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  #1  
Old 02-23-2002, 05:08 PM
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MB quality?

Hi everyone. I am new to this forum and basically signed up to get some feedback about the situation with my 99 C43. I have had nothing but problems with this car - it is easily the worst ownership experience I have had out of the 25 or so cars I have owned. I had six things malfunction before the first oil change and eight more problems by the second oil change. I would dance a jig if I could make it through any 5K mile period without something breaking. Is this typical of a Mercedes? Perhaps I have been spoiled by owning a couple of Hondas, but I just don't get how a car this expensive could be so crappy. What's the deal? Is it a lemon or is this pretty normal? My current favorite car (NSX) is over ten years old and it NEVER breaks. Why can't MB build a car like that? Anyone want to take over the payments?

(Also, don't even get me started on how poor the service is at my MB dealer)

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  #2  
Old 02-23-2002, 05:13 PM
Ali Al-Chalabi's Avatar
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Sorry to hear of your bad experience with your MB. I do not believe that this many problems is typical of a Mercedes. There have been many discussions here about Mercedes quality now versus that in the past.

I hope things shape up, the C43 is a great car.
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  #3  
Old 02-23-2002, 05:47 PM
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I would say that the first course of action would be to find a dealership that doesn't suck.

Alon
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  #4  
Old 02-23-2002, 05:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Ashman
I would say that the first course of action would be to find a dealership that doesn't suck.

Alon
I would love to, but I live in Austin, which has one dealership. Dallas is 3 1/2 hours away and Houston is 3 hours away. Six hours on the road to get my car serviced is not a viable option.
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  #5  
Old 02-23-2002, 07:15 PM
mbz380se
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San Antonio is much closer to Austin than either of the two aforementioned cities, isn't it? I think that city would have a Mercedes dealership, due to the fact that if a place like Yakima, WA or Nanaimo, BC or Bellingham, WA has a dealership, a city like San Antonio ought to.

Question: How fast does your Acura NSX wear through tires per full set (not just the rear ones ).

-Sam
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  #6  
Old 02-23-2002, 08:27 PM
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FastNSX,
Where did you buy the car, and how long you have it? Your car should not have that many problems and it is definitely not a typical MB. If you just bought the car, maybe you should take it back and demand to have the car inspected and any problems fixed or your money back. Another thing you can do is make sure you document everything that has been fixed/replaced, and get in touch with MBUSA. Talk to the rep who handles your area and see if there is anything he can help you out with. BTW, what are the problems you are having with the car?
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  #7  
Old 02-23-2002, 08:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by mbz380se
Question: How fast does your Acura NSX wear through tires per full set (not just the rear ones ).

-Sam
The rears last 12K to 14K and the fronts about twice that. The tires on my C43 were bald in 20K for comparison.
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  #8  
Old 02-23-2002, 08:41 PM
Benzman500
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I tought MB was addressing quality issues a while back. Or am I thinking of the wrong thing
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  #9  
Old 02-23-2002, 08:49 PM
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I have never owned one of these high performance MB cars but from what I heard and read, it seems, on average, they do have more problems than the more mass produced ones. C36 and C43 vs regular C class or E500 500E vs regular E class.
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  #10  
Old 02-23-2002, 10:30 PM
Benzman500
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Isint it true anything geared towards preformace is going to take more repairs?
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  #11  
Old 02-23-2002, 10:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Benzman500
Isint it true anything geared towards preformace is going to take more repairs?
No. My 12 year old NSX has broken three times. Once, I ran over something and broke an AC hose ($105 total), next one of my girlfriends got pissed off and broke the passenger side interior door handle (about $80 to fix) and lastly, I had to replace the AC evaporator last year. If a car is well designed and well made, it does not break.
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  #12  
Old 02-23-2002, 11:14 PM
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<<
If a car is well designed and well made, it does not break.
>>

Well said, FastNSX.

Some MBs are just not well designed and/or well made. Yours is a good example.

Unlike many other car makers, MB will sell a car that is not well designed and/or well made and then blame the customers. They could easily blame you for putting regular unleaded gasoline or diesel fuel in the car and caused all the problems. There were a couple examples of that in China. Some business man's SLK breaks down all the time and he had the car towed by some oxes in some major streets and now MB is suing him.

I have dealt with MBNA a few times and they are extremely arrogant. They won't take any responsibility for the badly designed head gaskets on the 103 and 104 motors, the MAS and wiring harness in the 104 motors, etc., etc., and etc.

The fact of matter is that MBs are not as reliable as Lexus, Infinity, Honda, Toyota, and many others. This has been proven time after time by surveys.

The money spent by some MB owners (non DIYers) in three or four years to maintain and repair their MBs can buy a new Accord or Camry.

