Last post on Nov 10, 2009 at 6:48 PM
You are in the Mercedes-Benz C-Class
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Mercedes-Benz C-Class, Car Safety, Sedan
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#4593 of 7297 Reliability of the C320
Sep 25, 2001 (12:48 pm)
I haven't contributed for quite awhile though I watch the posts on the reliability isuues. I have an early (Nov 2000) build that has been in on 7 separate occasions for:
squealing brakes (2 Trips, fixed), noisey purge valve (better, but will go for the replacement kit), moving or shifting drivers seat cushion ,2 trips,fixed, (actual frame replaced), bad memory module for drivers seat(fixed, module replaced) keys replaced( fixed), wiring harness to enable the satellite unlocking (early builds below 59000 need this )upgrade.
I think Zeemenow is in the minority when it comes to problem free motoring since I have several friends with the C320/240 who have all been back at least 3 times for this and that.
At 10,000 plus miles I do want to balance the comments about what is right. I am averaging 27+ miles per gallon for the last 3600 miles.(avg speed 42 miles per hour). I managed 31.4 mpg for 254 miles in a mostly highway cruise. The return trip was 30.2 mpg running the AC intermittantly cruising at 65 to 75 mph. The brakes are the best I have ever used. (Rented a Lincoln LS on a recent trip and realized that after almost rear ending someone ). This car is very quiet handles well, is fast and instills great driver confidence. It is a very attractive design.
I also have an LS 430 which has been back to the dealer but once in 9 months. This car is very refined and it too was a new model build just like the Benz. In short the Benz will get replaced before the Lexus but I will admit that I feel more noticable in the Benz and much more anonomous the in the 430. If I could do this over I would have still bought the Benz but should have waited for the C 320 wagon which to my eyes comes off very well in the styling dept. By the way I dumped the factory wheels/tires and went for 255/40 18 inchers in the back and 225/40 18 s on the front. The ride and road noise are is fine and it brought the rear end down an inch which makes for a really nice looking stance (tirerack.com knows this car well as to various fitments)
Best Wishes to all
Sep 25, 2001 (4:30 pm)
Not to partake in dealer bashing, but I did want to at least vent about the call I had with RBM's general manager in the process of trying to resolve the bumper situation.
After I explained my position that I thought it was the dealer's responsibility to at least give me the option of having the front plate installed (especially since the salesman did admit that I wasn't the only customer who was very unhappy to find out about the permanent damage -- all for a front bracket that isn't required by the state!), I said, "Sir, with all due respect, as a piece of advice from the customer, I would train your salespeople to mention this to the client prior to delivery." He abruptly cut me off saying, "Don't you tell me how to run my business -- we're doing quite fine without your input, thank you very much. I don't go into your business and try and tell you what to do?" To which I replied, "Actually, if I didn't listen to you as my customer, I would be out of business."
So, unfortunately, the rose-colored glasses are off -- I thought buying a MB would be some sort of fantasy experience, but alas, I guess I fell victim to marketing hype.
Bottom line: buyer beware -- don't take the dealer's word for anything. Continue to use forums like this and be aggressive about asking questions and taking charge of the buying experience.
(With less than 200 miles on my new car, I'm probably not qualified to report my experience. But, so far, so good -- although, I did get the new albaster white color, which I had hoped would be more different than it really is from the 2001 "white" color. Would probably take a German engineer to tell the difference in a parking lot.)
#4595 of 7297 Reliability of C320
Sep 25, 2001 (5:03 pm)
I own a C320 that I bought in early February and have no problems whatsoever. My belief is that the only guys who post messages typically have a problem of some kind while the rest of us who don't have problems either don't read this message board or don't bother posting.
Sep 25, 2001 (6:04 pm)
I appreciate your reply to me, Miki, about the extended Warranty. How soon after purchasing a vehicle should/must you purchase the extension? And will it be accepted at any Mercedes Dealership? Thanks
#4597 of 7297 robtroxel - wheels question
Sep 25, 2001 (6:41 pm)
I was thinking of getting new whee;s for my 240 and was looking into 18's for them. The only thing is that it seemed as though the front and the rear would need to be lowered to make it look nice. In your post you mentioned that you had only lowered the rear? So have you not lowered the front?
Do you have any pics of your car with the 18's on?
Thanks in advance
#4598 of 7297 Re: C 240: No cool air out of floor vents on auto setting
Sep 25, 2001 (6:48 pm)
Come on . . . a "feature"???? I hardly see how being uncomfortably warm--and not being able to control it--can be considered a "feature". Let's at least be honest enough to call it what it is . . . a design "flaw."
