Lots of views being expressed here. The one regarding other manufacturers "bribing" people or pressuring them to fill out "excellent" surveys is not foriegn to MB. On the day we bought our new '01 S600 the salesman spent more time worried about his survey score than our ability to work the controls of the car. This was followed up by more than one call regarding the survey. IMO MB is fudging surveys as much as anybody out there.
Now for my MB horror story. The first repair the car required was on the way home from the dealership. The oil level sensor on the car had failed, giving a low oil warning. What kills me is that MB omitted a dipstick on this car so that I can not even check the oil manually anymore. That is STUPID. Next we leave the dealer from having the sensor checked out and once on the highway the car starts shudderring very badly. Turns out that my size 12 bumped the e-brake pedal on the way in. The parking brake light did not illuminate, but it was enough to engage it. Now the rear rotors are warped and I need to check the release every time I get in the car to avoid this problem. The trunk lid is mis-aligned, about a 1/4 inch off on a $130,000 car. The latest and greatest issue is a serious drivability problem for which it is in the shop for the second time as we speak. When making a pass at highway speeds the engine falters above 5000 rpm. For some reason there is un-burned fuel getting through as evidenced by a bad sulfer smell from the exhaust. If I let the car run up to 5-6000 rpm in third gear it will not go any faster, it will not shift to fourth. The top speed of my top of the line V12 powered Mercedes is 105 mph.
At this point I am praying that they are NOT able to fix this car so I can force them to buy it back. It has under 6000 miles on it. It is a spectacular machine, I love it, when it runs. Seems to me that JD Powers is right on the money.
Problem now is what would I replace it with? Lexus is way to staid for my tastes and the new BMW is way to ugly for the road. Sure would be nice if MB would get its act together and build them like my last two G-Wagens. Those are indestructable.