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  #46  
Old 09-28-2000, 04:08 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: PA
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If you bought it, they priced it right. There is an Economics principle: If you bought it, it didn't cost too much. If you didn't buy it because the price was too high than it cost too much.
P E H
  #47  
Old 09-28-2000, 04:11 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: PA
Posts: 5,440
If you bought the car, it was priced right. There is an Economics principle: If you bought it, it didn't cost too much. If you didn't buy it because the price was too high, then it cost too much.
P E H
  #48  
Old 09-28-2000, 07:21 AM
LarryBible
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Agron80,

Don't hold your breath for that manual transmission W210.

In my search for a manual transmission car, I visited the BMW dealers. Even though they show US availability on quite a few models, including the larger cars, you can't find one at the dealer. At least they allow you to order one, which is much more than I can say for MBUSA.

I need a car now. If BMW would have had a stick that I liked, I probably would have bought it. If my C240 comes in damaged and I have to order a car, I will consider a BMW since I will have to wait anyway.

Larry
  #49  
Old 09-28-2000, 08:06 AM
LarryBible
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Maybe so, but the money grubbers still kept 20% of the dollars for themselves didn't they? This is in the midst of a trend which will see the DMark slide for a few years, do you think MBUSA will share any of that with their consumers? Not a chance. When the dollar starts going the other way, stand back and see how fast they raise their prices.

Larry
  #50  
Old 09-28-2000, 01:47 PM
tracy_leb
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They are entitled to make money, Larry. As much as the market will permit. Do you have a point, other than to compalin?

...tracy
  #51  
Old 09-28-2000, 02:43 PM
LarryBible
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My point is to complain. This is America, built on free enterprise. I have as much right to complain as they do to make money.

But keeping 20% for pure profit and not passing along one red cent to their customers makes a bad statement about them. Maybe what's really in my craw is that I'm one of the idiots that throws gasoline on the fire.

Larry
  #52  
Old 09-28-2000, 03:00 PM
tracy_leb
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Larry, I apologize for my previous post. It was perhaps insensitive. Most folks would be delighted at the opportunity to buy a new car. A new car, in particular a new MB, is generally considered a significant lifetime achievement. Not a lot of people do that. I'd think you'd be excited, happy, looking foreword to it. But your repeated statements are anger, ostensibly at MB, due to cost, and real concern that the car will have some shipping accident related defects. And your cost concerns are on what is a very low cost model, as MB vehicles go.

I understand that your last new MB was a lemon and you are understandably concerned as a consequence. But still, no one is forcing you to buy it, and no one will force you to take delivery if it is not satisfactory. Despite that, you repeatedly whine about MB for making money, and are speculating on almost every post that your yet to be delivered vehicle will be mangled.
Jeez, Larry, with all due respect, give it and your emotions a little rest. We all go through buyers remorse, but you are setting yourself up to be angry at the car before you even get it. With this as a premise, imagine how cheerfully you're likely to react when the first or second rattle occurs. And they will…..

Just a little friendly advise from another owner of a new MB.

…tracy
  #53  
Old 09-29-2000, 12:15 AM
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Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: macon,ga. usa
Posts: 354
Ah,yes. As a mattter or fact I have driven one, and a six speed SLK too. The SLK is better than it was, I will give it that. Perhaps it was just the overall feel of the 6 that impressed me. But to think that I had to shift that compared to a Z3 or Boxster gearbox? Not bloody likely! Rubbery, vague, and lifeless are the words that come to mind. To quote this months Sportscar International mag, " the standard 6 speed gearbox is a real letdown. Rubbery and remote with a clutch pedal that offers hardly any feel, the transmission gets the job done but simply isn't very satisfying to use. Shifts won't be missed, but they won't be enjoyed." Hey, I'm with you, I love to drive a stick. But with the resources, talent and experience that Stuttgart has, this tranny is just a marketing ploy to try to capture a few 3 series customers. Now I have a question for you--have you actually driven a touch shift car? Hard? It's quite remarkable how good it can be. BTW, I wouldn't get too concerned about the car still not being released. I was in Jacksonville yesterday and the warehouse is convered in merchandise. You would think with things moving that slow that they could improve quality control a bit. Anyway, wish you luck, just enjoying the thrust and parry. allen.
  #54  
Old 09-29-2000, 09:13 AM
LarryBible
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Touchshift or whatever, it's still an automatic transmission. There's no clutch pedal, and if you drive a car to high mileage, like I do, it is destined to reward you with a multi-thousand dollar repair bill somewhere along the way. A manual gets a clutch every now and again( I just put the third one in my 240D at 528K miles) and you go on.

You can give me all the automatic transmission doodad's; driver adaptive, touch shift, tiptronic, and I'll still take a manual transmission and clutch pedal every time.

