Last post on Dec 25, 2012 at 11:19 AM
You are in the Mercedes-Benz E-Class
What is this discussion about?
Mercedes-Benz E-Class, Sedan, Wagon
#117 of 1173 JD Power Dependability Study
Nov 23, 2002 (5:41 am)
Was a link in one of the other forums to a 11/21/02 press release showing the results of the latest JD Power Dependability Study which reports on the problems of 5 year old cars. Lexus, as usual, was on top. The release stated that a 5 year old 1998 Lexus has fewer problems than the average 1998 car had WHEN IT WAS NEW (159 problems/per 100 cars vs. 176 problems/per 100 cars). The three European makes with above average dependability were Porsche, BMW, and Jaguar. Mercedes was not in the above average group (don't exactly know where it was). Never thought I'd see the day when a Jaguar was more dependable than a Mercedes, but it's here.
#118 of 1173 fuel tank or gauge
Nov 23, 2002 (9:07 am)
I am looking at the discussion because my wife has a C320 and I'm considering the new E. A little concerned about reliability, but I noticed the post about the inability to fill the fuel tank. Just got the C320 back and the service slip (all warranty work) talked about replacing a faulty fuel gauge sensor. They indicated that the gauge didn't read "Full" after filling. The real problem was the car wouldn't hold enough gas, although maybe when it said it was nearly empty it really wasn't. Any thoughts. They also couldn't replicate an annoying ticking sound from under the car while driving and warm. Maybe the service dept. isn't good. Any thoughts.
#119 of 1173 fuel gauge
Nov 23, 2002 (9:12 am)
Our '01E320 had the same problem. Dealer made a quick fix which helped about 90%. Still reads a tad below full after filling up.
Nov 25, 2002 (2:18 pm)
Jaguar has improved to Ford dependability standards over the last several years.
With as much critisim as I heap on MB, defining quality by battery life or problems with the fuel gauge doesn't seem fair to me. And there will always be some idiosyncrasies with cars ... even the Japanese cars. My Lexus is very prone to rotor warpage with the OEM ceramic brake pads. What are you gonna do? Doesn't mean the car is a bad car. It just means that that particular system could be better designed or that the engineers decided occasional warpage is acceptable in order to give most people 50K miles between brake jobs because the ceramic pads last longer and make less brake dust. I'm not willing to say the E class car is a bad car because of a few opportunities for improvement.
My personal E-class experience was more along the lines of catastrophic failure of rather mundane but very critical systems. Still every manufacturer is going to have the occasional bad car and perfect car. And in my 3MB experience, the other two cars, while costing more to maintain than a Toyota, were within my personal tolerance. Too bad we can't get the numbers by specific failre or repair.
On a sighlty different note: Perhaps the sealed unit concept is still somewhere off in the future, but auto manufacturers seem to have to be forced to reveal the diagnostic codes even today, making it very difficult for the independent operator. Thank goodness they are being forced to provide the codes after the car is out of warranty.
Nov 25, 2002 (7:55 pm)
Yeah, you see, nobody expects Jaguar to be perfect. They score average and everyone treats it like the Second Coming.
If you are a drunk and you sober up and start working in a shoe store, everyone calls it a miracle. If you were a college professor or engineer and you quit to sell shoes they'd call it a tragedy.
#122 of 1173 Good analogy shifty
Nov 26, 2002 (4:24 pm)
But Jaguar has actually surpassed MB in dependability so they're both not selling shoes. More like Jaguar is selling shoes and MB is working in the sewer.
What Ford did for Jaguar was to simply implement modern manufacturing methods. I worked in England for 4 years and it was hard to believe how antiquated British industry really is. When Ford bought in the 80s, Jaguar was using a 1950s production line. Morgans are produced today using a wooden frame (ash). With the sale of Rover and Rolls to the Germans (which really irked the Brits), the largest British owned car manufacturer is Reliant. Their main product is a 3 wheeled plastic bodied car called the Robin. It has about 40 HP and requires only a motocycle license. Reliant is in and out of bankruptcy. I think the whole company is worth around $600k.
#123 of 1173 You are not a true E-Class owner until...
Nov 27, 2002 (9:25 am)
...you know how to:
a) Replace the bulbs in the foglamps.
b) Replace all exterior lights.
c) Interpret the dreaded 'lamp defective' message, use a multimeter to find troublespots and remove oxydation from contacts.
d) Replace a rear window regulator.
e) Pull the instrument cluster and center console in search for defective lamps.
f) Know what type of clutch holder it takes to remove your particular fan clutch.
g) Can recite all locations in a 30-miles-radius from your home that will actually sell the recommended Mobil 1 0w40.
h) Know how to fight back your tears while forking over $1000 for replacement Xenons, after the plexiglass of the old ones has dulled.
i) Know where the wheel mounting tool is located and how to use it.
Oh, the joy ...
Nov 28, 2002 (10:58 am)
Hahaha...my '80 Benz does the same things. Always burning out bulbs and yep, I repalced a window regulator recently! Very funny. Some things don't change.
Wipers: -- Doesn't it make you want to scream with all these useless gadgets?
British Auto Industry -- more than one cynic has said that it might have been better if the Germans had destroyed all of Britain's and America's auto plants to the same extent that the British and Americans destroyed all of Germany's. That way, the Brits could have started from scratch again like the Germans had to, with more modern plants and machinery.
Of course this is a rather simplistic view of a tragic situation, but the point is well made nonetheless.
There is a funny story which may be true and may not, that after the Brits won Lemans with the Bentley (ah, my mind is fading...was it 1931?), that the Germans hired some spies to find out the secret. Somehow they managed to buy, through an intermediary, one of the old race cars (a common practice, to sell or junk last year's models and build new ones for the new season), and when they took it apart, they were amazed to see nothing new whatsoever in the way of technology. All it was was the clever use of old technology.
I think the Americans inherited this clever use of old tech from the 50s through the 80s, while the Germans and Japanese went merrily into super high tech.
Hearing all these stories of mysterious electronic failures makes me wonder if they aren't going further than they need to.
Just because we CAN build rain-sensing windshield wipers, do we really need to have them?
Benz used to be known (like Packard was) for solid sensible engineering. I'd hate to see these cars become show-boats for high tech drivel.