"Every car has problems" Not to flame that statement too much but, what exactly is that based on? Sounds like an opinion to me. I agree that the type of problem is important. Notice I have made four dealer visits for engine mechanicals and one for poor body fit. Is there any excuse for sending a $130k new car to market with ill fitting body parts? What about the mechanical ailments on a brand new top of the line Mercedes? You seem to classify this as "to be expected". That IMO is absolutely WRONG. Not holding MB to a higher standard is likely what caused this mess to begin with, they got lazy. The JDP surveys are certainly flawed but, when a marque like MB falls as it has in these ratings I think it definately demonstrates that there are major problems. If MB fell from second or third to even sixth or seventh I would blow it off. Fact is they now reside on the bottom. There IS a reason. It is not flawed surveys, it is a quality control problem at MB.
Both of my G-Wagens were/are impressively tough and reliable. They were hand built in a dedicated plant with pride and it shows. I have to wonder where the pride has gone from this once proud marque. Maybe my 600 was built the Monday after Oktoberfest. Somebody HAD to be wasted when they built this one.