I'm one of the oddball's that MB does not normally build cars for.

As for my whining, I apologize, I am very upset with MB about their decision to rip us off by keeping the 20% for themselves and not sharing one red cent. However, I am very excited about getting my first new car in awhile. It was released to the trucker's yesterday, so maybe I'll get it this weekend.

As I said before, it is MB's right to rip us off if we will stand still for it, and obviously I want the car bad enough to bend over and back in the door. But it's difficult for me not to complain after this turn of monetary events.

I promise to make this my last complaint about MERCEDES BENZ USA's MONEY GRUBBING, RIP OFF ATTITUDE. There, I have to make my last complaint a good one. Henceforth I will report on the car, and hopefully will never have to make a lemon report, or have to report about bad service from the dealer or MBUSA. I bought this car at a different dealership, and so far I am pleased with them. I told the rep. about my past experience and also told him that we are going to wipe the slate clean and start over. New car, different dealership, fresh start.

Thanks for everyone's comments. Let's keep the manual transmission debate going though, it's fun. BTW. If MB's stick is so bad, why are there so many cars in Germany equipped with them?

Thanks and have a great day,

------------------
Larry Bible
'01 C Class, Six Speed
'84 Euro 240D, 523K miles
'88 300E 5 Speed
'81 300D Daughter's Car
Over 800,000 miles in
Mercedes automobiles
  #55  
Old 09-29-2000, 11:18 AM
russla
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Regarding why there are so many standard transmissions in Germany / Europe

It is my perception that MBZ charges an arm and a leg for the autobox, all over Europe.

Secondly, and this is more factual, that the average engine size is much smaller. you can get W210 with 2.3 litre engines in them, and 124's came with 2.0L too. (in the US, MBZ are all loaded) in Europe, they are stripped and even the radio is/was extra, (it's getting better).

It used to be a joke about the steering wheel being an extra option.

I don't know about Germany, but in France, the insurance is higher for a car with an auto box, for example a 230 with a 5 speed would come in as a 12 or 14 CV, but if it has an autobox, it is a 16 or 17 CV, Maybe those ratings dont mean much to you, but to citizens already paying extremely high petrol taxes, they don't necessarily want a less efficient, and power grabbing, insurance fee raising transmission. They'd rather just shift and feel like they're sportier. There are also social pressures. In the UK, many people also feel like they are 'real' drivers, owning an auto (even if you commute only in BtB traffic)is an admission that you're not a "driver" and your car is v much a part of your social status there. When I moved there, I was amazed at the social importance attibuted to cars.

So that's how I see it. Furthermore, in Europe, the driving population has been raised on small cars with standard boxes, rather than the American experience of the Auto V8 muscle cars that one might (I had) get while in HS.


Flame suit on

Regards
Russ

Ps, as a rude psychoanalyst, I see you trying to appeal to two groups at once. you want to be seen as the man who can easily afford a new MBZ (groupA), yet also appear to the value conscious MBZ owners who are buying (or bought)older used MB's because they want a classic dependable car as someone who's concerned about value and cash out flow (groupB). I don't think you can be successful. Spend the money and and get in group A w/o looking back, you can't be in that club and whine about money! or put your principles behind your feelings and tell them (mbz)to stuff it, and let someone else take the first few years depreciation. (tongue firmly in cheek)

MBZ is not ripping you off, they're pricing their product where they can maximise revenue. As a stock holder, I expect them to do that. If you don't agree with their marketing people about pricepoints, you wouldn't buy the car would you? It seems to me, you want the performance,the status, the reliability and the kudos from your neighbors/peers. All of that 'value' is in the price you pay. If their cost of production goes down,(in this case MBUSA profit goes up) the value of the car to you doesn't change does it?, so why should they lower their prices?


[This message has been edited by russla (edited 09-29-2000).]

[This message has been edited by russla (edited 09-29-2000).]
  #56  
Old 09-29-2000, 11:33 AM
LarryBible
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There are no comments that I make in regards to automobiles that are meant to appeal to anyone. I am a terminal CarNut. My ideas about cars probably don't match up with any other human being on earth. I simply espouse(sp) my ideas and opinions.

The only reason I can afford to buy a new Benz, albeit the cheapest one they sell in the US, is because I pinch pennies, that's why the monetary issue unsettles me so much.

I'm sure that you could have a field day performing psychoanalysis on me. But if you do it based on my comments and opinions regarding cars, your conclusion and results will be highly inaccurate.

If I am seen as bragging about buyig a new Benz, there again one that is less expensive than most American luxury cars, I apologize. My discussions are simply my thoughts about cars and car companies.

Additionally, the subject of cars is certainly the one in which I am clearly the most opinonated.

