Last post on Dec 04, 2010 at 4:10 AM
You are in the Mercedes-Benz CLK
What is this discussion about?
Mercedes-Benz CLK-Class, Coupe, Convertible
#599 of 1636 Extended Warranty
Nov 12, 2001 (2:10 pm)
We opted for the extended warranty based on several factors. 1-This car is so full of gizmos, seemed prudent to cover it beyond 4/50K. 2- Its our first Benz, and we have heard of bank account draining repair costs happening beyond the standard factory warranty. Of course, not covered are "consumables" like brakes, light bulbs, filters etc. But what concerns me the most is the complexity of the electronics in the car, plus electrical motors in the seats, windows etc. So, we went with the premium 4/50K extended which covers it till the year 2009 or 100K. Cost us ~ $2200 extra.
Nov 13, 2001 (8:36 am)
MB says that the angle of the hatch is such that a wiper isn't necessary.
They can claim all they want, but they put one on the C320 Wagon...what's that say?
The bottom line is that as a hatchback owner for the last 15+ years, I know that I use the rear wiper and I want one on my next hatch. PERIOD.
#601 of 1636 That says that the wagon has a different rear window angle, no?
Nov 13, 2001 (9:27 am)
The angle on the rear window is more like a coupe's than a hatch's. I don't see the lack of a wiper as a big issue on this particular car. If you're stuck on this, then I guess that you've just eliminated one model from your search.
Nov 13, 2001 (10:47 am)
That says that the wagon has a different rear window angle, no?
Yup. The catch is that more vertical rear surfaces are less less likely to gather rain, snow or frost, so why did M-B see a wiper as necessary on the C-Wagon? For "looks"?
I don't see the lack of a wiper as a big issue on this particular car.
It is a combination of local conditions and constraints...YMMV applies. As I mentioned, I have 15+ years of direct, relevant experience. The slope of hatchbacks such as the C230 will require that you're going 40+mph in a rain or snowstorm to keep it clear of precipitation. If you're stuck in bumper-to-bumper in a snowstorm, it is going to get obscured.
My point is that this "don't need it" claim is self-contradictory on M-B's part...you need it on both, or neither.
Since a rear wiper also exists on the A Class, its absence on the C-Coupe is downright conspicuous.
FWIW, I personally suspect that MB figured that this was a place that they could cut costs a little, keep the "ugly hatchback" accusations at bay and hope that the profile of their targeted customers won't miss it.
For example, if your car is always garaged, then you don't have to worry about the chore of clearing off heavy morning dews & frosts. YMMV.
If you're stuck on this, then I guess that you've just eliminated one model from your search.
Perhaps. I'm more upset at the lameness of M-B's excuse than its absence. I would have been fine if it had been extra-cost option, but it isn't. IMO, if MB is successful with the C230, expect to see a rear wiper on it within a few years.
Any suggestions on how or where I could get a rear wiper aftermarket?
Nov 13, 2001 (11:08 am)
I believe that Mercedes deemed rear wipers unnecessary on their hatchbacks because of the way aerodynamics work. The rain, sleet, whatever form of precipitation naturally flows off the steeply raked window with help of the wind flow. On wagons, where windows are not as angled, the water tends to gather and stay and slowly drip off, which requires the help of a wiper. Furthermore, since the window is more upright, it is more susceptible to water rising from the rear wheels. It's all about aerodynamics once the car is going rather than what happens when the car is stable.
#604 of 1636 Once Again...
Nov 13, 2001 (11:29 am)
...we have folk who know better than the engineers...
Believe me, if a $15 wiper were necessary on this car, it would be there.
I've owned plenty of hatchbacked cars in my time, and each has been different about crud buildup in bad weather. A couple of early '80s Celicas never required aux wiping in foul weather; others were a disaster without constant use of the rear wiper. The angle DOES make a difference, and I'll side with the assumption that the people in Stuttgart know what they are talking about - if they didn't, the EU reaction to this would already be deafening.
#605 of 1636 Rearwiper
Nov 13, 2001 (11:46 am)
I have owned both generations of the Honda CRX-SI which had a very raked rear windows. Each car had a rear wiper and at speed you really didn't need it. When in traffic, with rain or snow the wiper was useful. If your car is sitting outside and you want to backup, you could flip the wiper and clean off the dew/rain/snow off the hatch window. Without the wiper you have to reliey on the side mirrors for rear vision or get out and wipe off the window by hand. I have found that keeping a rear window well coated with rain-x or equivalent will reduce the amount of moisture sticking to the rear window. I think the wiper was left off to cut costs. So it goes in the entry level luxury sporty car market.
Nov 13, 2001 (12:05 pm)
...Mercedes does not cut costs on safety. If the wiper were an issue, it would already be a scandal in Europe.
What everyone forgets is that the things that American customers consider "cheap" about this car are routinely left off of ordered cars in Europe. Leather is rare in this class of car in EU - the cloth upholstery is what most people order. Same with wood, where it is an option, it is ordered by a minority of people. Safety equipment is another story - Mercedes simply doesn't cut corners here...they spent money on standard ESP, headbags, etc. If the wiper were necessary to safe driving, it would be there.
Look, I think there are a lot of things to criticize about the way MB is doing business these days - this is not one of them.
Nov 13, 2001 (12:18 pm)
I believe that Mercedes deemed rear wipers unnecessary on their hatchbacks because of the way aerodynamics work.
Yes, but this is incomplete: the fluid mechanics of non-inviscid compressible flow to apply as a tangential clearing force are only applicable when the car is moving at or above a threshold velocity.
...we have folk who know better than the engineers...
Or perhaps some of us are Mechanical Engineers ourselves.
Using a semi-laminar flow to blow rain off your rear hatch works fine when its rain. But when accumulated snow blows off your roof, you're pretty much hosed, unless you have a nuclear powered rear window defogger.
#608 of 1636 not an engineer but have had MB in the past, and have c230 on order....
Nov 13, 2001 (1:14 pm)
If you take a look at the C230 option list, one thing becomes glaringly obvious. MB does not consider safety an option. All of the safety & handling features are standard. Differing from other makes, especially at this price point, MB made a decision about what they felt was important to include. IMHO, I feel more confident when side airbags, skid control, etc. are considered essential parts of the vehicle, and the CD changer, leather seating, etc. are options. I'm fine with that hierarchy of priorities.
My MB station wagon had a standard rear wiper which was needed to clear the window at highway speeds. I agree with earlier posts that if window visibility was a problem, this relatively inexpensive item would have been included.