Last edited by loubapache; 02-23-2002 at 11:19 PM.
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  #13  
Old 02-23-2002, 11:25 PM
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I still prefer innovation over copy catting what others invented.

MB owns the patent on the first car. That says enough for me.

Japanese cars may be reliable, but I'd still take an MB over any japanese car any day.

Personally, the only japanese cars I have ever liked are the NSX, 300ZX TT, and Supra TT.

The rest I could care less about.

a Friend of mine has a full stillen 300ZX TT. Things break on it like clockwork. Mastercylynder every 50k miles, etc etc. But the car will do 175+ MPH any day.

Is the C43 still under warranty? Did you buy it used? Did the previous owner maintain it?

Many MB's are very reliable, its all in maintenance. If you don't maintain it or if it wasn't maintained by a PO, then you run into probs. Some just had problems. You can't expect everything to be perfect.

Let us know what kind of mileage your NSX has. Most japanese cars I have seen require lots of repairs after 100k miles, and the parts and all are usually very expensive.

Alon
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  #14  
Old 02-23-2002, 11:43 PM
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Sorry, blackmercedes, but it is a healthy debate. We are talking about reliability and remember MB costs at least twice as much as a Toyota so it is reasonable for us to expect MB to have EQUAL (not better) reliability as Toyota. I have owned two Toyotas. The 1992 Corolla I owned for 4 years was never back at the dealer. A Camry I owned for 5 years was at the dealer once to have a faulty multi-function switch replaced under warranty. Neither had any oil leak problem, whatsoever.

<<
Toyota has a severe problem with head gaskets on V-6 engines.
>>
So does MB. MB has a severe problem with head gaskets in their I-6 engines.

<<
They also have problems with electrical components, and failing cruise control units.
>>
So does (square) MB.

<<
Brake components don't last very long, and rotors warp frequently.
>>
MB rotors are among the easiest to warp. Toyota does not require change of the brake fluid and that is one of the advantage MB has in long brake life. Had the fluid in MB brakes not changed, . . .

<<
In 1997, the Camry's material quality dropped, and even lighter duty brake components are now used.
>>
So did MB. On the new E-class, vynyl was used on the dash and that cracks easily.

<<
Camry's also have drivability problems that are lined to engine management, but have remained unsolved for years. Stumbling and stalling is common on 92-96 Camrys.
>>
Irregular idle, hard cold/warm start, OVP, wiring harness, ASR, limp home in MB. Many are unresolved in MB. There is one member who has this E500 ASR light or somesuch for a long time and I believe it is still not resolved.

<<
Toyota has a peeling paint problem, especially on white Camrys. They have repainted lots of cars, and to their credit, at their cost.
>>
This is one area MB is better than Toyota.

<<
Common problems with 94-98 Camrys include:
Faulty window regulators.
Smelly AC units.
Failing AC, including evaporator problems and faulty expansion valves.
>>
LOL. want to get into the MB condenser/evaporator? One repair on the W140 can by you 1/4 of a Camry.

<<
Surging and shuddering when decelerating, really bad on 95-96 models.
Defective automatics that slip out of "Park."
94-96 cars have rusting and failing trim (in Canada badly).
Mufflers don't last very long.
>>
Do you need a list for common problems for MB?

<<
Toyota pefect? Nope. BUT, they usually don't fight with the customer about warranty repairs. Been to a GM dealer lately?
>>
Should it be "been to an MB dealer lately?" as FastNSX has many times lately.
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  #15  
Old 02-24-2002, 02:51 AM
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In the same breath, a Rolls Royce may be considered an extremely luxury vehicle, but that does not mean it is also reliable or inexpensive to maintain or repair.

for a 1983 Rolls Royce Silver spur, the rear shocks alone cost in the neighborhood of $2500.00 They are also gas and self leveling, not a cheap system to begin with. They use a mineral oil hydraulic Braking system, and you have to get special expensive oil for the system. Did I mention the caps for the brake resevoir are about $50.00 each or so, and they basically look like larger milk jug tops. We are talking a simple green plastic cap that just pops on. Hubcaps, around $1000.00 each. - again, these are hubcaps. nice ones though, but still.

Isn't it also about the driving experience? Is driving an econobox the same as driving a luxury car? They drive differently, have a different feel, and are in essence totally different things, even though they are still both cars and share the same basic principals.

to me an MB drives like no other car on the road. I like the way lots of cars drive, but in my hands, a mercedes feels just right. I could have gotten a newer bmw than my benz, but the benz felt better to me. I like cars that feel heavy and solid. The benz is easily controllable in slides and emergencies, and feels like a ton of bricks. I love the heavy yet completely responsive steering, and I love the feeling of the seats and the way the car sounds.

To me its worth it for the experience you would have formt he drivers seat.



Got some pics of the C43 and NSX? I'd love to see em.

Alon

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