2005 Mercedes-Benz CL65 AMG Long-Term Road Test

Edmunds.comEdmunds.com Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 10,315
edited September 2014 in Mercedes-Benz

image2005 Mercedes-Benz CL65 AMG Long-Term Road Test

We towed our 2005 Mercedes-Benz CL65 to the dealer following an Active Body Control (ABC) failure. Here is what happened.

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  • miedenmieden Member Posts: 75
    In the interest of reliability, you should have replaced ALL pressure hoses, not just the failed one(s) the dealer suggested (If one has aged enough to fail, so have the others). The complete fluid flush and filter replacement(s-hopefully) will buy you some time, but once the system has been opened and exposed to contaminates its only a matter of time before the pump and valve blocks fail too ($$$!). Depending on how the hose failed (center, or ends), you needed to renew (at least) the pressure supply accumulator too or pressure spikes will cause the new hoses to fail prematurely. Hose replacement requires engine lifting, so most in-the-know replace the engine mounts while there to save a little money on the labor for this wear item. You'll just spent $1K on fluid and labor, but didnt protect yourselves against future failures of the system, which will require (at least) another $1K in fluid and labor the next time any part of it fails and it has to be opened up again. I try to always recommend to my customers that they pony up a small percentage more money and replace all common wear items in the system if they're about to spend THAT much on fluid and labor. The dealer is not as interested in not seeing you again...
  • s197gts197gt Member Posts: 486
    mieden, i generally agree with your post that one should make sensible preemptive repairs when the opportunities arise. but this is a 1-yr ownership vehicle. in this case i disagree.
  • reminderreminder Member Posts: 383
    I tried to post my guess for the cost of the repair, but none of the comments would load. I was pretty close at about a grand. Always a premium to be paid on the left coast.
  • stovt001_stovt001_ Member Posts: 799
    Hey is commenting turned back on now?
  • mercedesfanmercedesfan Member Posts: 365
    @mieden, I really wish you had been our service tech when we first had issues with the ABC on my wife's old SL500. Had that been done the system wouldn't have completely failed on her in the middle of a parking lot. :/ On a different note, do you happen t
  • desmoliciousdesmolicious Member Posts: 671
    mieden, where is your shop?
  • noburgersnoburgers Member Posts: 500
    Comments came back a few hours ago, it seems. I guessed $799 but that was too low. The first comments about all that is involved in doing this job right are enough to scare me away from owning without a warranty.
  • zhangrenhouzhangrenhou Member Posts: 79
    That's not bad, at all. I would've guessed $2,000.
  • miedenmieden Member Posts: 75
    @s197gt, I thought about that too. Had this been the end of the test I wouldnt suggest the preemptive maintenance, but 10 months is plenty of time for ABC to fail again, especially since its been recently touched. On the other hand, nothing increases re
  • fordson1fordson1 Unconfirmed Posts: 1,512
    mieden, was there a campaign that resulted in the quality of the replacement hose on this car being the same as those on newer cars? Or is this hose the same as the hose it replaced?
  • ttopjohnttopjohn Member Posts: 25
    mieden, you seem very knowledgable about the ABC system - what are your thoughts on a middle ground, in which you don't replace every hose the first time one of them leaks, but instead you guard against contamination of the system (or worse, running the system dry) and the resulting pump failure by regularly monitoring for leaks, addressing any leak right away rather than waiting for a failure or an ABC warning light, and changing the abc fluid at a regular interval? It's a hydrualic system like the brakes, and like the brakes contaminates and moistrue introduced into the fluid can damage the elements of the system, but it would seem to follow that you can remove these contaminates the same way you do in the brake system - e.g. flushing the fluid at a regular interval, and flushing the fluid whenever the system is opened, either opened for maintenance or opened by a leak.
  • desmoliciousdesmolicious Member Posts: 671
    I was thinking about how disappointing this Long Term entry was from a professional point of view.
    Edmunds did zero research as to what the problem was, and what the best fix would be. Something that anyone with an internet connection and search engine could have done.
    We needed mieden's expert comments to shed light on it.

    Instead what we got was, paraphrased, "excellent service from the dealership for $1200". When in actuality they should have informed the customer (Edmunds) of the service concerns for the ABC system. Edmunds acted like your typical uneducated customer. Maybe this was the intention - to show how regular folk would be treated - but if that was the case shouldn't Edmunds have also then shown what should have happened?
    Otherwise what is the point to this? The only real lesson learned was from a commenter to this site - mieden . All we learned from Edmunds was to take it to the shop and open your wallet.

    I am undecided if this is just lazy "journalism" or incompetence.
  • miedenmieden Member Posts: 75
    @fordson1, shortly after I first got to the dealer there was an open recall on a different pressure hose because it was a fire hazard, but to my knowledge there hasn't been any "campaign" to improve the quality of this hose. Id assume, like the
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