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Discussion Starter #1
I got my 350 in November, 2004. With less than 6,000 miles on it I started noticing an unnerving noise. The sound is a familiar one. I heard it years ago in my Dad's 1973 Impala when unleaded gas became popular. My new, $60,000 Benz was knocking and pinging in 3rd and 4th gears, especially when going up hills.

When I took it in for service, My MB Service Rep. told me, "That's impossible!". So was sinking the Titanic. When I took the MB Shop Foreman for a ride he said, "Yes, that's knocking but we can't do anything about it." Apparently, MB cannot adjust the timing as it is computer controlled. The knock sensor appears to be working properly. I use the highest octane gas I can find.

The second time I brought it in for this issue they kept my car for six days but still could not find a solution. Carbon build up in the engine was within normal limits. They tried different fuels but that didn't help. We're currently doing an Oil Consumption Test and will check it in 1,000 miles. My dealer has been working with the MB Technical Assistance Center but so far has found no answers.

Has anyone else experienced this?

It is most prevalent just after shifting into 3rd and 4th gears with low to moderate acceleration. Easy to miss if you have the radio on or are talking on the cell phone. And no, I'm not undereving the engine.

Any feedback is appreciated!
 

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350 SLK
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da_nailgun - 4/27/2005 7:04 AM

LOL

yea.. please post location.
ps.. hi from australia
You know every time a forum member asks someone to post their location, you have a negative comment about it. You have done this so much that we ALL know your position on this so there is really no need for you to keep posting your opinion.

For those of us who really want to help and respond with answers that are relevant to the particular car (which may be different depending on location) we will continue to ask[:)]
 

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Are you lugging your car up these "hills". Try keeping the rpms higher by downshifting sooner, or staying in a lower gear. Try Chevron gas. This should NOT happen.
 

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2005 SLK55
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The first thing that I would do is change your plugs.

A tank of crappy gas could fry your plugs and the ensuing "lean" code will have you run rich coating them as well. This could happen even without a check engine light.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for your replies.

I'm in Southern California, United States.

Our emission controls are stricter than many other places. That could add to the problem. But the 350 engine is used in so many other Mercedes vehicles along with the SLK, you'd think if this was a widespread problem it would have surfaced by now.

So Mercedes is stumped and my dealer's Factory Rep is supposed to get back to me by tomorrow about getting a replacement vehicle or making some kind of offer.

As I mentioned, I am NOT underreving the engine. And if the plugs were fouled you'd think the geniuses at MB would have discovered that during the six days they last had the car in for service to evaluate the problem.

I mainly wondered if anyone else was experiencing this problem. So far it looks like it is not pandemic. I'm truly glad that others don't seem to be experiencing this.

However, due to this and a host of other mechanical needs, the dream of owning a Benz has been shattered. I have had this car in for covered services more in 6 months than any other vehicle I have owned for years. Can't help but wonder if their quality control hasn't suffered as they try to broaden their customer base and mass produce more cars.
 

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2005 SLK350 2011 GLK3504X 2006 ML350(selling when GLK arrives)
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bladerunner - 5/8/2005 9:47 PM
...But the 350 engine is used in so many other Mercedes vehicles along with the SLK...
Isn't this new 350 engine first in the SLK...[?][?][?]
 

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Bladerunner

Sorry to hear about your woes.

In a sense the service rep was right when he said that it is impossible - IF the sensor is working. With a sensor working properly, you should be able to lug up a hill in any gear at 1500 rpm with the lowest octane fuel you can find - with no knocking.

Something big is wrong. I'd insist that they put the "yes it is knocking, but we can't fix it" bit in writing.

Insist on going higher up the MB technical tree to get experts in to help.

Good luck
roadsta
 

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This 350 is only in the SLK 350 for now. Believe me you are not the only ones with problems, engine, quality control, etc. A lot we do not hear about because those are the old school Mercedes dealers who go out of the way & will bend over backwards to help you like Mercedes used to be. Most dealers as well as MBUSA now expect the customer to bend over backwards instead. My dealer can't get it right, my SLK came damaged new & was not found by the dealer, twice I have been called to pick up my car & twice it was not fixed even though on the receipt invoice it said so. I contacted MBUSA as well as the regional rep Larry Stains who was less then useless & also MBUSA said he has the last say & they have complete confidence in him. Just for these reasons alone I will never buy another MB again. MB is no longer the same MB & neither are most of their employees. I wonder if Larry Stains used to be the regional rep for Yugo.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
According to my Service Manager, the 350 engine is used in other MB vehicles. He rattled off the names but I didn't make mental notes of them. The point is, preignition doesn't seem to be a widespread issue for this engine in my or other vehicles using it.

The other good news is that the powers that be up higher on the MB food chain (Factory Rep, etc.) have decided to ship in a new 350 engine from Germany as a replacement. I should have it in about 3 weeks. The old engine gets shipped back to MB so they can look at it.

I admit to being seduced by this car's looks and clean lines. Of the few hardtop convertibles available it is the most beautiful.

However, the MB reputation means nothing to me anymore. I will, from this point on, have my doubts about the mechanical reliability of their products. If they can't build the engine right, the rest of the car becomes suspect as well.
 

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The 3.5L V6 used in the SLK is unique to 2 other vehicles in the USA.
The New E350 and the all new redesigned ML350.
That's it.
The older ML350 used a Bored out version of the ML320's 3.2L engine to 3.7L for more power - that was a SOHC engine.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thanks, Dan.

Your message is at least as interesting for it's content as for what it reveals about your character.

If you would like a copy of my car's service record (which I just had MB print a complete copy for me) please let me know. Contact me privately and I will accept your apology off line.

I have decided NOT to take the offer of the new engine for now and have asked MB for a refund. Getting A MB with a factory installed engine is one thing. Having a replacement engine installed by a dealer MB mechanic is another. Especially from a company in which my confidence lessens every day.

After all the problems with this car, I will refer to it only as a Chrysler SLK 350. It doesn't deserve to bear the name Mercedes.

But enough of my woes.

I'm hoping my experience is an anomaly and truly wish you all the best of luck with your vehicles.

Happy Driving,

Bladerunner
 

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My 350 pinks in 3rd/4th too. I went out with a mechanic to prove it on Thursday. They've still got it whilst they fix a heap of rattles and wind noises. Will update you on what they find.
 

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Yikes!! You guys are scaring the begeezus out of me -and I haven't even gotten my car yet! If the Lexus convertible wasn't so expensive, so boring, and so unappealing, I guess I could have gone that route and spared myself the possibility of running into any problems. I'm crossing my fingers and hoping for the best because in terms of looks and performance, there are few equals out there in the same class - which is why, I think, most of us decided to purchase the cars in the first place. Hopefully, the new CEO that they're bringing in will shake up some things and get MB back where it belongs. On top.
 

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NewMB - 8/6/2005 8:36 PM

Yikes!! You guys are scaring the begeezus out of me -and I haven't even gotten my car yet! If the Lexus convertible wasn't so expensive, so boring, and so unappealing, I guess I could have gone that route and spared myself the possibility of running into any problems. I'm crossing my fingers and hoping for the best because in terms of looks and performance, there are few equals out there in the same class - which is why, I think, most of us decided to purchase the cars in the first place. Hopefully, the new CEO that they're bringing in will shake up some things and get MB back where it belongs. On top.
Many of us haven't had any problems...I have almost 16K miles with no problems...[;)]
 
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