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  #1  
Old 03-19-2003, 02:33 PM
Bud
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Feedback on 3-valve Engines

Im thinking of buying my wife a new car. Weve owned Mercedes for the last 19 years and German cars since the 50s. My first choice would be a C320 but I really have my doubts about the new 3-valve engines. It appears that Mercedes primary objectives for these engines were cost and emissions reductions at the expense of reliability and performance.

I realize the advantages of the V6 but not a 90 degree V6 thats inherently unbalanced. Having to use a balance shaft and soft motor mounts to overcome the inherent vibration is a compromise that bothers me.

Ive also read about other problems like strange ticking sounds and problems with the variable length intake manifold.

Id appreciate any feedback from those who own or maintain cars with these new 3-valve engines.

TIA,
Bud
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  #2  
Old 03-19-2003, 05:00 PM
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What you say sounds about what I said 6 years ago when we first saw them, however they are some of the most reliable engines that MB has produced in the last 15 years!!
Other than lack of oil changes & the front harmonic balancer there haven't been any real problems.
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  #3  
Old 03-19-2003, 07:08 PM
Bud
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Thanks Doc. BTW, is there anything about the V8's that would make them more reliable than the V6?

Are they both essentially the same engine except for the number of cylinders and the balance shaft?
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  #4  
Old 03-20-2003, 08:43 AM
LarryBible
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The V8's are the same engine with two more cylinders.

According to my longtime friend who is my tech at the dealer, these engines have proven very reliable.

He called me one day to tell me that he had a V8 version apart if I wanted to see it. It had been an accident, oil filter cannister punctured, lost oil pressure and had to come apart.

I went and got a look. These engines IMHO are an engineering masterpiece. They have such things as; cross bolted mains, short skirt pistons kept from rocking by dual spark plugs fired a specific number of crankshaft degrees apart to control flame travel, cold cracked connecting rod technology, roller cam followers, etc.,.....

The only recall of any type has been on vibration dampers. All the techs are constantly reminded to check the part numbers on the vibration dampers to see that they have the correct one, so this should be taken care of for you.

You should have no worries about the longevity or reliable of one of these engines provided, of course, it is properly maintained and reasonably driven.

Good luck,
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  #5  
Old 03-20-2003, 09:19 AM
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I remember reading Larry's original overview of the engine with great interest. It can be found here.
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  #6  
Old 03-20-2003, 09:47 AM
Bud
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Thanks for the Info on the M112. It puts my mind at ease.

I want to make sure my wife has a reliable car if something happens to me.
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  #7  
Old 03-20-2003, 01:52 PM
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BUD

On a bad day, I may feel insulted by your even questioning the excellence of german engineering.
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  #8  
Old 03-20-2003, 07:19 PM
Bud
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Manny,
I NEVER question German engineering, just Mercedes-Benz priorities.

BTW, my wife just told me she doesn't like the looks of the new C-Class! Looks like the whole thread is now academic
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  #9  
Old 03-20-2003, 08:05 PM
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[
BTW, my wife just told me she doesn't like the looks of the new C-Class! Looks like the whole thread is now academic [/B][/QUOTE]

If the man likes it, the wife can usually be persuaded. Worked for me.
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  #10  
Old 03-20-2003, 08:20 PM
Bud
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If it was up to me, she'd be driving a new 540I Unfortunately, our experience with BMW's have poisoned the well (so to speak).

My head says Mercedes but my heart says BMW.
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  #11  
Old 03-20-2003, 08:34 PM
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My nephew works for BMW................and drives an Audi.
Says his next car will be a Mercedes for sure.
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  #12  
Old 03-21-2003, 08:37 AM
LarryBible
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HOW DREADFUL!!!!!!! I can't imagine driving a car that you don't like the looks of!!!!

I don't think I've ever bought a car based on looks. If I did, I would have never bought an MB at all. I think compared to other cars throughout the years, MB's look almost hideous.

I buy clothes based on how they look not cars. The important things about cars are reliability, drivability, ease of maintenance, longevity, etc. On my list, looks comes in dead last.

MY $0.02,
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  #13  
Old 03-21-2003, 09:58 AM
Bud
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I agree about style. It's very low on my priority list or we wouldn't have driven Mercedes for the last nineteen years.

In fact, if reliabiliby wasn't my overriding priority, I'd probably still be driving BMW's.

My current car is a '91 300E which has turned out to be something special. I've been driving it all these years dispite a real dislike of the styling forward of the A-piller.

However, the choice of Mercedes is no longer so clear cut as it used to be so I have no problem with my wife looking at some alternatives that might be more appealing to her.
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  #14  
Old 03-21-2003, 10:54 AM
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IMO Mercedes as a rule are the most beautiful looking cars on the planet. Their lines and styling are timeless and are one of the most copied designs there is. Ever noticed the prevelance of slanted taillights and deck lids out there now, a la E class?
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  #15  
Old 03-21-2003, 11:42 AM
LarryBible
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"Beauty is in the eye of the beholder."

Just as with people, a cars "beauty" is only skin deep. It's what's inside that counts!

All that side, I still think that most MB's are as ugly as a mud fence.

Have a great day,
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