I paid a visit to my local M/B garage the other day to find the mechanics gathered around a C-Class Saloon having an in-depth conversation.
The C-Class was owned by a local independant Taxi driver who bought it a bit over a year ago and had since done just over 60k miles in it.
He had arranged for it to be towed the garage because it would not start. He also said it had become rather noisy in the last month of driving it.
Having checked everything they could think of they finally lifted the cylinder head because it was very tight to bar over.
You would not believe the state of the oil ways in the head. They were solid with what looked like tar.
They then had tried to drain the oil in the sump but the outlet kept blocking with again looked like lumps of tar.
With the sump pan off they had to use a scraper to remove the gunk on the sides and bottom.
The decided to phone the owner and inquired as to when he had last had a service.
The answer -never - and he added "The engine never seemed to burn any oil either"
When questioned about the "Service Required" indication he said "I was too busy to get it done"
The oil filter was so hard that it cracked when hit with a hammer.
Next time I visited I enquired as to the outcome.
It took a specialist industrial company 4 days to clean out the head in a ultrasonic bath filled with solvent. They said they had never seen anything like it.
On checking the oil pump was also replaced as a precaution.
The bores and valve gear looked OK.
They flushed the engine oil system using a variety of solvents some of which were left in for 24 Hrs. (Literally filled up the engine with the solvent)
Finally the bit moment - Hit the starter.
The engine fired up immediatly and ran without noise with no apparent problem.
After running for a couple of hours they replaced the oil again.
We all agreed the man was an "Animal" and should not be allowed to own a Mercedes.
His penalty - a bill for about $2200.00
Who say's they do not build M/B's tough any more.