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Mercedes-Benz M-class (ML320, ML350, ML500 and ML55) 2005 and earlier



  • dennettdennett Posts: 332
    My dealer, MB of San Diego, gives 00 ML320s as loaners. The local Lexus dealer gives one free loaner with purchase and then does not give loaners period. So I don't think it's a corporate decision, I think each dealer decides what their loaner program will be, or not be. Let's not give Lexus too much credit. My sister in law just recently had her new RX300 serviced, no loaner and this was in LA, and they locked her keys in the car and couldn't get into it. They had to keep the car over night while a new key was overnighted from Lexus. When she came to pick up the car that afternoon they did give her a loaner for the night.
  • dennettdennett Posts: 332
    When I talked to the Lexus dealer about their lack of loaners, he said it was because Lexus vehicles don't break and they don't need loaners. The Benz dealer must do it because they breakdown! The local BMW dealer, Cunningham BMW, also has dropped it's loaner program. They said gas prices had forced them to do it, and that they'd pick me up and or take me anywhere I wanted to go instead.
  • kenyeekenyee Posts: 738
    Your Lexus dealer is the first one I've heard of that does that. All the ones in the Boston area give out Lexus loaners AFAIK...the policy is "comparable or better model", too.
  • mlx52mlx52 Posts: 72
    I was talking with one of my friends today, who said that it is easy to brake into the M-Class and many other classes of cars without breaking the windows or pulling up the plunger. What makes a car easy or hard to break into??? He said that the BMW 3 series was very hard to get into, why is this.

    Very curious, as to why one locking system would be better over another.
  • Can you believe what dealers will say to cover up a deficiency? I have read some real whoppers on different boards. Please do not read into my message that I consider my service experience to be indicative of all Lexus dealers. As I stated, I have only been to three. I'm certain there are some horror stories to be heard if we could only dig a little.

    I was just taken aback to hear that Mercedes does not seem to have a consistently superior reputation in the service area. Good grief, this line has the S series that can easily shoot up past $100,000.00. In any event, it was just a musing and actually has given me another area to investigate when purchasing which can be easily done. You know, sometimes we all become so concerned with the price of a vehicle without stopping to think that the service experience can be a much longer and more important relationship.

    I guess we could say that the sale is similar to the wedding, all the excitement and expectation, while the service is more akin to the marriage, which can only thrive well if each partner feels that he/she is respected and valued.
  • We picked up the ML55 12 months ago. It hasn't been back to dealer yet (9,000 miles). No issues or problems. Lots of fun to drive, seems to have all the shortcomings/deficiencies of the other m class vehicles.
  • KNOCK IT OFF GUYS AND STOP PICKING ON EACH OTHER FOR EVERY DARN THING......Look guys being different from each other is what keeps the world interesting and each of us unique and different from all the lets accept each other as we are and stop picking on each other for is too darn short....Bon.

    ps. My front driver's seat broke...the plastic under the set where you move the seat forward and back the large back plate plastic piece there is loose and I found a piece on the floor that obviously broke off and my sunroof keeps humming and letting air I have to make appt with dealer to bring the baby in for a diaper change...haha.. fix up.....let bygones be bygones and lets just have bon
  • dennettdennett Posts: 332
    Are you refering to the discussion a couple of us guys are having about service loaners? If so, I sure didn't mean to pick on anyone, nor did I feel anyone was picking on me. We're just talking about our experiences with our dealers. I'd say your post's title and your first paragraph are much more abrasive than any post I've read here since Saturday.( ;-) Drew! LOL!)
    Bon, if you reread your post and those I'm refering to, I think you'll see what I mean. I couldn't agree with your point more, about sharing different viewpoints and respecting other's opinions! Peace!! Good luck getting your ML straightened out! Car problems really are depressing aren't they!!!!
  • yickwoyickwo Posts: 54

    Thanks for the welcome. I will make it over the the owner's club eventually.


    As you can see from the prior posts, Fletcher Jones is the MB dealership in the Newport Beach area. I just recently moved into to the area too, and I only have been there twice. FJ is a very large dealership with a fairly good service dept. The prices they charged me for some services are reasonable. Check out their website. You can find out about service specials and make appointments on line. I would say give them a try first if you are in the area.


    I didn't see your email address, and if you can post it, I will be happy to share more detailed information and thoughts with you. The deal was $500 below dealer's invoice (which was $400 above Edmunds' invoice due to ad. fee) plus TTL. The out of the door price with everything was just under $44K.
  • Has anyone heard if "parktronic" i.e. reverse sensors, will be available on the 2002 ML's ?
  • I have my 99M in for service today and I just received a call from the service tech letting me know that my brake pads need replacing. It seems a little early to me. I do the vast majority of my driving intown on surface streets. Does this seems like normal wear and tear??
  • drew_drew_ Posts: 3,382
    In town driving puts the most wear and tear on the brakes since you're constantly stopping and going. Consider yourself fortunate. Many people have gotten even less out of their pads. The main reason is that MB uses softer brake pads, which are good because they don't tear up the rotors (which are far more expensive than the pads) as quickly as the harder brake pads.

