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2001 SLK320, 2001 C320
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I thought an "A" service was supposed to cost about 85 bucks. Not at my local dealership. No sir. 221 bucks for a glorified oil change. 1.5 hours labor?

Oh...and they suggested replacing the spark plugs for $445. Yeah, right.

I was a fool. I'd never before paid for scheduled maintenance at the dealer. Guess what? I will NEVER again have an A or B service performed at the dealer.

Talk about a white glove enema...
 

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Send a letter to MB HQ, noting that it hurts you and MB if their dealers are not reasonable about charges for service and that you are surprised that while MB cannot set prices, MB does not set some guidelines for its dealers so as not to extort its subscribers. Let them know that with dealers like this, people will be disinclined to buy a MB again.
 

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2001 SLK320, 2001 C320
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
An "A" service is very simple:

Change the oil and filter. Check other fluid levels.
Inspect the rest of car for repair opportunities ($$$ for dealer)
Suggest scheduled maintenance ($$$ for dealer)

So if you do an A service PLUS whatever they suggest, it's BIG BUCKS for the dealer.

For example, it was suggested I replace my air filters, replace my spark plugs, replace my front end bushings.

I can do the air filters myself (I just checked and they don't need it).
I can replace the spark plugs (for those of you who think it's hard...you never owned an old Corvette). But they have lots of life left...trust me.
The bushings will let me know when they need repairing (they will go "clunk clunk", which is German for "take me to an indie mechanic!".)

Take that, MBUSA!!!
 

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99 230slk
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Lol, if you really want to feel stung try the UK service prices.. £275 ($508) for an A service and wait for it (drumroll).....................£485 ($897) for a B service at my local Stealership. And thats before they pile on any extras. Ouch!!
 

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1999 SLK230
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My local (Bethesda, MD) stealership also charges something in excess of $200 for an A service. This was as of about three years ago which was the last time I took my 99 SLK there. My advice is to find an independent shop, which I did, or learn how to do most of the basic stuff yourself, which I also did. My general rule of thumb is that if I can do it from the top I do it myself and that's about 80% of the regularly scheduled stuff. If it requires that the car go up on a lift, I take it to the independent shop that I use. The A service for my car calls for 6 quarts of oil, I use Mobil 1 or NAPA, and a new oil filter, about $5 for OEM on the Internet. I use the same suction pump that I use on my boat, about $50 in any marine supply store. In other words, about $35 for oil and filter and next to nothing for the suction pump if you amortize it over the life of your car. I never take a phone into the garage and I always tell my wife how much money I am saving by doing the work myself.
 

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2002 SLK 32 AMG
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441 Posts
Pfft, you wanna talk about rape? The dealer didn't like the generic lugs that Good Year put in on my car. so they replaced the rear ten. They charged me 230.00! When I found out the lugs only cost 4.30 each, I was furious! The guy made it sound like they were special lugs for high speed etc. Pffft. For now on, I'm going to call around to double check prices and not just trust the dealership that I was trying to have a long term relationship with.

John
 

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2002 SLK 32 AMG, bone stock. 1987 190E 2.3-16 valve (destroyed). 2005 E320 new toy.
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John Boy 330xi said:
Pfft, you wanna talk about rape? The dealer didn't like the generic lugs that Good Year put in on my car. so they replaced the rear ten. They charged me 230.00! When I found out the lugs only cost 4.30 each, I was furious! The guy made it sound like they were special lugs for high speed etc. Pffft. For now on, I'm going to call around to double check prices and not just trust the dealership that I was trying to have a long term relationship with.
John
So John Boy, at $23.00 a bolt you didn't ask for the certificate that showed that the bolts were 99.99% pure silver? :D
Seriously, I have to ask why you didn't tell them to put the old ones back on..... The last bolts I saw that cost $23.00 each were stainless steel, 2-1/4" in diameter and 8" long. That sounds like a hose job that could have been avoided................;)
 

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2002 SLK 32 AMG
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Bruce, your right! I questioned it over and over. The reason I ended up in this position was because when Good year put on my after market winter rims and blizzak tires, the original MB lugs were to long in the back, so, they cut some lugs up at the shop and put them in. Well, I had MB inspect the job sortly after because prior to them cutting the new lugs, they used the old ones, backed the car out of the store and ripped my emergency brake system apart, and when Goodyear was fixing that, I was watching them ream the holes the lugs went into with a thread reamer!!!