Thanks and have a great day,
Larry

PS. Regardless of the REASON that Europeans buy manual transmissions, If MB's versions are so awfully bad, how are they staying in business with their product in Europe? LB

[This message has been edited by LarryBible (edited 09-29-2000).]
  #57  
Old 09-29-2000, 12:14 PM
russla
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Hi Larry,

'so bad' or 'really Bad' standard transmissions are very relative terms. While you drive them and don't seem to think that they are bad, just like some other posters, there are some that dislike the way they feel.

Obviously (to me) the reasons for choosing the standard, (at least in Europe) out weigh the 'badness' of the transmission. So they MB can get away with their continued level of 'badness' of transmissions because of the other 'good things' inherent in the ownership of a Merc..

perhaps your perceptions of the quality of MB standards is identical to most of the Europeans? if this is the case, they are satisfied enough with the boxes (little do they know ) and can keep MB happily in business making them. you seem to like it, and you seem somewhat coherent & intellegent,(if not a little anal )

Perhaps the standard boxes are just that, standard, tolerable, but not crappy enough to drive customers away?

McDonalds is not gourmet food, but I don't dislike it so much that I refuse to go there on occasion. (yes I've been seen in the drive thru)

Kind regards and no offence intended (just poking some fun)

Russ
  #58  
Old 09-29-2000, 03:01 PM
LarryBible
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Yes, I am really anal on this. I have driven manual transmissions in everything from Army Jeeps and Army MultiFuel Cargo Trucks, to Corvettes, Porsches, VW's, MB's, Fords, Chevy's, Plymouths, Audi A4, Tractors, Honda's, Toyota's, Fiero's, a Hay Truck or two, Mustang's, Corvairs, Civilian Jeeps, Dodge Cummins 5 Speed, etc. I don't remember any of them being particularly bad or particularly good. If you know how to handle a stick and a clutch, one drives about as good as another. The next thing is the reliability. Again, if you really know how to handle a manual transmission, the worst of them will last forever. If you continue to move the shift lever before the clutch is completely disengaged, you will round off gears and/or ruin brass.

A fellow I used to work with had two manual transmission cars that he and his wife drove. They constantly had transmissions knocked out. I never said anything to him, but it was clear, that he and/or his wife did not know how to handle them properly.

I can see where if you have a limited amount of experience with manual transmissions, you may notice differences from one to the next. A really high time airplane pilot can usually climb into about any airplane and fly it and just do it. It comes from lots of stick time (no pun intended). This is the only explanation that I can come up with for this understanding gap. I drive about any manual transmission without even thinking about it. If I get in a strange vehicle, I won't be totally smooth at first, because it takes a few starts and shifts to know that particular clutch.

There are many young people in this country who couldn't drive a manual transmission, even if it were an emergency. I think that this is part of what is playing into this gap.

As a matter of fact, I'm shocked that ANY mid engine or rear engine car can have a shifter that you can brag about. These are usually the worst, like a VW, a rear engine Porsche or a Fiero (I have never driven a Boxster, but if you say so, it must shift well). There are just additional factors that play into the equation in a rear or mid engine situation.

In case you haven't read between the lines yet, When someone condemns the MB manual as bad shifting, I am suspect of their amount of time and experience handling manual transmissions in general.

Have a great day,

------------------
Larry Bible
'01 C Class, Six Speed
'84 Euro 240D, 523K miles
'88 300E 5 Speed
'81 300D Daughter's Car
Over 800,000 miles in
Mercedes automobiles
  #59  
Old 09-29-2000, 05:17 PM
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Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: macon,ga. usa
Posts: 354
This is fun! I do note Larry, that most all of the cars you listed below have godawful manual transmissions. I do also note that the standard bearer for manual transmissions, BMW, is not listed among them. If you haven't taken delivery of the 240, I would encourage you NOT to drive a new e46 325 or 330i. You will not go back to the Benz store. I guess that's the point I'm making--if you're absolutely commited to driving a stick, why not drive the best one? And as for saving money on the repairs, you are right, but there's a flaw in your logic. You're forgetting the thousands of dollars in depreciation that you'll lose if you buy an MB stick. But realistically, that's not part of the equation for you because you keep a car so long. You still didn't answer my question--have you driven a touch shift in a new Benz? It's a great tranny. But you better not go drive that stick in the 3 series......
  #60  
Old 09-29-2000, 05:40 PM
Alex Kouliy
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Larry,

Congrats on your new set of wheels. I loved your prostitute analogy, can't agree more. The worst you-know-what is better than no you-know-what at all. And, BTW, it's perfectly OK to complain about mark-ups, but hey, the Made in China stuff at TOYS-R-US probably has a higher mark-up than your new Benz. Enjoy your new toy and don't let those thoughts spoil the fun!
-------------
AK
87 260E
75 FIAT 124 Spider 5-speed "prostitute"
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