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2003 ML320
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18 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hello,

I have a chance to buy a bank repo 2003 ML 320 for $7000. I am looking for any advice or help I can get.

I don't get to have it inspected or checked out at all. I got to drive it and it drove, but made noise when turning the wheel to each side. Also the coolant light is on. The exterior is in almost perfect condition, with the exception of a small dent on the back door edge. Interior is very clean and everything seems to be in working order. I did a carfax and the history looks good, its had 2 owners, no accidents or flood damage. I have never had a mercedes before, but always wanted one, but I'm not sure this is the one for me. Right now, I don't have the money right now to buy this vehicle to repair it if it has big problems.


My questions are...:confused:
What are the general maitenance costs for this vehicle, like oil changes, etc?

Whats the average MPG?

Should I be worried about the problems that I addressed earlier? Could they be signs of a big problem? What could costs be to repair problems it may have?

If I did buy it and it has problems, what do you think it would be worth to sell it?

Any other info would be greatly appreciated also.

Thank you so much!!

Jennifer
 

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2003 ML 350
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23 Posts
How many miles are on it? Probably power steering problems. I just purchased a 2003 ML350 with 105k on it, and the Carfax I had done listed all of the recall work that was ever performed on the vehicle, one was of course the hoses for the power steering. 7k sounds like a good deal if you are going to flip it over. Did you check Kelley's Blue Book online or do a comparative analysis of all of the ML's for sale in your market? Are there a bunch on the market in your area or only a few? Could make a big difference on selling it quickly to recoup your initial and repair investments.
 

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2000 ML55
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565 Posts
"My questions are...
What are the general maitenance costs for this vehicle, like oil changes, etc?"
Regimented dealer service plan. Every 6 months, $275, then $475. Then $275, then $475.

"Whats the average MPG?"
15 City, 19 Highway.

"Should I be worried about the problems that I addressed earlier? Could they be signs of a big problem? What could costs be to repair problems it may have?"
Short answer: Could be low on steering fluid $10. Could be a new pump $650.

"If I did buy it and it has problems, what do you think it would be worth to sell it?"
Depends upon your ability to find another person who has no idea what they're doing when looking at this vehicle. Try getting what you paid for it, plus what you pay to have it fixed if it has issues.

Please click on the "New Member's Guide - READ THIS BEFORE POSTING" at the top gray area of this forum for more details.
 

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2003 ML320
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18 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
How many miles are on it? Probably power steering problems. I just purchased a 2003 ML350 with 105k on it, and the Carfax I had done listed all of the recall work that was ever performed on the vehicle, one was of course the hoses for the power steering. 7k sounds like a good deal if you are going to flip it over. Did you check Kelley's Blue Book online or do a comparative analysis of all of the ML's for sale in your market? Are there a bunch on the market in your area or only a few? Could make a big difference on selling it quickly to recoup your initial and repair investments.

85k miles on it. going for about 13-15k around here retail... there are quite a few in my general area, but not too many in my local area for sale. the carfax did say that there was this recall pending on the car.....

Manufacturer recall/service bulletin issued
Recall # 2003040005 1999-2003 m.y. w163 replace
lower p/s hose & clamp
 

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2003 ML320
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18 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
"My questions are...
What are the general maitenance costs for this vehicle, like oil changes, etc?"
Regimented dealer service plan. Every 6 months, $275, then $475. Then $275, then $475.

"Whats the average MPG?"
15 City, 19 Highway.

"Should I be worried about the problems that I addressed earlier? Could they be signs of a big problem? What could costs be to repair problems it may have?"
Short answer: Could be low on steering fluid $10. Could be a new pump $650.

"If I did buy it and it has problems, what do you think it would be worth to sell it?"
Depends upon your ability to find another person who has no idea what they're doing when looking at this vehicle. Try getting what you paid for it, plus what you pay to have it fixed if it has issues.

Please click on the "New Member's Guide - READ THIS BEFORE POSTING" at the top gray area of this forum for more details.


Thanks for your info! About the coolant light being on....any info on that??
 

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E320/E250 Bluetec Ford F350 6.7l
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36,185 Posts
The yellow coolant light indicate low level.
2 cups of distillate water should cure it.
ML had at least couple of PS hose recalls. Not a big deal.
 

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1999 E55, 2001 E320, 1990 560 SEC, 2004 ML350, 2001 ML55, 1995 S500, 1998 SL500, 2010 E550 Sport zoo
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7,035 Posts
You have had good advice - don't buy it (you are at risk) - but you seem to already to have made your purchase decision, have at it !

On this board, based on board member's experience, purchasing any MB witout the opportunity to do a PPI (Pre Purchase Inspection) put you at risk on major mechanical you cannot assess otherwise.

