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Old 09-11-2003, 05:51 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Jul 2001
Posts: 4
2000 C-Class Problems ---> Please Help

List of current problems:
1. engine stalls just after starting.
2. car dies on highway after all gauges and readouts go off.
car won't start after repeated tries. suddenly it starts.
3. power brakes fail. brakes become very hard and barely stop
the car. suddenly, they work again.
4. car stereo knob malfunctions. lower volume using knob and the volume gets louder.
5. knocking sound coming from the back of the car.

has anyone experienced these problems? If so, do you know how they were fixed? the dealership says they can't recreate the problems and have never seen them on other C's before. I think that's a bunch of BS.

The car has 25,000 gentle miles on it.

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Old 09-11-2003, 06:53 PM
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Tucker, Ga USA
Posts: 12,153
What model? C230 OR C280.

You could have a charging system problem, causing many of your problems.
If the car is a C280 then the flywheel sensor can make the car stall.
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Old 09-11-2003, 09:00 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: east coast
Posts: 1,255
Beyond attempting to pull codes to try to detect the problem, ask about attaching a diagnostic data recorder to the engine. ( a shop tool recorder, temporally mounted in the passenger compartment - usually ) Drive around as long as it takes for the car to exhibit the problem and then back to the dealer.
You may have to call different dealers or shops to find out more about such a method to diagnose.
If the car is still under warranty, have the complaint documented.

Also when the car stalls notice if the tach drops instantaneously to zero, or if the tach needle falls incrementally to zero. Instantaneously usually means electrical, incrementally usually means mechanical - like a fuel clogging issue.

Sounds simple, but the noise from the rear - make sure your battery is mounted securely.
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Old 09-12-2003, 10:28 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2001
Posts: 4
The car is a 230Kompressor.

I think that the main problem has been trying to deal with the worst dealership I've ever heard of -- Cardenas Motors in Harlingen, TX. They suck!

Thanks for the good advice. I think I'll ask another dealer (Austin probably) to check the car out. Since it's still under warranty, they really shouldn't have a problem doing this, right?

I was noticing on that there are two TSBs that refer to the problems the car is having (brakes and stalling). The dates on the TSBs are 9/99 and 12/99. If the car was built before that (it's a 2000), then perhaps the TSBs can address what's wrong -- assuming the dealership knows what it's doing.

I think I'm most surprised at how unhelpful and unresponsive Mercedes Benz USA has been. When dealing with Audi for my A4, they have been great. I know other people have complained about Audi service, but I'm thrilled at how I've been treated by my dealer and Audi USA. First rate.

Anyway, thanks for the good advice.
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Old 09-12-2003, 11:47 AM
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California Dreaming
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 599

Ethan brings up a good point about the battery. While you are in the area just ensure the cable connections are tight. Also check the ground cable connection to the frame/body and ensure it is clean (free of paint) and tight. Your battery is "out of sight" therefore it is "out of mind!"

The majority of technicians at dealerships will strive to duplicate a customerís complaint within the 20 minutes they may, or may not spend on it.

With MB's lack of favorable reports from JD Powers you can be assured that at some point the service area could witness some serious brooming to correct it.

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