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Mercedes Benz service

ea6651ea6651 Member Posts: 4
edited April 2014 in Mercedes-Benz
I keep having bad experiences with R.A.B. Motors in San Rafael, CA. They must be selling too many cars, since it's extremely tough to get decent maintenance from them. Twice I couldn't drive the vehicle off the lot after a services because the check engine light came on. Once, it took them 3 weeks to schedule an oil change and 4 days to perform it (they gave me a loaner, though, after I pressured them) They have broken parts during repairs, aso. Does anyone have similar experiences, or a better service experience in the Bay Area?


  • haspelbeinhaspelbein Member Posts: 227
    I recently moved to the Bay Area and had my '96 E320 serviced (30K miles) by Stead Motors. I used to do my own service and still do my own oil changes, since I don't drive my Benz all that much.

    They had no problem substituting the standard oil change for a coolant flush, the car was ready when promised and they came in about $50 under quote. I scheduled my appointment the day before and brought it in the next morning.

    Walnut Creek has an abundance of independent BMW/Benz service shops. I asked them for quotes, but they were all in a similar price range, so I used the dealer.

    I can't believe it would take somebody 3 weeks/4 days for an oil change. The filter position in most MBs make them some of the easiest cars to change oil on. Again, it takes me about 20 minutes on my E320. And I do take my time.

    I've had a friend of mine bring his '97 E320 to a dealer in Emeryville after the check engine light came on. They misdiagnosed a faulty MAF sensor for a broken control unit. This would have been a costly mistake if the car hadn't been under warranty.

    Yes, Mercedes Benz normally doesn't give out loaners. I'm not surprised that you had to pressure them. (I'm lucky to live in walking distance.)

    I wondering, what kind of vehicle do you drive and what faulty parts did they install ?
  • PeterUbersPeterUbers Member Posts: 48
    I totally agree... Go to Lexus ES300 III in the SEDANS forum and note my recent post about MB service.

    I have had nothing but problems with their arrogance, and their quality of service... Please do read this post, as it will reassure a continuing problem with MB service. That's what I truly admire about Lexus service, they are spectacular.
  • johnbaldaseronjohnbaldaseron Member Posts: 1
    I'm thinking about purchasing a 2001 ML55 MAG but before I do can any owners of either 2000 or 2001 models give me a rundown on Pros and Cons. How has the fuel economy been, maintenance, any "heads up" concerns, etc. Please em-ail me at [email protected] tax, BB
  • calsunncalsunn Member Posts: 4
    Has anyone had any experiences with SRS problems in the 1998-present E class cars? I recently had an SRS light that would not go out and found a connection problem that necessitated the replacement of an expensive wire harness.
    Please contact me at [email protected]
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    I have heard of this problem before....I believe it was in conversation with a high-line used car dealer in California...he was complaining about the expense of that repair as well, and how it really ate into his eventual profit on the car. I don't recall much about the car itself other than it was higher than normal mileage.
  • calsunncalsunn Member Posts: 4
    Mine is a 98 E 320 with 68K mi. Other electrical problems: New diode row was out, SAM control unit...with 1000 mi. and oil sensor. Having a problem with MB in that even though the car is only 3 years old, they have decided that the mileage takes my problem out of warranty. I certainly don't uderstand how a connector or wire on a non-stressed connector should be an owner's problem regardless of the 50K mi warranty. I have heard of Lexus replacing motors well out of the warranty time period to satisfy the customer. MB has offered to pay for a portion of the $3200 cost of replacement. Supposed to get my car back after, 1 week waiting for the part from Germany, tomorrow.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    Well, they have to put a limit on the warranty sometime, but I do give them credit for participating financially. I doubt most companies would do that. I doubt Lexus replaces motors out of warranty, I really do, unless there were very special circumstances of dealer incompetence, or some legal pressure to do so.
  • ps2doyleps2doyle Member Posts: 1
    I'm looking at a '96 s600 to purchase. Any comments or experience with the maintenance on this model? Or is there some place I can check? I like the car, but have heard the maintenance is a major issue.
  • dnr2dnr2 Member Posts: 3
    RAB has been hazardous since inception.

