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Old 11-10-2003, 12:51 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Indianapolis
Posts: 109
Dealer economics on parts (rhetorical)

I like to support Fastlane, but I also like to 'oil the local economy', and check with our local dealer occasionally for parts. The fuel pump relay went out on our 300TE this weekend, it's a pain driving to work and back with the relay jumpered, so I gave a call to the parts department at the dealer.

Long story short, would not budge one bit off price for their relay, which is nearly $60 over what you can get it for at any respected web parts supplier ($160 MSRP, $100ish from web).

Offered to split the difference with them, no way. What is it about dealer economics that I'm missing - the chance to make $30 seems better than making $0, right?

Sorry for the rhetorical post - I just find this fascinating.

89 300TE 192,xxx
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Old 11-10-2003, 12:59 PM
GermanStar's Avatar
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Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Fountain Hills, AZ
Posts: 4,918
You seem to be assuming that Mercedes dealers can purchase parts for the same price that independent distributers can -- and they cannot. They are bound by contract to purchase parts from MBUSA, who is bound to purchase from Daimler Chrysler, who purchases from the local suppliers in Germany. Independent distributers can purchase direct from German suppliers, eliminating some middlemen and lowering the price.

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Old 11-10-2003, 01:06 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Indianapolis
Posts: 109
Thank you for the kind reply - yes I did make that assumption. But would you not also assume that MBUSA would generate much more volume and as such get the same/better pricing?

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Old 11-10-2003, 02:53 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: San Francisco, CA
Posts: 3,096
I had to run out a couple of weeks ago and get a part for the 190e heater core project. Drove over to the local dealer.

By the parts department is a little sign saying something about welcoming Mercedes Benz Owners Club memebers.

Upon doing the parts transaction I said: "Oh, I see you honor Mercedes Owner's Club memebers ..... please apply that discount to my purchase".

I was told: " Well, if all of our customers were members, then everyone would want a discount, now wouldn't they!" .........

After I pulled my jaw up off the ground, I told their parts person, that was the last time they would ever have my business.


'03 E320 Wagon-Sold
'95 E320 Wagon-Went to Ex
'93 190E 2.6-Wrecked
'91 300E-Went to Ex
'65 911 Coupe (#302580)
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Old 11-10-2003, 03:32 PM
it leaks, its german
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: raleigh nc
Posts: 1,111

140 speed sensor. l/f

local dealer......... $270.00 wholesale.

out of town dealer $180.00 wholesale.

get my point?

MBUSA has no control over pricing. The dealer sset up their own "matrix" and thats that. Now while one would think the same part would be the same price regardless of where you purchased it (within the same general geographic region) that simply isn't the case. Add that to the move of a few years back to "regional" retail centers and well.... now you get my drift.

Project Smoker, '87 603 powered wagon
Hauler, 96 CTD can you say torque?
Toy 73 Cougar xr7 convertible
Acme Automotive Inc.
Raleigh NC
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