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  #1  
Old 11-15-2007, 09:43 AM
MB-Dude's Avatar
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A Rant on Mercedes

For well over 10 years I have defended the Mercedes name, especially in the late 90’s and turn of the millennium when it appeared that every vehicle produced by Mercedes was a piece of s***. Through all the wiring harness, poor design, cheap manufacture, before-it’s-time W163 product launch, etc., I stood by Mercedes. However, when I seek out technical information – even for the R129 model, which has not been produced for over 5 years – and find that it is virtually unavailable (especially to owners), sort of slaps one in the face.

I am getting real frustrated with Mercedes and am starting to consider trashing the 4 that I have and move on to a different manufacturer. One that cares about long-term quality and takes pride in seeing fine motorcars on the road for many years. Obviously, Mercedes no longer shares this long-term vision and is only interested in following the American auto industry mantra – Build and sell a car that lasts no longer than 7 years. Make it robust enough to survive a 7-year warranty and mysterious enough that no one can fix it after that.

Sorry, had to unload. Root of my frustration can be found in thread…
V12 ECU's Reporting 'Not Ready'
and thread…
Retrieving Pre-OBDII Diagnostic Data From ’94 SL500

Neither of which are resolved, by the way.

Cheers,
Jeff

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  #2  
Old 11-15-2007, 10:31 AM
SwampYankee's Avatar
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MB-Dude View Post
For well over 10 years I have defended the Mercedes name, especially in the late 90’s and turn of the millennium when it appeared that every vehicle produced by Mercedes was a piece of s***. Through all the wiring harness, poor design, cheap manufacture, before-it’s-time W163 product launch, etc., I stood by Mercedes. However, when I seek out technical information – even for the R129 model, which has not been produced for over 5 years – and find that it is virtually unavailable (especially to owners), sort of slaps one in the face.

I am getting real frustrated with Mercedes and am starting to consider trashing the 4 that I have and move on to a different manufacturer. One that cares about long-term quality and takes pride in seeing fine motorcars on the road for many years. Obviously, Mercedes no longer shares this long-term vision and is only interested in following the American auto industry mantra – Build and sell a car that lasts no longer than 7 years. Make it robust enough to survive a 7-year warranty and mysterious enough that no one can fix it after that.

Sorry, had to unload. Root of my frustration can be found in thread…
V12 ECU's Reporting 'Not Ready'
and thread…
Retrieving Pre-OBDII Diagnostic Data From ’94 SL500

Neither of which are resolved, by the way.

Cheers,
Jeff
Damn, Jeff, that sucks. I can't imagine the frustration you must be going through. All of that computer and electronics stuff makes me all the more happier to have my old diesel 123 and why I'll probably never have one newer than a 126 diesel. All of that electronic stuff scares me.

Good luck though! I hope you can track down those problems.
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  #3  
Old 11-15-2007, 10:55 AM
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Dibs on the 240D....
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  #4  
Old 11-15-2007, 11:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SwampYankee View Post
Damn, Jeff, that sucks. I can't imagine the frustration you must be going through. All of that computer and electronics stuff makes me all the more happier to have my old diesel 123 and why I'll probably never have one newer than a 126 diesel. All of that electronic stuff scares me.

Good luck though! I hope you can track down those problems.
My sentiments exactly.

Based on trends in the quality of various manufacturers, there might come a day when we actually take another look at American cars. NPR had a segment this morning about the problems Toyota is having with the V6 Camry and their full size pickup truck. Meanwhile, the Chevy Malibu (of all things) is getting great reviews for reliability and quality.

Maybe there's hope for us yet.
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  #5  
Old 11-15-2007, 11:24 AM
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The tide will start to turn as aging baby boomers' shrinking patience and tolerance for excessive maintenace will coerce them to take another look at American offerings.

