It's interesting to note that Mercedes Benz (and other luxury automakers) have gone to Continental tires as OE on some of their new models. I suppose you can view this two ways ... that this is an endorsement of Continentals as being solid, quality tires, equal to or greater than Michelins of which they replaced on that particular model. Or, that MB (and others) are cutting costs hoping that the Contis hold up for at least the first 20k miles or so, which is almost a certainty with a brand new car in perfect alignment.
If you had to pick a "second best" brand of tire behind Michelins, which brand would that be Steve?
'01 E430, Sport 72,000 mi
'98 C280, 126,500 mi