You are not alone. A satisfied Vito customer is probably something that's hard to find. My experience stems from a company where I used to work that had a couple of Vito's.
They started off with a 98 model that soon was called "the rolling disaster". One of the older guys said this had a quality worse than a Fiat from the seventies, and he really meant it.
Suspension and steering problems, bad electrics, a sliding door that never worked/jammed/would not stay shut, drivers seat that fell apart, interior parts falling off, two clutches, failed transmission before 120.000 KM, various engine problems and when it was sold it had started to rust badly after 5-6 (!) years.
The joke is that the owner then bought a new one in 04 and that one is a piece of junk too. But this is probably the last vehicle he ever shops from MB.
It's a pity that MB manufactures junk like Vito since the MB Sprinter is pretty good and is lightyears ahead in the quality department. It just shows that you can't trust MB to produce quality vehicles all the time, and personally I would be skeptical dealing with MB.
Especially since after sales support is pretty bad. Most of the repairs listed above were covered by us since MB dealer refused to cover them after instructions from MB importer (at least that's what they said).
Hi, I too own a 2003 Vito 112 CDI. And one week from buying it at private sale, the gear box locked up, throwing me off the road!!
Had it taken to an auto specialist. They said I needed re-co box, $6500, new engine mounts as they snapped, and also a new water pump as it smashed into body of van when it locked up. Total came to $9800 and extra for MB to reprogram the computer.
Other than that, an ants nest was somewhere in van and took ages to kill them off.
Yes wheel alignment is also an issue. Just last week I had to replace a rear muffler and exhaust due to cracking in bends. It's still best looking van on market.
Hi, bought a Vito 112 CDi panel van 2002 model with 190 000km, and must say it's the best looking van, and rides better most other vans. Feel in control as a driver. Have had it serviced by a friend, cost 800 rands, gives me 14 km per liter. So far it's my dream come true.
Just bought a Vito 2003 model, and I am really surprised that a Mercedes product such as this would have so many starting problems. Had to replace high pressure fuel pump and all the injectors. Do not buy a Vito, it is not an affordable van, and has too many problems.