Mercedes quality - fact or phantom?

Discussion in 'Mercedes' started by Mikemoss, Jul 8, 2010.

  1. Mikemoss

    Mikemoss Read Only Funster

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    Although our Bessie is on a Fiat, I'm posting this in the Mercedes section as I'm curious to know whether MB's quality image is actually deserved so far as the Sprinter is concerned.

    I'm now on my third Mercedes estate. The first (a W124 230TE) blew it's engine before it had time to go rust, the second (a W124 300TE) didn't blow it's engine but was rusting away merrily at 13 years old, and my current W210 E320 is a rust bucket in every sense of the word. Particularly annoying is the fact that the so-called 'goodwill gesture' under which MB kindly allowed me to pay £570 towards what was supposed to be repairs to affected parts is now going rusty again just 13 months later.

    Maybe I'm the mug for sticking with MB for so long, but I do find it amusing when I read the gushing praise which the motorhome mags tend to lavish on any MB-based motorhome for its 'prestige' and 'quality' and so on when my experience of their car bodywork design, rust-proofing and paintwork has been so at variance with this image.

    Is it just the cars, or do Sprinters suffer from the same issues?
     
  2. wivvy's dad

    wivvy's dad Read Only Funster

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    I know it's not quite the same, but modern BMW motorbikes are not a patch on the older ones.

    Modern vehicle manufacture is ruled by accountants - build them down to a price.

    MB are no different from what I can see
     
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  3. hilldweller

    hilldweller Funster Life Member

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    Search on here and discover the thread of the poor FUNster who had to pay something like 11K when his Merc MH holed a piston in France. Part of the thread found it not uncommon and Merc did nothing to help.
     
  4. Jim

    Jim Ringleader

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    Its everywhere, I was looking at (Looking only) a £120,000 RV. A Damon, the "real wood":RollEyes: veneers were peeling, cupboard handles were hanging off and the toilet door would not close. If they are skimping where we can see, what are they doing where we can't . :Eeek: as little as 8 years ago Damon build quality was superb.
     
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  5. dazzer

    dazzer Read Only Funster

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    Merc Sprinters.......bloody nightmare.

    We had 3 from new all bought within 4 weeks of each other. I can honestly say in the 3 years we had them all 3 were on the road and running at the same time for about 14 months, the rest of the time one or more of them was in the garage either being fixed or waiting for parts.:cry:

    We had absolute nightmares with the engine management systems and the brakes. :Eeek:

    The very day the 3 year warranty expired we got shut of the bloody things and replaced them with Iveco Daily vans which are quite simply the best vans we have ever owned.:thumb::BigGrin:

    I would never ever buy another Merc as long as I live, they are quite simply expensive crap. :Sad:
     
  6. robnchris

    robnchris Funster

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    merc sprinter

    I just know I`m a bloody fool for writing this but have to say we have had our Merc sprinter based motorhome for almost a year now and I would`nt want anything else, it has the Sprint shift auto gearbox (which apparently is actually a semi auto box) not certain of the difference but ours is faultless.

    Going in for a service tomorrow so I suppose I should have left this until I got it back..:Doh:

    I think it has a worn lower ball joint as the near side tyre is wearing on the outside edge but apparently Sprinters are heavy on ball joints.
    We have just done 2600 miles touring around Scotland and it managed to return 27 mpg which we are delighted with.

    So would I buy another... most certainly :thumb:
     
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  7. billkce

    billkce Funster

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    Merc...quality. Our Autotrail with a paltry 313CDi pull us & a toad with no effort & does 25 mpg. Touch wood that will continue.:Laughing:
     
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  8. Douglas

    Douglas Read Only Funster

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    I have never owned a Merc but as a general observation their panel vans do seem to run to rust quickly.

    Doug...
     
  9. DESCO

    DESCO Read Only Funster

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    Agree with you on that point, but as most seem to be fleet vans and only kept for three years, I don't think they care. Built to a price not quality.


