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Old 11-06-2003, 11:56 PM
Judge's Avatar
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Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: San Francisco Area
Posts: 124
82 300D is too old for dealer to work on.

I called the local dealer today to schedule an appointment, inorder to see what they would say about an annoying noise my car has. The dealer told me that they don't work on 82's. The reason given is that all their mechanics who work on that age car have retired. The dealer gave me the telephone number of an independent shop in the City.

I'm surprised that the supposedly lifelong Mercedes mark allows their dealers refuse treatment to the senior autos.

Funny how, I want the freedom to not use a dealer, but I feel slighted when the dealer says they have the freedom not to work on older cars.

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Old 11-07-2003, 12:04 AM
unkl300d's Avatar
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Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: San Francisco, Ca
Posts: 2,453
That shows a lack of confidence in their own work and knowledge!!

If that was the SF Benz dealer, I had seen older diesel there about 4-5 months ago (when I went for some small parts).
They may have changed policy.
Well at least an indie mechanic can no longer say, "the dealer would have charged more!".
1979 300D 220 K miles
1995 C280 109 K miles
1992 Cadillac Eldorado Touring Coupe 57K miles SOLD
1979 240D 140Kmiles (bought for parents) *SOLD.
1989 300SE 148 K miles *SOLD
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Old 11-07-2003, 05:35 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: PA
Posts: 5,440
The MB dealer in Binghamton NY advertises that they have a mechanic that specilizes in older MBs.

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Old 11-07-2003, 07:14 AM
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Woolwich, Maine
Posts: 3,598

Be glad the dealer was that honest, and referred you to another shop. You have to admit the likelihood the average 1982 Diesel owner is going to be willing to spend $70 to $100 per hour for service pretty much zilch. Imagine how hard it would be to live through having the mechanic learn on your car at those prices. Jim
1986 Euro 190E 2.3-16 (291,000 miles),
1998 E300D TurboDiesel, 231,000 miles -purchased with 45,000,
1988 300E 5-speed 252,000 miles,
1983 240D 4-speed, purchased w/136,000, now with 222,000 miles.
2009 ML320CDI Bluetec, 89,000 miles

1971 220D (250,000 miles plus, sold to father-in-law),
1975 240D (245,000 miles - died of body rot),
1991 350SD (176,560 miles, weakest Benz I have owned),
1999 C230 Sport (45,400 miles),
1982 240D (321,000 miles, put to sleep)
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Old 11-07-2003, 08:18 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: central Texas
Posts: 17,281
Jim beat me to it...
That was wonderful of the guy to be honest about their abilities ( who would know better ? ) and bother to recommend someone...
It just hit you wrong because it is such an unusual occurance these days...
If you acquire a late model MB then you know where to take it.
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Old 11-07-2003, 09:40 AM
Rick Miley's Avatar
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Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: Land O Lakes, FL
Posts: 3,086
Originally posted by JimSmith
$70 to $100 per hour
You got it, Jim! The day the clutch went out in the 240D and I limped in to the dealership they wanted me to authorize $300 just to check it in. Not gonna happen on a $500 car. I drove it home clutchless and bought a brand new master cylinder and slave cylinder from Fastlane for under $100.

Judge - count your blessings.
Rick Miley
2014 Tesla Model S
2018 Tesla Model 3
2017 Nissan LEAF
Former MB: 99 E300, 86 190E 2.3, 87 300E, 80 240D, 82 204D Euro
Chain Elongation References
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Old 11-07-2003, 09:56 AM
Wes Bender's Avatar
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Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Alpine, AZ / Green Valley, AZ
Posts: 733
I think that it might indicate the quality (or lack thereof) of their technical people at that dealership. Our older cars can be repaired in many instances using just shop materials and good old fashioned know how. The newer models all seem to be repaired using the remove and replace concept. If a dealer doesn't have qualified people that would still know how to actually troubleshoot and fix something, he would rather not see your car.

I too am surprised that MBNA would allow a dealer to have such a policy. They have always been proud of the longevity of the older models. This dealer's policy flies in the face of that.

Just my $.02,

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Old 11-07-2003, 10:37 AM
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Location: En te l'eau Rant
Posts: 5,393
FWIW, one of the big indys here in Austin no longer works on models older than 1990.
Never a dull moment at Berry Hill Farm.
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Old 11-07-2003, 01:03 PM
lrg lrg is offline
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Location: San Francisco
Posts: 1,163
I think another factor is at play here. A couple of years ago I took my 123 into who I suspect is that same dealer (the one on Folsum?) and they told me I needed over $2,000 of work that I didn't need. I think they may have gotten tired of owners of these old cars (like me) that know a bit too much and are inclined to argue about what is really needed. We represent too much agrevation per dollar profit. Great source of parts though. By the way, I've not had graet success with the in town indies. On the rare occasion I want a good MBZ mechanic to help out I take my car up to European Car Service in San Rafael.
1987 300D Turbo 175K
2006 Toyota Prius, efficent but no soul
1985 300 TDT(130K miles of trouble free motoring)now sold
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Old 11-07-2003, 02:53 PM
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Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Chester, VA
Posts: 77
just be glad you don't have the dual zenith carbs like on the
'72 250. it's even harder to find somebody to work on those!
'85 380SE (238,300) my "new" old car!
'84 300D (303,000+)
'72 250/8 (mercy heaven)
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Old 11-08-2003, 02:22 AM
Posts: n/a
They may be able to work on the older Benz's, but just don't really want to. They're simpler and thus cheaper and a less revenue generating use of their time. I don't deal with the dealer in KC, they're reputation is horrible and I don't want to spend (waste?) the money on their "expertise". But, I know the Porsche shop (connected) discourages working on old 944/951's for the same reason.
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Old 11-08-2003, 10:40 AM
Judge's Avatar
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Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: San Francisco Area
Posts: 124
Thanks for the perspective. From what you said, I do now appreciate the honesty of the dealer in saying they don't have the personnel to work on these cars.

And to be fair, leathermag is right the possibility that I'm going to pay in the neighborhood of $100/hr to fix it is pretty much zilch. What I really wanted was the chance to pay for one hour for a long experienced mercedes mechanic to make a diagnosis. If the result was within my experience than I fix it myself.

And, I'm surprised the Mercedes Benz of America allows that policy.
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Old 11-08-2003, 11:22 AM
Posts: n/a
Also with the introduction of the OBDI and OBDII
systems,the mechanics don't know how to
diagnose a car without a computer.

With the computers it's easy,just hook
it up and let the computer do the diagnosis.
After a few minutes it spits out a few possible
Instead of changing one part,now they change
all the listed parts,because it takes less time and
it's easier.
This cuts the time they need to work on the cars.
This way they can do more cars(thus making more money)
in the same time it would take to diagnose(sometimes a few hours) a problem on the older cars.

Plus the parts for the newer cars cost alot more
than the part for the older ones.
And since the dealer pays only cost for the parts
they make a nice penny on them to.

So,all in all it comes down to the bottom line,
the more cars you can do in a given period of
time the more money you make.
Older cars aren't profitable enough to a dealer,
so they don't work on them.

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Old 11-08-2003, 04:57 PM
Newbie Benz Driver
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Between Oakland and Vallejo, CA
Posts: 253
if you want to try a dealer again, try RAB Motors in San Rafael.
1984 380SL-driving and service privileges.
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Old 11-08-2003, 05:30 PM
Charlie Mitchel
Posts: n/a

Call the 800 # for Mercedes USA and ask why their dealers refused to work on a car because it was to old. That will get Mercedes on their tail. If you sell it you service it.
It can be 40 years old they are still a Mercedes dealer.

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