height between the two profiles are 12.25mm.

Which would be x2 giving a 25-26mm overall dif in the wheel diameters. I would complain to Mercedes if they will not put it all right. I'm sure they would be pretty non plused if you posted to them what you posted to us.
 

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Sold1990 500sl - 1992 300sl 1999 sl 500
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Which would be x2 giving a 25-26mm overall dif in the wheel diameters. I would complain to Mercedes if they will not put it all right. I'm sure they would be pretty non plused if you posted to them what you posted to us.
I would also complain to mercedes benz ,go over their heads, I think odd tyre sizes on the same axle are illegal here don't know about usa if so they have put you in difficult situation if you are stopped by the police ,hope all goes well for you
 

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1983 300cd
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127 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Thanks to everyone that responded. I stopped by the dealer this morning and explained the situation. They were very professional and immediatley acknowledged responsibility and are as I write this are replacing the tire at their expense. Thanks again for your help. It was a lot easier to explain the problem to them once I understood the implications of the improper tire size. I love this forum.
 

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2004 CLK 240 Coupe
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This is a typical example of how customers can get treated when things get sloppy in the workshop management structure. Straightforward work gets passed to an inexperienced worker, and nobody cares to check before it gets passed back to the trusting customer....:(

It seems that your dealership is now suitably apologetic for the mistakes that have occurred, but it must leave a doubt in your mind if you can ever trust them again.....
 

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1997 SL500, 1948 Rover 75 P3, 1984 Citroen 2CV, 1953 BSA Bantam D1, 1966 Velosolex Moped
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Thanks to everyone that responded. I stopped by the dealer this morning and explained the situation. They were very professional and immediatley acknowledged responsibility and are as I write this are replacing the tire at their expense. Thanks again for your help. It was a lot easier to explain the problem to them once I understood the implications of the improper tire size. I love this forum.
I'm glad you got the problem sorted, it really was a shameful performance by this dealership. I wanted to ask the more knowledgable members of this forum whether there are any repercussions with regard to the anti lock braking or the traction control systems? As I understand it, the four signals coming from the wheels have to be roughly the same or else the system thinks one wheel is skidding and would apply the brakes to that wheel. If one wheel is smaller or bigger than the others, might the car not continually apply it's brakes in an attempt to correct a perceived skid? Should VCG get MB to check his brake shoes / rotors? Or would it have been obvious from the flashing lights on the dashboard?

Regards
Steve
 

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Departed 1998 SL500 (and the Pano is in Bogota)
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If the rolling circumference of all 4 are within 3% of each other, they are considered a matched set. More than 3% will raise problem with the cruise control and braking system as they may consider the faster rotating wheel slipping. Whether the dash lights come on will depend on how much are the differences.

The first thing that wouldn't work would be the cruise control, as it is fed with 'error' signals, it just shuts itself down by default. As far as ASR/ESP slip control to cut in to apply the brake, it might need more wheel speed differences to be considered 'skid', and the dash light will come on when they do.
 

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1983 300cd
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Discussion Starter #12
I picked up the car yesterday afternoon. While the dealer was gracious enough to replace the tire at their expense, They did add an upcharge of $20.00 for the larger tire. After a breif discussion (including the phrase "you have to be out of your ****in minds") they agreed to remove the charge.
A couple posts question why I would return to this dealership after such poor performance. Overlooking the "maybe I am just stupid" possibility, I would in my defense offer the following answers.
1. While going to the dealer may be more expensive than a heroin addiction they usually provide factory trained mechanics that are familliar with the car's features and special needs.
2.Up until the current tire issue they were pricey but did decent work.
3.I have had a 300td, a 250c, a 450sl, a 560sl and now the current sl500. Over the last few years I have worked four different independent shops claiming to be Mercedes specialists. I have recieved poor workmanship, grossly overpriced repairs, damage to my cars and one that kept my car for two months and wouldn't return my calls.
4. I have tried to work with the local familly owned repair shops that work on all cars. They do not know things like the wheel weights go on the inside of wheels on Mercedes or anything about the car's system but are great for changing tires but that is about it.

When dealing with any business you have to go in with the idea that everyone is entitled to a bad day. They made good on the tire repair and once I decide wheather to continue to have my car serviced or send my children to college I will probably return.

The car drives great and shows no evidence of damage to the traction control.
Thanks again to everyone for their help.
 
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