    Dave :thumb::thumb:
     
  10. rainbow chasers

    rainbow chasers Read Only Funster

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    This is quite accurate - all vans rust wildly as they are made for the lease market, which accounts for something like 70% of sales. They keep them for 3 years and who cares after that.

    Engines are pretty good - there was a glitch year or two where engine management was a major problem, but they do withstand high mileage and loads without too much issue.

    Mercedes cars, again are quite reliable engine wise, the e-class did have a rot problem with rear arches and front flitches/crossmember. This is due to it being a bit of a dirt trap and being covered by body. Mine has the arch issue, which I will sort out - but after all it is a cheap runabout at 65mpg!:thumb:
     
  11. sedge

    sedge Funster

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    We have a daughter who works for Ocado, delivering Waitrose groceries to folk. They run both Merc Sprinter and Fiat Ducato vans.

    The Merc gearboxes have been utter rubbish, as someone else said, to have em all running at the same time was just about unheard of. So when we said , Dunno, should we risk buying a Fiat? she replied :Rofl1: :Rofl1: :Rofl1: :Rofl1: :Rofl1: :Rofl1: :Rofl1: (that was a Yes, then!)
     
  12. tjay

    tjay Funster

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    sprinter

    I have my second older style (2000) sprinter with the 2.9 5cyl engine,no cam belt (has a timing chain), far less electronics, ( less to go wrong) Regular servicing usely means that they will go for 500 thousand miles.
    Not as quick as a CDI model but, with it chipped up from 122bhp to 147bhp it's quick enough if you want it to be but, if your like us and retired there's no rush,take your tme and get 28/30mpg !! great. :thumb:
     
  13. buttons

    buttons Funster

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    Waitrose is a quality company, having your groceries delivered in a fiat would be like having your John Lewis furniture delivered in a white van.:cry::Smile:
     
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  14. Heyupluv

    Heyupluv Read Only Funster

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    Before I start ..MERCEDES....they do not appeal to me... We have had many expensive vehicles...but not a merc!... I am not a Merc man, and I am not nocking the Merc

    At the moment I have a fiat 130 multi jet......I luv it.. fast, economical, pulls very well, and I like the style, mine has had no problems, mid 2008 model ( some people may have).

    before you fufu, just try driving one of the new multi jet ( hopefully fiat have sorted out any problems they have had in the past) I am not replying to push Fiats....they suit me

    I have just purchased a new motorhome Rapido 9090DF to be delivered late March / April....on another Fiat 130 multi jet.

    Now before I purchased and after looking at many many vans ...I asked a similar question, Do I go for the Fiat again.....or do I go for the Mercedes.as the Merc keeps getting bulled up so now was the time to think about change.....so I asked many people what was there opinion on the Merc (these are the people that had or have had Mercedes themselves).
    I received mixed replies some luv them some hated them......some said they was like driving a lorry...and the Fiat was like driving a very good motor car....some of the people was dealers selling Mercedes, Fiat, Ford, all on the forecourt some was selling Hymers, Pilote, Rapido's, Defleths, Burstner and other brands and at the Paris motorhome show.......the main feed back was FIAT..........they would buy for themselves a Fiat.......one dealer said it is the most wide spread vehicle in the European market and if you had any problems you would get parts if needed anywhere..they said they all have problems and they all brake down, it is not just one company.
    Another set of persons they have had 13 to 15 motorhomes and still have two they also have a campsite, most if not all have been Hymers on Fiat or Mercedes they still have two on one on a Fiat and one on a Merc...they said it is personal choice they both drive, one liked the Fiat and One liked the Merc
    At the Paris motorhome show I asked the dealer I purchased from what his thoughts was of which I should go for...he said for the extra 10,000.... it, and they are not worth the extra money and after about 5 to 10 years the price difference would be very small if any.

