30th Dec 2007, 01:06
"The timing belt snapped"? That's curious because it has an automatic tensioner. I've had many good experiences with A-Classes. One of both I own has 170,000kms and never had a similar problem; well: never had a single problem, not even a battery change. The other one has 63000kms and is also like new. Both run like first day.
I have also rented one A-140 for One month and was always perfect and another one for 3 months and same good experience.
I don't believe it has been good chance.
31st Dec 2007, 00:55
To the 30th Dec poster, I wrote the timing "chain" snapped, not the timing belt. The W168 A-Class does not have a timing belt. The chain is sealed in the engine and designed to never be changed. Unfortunately mine snapped at just 67,000km. The 1.6L engine is an 'interfering' type, so if the timing goes the pistons smash into the valves and bend them. After the engine was taken apart and rebuilt I saw the extensive damage caused.
4th Jan 2008, 19:16
My fault: you did say "timing chain" and indeed they have a timing chain and not a timing belt. Anyway, it seems to me as a very rare problem, because I have had an extensive experience with these cars and know some more than the 4 I have had (I own 2 and have rented 2, as I established before).
My experience is of very long mileages with no problems at all. In fact, I have a BMW 325iF1 SMG 2005 model and my A-Classes have been far more reliable.