Thank you for the detailed post. With the exception of your statement regarding a visual inspection underneath the car, I respectfully disagree. It has been proven by personal experience that the topsider removes MORE oil than when allowing the oil to drain at the plug. I have tested this extensively and found that the topsider removed more oil on average. I surmise that one of the reasons is that there is a boss on the inside of the oil pan to accomodate the drain plug threads. This acts as a dam for the last little bit of oil which can spread thin over the surface of the pan bottom. Regardless, a few ml of oil will not harm anything as long as one is taking advantage of proper oil changing regimens and using the right oil! Can't find other accounts now, but have heard others make reference to this fact on numerous occasions. MB has recommended and approved of vacuum oil changes since the '70s. This has always been one of the most hotly debated topics. The bottom line, use MB approved oil and change it often and all will be good.