    FWIW, I do a fair amount of in town driving as well, though I try to time the lights and be gentle on the brakes, in addition to a fair bit of driving up and downhills. At service A recently, which under 15K kilometres, my front pads had 60% left, and 65% for the rears. Keeping the current rate of wear in mind, I'll most probably need new pads at about 25-30K kilometres on the odometer.
  • drew_drew_ Posts: 3,382
    So far no word on whether Parktronic will be available with the '02 ML. If it is, you can probably expect it to cost the same amount as the option with the cars (~CDN$1500), if it comes with the front and rear sensors.

    Keeping in mind that the rear bumper has to be removed for the trailer hitch installation, I wonder if they will provide this option since many people do the trailer hitch installation themselves.

    Vans, SUVs, and Aftermarket and Accessories message boards
  • biker5biker5 Posts: 199
    Its a bit early compare to the rest of fellow who change their pad between 25,000 to 35,000. Its been discuss before on this board that the pad MB used are soft for braking purposes and produced tremendous amount of dust to the wheel.Keep us posted how much the dealer charge you.Good luck.
  • Just to add to the MB and Lexus loaner programs. I owned a Lexus and my dealer once gave me a purple Corolla, the only thing Lexus like with that car was the power steering. Most of the time we got Caravans or Intrepids from Enterprise. I went to another Lexus dealer looking for better and they gave out Altima loaners - from Enterprise.

    I know that all dealers have been cutting back due to expense, both the highly regarded MB dealers out here loan out Chryslers (makes sense now)- at times they'll get an MB, but you need to be in line by 5:00 in the morning :)
  • pathdocpathdoc Posts: 126
    I believe the "loaner" program is important to maintaining customer satisfaction.After 20 years of purchasing numerous Mercedes (all S class) I purchased a 99 ML 430 from my local dealer. This is the same dealer that I had purchased the others from and had previously received a ride back to my office. It used to be the most efficient means and the cars weren't in very often(they WERE reliable). It was amazing to me however that my employees who had Lexus autos would always get a loaner (which were always a lexus). The ML 430 was nothing but problems. On one occasion it was in the shop for over a week waiting for a new locking module and then for new keys. It was during these numerous episodes that I found out about the Enterprise junker rentals. The negative experiences prompted me to purchase another luxury brand and it will be a long time (if ever) that I return to Mercedes and never at the local dealer.
  • Are you saying that your disatisfaction with your former dealership was due to the loaner cars that you were given or were there other problems that turned you against your local dealer?

    I have read quite often about troubles with the '98 and '99 ML, but these problems have seemed to be greatly reduced in the '01 models, don't you think?
  • pathdocpathdoc Posts: 126
    There were other issues with the dealer. The quality of service and sales deteriorated over 20 years but certainly the loaner issue was important. I was picked up by a rep. from Enterprise and then driven to their location to get a junker of a car. I actually paid to get an upgrade. I chose a loaner because I thought it would be more efficient than their van service that at one time was convenient but became very inconvenient because of fewer departures,more customers, etc. Nevertheless, it seemed that if Lexus (and Infiniti) could provide decent loaners why couldn't Mercedes. It was my impression that because of such demand for their cars they became arrogant and figured they didn't have to do it.
    As far as the ML reliability issue ,it seems that they may have improved but not to a par with Lexus (or Toyota). They never did fix all the problems despite numerous attempts. Since it is not my main vehicle I've decide to just keep it until the warranty is up and then go with a Lexus (470) unless the published reliabilty data and info obtained on this board proves that the ML is truly improved.
  • tariktarik Posts: 344
    When the decision was to be made whether to get an MB or a Lexus, I also inquired about the situation regarding loaners at both dealerships (not a decisive factor, though).

    MB would take you anywhere and pick you back up, or pick up the car and bring it back, and all that although I live 30 miles from the dealer. Well, let alone the fact that I don't like others to drive my car, being without wheels for one whole day isn't exactly convenient for everybody.

    My Lexus dealer provides new loaners for scheduled service and warranty repairs. No questions asked, no Enterprise deals. When our RX was in, we had an LS, RXs and Camrys - the dealership keeps a fleet of 27 loaners, may be that is what makes their service so expensive...

  • kenyeekenyee Posts: 738
    You'll find that MB dealers vary a lot on their policy. Lexus seems more consistent, though w/ the reports of a few dealers that don't give out Lexus loaners, I'm starting to wonder. I'd suggest you try another dealer in the area. Where are you located? Perhaps one of the folks here can recommend one in your area.
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