I posted this on wheels and tires but got no response. Hope it is more appropriate here.
In July I bought a 93 300E from a local individual. He told me that the tires were "new" and they looked new.
According to the sales slip he left in the car, the set of MXV4s was purchased in
February, 2000 about 10,000 miles ago (3000 miles before I bought the car).
After driving it for several months, the steering developed a "wander", i.e. you would cross the
crown of the road or hit a bump and the steering point would change. At the same time I noticed
edge wear on the front tires. I traced the problem to a bad drag link and replaced it. After the
repair I took the car to a local tire shop for an alignment. They found a bad tie rod end I had
missed, replaced it, rotated the tires, and aligned the vehicle (4-wheel). This was done in early
Around Christmas my daughter told me that the left rear tire looked worn. I looked at it, and sure
enough, the wear looked excessive. But, I forgot about it and didn't do anything.
Last week, my wife told me that the rear tires had cord showing through. I looked at them and
sure enough, the rear tires were scrubbed off slick. Due to the previous edge wear, the cord/belts
were visible at the edge.
I went back to the tire shop and they re-checked the alignment. It was off only slightly (from their
specs)in the front and within tolerance in the rear.
I compared their specs the the data in the MBUSA 124 Maintenance CD-ROM and with the
exception of toe, the specs appear compatible. I can't easily compare toe because the CD gives
it in degrees and the tire shop gives it in inches.
The tire shop's printer wan't working in December so I didn't get the typical specs/initial/final data
for that alignment.
The tire shop replaced my rear tires at 50% off, so I'm OK there, but I'm concerned that in another
month or two I'll be back with slick tires again.
I don't think it is a frame problem, because the tires that we moved to the front had been on the
rear for as long as I owned the car (maybe since installed in February) with nominal wear. After
6-10 months on the rear and one month on the front, they measured 5/32 tread depth while the
others with 6-10 months on the front and one month on the rear were slick. I have followed the car
while driving down the road and there is no apparent tracking problem.