I am appalled at the prices everyone are quoting for basic work. I have found most basic maintenance issues like brakes to be easier on MB than on most other cars ... it would seem this would lead most to believe that a competent independent could do the work.
I too, over the years, have found no really good dealer in any brand ... the MB stores I have visited have been arrogant and snotty about their product. While MB are very good cars, their repair incidence is actually worse than several Japanese low end models and a couple of American models; so, where is the value?
My worst experiences have been, however, at VW dealerships. Maybe it is the German arrogance of quality coming through?