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  #1  
Old 02-06-2005, 10:00 AM
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MB Quality for 96-97 E320

With all of the "not so good quality" of MB compared to Lexus , I wonder if you can share with us your experiences with your MB, especially the later models since I am told that the earlier models, i.e. before 1990, are much higher quality
I will start... my '96 E320 has 64K miles, bought used with 38K, no problems at all. Changed spark plugs and trans fluid at 60K. I change my own oil, use Mobil 1 at 10K intervals(5-30 or 15-50 grades), car does not burn oil at all. I am hoping that I can keep this car > 300K... some signs of rust though

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  #2  
Old 02-06-2005, 11:28 AM
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All Lexus have ever done was copy Mercedes, that is what Japan is good at, copiers not inovators like the Germans. All Lexus are Toyotas with better trim, seats, ect...Can you even get one made in Japan?
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  #3  
Old 02-06-2005, 12:31 PM
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This is a sensitive subject and ofcourse you are going to get bias replies from the MB forums and sometime "close minded" replies like the example above. Just curious, ask the same question on the lexus forums and see how they reply.
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  #4  
Old 02-07-2005, 01:11 PM
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Smile

I don't worry too much about "bias" or "close-minded" replies because they don't contribute to anything. I am just looking for facts that we all can share and learn from. Isn't that this forum all about?
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  #5  
Old 02-07-2005, 02:40 PM
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I don't have those particular cars and years you mentioned so I am too looking forward to see how others reply.
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  #6  
Old 02-07-2005, 02:58 PM
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I have a 98 E320 with around 110K mile, quite a reliable car so far.

For the time & milaged that I've put in the car, the following have been changed & repaired (list of cost for part), this is not included maintenances & wear & tear (tire, brake, shock, belt, spark plug, oil...) :

1. Air Mass Sensor ($200)
2. Brake light switch ($15)
3. Windows regulator ($80)

I think it's a very reliable car, provided that you find an honest mechanic. Most mechanic still see owners of MBnz as banker, ready to be robbed, so they must make up story & crabby stuff to charge Benz victim.

My case: BAS/ASR lights turn on, one shop told me it would cost at least $800 (part & labor) to replace the so called "Anti Skid module"...blablabla..... Did a little research on forum myself, turn out it was a brake switch that cost $15 and 15 minutes of my time.

No sign of rust whatsoever, but I live in Southern CA.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ccmbduong
With all of the "not so good quality" of MB compared to Lexus , I wonder if you can share with us your experiences with your MB, especially the later models since I am told that the earlier models, i.e. before 1990, are much higher quality
I will start... my '96 E320 has 64K miles, bought used with 38K, no problems at all. Changed spark plugs and trans fluid at 60K. I change my own oil, use Mobil 1 at 10K intervals(5-30 or 15-50 grades), car does not burn oil at all. I am hoping that I can keep this car > 300K... some signs of rust though
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  #7  
Old 02-07-2005, 05:32 PM
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Road and Track did a reliability and general ownership survey of the W210 E-Class cars, and they found them to be one of the highest rated cars ever surveyed. Despite our bickering about faults, it seems that when stacked up against other cars, they come out very high.

Lexus makes amazing cars. They have a different character than Mercedes, but their overall quality is very high. They do have their foibles, but they're rare. I haven't driven the latest generation LS430, but I found the LS400 one hulluva comfortable car. However, it was just too soft for me. The steering was too light, the suspension a bit soft and the throttle and brake inputs a little too sensitive. Nitpicks? Sure, but when you're blowing luxury-class bucks, you want your car to be right, for you.

The LS400 felt more like our Subarus than our Mercedes. The Subies also have super-light steering and sensitive pedals, making smooth driving just a bit more difficult. But, the LS400 is the quietest car I have ever been in, including a W140. Sound isolation is amazing. Also, the Nak stereo it had was SUPERB, unlike the often-junk MB installs.

