Desirable and beautiful when it is working, but astonishingly, disgustingly unreliable
Brakes failed at speed (turned out to be an electronic problem).
Steering stuck at the dead-ahead position whilst driving (hydraulic problem).
Hydraulic suspension failed whilst driving (clouds of smoke, and the car dropped down onto its bushes).
Electric seat movement stuck in complete forward position.
Seat-belt mechanism failed (warning light came on, took 10 days for the garage to get parts & fix).
Phone software failed (no longer able to answer calls).
Parktronic incorrectly installed.
Fuel flap failed (stuck open).
Regular brake warning lights when starting on cold mornings.
Frequent shut-off of non-essential electric systems (e.g. heated seats).
When this car is working, it is a joy to drive - comfortable, fast, turns heads (still) and the roof is magnificent.
However it is horribly unreliable - in three years it has been back to Mercedes more times than I can count, and I have had too many scary experiences (like the brakes failing while I was driving on the motorway).
Systems testing seems to have been very poor at Mercedes design. The car systems are complicated, but they don't seem to have cross-tested functions or thought about practicalities.
For example, if you press the button that moves the seat fully forwards, and then press the seat UP button, you can crash the computer, which means a trip to a dealer to reset it.
Similarly updating the software for the phone required the dealer to remove the passenger seat.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No
Review Date: 12th March, 2006