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Old 09-29-2000, 10:18 AM
Posts: n/a
Regarding why there are so many standard transmissions in Germany / Europe

It is my perception that MBZ charges an arm and a leg for the autobox, all over Europe.

Secondly, and this is more factual, that the average engine size is much smaller. you can get W210 with 2.3 litre engines in them, and 124's came with 2.0L too. (in the US, MBZ are all loaded) in Europe, they are stripped and even the radio is/was extra, (it's getting better).

It used to be a joke about the steering wheel being an extra option.

I don't know about Germany, but in France, the insurance is higher for a car with an auto box, for example a 230 with a 5 speed would come in as a 12 or 14 CV, but if it has an autobox, it is a 16 or 17 CV, Maybe those ratings dont mean much to you, but to citizens already paying extremely high petrol taxes, they don't necessarily want a less efficient, and power grabbing, insurance fee raising transmission. They'd rather just shift and feel like they're sportier. There are also social pressures. In the UK, many people also feel like they are 'real' drivers, owning an auto (even if you commute only in BtB traffic)is an admission that you're not a "driver" and your car is v much a part of your social status there. When I moved there, I was amazed at the social importance attibuted to cars.

So that's how I see it. Furthermore, in Europe, the driving population has been raised on small cars with standard boxes, rather than the American experience of the Auto V8 muscle cars that one might (I had) get while in HS.

Flame suit on


Ps, as a rude psychoanalyst, I see you trying to appeal to two groups at once. you want to be seen as the man who can easily afford a new MBZ (groupA), yet also appear to the value conscious MBZ owners who are buying (or bought)older used MB's because they want a classic dependable car as someone who's concerned about value and cash out flow (groupB). I don't think you can be successful. Spend the money and and get in group A w/o looking back, you can't be in that club and whine about money! or put your principles behind your feelings and tell them (mbz)to stuff it, and let someone else take the first few years depreciation. (tongue firmly in cheek)

MBZ is not ripping you off, they're pricing their product where they can maximise revenue. As a stock holder, I expect them to do that. If you don't agree with their marketing people about pricepoints, you wouldn't buy the car would you? It seems to me, you want the performance,the status, the reliability and the kudos from your neighbors/peers. All of that 'value' is in the price you pay. If their cost of production goes down,(in this case MBUSA profit goes up) the value of the car to you doesn't change does it?, so why should they lower their prices?

[This message has been edited by russla (edited 09-29-2000).]

[This message has been edited by russla (edited 09-29-2000).]