Last post on May 11, 2010 at 11:16 AM
You are in the Mercedes-Benz E-Class
What is this discussion about?
Mercedes-Benz E-Class, Sedan
May 11, 2004 (2:27 pm)
I can do financial analysis in my sleep, but there is no absolute objective answer to this analysis and for you to suggest buying is always better than leasing is inaccurate, at best.
For the record, I have only bought my cars, whether titled in my name for personal use or in my company's name for business use and depreciation. However, I typically buy cars with the intention of keeping them for 7+ years after which residuals and depreciation are pretty much exhausted.
If I were to desire to have a new car every 36 months and not want to have excess depreciation risk and no-brainer tax returns and deductions, I'd likely consider leasing. And, frankly, I probably should have done so with my 2 1/2 year old Honda S2000 that I am now looking at trading. I paid $34.2k cash (including taxes)for it in November 2001. I can now go through the pain of trying to sell it privately at about $24.5k or trading it for $22k on an Acura TL or E320 CDI (same dealer for either). So it will have cost me roughly between 10k-12k for 30 months and 18,000 miles. Had I leased it for 30 months, the total cost would have been about $12k over that time. However, I would have had $34.2k still sitting in a brokerage account. What's that worth? Between -$10k and +$20k depending upon what portfolio it was in. Oh, and on the depreciation front, I may have to recapture a bit at ordinary tax rates because of the accelerated 25% allowed in 2001 after 9-11. Had I simply writted off the lease payments, no recapture would be required and, although it would have been nearly a wash, the process would have been simpler.
Professionals and companies that like nice steady cash flows, want/offer new company cars every 3 years, don't want to sell privately or negotiate trades, etc. are well served by leasing. And the Mercedes/Acura dealer I would either buy or lease from is very reasonable in accepting "normal" wear and tear at turn in time. Park the car in the middle of your country club's driving range, and you'll have a problem. But you wouldn't do that with a car you just bought for $60k either.
#5753 of 6720 CDI vs. Hybrid?
May 17, 2004 (5:29 am)
I dont see how a diesel can remain a viable option when the hybrid is quickly becoming mainstream with Lexus preparing a "sporty" hybrid engine for November '04 release. Specifically, I'm waiting anxiously for the new Lexus RX Hybrid that's alleged to have quicker acceleration than its gas counterpart while keeping great fuel efficiency in the 30-40mpg ballpark.
If the hybrid has been "perfected" to where reliability is not an issue (and considering this is coming from Lexus, highly doubt problems) while performance is no longer a weakness, wouldnt consumers flock to the hybrid because regular gas is easily available versus diesel fuel?
I'm surprised MB doesnt have a hybrid offering announced.
I was looking forward to the CDI until I read early adopter reviews that ultimately, the CDI is experiencing some turbo lag, and despite what journalists are reporting, owners still notice a louder than normal noise from the engine during normal commutes as well as during morning idle. Really, the only reason to get the CDI is if one honestly wants to save on fuel and help the environment, otherwise the car itself does not sound like a compelling alternative for those used to the smoother performance of the regular gas engine - add to that the $1500 premium US dealers are charging and it makes sense they'll only send over a limited number.
May 17, 2004 (8:40 am)
The diesel does not lose charge going up a long hill. The diesel can tow. The diesel is very durable and simple. The diesel will run on 100% renewable fuel. The diesel can also be made into a hybrid.
Gasoline is already sliding off the map in some countries.
The reviews I have read indicate that it is extremely hard to tell the vehicle is a diesel, and even then only at idle. My father test drove the new Passat diesel last week, and said he could not tell it was a diesel, and it felt as fast as his 1.8t.
#5755 of 6720 Re: [dudleyr #5754]
May 17, 2004 (2:37 pm)
Great Points. This is a good time to be a consumer as car companies are really making a concerted effort to offer us choices in alternative fuels.
May 18, 2004 (3:01 am)
I could hear the diesel "ping" standing immediately outside the car, but not sitting inside of it. And the brief test "ride" I got did not show any significant turbo lag. It may not be an E55, but I would be hard pressed to get even the E500 over the CDI based upon the strong 45-70 mph acceleration it showed on the highway. My business associate managed just under 40mpg on her first long highway trip (about 5 mpg more than her former 1998 E300 TD).
And I agree with dudleyr, the 320 CDI is relatively simply, proven technology that is extremely durable. If you want a vehicle that is a near sure bet to go 250k miles, the E320 CDI would probably top my list. The hybrids sound very interesting, but I'd give them a little development time to work the bugs out.
#5758 of 6720 Diesel Vs Hybrid
May 18, 2004 (2:16 pm)
I am really disappointed that I cannot buy the E320 TDI in New York. I will be looking soon for my retirement car and looking at gas prices in NYC 2.29 for premium is ridiculous.
The advantages of the Diesel to me are no tune ups and you can put a million miles on a diesel which you cannot do in a gas car. I have also read that with the Hybrid the battery life of the car is about 6 to 7 years so you will have to make a big investment around that time so to me a Hybrid is a better lease deal.
I hope that MB will be able to get this car certified in NY soon.
#5759 of 6720 Needs low sulfur fuel
May 18, 2004 (5:02 pm)
It's the fuel producers, not MB's issue. NY is right to say no to the crap that they pass off as diesel fuel in the U.S.
May 19, 2004 (1:27 am)
right. Thank your US petrolium companies for successfully lobbying for the delay in the US adoption of low sulfer requirements that have been in place since in Europe the 1990's.
Mercedes is to be credited for making a TDI that runs on the US "crap", but will run even better when the low sulpher diesel makes it's way to our pumps.
May 19, 2004 (10:05 am)
As an FYI to E-Class owners, a recall was reported in this week's Automotive News.
Mercedes is recalling 680,000 cars worldwide, including E-Class sedans built after March 2002 and wagons made after March 2003, because the electronic braking system has failed on some E-Class and SL-Class cars.
The fix requires new software and should take about an hour, although some cars may need their hardware repaired.