going down hill
My dad bought a C320 last year. They drive very little but he had his share of problems. The Dealers in LA were not very forth coming or helpful.
The car had incorrect motor mounts installed at the factory and they collapsed. The engine went into safe mode and reduced power. The dealer never told my dad what happened, just that they replaced the mounts. I have a buddy who is a MB shop manager here in Dallas and he told me the real story. The key fobs also malfunctioned and would not hold the memory settings. The battery died 2 times. The seat bottoms wrinkled up (only 4K on the odo). The engine skipped. The tranny had a faint whine. The lid for the first aid kit was warped. The cover in front of the shift lever was not aligned properly (dealer never could / did fix those last two). The brake disks already had a substantial ridge on them (again, less than 4k)
My dad ended up getting MB to buy the car back at 4k and 1 year old for full price but only after a considerable bit of fighting. He has a friend in MB in Germany who forced the issue. Now I will grant that my dad is not the easiest customer but he has been in the car repair business for 50 years and knows what something should or should not do and for $47k that C320 was a piece of crap. When we ended up having MB buy it back the regional rep for MB told my dad not to ever by another MB. I could not believe my ears. My dad ended up going to another dealer out side that reps region and bought an E320 Special Edition (so far he is very satisfied).
I have a 1987 190 16V that I have placed close to $10k in. My folks who had it prior to me hardly drove it and as a consequence did not have to do much maintenance to it. I drive quite a bit now and stuff started failing left and right. New trans, shocks front and rear, condenser, control arm, drag link, tie rods, cruise amp/actuator, exhaust … Granted had the car been driven these expenses would have been spread over several years instead of a year and a half but still, that is not what I expect from MB.
I had a 1977 240D that had 125k that just ran and ran. I yearn for the good old days.