#4599 of 7297 Reliability
Sep 25, 2001 (8:49 pm)
Obviously there is some concern regarding the anecdotal evidence of many design and QA/QC flaws in the new C Class. There has been some speculation as to whether this board is a representative sample (of course it's not), or if these are even common problems.
Perhaps one way to assess this is to examine statistically significant reliability sources. I don't know if this is any kind of omen or precursor of things to come, but this year, Consumer Reports has taken the W202 C Class off its "Best Buy" list due to an average performance. The car was on the Best Buy list for several years before that, with above average reliability. What will happen next year when CR first rates the W203? I really wonder.
Notably, the BMW 3 series remains a CR "Best Buy". But if you read the anecdotal evidence on BMW message boards such as bimmer.org, these cars also seem to have a spate of reliability issues. Some are rather grave; many posters have indicated that their engine cooling fans (mostly Siemens, but some Bosch) have failed and as a result the engine has overheated. BMW did a recall on all E46 3 Series cars, only to recall the recalled part yet again, replacing the fans (made by Siemens) by Bosch units.
What is wrong with this picture? Bosch and Siemens used to be highly respected suppliers. But wait, there's more ... apparently there is an issue with premature A-arm bushing failure resulting in very sloppy handling and braking imbalances. There may be a recall in the works for this too. There is also a host of other problems described on the board. At least CR has not (yet?) found sufficient data to suggest that the 3 should not be called a Best Buy any more.
Quite frankly, the more I read in this vein, the more I like my 1966 Peugeot 404 Coupé, which in its long life has had no unusual part failures, or a single breakdown. In 35 years!! Maybe I should restore it now instead of buying a new car. In fact, I think I will.
Even my 1989 405 is still going strong at 155,000 miles, though it did have several issues under warranty (none involving inoperability, I hasten to add).
If I lay down some big bucks for a new German car, I'll expect near perfection. If the car ever became inoperable, for any reason, I'd be horrified. Speechless. I would be in the manufacturer's face like their worst nightmare. Such shabbiness is simply inexcusable. No paying customer should have to do alpha testing for a carmaker. And yet that seems to be what I'm seeing evidence of here, to one degree or another.
Some of the folks here whose keys have failed to operate, or have had electrical shutdowns while driving, would likely think twice about taking a long trip in their new car. One or two of you even mentioned this in previous postings.
Well, our family just got back from a 4000+ mile trip in my fully loaded (with luggage and people!) Peugeot 405. I knew the car would not break down. Think about it folks ... this is an old, orphaned, French car. Parts are hard to get. No roadside assistance, no local dealer, no warranty. But I knew there would not be a problem. And there wasn't even a hiccup.
I am truly glad that I'm not able to buy a new car at this moment, as it gives me time to assess the situation and react accordingly. I'll be watching JD Power, ADAC Pannenstatistik, CR and even the costs of W203 extended warranty closely over the next couple of years to see what I should do.
Meanwhile, I hope that those of you who are experiencing problems with your C Classes manage to sort them out and enjoy your cars. I really want to buy one, but I'm not sure it'd be the right decision.
#4600 of 7297 C320 sport ride quality
Sep 25, 2001 (9:15 pm)
it looks like maybe one of your shock absorbers is dead. try to push down on each corner of your car. the corner that bounces too much or offers least resistance could be at fault. this is just a hunch on my part; i can't believe that it went past quality control if really faulty. hope you find it.
#4601 of 7297 404c - I'm with you
Sep 26, 2001 (3:50 am)
They don't build them like they used to. I have a neighbor who has a new C-240 6-speed and an old 240D 4-speed. He has put over 250,000 miles on his "D" without any significant problems. As for his new "C" with 5,000 miles, no significant problems, but it's been back to the dealership numerous times for little things that are driving him nuts.
His assessment is that over the past few years MB has gone in the direction of flashy styling, lots of electronic gimmicks, and (relatively) high volume production at the expense of building an incredibly solid, well engineered and tested car (i.e. what their reputation of 10-20+ years ago was built on).
As for dealerships that forget who is the customer and how to deliver service, I think that is unfortunately another example of MB going towards quantity over quality.
I remain on the list for a C32, but will be giving this dilemma further thought before I stroke the check. I'm also on the list for an M3, and it appears to me that BMW has not "fallen" as much as Mercedes in quality control. Perhaps because they weren't quite as high as Mercedes was to begin with.
#4602 of 7297 GUESS WHAT....ARGH!
Sep 26, 2001 (5:28 am)
Yep, this morning wouldn't crank. They are on the way with a mechanic. I cannot believe this. I spend 43,000 and have 10,000 miles on it and it has cost me 3 days pay!
Its not the key, It's only 3 days old!