The car already has (2) known problems - on steering you "might" get by with just the recall (if the steering is making a whining sound, if it is making a moaning sound maybe not so good), on the low coolant which could be anything from a leaking hose to a leaking head gasket you again have a risk.

edmunds.com has a much better gauge of local retail value than Kelley BB - at $7000 the car is close to close wholesale - but if the car will cost your $2000-$3000 then then wipes out the savings.
 

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'07 C280 4matic, '06 530i, '98 ML320
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1,562 Posts
... Right now, I don't have the money right now to buy this vehicle to repair it if it has big problems.
...
Please read the sticky on this forum about the most common problems with W163 vehicles. There are many things that can go wrong.

Power Steering components needs some attention (there may be air in the PS system) or the PS pump may be on its way out.

Not knowing the maintenance history [and not having the recourse] is the biggest risk here. If you go ahead and buy it and your mechanic shows a list of repairs that need to be done... you can't return the truck back to the bank.

I concur with Witek's suggestion. Don't buy it.

Some people buy ML because it's cheap. But they don't realize/understand the cost of maintenance while/before buying the truck.

Good Luck.
 

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05 500
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6,473 Posts
I agree with Witek, don't buy it. Unless you're a mechanic (or have a lot of money to spend on repairs), never buy a used car if you have no chance of having a qualified mechanic inspect it. The ML is known for problems - this is the last vehicle you want to buy without a complete thorough inspection by a qualified Benz shop. You have less than a 50/50 chance with this truck.

Now, if you insist on getting it, at least do a VIN check. CARFAX is fine but a VIN check is absolutely critical. Get the VIN and ask a MB shop to check out this truck. Some states forbid this but just call around. Don't feel bad, there are plenty of used MLs out there for you to grab.
 

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E420 '94 240D '82 200E '91
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72 Posts
I'm a Mercedes mechanic and these cars are just about the worst peace of crap any car maker has ever had the misfortune of building. They are only good for one thing and that is vacuuming your wallet.
 

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It was fun while it lasted
2002 ML320, 2005 S430 4MATIC RIP, 2010 F150 Crew Cab
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11,137 Posts
I'm a Mercedes mechanic and these cars are just about the worst peace of crap any car maker has ever had the misfortune of building. They are only good for one thing and that is vacuuming your wallet.
A little harsh but a lot of truth as well.

wifey77, Witek says not to buy it because you have been refused inspection. Now, if you are adult enough to understand that you may have to put another 3-4 grand with that purchase price to fix what pops up, then go for it. Otherwise, I'd walk away. A person who didn't have enough money to pay for it didn't have enough money to maintain it.
 

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E420 '94 240D '82 200E '91
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72 Posts
A little harsh but a lot of truth as well.

wifey77, Witek says not to buy it because you have been refused inspection. Now, if you are adult enough to understand that you may have to put another 3-4 grand with that purchase price to fix what pops up, then go for it. Otherwise, I'd walk away. A person who didn't have enough money to pay for it didn't have enough money to maintain it.
True
 

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2014 RX 350 F Sport, 2007 Scion tC, 2000 ML 430 Money Pit Finally Gone! Oh Happy Day!
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1,284 Posts
I'm a Mercedes mechanic and these cars are just about the worst peace of crap any car maker has ever had the misfortune of building. They are only good for one thing and that is vacuuming your wallet.
^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ AMEN! :thumbsup:
 

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Dallas, Texas
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6,985 Posts
A little harsh but a lot of truth as well.

wifey77, Witek says not to buy it because you have been refused inspection. Now, if you are adult enough to understand that you may have to put another 3-4 grand with that purchase price to fix what pops up, then go for it. Otherwise, I'd walk away. A person who didn't have enough money to pay for it didn't have enough money to maintain it.
This is key point. Thank you.
 

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Dallas, Texas
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I'm a Mercedes mechanic and these cars are just about the worst peace of crap any car maker has ever had the misfortune of building. They are only good for one thing and that is vacuuming your wallet.
I disagree. For me it turned up most reliable and fun vehicle I have ever owned. And it (sorry, could not resist) runs circles around 240D.
 

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E320/E250 Bluetec Ford F350 6.7l
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36,185 Posts
I'm a Mercedes mechanic and these cars are just about the worst peace of crap any car maker has ever had the misfortune of building. They are only good for one thing and that is vacuuming your wallet.
Than our 11-years old ML320 is the best car ever.
$129 total repair cost for 11 years.
Than besides recalls and couple minimal warranty issues no mechanic put his finger on the truck.
Draw your own conclusion. :D
 
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