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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
They will send them to a freight forwarder, which is how I get my parts from them.

You can register for free and get an address in the USA. http://www.bongous.com

Alternatively, MB of South Atlanta will ship direct to you, but charge full MSRP.
Genuine Mercedes-Benz Parts and Accessories brought to you by Mercedes-Benz of South Atlanta
Don't wish to hijack this thread, but it would be really interesting/helpful if you could elaborate on your actual experience of this service. What sorts of things you purchased, whether you were able to consolidate and save on freight, whether you were hit by unexpected costs (over and above GST and 5% duties) like local delivery surcharges etc., actual shipping timing. I just ordered a complete set of after-market MB Tex seat covers (front and jump seats) for my 280SL from the USA and had some other parts sent to the upholsterer to consolidate for shipping. Saved me $300 in freight, but its not always this easy.

Can I suggest you start a new thread on freight consolidation for us Ozzies?
RJV, it costs at least US$53.03 to have a Small Box (320 x 280 x 40 mm) shipped via FedEx International Economy. One took 8 days to arrive.

As parts bought from AU dealers are marked up by at least 100% on the US MSRP, you only have to buy $50-60 worth of parts to break even. Any more than that and you're ahead.

As long as your whole shipment is under AU$1000 in value, you don't have to pay any GST or customs fees. But if it is over $1000, you can get hit for around $300 extra in GST, customs duty, and customs clearance fees.

I buy absolutely everything I need from the USA now. Even the tiniest items, like washer pump grommets, oil drain sealing rings, screws and light bulbs. Around here, my local dealer wants $7 for a grommet, $8 for one light bulb, and $6 for a screw. I just toss them in with 9 litres of Mobil 1 - it's cheaper to airmail a case of oil than to buy it locally.
 

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Thanks for starting the thread. :)

I am familiar with GST rates, thresholds and import duties etc. Over a number of years I've personally imported and cleared through customs lots of very large and expensive objects - boats, trailers, jet skis etc., shipped from the USA in 40HQ containers, scores of guitars from USA, and lots of musical instruments from Hong Kong. And, like you, often (very often!) I purchase ad hoc from overseas. To illustrate the point, right now I am waiting on a number of items to arrive - an MB D2B cable from the USA, some hi-fi parts from Asia, some electronic parts from Sydney, a masthead wind vane for a yacht from the UK, and some upholstery for my 280SL from the USA. Very, very few things are "low cost" in Australia. A week would not pass without at least two parcels being delivered to my door. In November I am planning to go to either Hong Kong/China or the USA for a week specifically to buy rather than holiday.

However, there are a lot of USA suppliers who won't ship internationally, or if they do, then the shipping rates make it uneconomic. Sometimes this seems to be unintentional - the online shipping calculators they have on their sites are just not configured to provide more economic shipping options - and at other times the supplier seems to want to price gouge on international shipping.

For example, there are some very economic international shipping options offered by USPS (flat rate parcels etc.), but if the calculator is driven by weight or size only, then these options never get offered. As a consequence shipping might be quoted at, say, $50, when blind Freddy can see that there are perfectly acceptable $15 options available. Whilst FedEx and UPS may be cost effective within the USA their international pricing is very inconsistent - sometimes it makes sense to use them, but not often.

I wanted to buy a pair of the "horsehair" backrest pads for the front seats of my 280SL. A USA supplier sells them for $149 each and will ship the pair of them anywhere in the top 48 states for less than $20, but his online calculator quoted $330 to ship two of them to Australia. Needless to say I didn't buy. Compare this with the USA upholsterer who will supply me with new MB-Tex seat covers, backrest covers, headrest covers, door covers, rear jump seat seat and backrest covers, and the matching trim on the soft top lid (all for my 280SL) and also cover shipping to Australia all for $1100. For an extra $400 he will buy the backrest pads from the first supplier and consolidate them with his shipment to me .... so he is only charging $100 "extra" to ship the backrests.

I am particularly interested in your experience of the USA freight forwarder - Bongo US (or a similar operator). Have you used them to consolidate purchases from multiple USA suppliers, have these been easy/difficult, do they communicate well, do they get it "right" etc., is their all up cost truly all up (excluding GST, duties, customs clearance if these apply)? They claim delivery within 5 days ..... did they?

I think it would be useful for a lot of members here to be able to confidently overcome the "we don't ship internationally" policy on several of the USA based MB parts supplier's web sites. It will make for much cheaper running costs for our MLs.

Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
When I first started using them, Bongo International were hopeless. A year later, they have made a few procedural and policy changes, mostly for the better.

Freight forwarding is basically a scam, but then so is overseas MB parts pricing, so you have to decide who is ripping you off the least.

For Bongo, the worst example was a packet of 7 springs. The incoming package barely registered on the scales at 0.1 lb, but they opened the package, weighed one spring (allegedly 0.5 lb) and multiplied that by 7. Due to rounding, that package would have been forwarded at 4 lbs.

I pointed the error out to customer service, who told me I had to pay $2 to have it reweighed. If they are in error, they refund the $2. They declared the original measurement correct and kept the $2.

Mistakes do occur, but then there was the case of oil. Incoming box (9 qts) 20.0 lb, weighed the 6-qt carton at 12.1 lb, x2=24.2 lb. Rounds to 25.0 lb for forwarding. Paid the $2 for reweigh, again told the original weight was correct.

Eventually these problems were resolved, my package was sent, and the reweigh charges refunded. I avoided paying to ship an extra 8 lb for nothing.

