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Discussion Starter #1
hi, new to the club and new to owning a merc.

today i purchased a 1999 a160 avantgarde auto.

the seller told me that the car needed a new battery but he jump started it for me before we arrive as it has been sitting for 2 weeks.

everything seemed fine on a slow drive but the tracking seemed a little out (pulling left) and it had a baldy nearside front tire.

the problems started when i got onto the motorway in the rain. i was doing 50- 60 and the car felt like i was on ice as if the back in was stepping in and out VERY SCARY!!. When i returned home i turned the car off and now it wont start and gives me a loud whining noise from what i think is the starter.

after hating myself for a few moments for buying the thing i checked the battery and it looks BRAND NEW. i contacted the seller and asked him how he managed to start the car. he replied it needs a jump start but i told him the battery is new then he said it might be the starter.

as you can imagine im seriously peed off at the moment and need some help from experienced owners or mechanics.

so to summerise it all up for those who dont want to read my story above lol

1. car wont start and has a whining noise coming from what i think is the starter

2. extremely scary handling on motor way almost like im on ice. was told so far it may be subframe bolts.

thanks in advance for any help you can give me.
 

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W168, W169 Moderator
A180 CVT, A170, A190, B200
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469 Posts

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You need to replace the rear trailing arms and whilst you are at it the rear shocks as well. It's great fun driving like that, until it throws you off the road. It's a fairly easy job once you have sourced the parts.
 

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A160 W168 /2002
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546 Posts
Take a look at my web site it may help you with some of the problems you have even if you cannot repair it yourself and a replacement flywheel is an engine out job , it will give you some idea of cost , I also have a CD which has masses more information on it than the site, some w169 information files as well
Good luck.
Lofty
go:-http://www.aclassinfo.co.uk/
 

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2001 A170 CDi. '87 BMW 320i. '95 Eagle SS Kit car, '99 Suzuki AN400X
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177 Posts
It's a bit too late now but the best advise one can give a prospective A-class auto buyer is , DON'T DO IT! They are the biggest load of crap ever to carry the three pointed star. My 2001 A170 CDi has cost over 4,000€ in 5 years mostly on the automatic gearbox but also speedo, multi switch, trim parts breaking, engine mounts, struts and dampers, ball joints. etc.Do yourself a favour, flog it and buy a Ford.
 

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W168, W169 Moderator
A180 CVT, A170, A190, B200
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469 Posts
come on black eagle, as I always say "the biggest problem with mercedes a class is allways a bad mechanic".
I get these cars on a regular basis, I even rescue them before going to the scrapyard.
I buy them from mercedes specialists and car dealers who can't deal with them, fix them and give them a new life and sell them to people who love them.
this is what I do for living.
it's the mechanic who can make you love or hate your car.
 

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2001 A170 CDi. '87 BMW 320i. '95 Eagle SS Kit car, '99 Suzuki AN400X
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177 Posts
Ah come on, The A–class, (mostly the auto) has such a bad reputation I'm surprised anyone buys them. I bought mine thinking it was a Mercedes and had Mercedes build quality, wrong!
First the MkI fell over, then the gearboxes went and cost a bomb to fix and no recall either. Multi switch design fault definitely weak, ball joints on wishbones too weak and as for the trim, well if just falls of at will, third brake light covers falls off at the slightest tap, inner door sills break away from the vertical fixing plate, speedo covers vibrate, rubbish Italian Marelli speedo etc..
As for accessibility, there are so few owner accessible parts other than filters it makes it a very expensive car to own as it has to go into a garage every time, simple things like, temp sensor, starter motor, exhaust, thermostat, oil lever sensor. The first thing you read is "You have to drop the engine", (OK, WE know a way around most of them), even something as simple as changing the belt or tensioner is a pain.
However good ones mechanic is, and I'm one of the best all round old school ones I know, it cannot compensate for rubbish design, poor materials or poor serviceability. This unfortunate trend towards unserviceable cars with a ten year life span built in is a growing one. Comparing the A-class to a REAL Mercedes pre 2000, such as my 1987 190E 2.3-16v shows to have more in common with a Chrysler and has a comparable build quality with my wife’s Opel Corsa B 1.4 sport! At least that is easy to work on and doesn’t cost a mortgage to repair.
Why have I got one then? well, short of nearly giving it away, no one will buy the bloody thing.
 
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