I disagree that Lexus is a Mercedes imitator. Sure, the exterior look is similar, but the character and feel of the cars is completely different. Lexus is a Caddy for people that want a car that is built right.
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Old 02-07-2005, 05:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ccmbduong
With all of the "not so good quality" of MB compared to Lexus , I wonder if you can share with us your experiences with your MB, especially the later models since I am told that the earlier models, i.e. before 1990, are much higher quality
I will start... my '96 E320 has 64K miles, bought used with 38K, no problems at all. Changed spark plugs and trans fluid at 60K. I change my own oil, use Mobil 1 at 10K intervals(5-30 or 15-50 grades), car does not burn oil at all. I am hoping that I can keep this car > 300K... some signs of rust though
Hi ZAM! I didn't know you were on this board too!

I have a 96 E320 with 157,9XX miles on it.
no big problems to mention, not even the rust.
The car still feels solid and the engine is strong. I just drove to Vegas and back over the weekend and it is still a great car to drive.
I plan on keeping this car as my daily driver as long as it is economical to drive. If it starts to cost alot to repair, I will ditch it for something else.

As far as Lexus goes, I use to have a LS400, Very smooth car. It will last just as long if not longer than a Mercedes. The Lexus had over 168,000 miles on it and it was in good shape. Had to get a replacement because it was totalled in an accident.

I use to think that I had to buy the latest car models but I after started to read the posts on this forum, I realized that you can drive these cars for along time and save some money.
I put my money in appreciating assets now.
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  #9  
Old 02-07-2005, 05:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blackmercedes
Road and Track did a reliability and general ownership survey of the W210 E-Class cars, and they found them to be one of the highest rated cars ever surveyed. Despite our bickering about faults, it seems that when stacked up against other cars, they come out very high.

Lexus makes amazing cars. They have a different character than Mercedes, but their overall quality is very high. They do have their foibles, but they're rare. I haven't driven the latest generation LS430, but I found the LS400 one hulluva comfortable car. However, it was just too soft for me. The steering was too light, the suspension a bit soft and the throttle and brake inputs a little too sensitive. Nitpicks? Sure, but when you're blowing luxury-class bucks, you want your car to be right, for you.

The LS400 felt more like our Subarus than our Mercedes. The Subies also have super-light steering and sensitive pedals, making smooth driving just a bit more difficult. But, the LS400 is the quietest car I have ever been in, including a W140. Sound isolation is amazing. Also, the Nak stereo it had was SUPERB, unlike the often-junk MB installs.

I disagree that Lexus is a Mercedes imitator. Sure, the exterior look is similar, but the character and feel of the cars is completely different. Lexus is a Caddy for people that want a car that is built right.

Have you driven the newer LS and GS models?
The suspension has been firmed up alot and the steering is tighter.
It's not a MB but they are getting much better in the driveablility area.

If you go to www.ClubLexus.com there are many people that have high mileage Lexus cars there that are just as satisfied as us in the MB forums.
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  #10  
Old 02-07-2005, 05:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by California Beach
Have you driven the newer LS and GS models?
Unfortunately, not. A 95-ish LS400 was my last LS drive. I have driven a late model ES330, but disliked it thanks to its FWD.
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  #11  
Old 02-07-2005, 05:55 PM
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Thumbs up Not an E-Class . . .

. . . and it's only been 6 months. But my C230 (W202, 1997) seems like it will be good for the long haul. Two oil changes and gas costs aside, I've had to replace a leaking differential seal and (ouch) the A/C compressor -- the original compressor, after 7 years and 58,000 miles of New Orleans heat and humidity.

Aside from that, the brake pads and rotors plus fluid, which I had done when I got it, are a normal maintenance item, like the cabin, fuel, and air filters. Coolant flush and tire rotation coming up this month, and I think the little gold beast will be good for a long time yet.

I think the perceived "problems" with MB nowadays stem mostly from the glitches with the poorly-integrated electronics. The bodies, engines, and (with certain exceptions) transmissions are looking pretty good.

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