Since then, they have increased their shipping options to include International Economy (previously everything was sent Priority/Express). Now all items are photographed for free (was $2 per image). Before they had 2 tiers of membership (one paid, one free), but now it's all free.

Raya uses MyUS and buys from genuinemercedesparts.com. He says they charge a monthly fee to maintain your US address, where Bongo no longer do.
 

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Thanks, that's a sorry saga. There are only two reasons to use an operator like Bongo - firstly, to provide you with a "USA address" to appease a seller who won't supply internationally and, secondly, to consolidate shipments and save on freight. It can't be too hard for an operator to deliver on both, but it seems the temptation to price gouge on freight is too strong.
 

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Where are some good places to buy ML parts in the states? Also the ML270 wasnt sold in the states, so it makes it hard to find parts.
 

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Where are some good places to buy ML parts in the states? Also the ML270 wasnt sold in the states, so it makes it hard to find parts.
I think if you elaborated on what parts you need you would get a more helpful reply.

There are lots of good suppliers in the USA but some "specialise" in certain parts (e.g. brakes and suspension only, or consumables only, or accessories only). Also, the vast majority of USA based suppliers either will not ship internationally, or if they do then the shipping costs quoted defeat the whole objective of purchasing internationally (to reduce cost).

So I suggest you list the key parts you are interested in.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Where are some good places to buy ML parts in the states? Also the ML270 wasn't sold in the states, so it makes it hard to find parts.
If you read my first two posts, I've mentioned the popular ones. And from a previous thread:
To get cheaper MB parts from the USA into Australia there are 2 basic types of sellers.
(1) Full-priced MB dealers that will export directly. e.g. MB of South Atlanta (trading as MBpartsworld.com)
(2) Discount parts dealers that won't export, e.g. MBOnlineParts.com, RMeuropean.com. However, they will send your parts via a freight forwarder.

The difference is, a direct exporter can give you more options e.g. cheaper methods. MBpartsworld sent me a box via Fedex International Economy which took a few days extra but saved $$. My freight forwarder sends everything by Air Express, which is the most expensive way.

You have to do the math to work out which is better. If you're spending a few hundred, the money you save in the discount makes up for the express shipping.
Bear in mind that the majority of parts sold for ML320 are the same as for ML270, with the exception of the engine of course. It's possible to buy directly from European dealers, but you might need to use a freight forwarder with an EU address if they won't ship to Australia.

Parts.com offers the lowest prices but don't accept overseas payments, so if the price you find is comparable to theirs then you can stop searching.
 

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For outbackjack

Data card for OBJ
 

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Thanks and confirms my vehicle is the Luxury Spec. I wasnt sure before.

Cant wait to get A/C fixed. Its too hot and humid here to drive around with out. Also the radiator fans not working, I think this is the fault caused by AAM.

Will update on how I go with pontentiol new supplier for AUS.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Outbackjack promised to update this thread but hasn't, so I will. He discovered the Holy Grail of genuine MB parts suppliers, offering discounts on a par with parts.com and direct international shipping.

www.rtpartsco.com

So far members in AU and the UK have successfully imported parts, at the lowest possible overall cost compared to anywhere in the world.

If you choose to use this company but have any problems, please post in this thread so I can modify this recommendation with a caveat.

For example, they are busy ordering, picking and shipping orders, so you'll get better results if you checkout and pay, as opposed to sending e-mails along the lines of "Can you order this part for me?"
 

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Sorry, I had been busy,


Also not being online much. My car is still offroad.


I can confirm RT Partsco are really good on price, freight arrives quickly.

Only problem is I dont think they do diesel parts.


OBJ
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Members outside the USA can buy the cheapest genuine MB parts in the known universe, from a US MB dealership who will export directly: Discount Mercedes-Benz Parts

This service is available from MB of South Atlanta, who also run a full-priced online parts store: Mercedes-Benz Parts - Shop Genuine Mercedes Parts Online at Mercedes-Benz of South Atlanta. This has a superior EPC-based catalog which you can use to look up part numbers, then paste them into the mymercedesparts site's search box to figure out the discounts and order.

Fill out your details, leaving country as USA and the state blank. Put your country in the City address line, next to your city & state/province. Choose a shipping option such as "FedEx Ground Service" that requires an extra calculation. In the message box, ask if they can send it to your overseas (or non-US) address, using FedEx International Economy (that's the cheapest).

Be patient. After they confirm your order, you can expect to wait for a week or more for the part to come in, then they will give you the shipping quote for your acceptance.

The only downside is that this dealership will not ship fluids. However, www.mbonlineparts.com will, but you have to use a freight forwarder.
 

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Thank you keeping our members in other parts the planet up to speed on the international parts shipping from the US.
 

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I have been using genuinemercedesparts for the last three years. (Genuine Mercedes Parts). I have placed over 20 orders and have never had a problem. They don't source RHD parts but will chase up other obscure bits and pieces. I have only returned one part (my fault) and they replaced it without a problem.
 

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I have been using genuinemercedesparts for the last three years. (Genuine Mercedes Parts). I have placed over 20 orders and have never had a problem. They don't source RHD parts but will chase up other obscure bits and pieces. I have only returned one part (my fault) and they replaced it without a problem.
I've visited their web site before but thought it strange that they do not declare which country they are in, no phone number, no email address etc. All very strangely secretive (unless I missed seeing it).

And then this on their shipping page : "INTERNATIONAL ORDERS: We are unable to sell or ship internationally. We only sell and ship to the contiguous 48 United States."
 
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