I know I have precious little time for tinkering...There are parts waiting to be installed still sitting in boxes for over a year!
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  #6  
Old 11-15-2007, 12:19 PM
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I have yet to experience any problems with the 90s-00s Mercedes Quality.... The vehicles that I have that were produced in that time period all seem to be holding up quite well, and they are daily drivers.




Let me talk to my friends at the dealer and my indy to see if they have seen anything like what you describe....
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  #7  
Old 11-15-2007, 01:20 PM
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I hear ya.......I can't get my '99 E300 to quit leaking fuel from under the hood.
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  #8  
Old 11-15-2007, 07:20 PM
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Jeff,

Having essentially, the same car minus .8 liters of displacement, I am familiar with your pain.
For me, the infamous Code 19 was the first "problem".
Wanna hear something that will irritate you? At first, MB would fix them under warranty - they would replace the chip with an updated one. After a few years of that, they made people not just buy the chip...but the whole damn module (if you haven't priced any modules yet, sit down first, before you do).
The next thing that went was the wiring harness. Found out I needed one the hard way - While being scanned, the engine suddenly died. Upon restart, and a short drive later, the ignition module was bad, as well as a coil. It was after that was replaced, that it was decided I needed a new harness.
Things were ok for a while - then the car died, and refused to run - Two ETA's later (first one was DOA) the car ran well.
Then...the CEL came on - it indicated a problem with the MAF - At the same time, I noticed lousy gas mileage (btw, you should better than 15mpg - I used to get near 24mpg!)
I installed a new MAF. Light as out for a while...now it's back. MPG never did improve....I'm lucky if I get near 300 miles per tank....more like 250.

I think the car is like one of those throphy wives - nice to look at, great curves, but uses a lot of $$.

OH - under hard accelleration, it will cut out for a moment - before it reaches redline. It acts as if it did reach redline, and cut off the gas pump, or limited how much gas it was getting. weird - You have this issue as well?

Like I said.... I know how you feel. I had a chance to drive a Jetta TDI for a couple of weeks, and am thoroughly impressed by it. It may very well be that my next car is a TDI. As slap in the face to MB? maybe... Or maybe one small payback slap for all the slaps I have gotten.

I hear MB's commercials about quality and integrity - not sure if I should roll my eyes, laugh or fart.
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  #9  
Old 11-15-2007, 08:43 PM
Registered User
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dculkin View Post
My sentiments exactly.

Based on trends in the quality of various manufacturers, there might come a day when we actually take another look at American cars. NPR had a segment this morning about the problems Toyota is having with the V6 Camry and their full size pickup truck. Meanwhile, the Chevy Malibu (of all things) is getting great reviews for reliability and quality.

Maybe there's hope for us yet.
The Malibu does look nice, but it's only been out for 15 days so it's reliability is a big unknown. Basically though, its a Saturn Aura and that car hasn't sold as well as it should. I don't think any American car with Euro flavor has ever topped the sales charts. The Crossfire and Ford Contour come to mind.

As a general rule, everyone knows to stay away from mid-90's Mercedes, right? At least thats the message I get.
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  #10  
Old 11-15-2007, 09:36 PM
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Remove the CE light bulb.
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  #11  
Old 11-15-2007, 09:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hatterasguy View Post
Remove the CE light bulb.
that involves pulling the cluster...I recommended black electrical tape
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  #12  
Old 11-15-2007, 09:56 PM
MB-Dude's Avatar
Proud MB Owner
 
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Thanks to all for at least saying, “Hey, I feel the pain.” Guess I just needed to unload. I’ve been wasted far too much time on the SL600, and far too much money on the SL500. It’s just so damned frustrating that Mercedes won’t have the decency to at least make information available. And every day has been the same… living in the garage, making zero progress on either.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SwampYankee View Post
Damn, Jeff, that sucks. I can't imagine the frustration you must be going through. All of that computer and electronics stuff makes me all the more happier to have my old diesel 123 and why I'll probably never have one newer than a 126 diesel. All of that electronic stuff scares me.