    So I went for the one that has given me good service...the Fiat 130 multijet :thumb:

    I think the Fiat has won the last 5 or 6 years running for the best chassis and cab for the motorhomes.

    The Fiat is a chassis and cab designed purposely for the motorhome.

    And the say the 130 multijet jet is the best engine for the motorhome.

    That is if you believe all you read Mmm:Doh:

    Me I think it is personal choice, buy what you like, not always what people put on a pedestal because 95% of the time it is not true.

    Mel:thumb:........this only my opinion and of the people I had spoken to.........there will always be a differ of a opinion

    Mel:thumb:

    This info was taken from French dealers, French and British Motorhomers themselves ...not hear say, from a cousin mother brother sister husband...that read in a mag from mates mates friend that has never had one or both of them.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2011
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  15. dave newell lvs

    dave newell lvs Trader-Vehicle Services

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    About 7 or so years ago a customer who ran his own business in light haulage told me he had swapped his Sprinter fleet for LDV Convoys as all eight of his sprinters needed new rear axles at 150,000miles. Bearing in mind his vans were doing 120,000 per year he felt this was way too expensive so switched to LDVs and had been running them for four years with no more than regular servicing.

    D.
     
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  16. Snowbird

    Snowbird Funster Life Member

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    Having ran MB vehicles for years,both trucks and cars in my opinion MB have gone down the route of most manufacturers,in that there vehicles have become more powerfull and more fuel eficient but at the price of reliability.
    Its an old addative but true that you get nawt for nawt,there has to be a price to be paid.
    Thinner metal is used in there build,resulting in rust,and there is only so much power you can get from a relativly small engine before you pay the price of reliability.
    I stopped buying Merc cars after the W124 which was the last of the over engineered cars that were built to a quality standard,and the old naturaly aspirated 5 cylinder diesel was capable of intergalactic milages.
    Why MB have decieded to build a van,the Sprinter capable of speeds in excess of 90 MPH I dont know,but I do know it wont last half the milage of the old ones,which can be seen still trundling around the world earning a living.
     
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  17. Jim

    Jim Ringleader

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    I'm sure there was a story on the forum a while ago, someone stuck abroad needed a replacement part, but Mercedes would only supply a whole engine for a 11000 Euros. That would put me off owning one:Eek!:
     
  18. WillH

    WillH Funster

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    Fiat 2.3 130 Multijet for me, pulls well and returns 31 m.p.g most of the time.
     
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  19. motor roamin

    motor roamin Funster

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    I have owned and sold many mercs, both cars and trucks, after about 97 they stopped galavanising car bodys hence the rust.

    At present I run a 03 S320 CDI low miles 55k which mechanicaly has been good, electronics thats another matter if selling it was an option it would go, but I have way too much money in this car for what it is now worth.

    The wife has a 06 e320 cdi 60k miles and so far has been agood car with no problems.

    At work I run 1823 merc trucks low miles 04 152k miles (yes it is genuine been a training Vehicle from new) so this truck has never worked by being loaded and now has the equivelent of 1 years miles on it, First day after Christmas break couldn't select any gear requiring the gear lever to be pushed forward, these are worked by hydraulics and only mercedes have the kit to mend them, it came back Monday this week with a £2,000.00 bill for something on a Daf would have been £350.00.

    Will I buy another Merc I very much doubt it, what would I buy instead Car wise I have no Idea. Truck Daf or Scania which are both in our fleet and are far less bother and the Daf is 03 with 468k miles on it (just run in) Scania is 02 has over 350k miles.

    I think all manufacturers are going down the route of if it needs mending youve got to go to them, so pick the one with the cheapest running costs.

    Don't suppose this helps much but I feel better having had a moan.

    All the best Rick.
     
  20. Munchie

    Munchie Funster Life Member

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    We are on our third Fiat current being the X250 and for me it is superb and would have another in a heartbeat. :thumb:
     
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