MB inspected the job, the brakes are fine, the holes are fine, but they didn't like the lugs, they already rusted within 3 weeks. So, here I am, nearly 100 miles away at the dealership from where I live and they call me up to tell me they should be replaced. I questioned the price a dozen times, again, they just made it sound like they were special grade materials for high performance. Later, I find it was just an outrageous labor rate. I'm still not done with them over this. In fact, that dealership that I bought both my MB's with, just lost this most recent repair to my SLK. If this other dealership treats me better, they'll lose more than just my repairs, but the next sale as well. Hey, 230 bucks pays my cell phone, my tv and my home phone and my internet cable bill for the month!
 

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Well that explains a lot. I guess the dealer figured anyone who let a tire dealer cut lug bolts, etc., to fit was an easy target for a $230 fix.
 

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2002 SLK 32 AMG, bone stock. 1987 190E 2.3-16 valve (destroyed). 2005 E320 new toy.
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John Boy 330xi said:
MB inspected the job, the brakes are fine, the holes are fine, but they didn't like the lugs, they already rusted within 3 weeks. So, here I am, nearly 100 miles away at the dealership from where I live and they call me up to tell me they should be replaced. I questioned the price a dozen times, again, they just made it sound like they were special grade materials for high performance. Later, I find it was just an outrageous labor rate. I'm still not done with them over this. In fact, that dealership that I bought both my MB's with, just lost this most recent repair to my SLK. If this other dealership treats me better, they'll lose more than just my repairs, but the next sale as well. Hey, 230 bucks pays my cell phone, my tv and my home phone and my internet cable bill for the month!
I would have to say you got "screwed"..... :D Sorry about that :D it was an opening I just couldn't resist ... :D More to the point, if the screws that Goodyear used rusted, so be it, that's just a lousy plating job, it doesn't nessicarily effect the strength of the bolts, and they are only Winter tires and wheels. Clean and paint the bolt with some hammer tone paint when you put your Summer wheels on. Hammer tone is thick heavy duty paint that can take abuse.
Tell the dealer to take his $144.00 "screw job" ($230, -$86 for 20 bolts) where the sun don't shine... that is the most abusive nonsense I have heard of. I would advise MB-USA of this abuse in front of the dealers rep. Call MB-USA ( the number should be in your glove box) while your there if it's not to late, and see if they can help.
 

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well, i just dont take my car to the stealership anymore since the warranty expired on me, which a totally got everydamn benefit from that warranty anyonse could ask for, Im also blessed with the fact that my MB mechanich at the dealer (a good friend of mine), left the mb dealer and opened his own performance / custom fab. shop... along with some other gearheads, so that is where my car goes in now for regular stuff...

although I do think I need to replace some bushings :(
 

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2001 SLK320 ; 2000 E320
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Ok, I live here in North Carolina. How much should I expect to pay for an "A" or "B" service? The last A service I had was while my car was under warranty. Nonetheless, my car indicates I need a service in 15 days. Oh, by the way, I have a 2001 SLK 320.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
2001SilverSLK320 said:
Ok, I live here in North Carolina. How much should I expect to pay for an "A" or "B" service? The last A service I had was while my car was under warranty. Nonetheless, my car indicates I need a service in 15 days. Oh, by the way, I have a 2001 SLK 320.
Over 200 dollars.

Quite frankly, if you can do the oil change yourself and are used to making the usual checks of air filter, etc....you can save big bucks over the so-called "A service."

However, don't even THINK of taking your car to one of those "quick-lube" shops. That would be the worst alternative of all!
 

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page62 said:
Over 200 dollars.

Quite frankly, if you can do the oil change yourself and are used to making the usual checks of air filter, etc....you can save big bucks over the so-called "A service."

However, don't even THINK of taking your car to one of those "quick-lube" shops. That would be the worst alternative of all!
Thanks page62. I would never take it to a "quick-lube" shop, that is just dangerous. :)
 

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I overheard them talking at the dealership that the labor rate is $113.00 hr.

"A" Service is 250.00 here.
 

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2001SilverSLK320 said:
Thanks page62. I would never take it to a "quick-lube" shop, that is just dangerous. :)
I dont agree. If they suck the oil out, replace with mobil 0/40 plus change filter its the exact same as a dealer or us at home:confused:
Just find a place you can watch.

Bazzle
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Bazzle said:
I dont agree. If they suck the oil out, replace with mobil 0/40 plus change filter its the exact same as a dealer or us at home:confused:
Just find a place you can watch.

Bazzle
Apparently, you've never been to one of our illustrious quick-lube joints. For starters, they wouldn't have a TopSider. For seconds, they wouldn't know where to find the filter. And thirdly, even if they did have the tools they would find a way to frig the whole thing up!!!

