I agree with Kestas on the public at large. Car makers (or makers of anything for that matter) make what people will buy. And if I do say so myself, the people of "general public" are utter morons. Like the example about the explanations of the technology and the blank stares. Just watch these people drive sometimes!! We've all seem 'em!
You also have to take into account why a lot of people buy the cars they do. Most of the people in this forum, buy our MBs because we admire them for their build, engineering etc. Most of us probably couldn't care less if the neighbors didn't like our car. However, these new-money suburban america yuppies only care about how much their car will impress the neighbors or how high it ranks in their gated subdivision. Most of these people probably couldn't tell an engine from a transmission. The more "features and conveniences" the higher they and their car ranks on the food chain. 100% status. So long as the car lasts till the end of the lease (when replaced by the latest and greatest), that is all that matters. And since these people are the primary market for new luxury cars...and SUVs, that is what they build. I guarantee you if MB built their cars for people like us, they'd be building them a lot differently.
As far as the technology itself, I do see that some technology is necessary. I don't personally think that cars should be built like they were 40 years ago. A new Toyota can outrun, outhandle, and outbrake a stock late 60s Camaro. Also, if you were in a crash, would you rather be in a Camry or '69 Z28? So some is necessary and very beneficial, it's the go-go gadget crap that is well....crap.
As far as the $700 worth of parts cleaning the exhaust 2%....you can thank the EPA for that. And they're not done yet!
'86 420SE Euro
904 Midnight Blue, Gray Velour
Dad bought it new, now I own it.
"A Mercedes-Benz is like a fine wine, it only gets better with age."