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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
ok, what is the deal with ESP? Should I feel a difference (better acceleration, faster shifts, more power?) when I turn it off? Do most of you drive with it off? I live in San Diego where we have very mild winters and it hardly ever rains. Do I even need to have the ESP on? I understand it controls the rear wheels from spinning and improves traction during hard cornering but should I have it on while on the Freeway?
thanks for any input
 

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Just leave it on all the time. It won't interfere with normal or even quite spirited driving, and in the event you have to react quickly it will protect you. Head to a track day you might think about turning it off to explore limits if you have a good runoff area.

Take care and enjoy the ride,
Greg
 

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you really should not turn it off
the car records that info and if something breaks, your warranty might not cover everything

the handbook states that
 

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ok, what is the deal with ESP? Should I feel a difference (better acceleration, faster shifts, more power?) when I turn it off? Do most of you drive with it off? I live in San Diego where we have very mild winters and it hardly ever rains. Do I even need to have the ESP on? I understand it controls the rear wheels from spinning and improves traction during hard cornering but should I have it on while on the Freeway?
thanks for any input
ESP does not improve traction, how could one increase friction between the tyre and the road? ESP keeps the car stable at hard cornering (also when driving straight, like on ice, not an issue for you in San Diego) buy keeping the speed acceptable and using individual brakes to steer the car.

ASR eliminates tyre slip, ASR is switched off (mostly) when ESP is switched off, a careful driver may get better acceleration figures if allowing wheels slip to some extent but not too much. In practise at normal traffic ASR would do it better.

ASR only reduces engine power if wheel slippage is too high (brakes are applied first).

The main use for "ESP OFF" is at soft sand or on a lot of snow where wheel slippage is useful to gain grip from the ground once the slippery snow gets removed or so.
 

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The main use for "ESP OFF" is at soft sand or on a lot of snow where wheel slippage is useful to gain grip from the ground once the slippery snow gets removed or so.
Excellent point on the sand/snow conditions. ESP OFF is great for spinning donuts in an empty parking lot with a little snow/ice on the ground. But also useful to pull out of a slight ditch. ESP often "undercompensates" when all you need is little extra spin to get unstuck.
 

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Yes for safety reasons, leave it on.
 

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Electronic Stability Control has been proven to be the single most important safety feature available today.
Turning it off, even temporarily, for anything other than to get out of sand or snow, is simply a very dumb thing to do.
Do your family and passengers and other road users, a favor - leave the ESP ON.:)
 

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I keep ESP ON. This is an exception when you have to turn it off for some reason but you'd better be a PRO to ride a car w/o it in tough road conditions
 

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I keep ESP ON. This is an exception when you have to turn it off for some reason but you'd better be a PRO to ride a car w/o it in tough road conditions
WOW, what have we done all these years without ESP?
It's amazing that our highways aren't littered with bodies and debris!:eek:
 

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The highways were littered with dead and injured - before ESP:
"Killed by Car Accidents

Highway fatalities account for more than 94% of all transportation deaths. There were an estimated 6,289,000 car accidents in the US in 1999. There were about 3.4 million injuries and 41,611 people killed in auto accidents in 1999. The total number of people killed in highway crashes in 2001 was 42,116, compared to 41,945 in 2000. An average of 114 people die each day in car crashes in the U.S."
And, that is just one sample of US statistics - don't forget Europe Asia.....:eek:
 

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The highways were littered with dead and injured - before ESP:
"Killed by Car Accidents

Highway fatalities account for more than 94% of all transportation deaths. There were an estimated 6,289,000 car accidents in the US in 1999. There were about 3.4 million injuries and 41,611 people killed in auto accidents in 1999. The total number of people killed in highway crashes in 2001 was 42,116, compared to 41,945 in 2000. An average of 114 people die each day in car crashes in the U.S."
And, that is just one sample of US statistics - don't forget Europe Asia.....:eek:
Wow, I see dead people.
 

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Well even with ESP switched off it will still keep you from doing stupid stuff like burning out or sliding off the road into a ditch. For the people who do feel like playing around with their new c classes there is a dyno mode :) . You can access it through the steering wheel using the same sequence as the service interval reset. For those of you who dont know it, here it is.

1. get in and close door
2. put key in ignition
3. turn key to position 1
4. press and hold phone answer and "OK" for 5 seconds
5. use arrows to navigate

Good luck and have a little fun
 

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According to the manual:
It may be best to deactivate ESP® in the following situations:
*when using snow chains
* in deep snow
* on sand or gravel

If you deactivate ESP®:

* ESP® no longer improves driving stability.
* the engine's torque is no longer limited and the drive wheels can spin. Spinning of the wheels results in a cutting action, which provides better grip.
* traction control is still activated.
* ESP® still provides support when you brake.
 

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According to the manual:
It may be best to deactivate ESP® in the following situations:
*when using snow chains
* in deep snow
* on sand or gravel

If you deactivate ESP®:

* ESP® no longer improves driving stability.
* the engine's torque is no longer limited and the drive wheels can spin. Spinning of the wheels results in a cutting action, which provides better grip.
* traction control is still activated.
* ESP® still provides support when you brake.
That for the most part is true but it will only allow a little bit of slip just to gain traction. It will not allow you to sit and burn out if anyone wanted to do that??? :thumbsup: For most of the people on here you probably don't ever do that and there really isn't any reason to deactive ESP or enter dyno mode.
 

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I would like to know the same thing. I know the dyno mode is there, EVERYTHING is gone. Including ABS. I wonder if theres a way to disable everything BUT ABS, just to take away the worry of locking up the brakes if you're doing some spirited driving :p
 

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That for the most part is true but it will only allow a little bit of slip just to gain traction. It will not allow you to sit and burn out if anyone wanted to do that???
Well, that's not what I bought this car for and wouldn't make a habit out of it but, I'd have to disagree because I have done it.
I got a pretty healthy burnout with the thing already, and without any power braking.

Try it if you want.
Take off ESP.
Put it in "S".
stuff your right foot in it.
It will spin pretty good. (this is a C350).
 

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More for people in areas where you get snow and ice. Being from Canada I can attest to that. It helps in icy conditions to keep you from fish tailing and loosing control.

Lar
 

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I was driving my 09 c300 4matic on the highway yesterday. All of a sudden the "ESP" unavailable light came on, and the yellow "!" light joined in. The car slowed down to 40 mph, and wouldn't let me accelerate. I had to pull off the highway, shut my engine off, and restart it. After I did that, it was fine.... anyone else have this problem? It seemed like a computer issue. Very odd.
 
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