Loubapache, regarding the recall notice, the service adviser told me about it last time I was at the dealer, I got no written notice. He said that the work is normally carried out at the next service. There seemed to be no urgency to have the work done. I chose to have the work done earlier. Yes the recall number is 01-0799.
Gillybenztech, The tire pressures seem fine, they are all within 1 psi of MB recommended: 27 - 28 psi. You think a higer pressure on the rear wheels might improve handling?
Jason, the previous tires were MXV4, the original tires, same as the ones on the front. I went to the Michelin web site before buying the new tires thinking I might fit something with greater wet weather grip (we occasionally get rain here in Seattle!). It seems there are only two Michelin tires of this size (215/55 16) namely MXV4 and MVX4 plus. The comparison shows that the "plus" offers better wet weather grip, quieter ride and better life, and for an extra couple of dollars it seemed like a no-brainer. The tread pattern is different, and I guess the compound is different. I am assuming the construction is similar (as they are both MXV4) so I am thinking that the tires are not a major contributor to the difference in steering response. I do know what you mean about tires changing the car's personality. I had an Alfa Romeo Guiletta back in 1980 with Firestone Cavalinos. These were the worst tires I have ever owned, poor grip, dimishing to almost zero when the tires were cold, and I wore out all four in less than 20,000 miles! These were replaced with Michelin MXV. They had the legendary Michelin ride quality, had terrific grip and lasted 45,000 miles (good mileage for those days). I have been a Michelin fan ever since, fitting only Michelins or Pirellis on all my cars.