Totally agree. Ten years ago every taxi was a MB, usually an E-class that had done half a millions kms or so. Now I'd guess that less than half are MB. A lot of Volvos, Toyota Camry and even Hyundai Sonatas. MB quality simply is not up to old standards. I've even asked taxi drivers. One ran a Camry and he said MB cars will break the bank. Another had a 15 year old banger with 1.2 mill kms on it. He refused to trade it with a new one, costs was still lower with old car.
Two of my neighbours are running E-classes as well. Below average quality even with premium price. Rust and electrical problems, one has problems getting MB approved rust repairs (all 4 doors) on 6 year old car even if MB states 30 years corrosion warranty. I would never ever go near a MB dealer.
I agree with all of the above. My 2000 E320 has the same problems. Catalytic converters failing, rear windows dropping, ball joint wear, SRS sensors failing, all the usual E series failures that occur way too early in the life of ANY car. After the second dash cluster failed again I finally found a company that re-manufactures them with a warranty. I hope I have finally beaten that issue. I also understand that you can get premium cats from independent shops so maybe I can beat that issue too. I like the ride and drive, but the same issues just keep popping up. It's hard to continue fixing the same defective parts over and over again and be happy with the car.
I own a 01 E320. Sport model, head turning good looks. but I've had some of the same problems. Not a non stop horror story but some of the same. I'd say M/B ownership nowadays is a love-hate relationship. I owned a 220S no problems at all. Solid like a tank. Before that a 190 gas, also like a tank.
The M/B dealer rip off has created a cottage industry of independent shops which have their own problems. They feed off of owners abused by the dealer repair facilities, but then just abuse a little less.
BMW by the way has some of the same issues--certainly dealer wise--but not to the same levels, and generally there are fewer problems or hocus pocus with the car in the first place.
To all those people complaining... do your research before buying, and make sure you're not buying a Chrysler instead of Mercedes. And to the JDM lovers, Lexus is the "pursuit to perfection", but guess what, perfection was before Lexus came into play... Copying others does not make one perfect.
I've been a loyal fan of Mercedes Benz until I bought a E430. I hate to admit it, but it was by far the worst car I have ever owned. Just about every electronic component went wrong. Some will swear they never had a single problem. Most data on the E430 proves otherwise. After expiration of the warranty, all hell broke loose. From the digital read-out failure, to the complete failure of the HVAC system. This E430 was in the shop every month. Enough was enough, and I got rid of it. Because of this hellish experience, I will never buy another MB product again.
You would be surprised to note some similarities when it comes to issues experienced with Volvo cars from the same era. They also had troubles with the instruments cluster. My guess is, after the year 2000, both Mercedes and Volvo began buying cheap components from unproven manufacturers, with the results known.