Good luck though! I hope you can track down those problems.
It is incredibly frustrating. And although I am tenacious, by nature, even I get depressed when I can’t seem to be making progress.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Palangi View Post
Dibs on the 240D....
Sorry, dude… if I keep any of these pieces of poo, the W123 would be the one. If it weren’t for the diehard, bullet-proof diesel sewing machine (my W123), I’d probably have trashed them all by now!

Quote:
Originally Posted by W124.090 View Post
I have yet to experience any problems with the 90s-00s Mercedes Quality.... The vehicles that I have that were produced in that time period all seem to be holding up quite well, and they are daily drivers.




Let me talk to my friends at the dealer and my indy to see if they have seen anything like what you describe....
My God! Count your lucky stars and blessings, my friend. I think you are the first I’ve heard of that hasn’t experienced a ‘mid-90’s crisis’ with MB. Seriously though, I would be extremely grateful if you do make inquires with your buddies at MB. Mine are scratching their heads, though I’m taking the V12 in tomorrow (hopefully) for them to do a complete CAN download. Mike (aka myarmar) is helping/guiding me down that path. But any additional information would be helpful.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Skid Row Joe View Post
I hear ya.......I can't get my '99 E300 to quit leaking fuel from under the hood.
Funny, with all the issues I’ve had with my 8 MB’s, fluid leaks (at least major ones) were never a problem. Electronics and supposed high-tech wizardry (i.e.: variable cam timing) is all the problems I have had. In fact, my ’79 240D is – believe it or not – leak-free.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry Delor View Post
… OH - under hard accelleration, it will cut out for a moment - before it reaches redline. It acts as if it did reach redline, and cut off the gas pump, or limited how much gas it was getting. weird - You have this issue as well? …
No. In fact, if I ‘punch it’ hard I get worried that the limiter is not working – it hits redline WAY too easy. No missing, wheezing, coughing, spitting, hiccups, etc. – at any speed or RPM. The only farting is me after the acceleration rush! That’s what makes the current problem so perplexing!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hatterasguy View Post
Remove the CE light bulb.
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDon View Post
that involves pulling the cluster...I recommended black electrical tape
Gotta agree with Joe… black masking tape would be easier. Sound advice from a true diesel-head.

Again guys, thanks for replying. Just reading the responses made me feel better. Well, at least until tomorrow’s journey into the garage.

Cheers,
Jeff
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OBK Member #47 (W123 Division)
'96 SL600 (105K) Triple Black - Mein über-Fräulein
'79 240D (292K) Yellow/Saddle - Mein Spielzeug
'01 ML430 (123K) Black/Saddle - Wife's Ride
'94 SL500 (164K) Green/Champagne - Daughter's Dream
'73 450SL - RIP
'86 300E - RIP
'88 420SEL - SOLD
'94 S320 - SOLD
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  #13  
Old 11-15-2007, 10:09 PM
Registered User
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by raymr View Post
The Malibu does look nice, but it's only been out for 15 days so it's reliability is a big unknown...
They were probably talking about initial quality, then.
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  #14  
Old 03-02-2008, 12:59 AM
MB-Dude's Avatar
Proud MB Owner
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Round Rock, TX
Posts: 215
Now I remember...

Just took the hardtop off the SL600 after the winter months. Now I remember why I love SL's. With all my SL problems finally 'in my rearview mirror' my MB summer is gonna be great! It's amazing how just a little wind in the hair and some sunshine on the face makes all the previous issues just fade away. Tonic for the soul.
Cheers,
Jeff
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'96 SL600 (105K) Triple Black - Mein über-Fräulein
'79 240D (292K) Yellow/Saddle - Mein Spielzeug
'01 ML430 (123K) Black/Saddle - Wife's Ride
'94 SL500 (164K) Green/Champagne - Daughter's Dream
'73 450SL - RIP
'86 300E - RIP
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  #15  
Old 03-02-2008, 03:19 AM
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ahh, how soon they forget..........

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