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  #1  
Old 02-10-2001, 09:26 PM
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I just returned from the Philadelphia auto show and came away from the Mercedes display a bit disappointed. I sat in a $55K E-Class sedan and the wood, and please let me be mistaken, looked an awful lot like plastic. I looked at the ashtray and it was black plastic underneath. I expect to see this type of thing in a Caddy or Lincoln, but a Mercedes? I liked the new S-Class. The one at the show was a S600 for 115,000 large ones. It had rear power seats and ceiling mounted vanity mirrors for the rear passengers. I think nicest car was the E-Class wagon, in German silver of course.
Please tell me I was mistaken about the wood and that MB hasn't gone the old Caddy route of laying down acres of PCV wood.
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Old 02-10-2001, 09:49 PM
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Mercedes claims real wood: "Burl walnut trim on doors, dash, console and shift gate." The wood is often coated with a Varethane/urethane type plastic to protect the wood, and certain sections of the wood may be attached to a metal or plastic support backing that inhibits warping and cracking. If they used plastic wood, they might as well be a Chrysler .
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  #3  
Old 02-11-2001, 10:02 AM
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I know that new safety regulations say the wood pieces have to have be glued to a metal backing to prevent splittering in an accident. I looked real close at the ashtray, trying to find the seam between the wood and plastic, but it didn't look like there was one. The seam that I saw was one that you would get when fusing 2 pieces of plastic together, "flash". I know that in my W116 the wood is the genuine article, at least an 1/8" thick. Of course I don't have the Burlwood, I have the standard Zebrano.
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1999 MB SL500 (101,000 mi)
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2004 Volvo V70 2.5T (205,000 mi)
2014 Tesla Model S 85 (75,000 mi)
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Old 02-11-2001, 11:39 AM
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It is indeed real wood, but it is a very thin layer with some sort of aluminum backing to prevent splintering in a crash.

The reason it looks like plastic is, like the previous reply said, the heavy plastic finish. This is the same thing that has been done to walnut gun stocks in recent years. They use a clear plastic finish that makes it look like plastic and makes it difficult to repair dings and scratches.

Have a nice day,
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Old 02-11-2001, 04:04 PM
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Isn't ironic that to make real wood look good for a long time, you have to make it look fake.
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2014 Tesla Model S 85 (75,000 mi)
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  #6  
Old 02-11-2001, 04:23 PM
wilton
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Interior wood trim on door panels in my 91 350SDL is very thin (little more than paper thin) covered by very shiny plastic. Under the top sheet of wood is a stamped piece of sheet metal; glued to back of the sheet metal is another very thin piece of wood conforming to shape of the stamped metal; all of this is glued to thicker piece of wood, maybe, 3/8" thick, which is glued to door panel. One of mine had severe cracks and came off at joint between back of sheet metal & "under" layer of thin wood. I replaced it several days ago with perfectly-matching piece from local salvage (used parts supplier) yard.
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Old 02-11-2001, 05:21 PM
LarryBible
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The fake look is partly due to the interest in safety. The difference in this approach to wood trim and plastic that is painted to look like wood is not really appreciated until the car is aged. The wood in my daughters '81 looks like it did when new. Go find an '81 Cadillac or some such car with fake wood and look at the difference.

Have a great day,
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Old 02-11-2001, 05:25 PM
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Larry Bible asks us to
Quote:
Go find an '81 Cadillac
Where, a junkyard?

Kuan
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  #9  
Old 02-11-2001, 06:51 PM
Jeepboy
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Kuan-
Not funny! I wuv my old caddy very much, and true the 81's had the variable displacement V8-6-4 engine, but hay! you could have ordered as an option the 5.7 V8 Diesel!
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Old 02-12-2001, 08:03 AM
LarryBible
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Kuan,

That would probably be the most successful place to start your search.

Have a great day,
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