    European Motors in SF city may treat you better. The owner loves the marque. Nor does he bow to the corporate/dealer-chain nonsence.
  • MarkinAtlantaMarkinAtlanta Member Posts: 194
    IMHO, a V12 is a bit too much for a passenger car.
  • jay1930jay1930 Member Posts: 1
    It may be time for a class action suit if the number of owners whose front bottom grill DISAPPEARED and when they brought it into the dealer always discover the stock $2000+ answer... you must have pulled into a parking spot where the bumper went up onto the concrete block and it ruined the bumper and the grill piece attached to the bumper just POPPED it out as you backed off the "concrete". It is amazing that they know the cause beyond when you call about it they tell you to come in and it certainly will be under warranty.

    I now have seen four missing the exact same part and even the service person told me he has seen several. I asked if he ever ever ever saw one that was not someones "fault", as above mentioned.Its interesting that if it has such a problem no one even warned you of it when you bought the car.

    Equally amazing is why it was so constructed , to pop out and then the reaction from my insurance company to think they have a responsibility for a defect in construction that is just BEGGING for the bottom grill(my salesman called it facie) to disappear.
  • lewis21lewis21 Member Posts: 5
    The radio/clock dial light in my 96 Bonne. has gone blank - radio, clock work but can't be read anylonger as they are not back lit. Previous posting mentioned similar problem and obvious bulb replacement for a Ford. Pont. dealer says replace radio! $500 - ANYONE OUT THERE HAVE ANY SPECIFIC INFO. ABOUT THIS ISSUE? Really appreciate it. Thanks a bunch.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    I'd agree with Markin on the S600...I think the V12 is overkill and encourages needless complexity and expense. An S500 would do just as well (or better) for $15K-20K less money. I doubt you'd even notice the difference between the cars unless you lifted the hood.
  • robbleerobblee Member Posts: 1
    I have a whistle noise from the front of the car, it sounds like an alternator, we had it replaced, still makes the noise, does any one have the same noise, if so, how was it fix.
  • lsl1207lsl1207 Member Posts: 6
  • lsl1207lsl1207 Member Posts: 6
    This car is the biggest piece of junk I've ever owned. Conveniently just after the lemon law period. Major problems at 25K miles. Dealer couldn't fix the problem because it was intermittent. They replaced the transmission, the alternator, battery and navigation system. The car kept bucking and decelerating while rpm's remained the same. I almost had many accidents on the highway and got stuck after transmission was fixed 250 miles from home. Finally we traded it in and now I drive a S500 sedan. I sure hope they are made better!!!
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    Well, gotta hand it to you, at least you still have faith in Benz!
  • sddlwsddlw Member Posts: 361
    My wife's boss had one of these. A 97 I think. After 3years, MB replaced it for him with a brand new 2000 S600! With no out of pocket expenses for him. The car had been in the shop so many times with seemingly unfixable problems. I had never heard of such a thing before, but he and his family buy a lot of cars, mostly MBs, so I guess they were trying to keep a good customer happy. He still loved the car, problems and all. But it really had reliability issues.
  • lcninolcnino Member Posts: 1
    I live in Texas and have been looking for 96-98 E320 and have noticed that current sales prices in the area(Dallas, Austin, Houston, San Antonio) are $3-5k lower than what KBB and Edmunds show on their web sites. Are these vehicles depreciating more than they used to or is KBB and Edmunds too pricy?
  • haspelbeinhaspelbein Member Posts: 227
    I'm not sure if this is the right forum, but I was able to purchase my '96 E320 for abour $2K to $3K less than the TMV.

    The problem is that MBs are rather pricey vehicles, and the car's condition, the location or even just the luxury car fashion of the day can make a big difference.

    I would compare the classified ads to the prices posted by the dealers. Also, there is a forum on Edmunds where you can find out what E320s are currently going for at car auctions. That should give you a good base line.

    But again, you'll have a lot of fluctuation even from vehicle to vehicle with cars in that price range.

    I hope that this answered your question...
This discussion has been closed.