Trust me! :D
 

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page62 said:
Apparently, you've never been to one of our illustrious quick-lube joints. For starters, they wouldn't have a TopSider. For seconds, they wouldn't know where to find the filter. And thirdly, even if they did have the tools they would find a way to frig the whole thing up!!!

Trust me! :D
And, Bazzle - if you going to watch them violating your car - you guaranteed to have nightmares. And they probably have no idea what's the difference between Mercedes fleece filter and 1.99$ Fram's special.
 

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John Boy 330xi said:
Bruce, your right! I questioned it over and over. The reason I ended up in this position was because when Good year put on my after market winter rims and blizzak tires, the original MB lugs were to long in the back, so, they cut some lugs up at the shop and put them in. Well, I had MB inspect the job sortly after because prior to them cutting the new lugs, they used the old ones, backed the car out of the store and ripped my emergency brake system apart, and when Goodyear was fixing that, I was watching them ream the holes the lugs went into with a thread reamer!!!

MB inspected the job, the brakes are fine, the holes are fine, but they didn't like the lugs, they already rusted within 3 weeks. So, here I am, nearly 100 miles away at the dealership from where I live and they call me up to tell me they should be replaced. I questioned the price a dozen times, again, they just made it sound like they were special grade materials for high performance. Later, I find it was just an outrageous labor rate. I'm still not done with them over this. In fact, that dealership that I bought both my MB's with, just lost this most recent repair to my SLK. If this other dealership treats me better, they'll lose more than just my repairs, but the next sale as well. Hey, 230 bucks pays my cell phone, my tv and my home phone and my internet cable bill for the month!
Yeah they love to get you in a position where you don't have a choice.

I had an issue a couple of months on a Sunday evening ago where the transmission started jumping in and out of limp mode. I figured it was my transmission finally giving out. When it acted up, I would just restart the car to reset the transmission. Limp mode is generally second gear. The last time I restarted the car, the car stayed in first. I drove it for about a mile or so when the check engine light came on. I stopped the car on the side of the road to see if restarting it would fix the problem long enough to get home. Click, click click. The car won't start now. I figured now was a good time to use the mechanic button I pay $400 a year for. It took 10 minutes for the operator to come on. The operator took my information and said the roadside maintainence driver would be contacting me. An hour and a half later, I received a call on my wife's cell (there is a longer version of this story, that sets this MB service story in perspective).

His response was that it was the battery. Curious, since I just had my car in for an A service (yes the $220 one). I would have assumed they check the battery. Evindently they don't. The driver said he had to check the battery first. I was second in line and he would be out in an hour or so. By the time the driver got out there, it had been 3 hours since the first call. I had been listening to the radio the entire time, so there was still juice in the battery. He jumped the battery and the car started right up. Guess the battery was the problem and the transmission is sensitive to low voltage. The driver then says that he gave away his last battery to the previous helpee and that I would have schedule an appointment when I got home. He said the battery was $140 and that they would not charge me labor since it was their fault that he didn't have a spare battery. I figured would drop the car off at the dealer to have my transmission shift issue fixed.

The dealer had an appointment opening on the following Thursday, so I had to car pool for the week. I had previous plans to drive to Tahoe that weekend. On the way out the door, I received a call from the dealership. $460 to replace the battery. I asked about the price difference and they said diagnotic charges and labor. $320 for a 10 minute job. Ouch. Normally I would have said no, but I was on the way out of town and needed my car back ASAP. In addition the dealer said they could not perform warranty work (tranny diagnosis) without the battery replaced. I received the car the next week. They didn't diagnose the transmission issue (again). So I was without a car for a week and a half, charged $460, and didn't even get the transmission issue fixed. Fitting, the day I received it back, the intercooler pump died (again).

On the warranty front: The battery trip was trip #16 for warranty work. I'm now on trip 18 in three years. The transmission issue was verified for the first time. The valve body was replace (#3), still no fix. The ECU software upgrade was performed to see if it was related to the problem. They are going to replace the intercooler pump again. If this doesn't solve the problems, they are going to look into a new transmission. With the number of trips ($50/day loaner, 2 weeks average, 18 times [or 1/2 a year] = $12600) that I have been in the dealership and the number of times they have replaced parts ($10's of thousands including labor) on my car, they could have just bought be a new one. I know why the first owner dumped his custom order in less than a year.

When I have time to sit down a write an essay, the story gets much better and is still continuing...
 
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