Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

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unclescrooge
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Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by unclescrooge » Tue Jun 30, 2020 11:38 pm

After owning only Japanese cars for 20 years, I'm thinking of turning in my 2010 Acura tax and going German.

I'm looking at a GLK 350. I can get a 2015 with 30,000 miles for $17,500.

I'm curious what to expect in terms of reliability, expense of repair, cost of tires, and ease of finding a good mechanic. Is it easy to find a non-dealer repair shop?

All experiences, suggestions, comments and alternative choices are welcome.

My main criteria is it be white, with tan leather interior.

onourway
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by onourway » Wed Jul 01, 2020 5:57 am

Maintenance costs will undoubtedly be higher. That’s baked into the incredible depreciation that brings you to the price you are looking at.

I would personally find out who your independent mechanic is going to be prior to purchasing a vehicle like this. If there isn’t someone convenient to you that does Mercedes, look for a brand that has a good mechanic in your area.

Cigarman
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by Cigarman » Wed Jul 01, 2020 6:11 am

I own a 2014 GLK 350 4 matic with 45,000 miles on it. Each visit for regular maintenance runs in the neighborhood of $800-$1000. I replaced the tires at a local shop about 3 years ago and take it there for rotate, balance, alignment check, etc.

The biggest drawback is the lack of room in the back seat. The car was actually my wife's who has passed away. I keep it because it is paid for and I drive a 2009 Honda Pilot with 240,000 miles on it for work. If you plan to put 4 adults in it than you may want to reconsider the purchase. It drives exceptionally well and has had no major problems.

The AO service light came on the other day...here are the details on it from a forum:

Hi, I just recently bought a 2008 C230. It has about 63,000 kilometers. Service A0 has come up on the dash board. I couldn't find what that is in the manual. I called the MB dealerships and one said it just needs to be brought in for service which includes oil change, visual on brakes, and fluid check. They quoted me $325+tax. The other dealership said I would need to bring it in to get scanned so the could tell me and if it's minor service $500 and major could be around $700. I then found a couple independent places that specialize in Mercedes and first place said it just means oil change and they'll do it for $220-$230. Other place said I needed transmission work cause of the kilometers on top of oil change and everything. They quoted me $800-$900. I also don't really know much about cars so it's hard to for me to check things out myself to know if any of them are dishonest. Any thoughts would be appreciated.


Just food for thought.

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snackdog
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by snackdog » Wed Jul 01, 2020 6:22 am

If you can handle crushing depreciation, many expensive trips to the mechanic and aggravation dealing with issues, go for it. Otherwise, I would get a Lexus. Scotty Kilmer on YouTube rants about them all the time.

Paddygirl
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by Paddygirl » Wed Jul 01, 2020 6:24 am

Forget the Mercedes, its unreal what the costly mechanical issues are. Buy a LEXUS SUV. Mine is wonderful and its a 2005!!!!

runner3081
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by runner3081 » Wed Jul 01, 2020 7:28 am

Counterpoint, find a good mechanic and MB maintenance and repairs are really not much worse than any other vehicle. We had a 1999 ML320 that we bought and kept from years 12-20 of its age. Very few problems, and when we did, the mechanic we had was able to repair at a good price.

Would absolutely go back to a Mercedes SUV again.

Living Free
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by Living Free » Wed Jul 01, 2020 7:30 am

You don't know true suffering until you've had to pay for maintenance and repairs on an out of warranty German luxury automobile.

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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by Jack FFR1846 » Wed Jul 01, 2020 7:34 am

Either buying CPO from a Mercedes dealer, getting you 1 year, unlimited mileage of warranty or having a great Mercedes mechanic will be key. We can't tell you how easy finding such a mechanic might be...you need to do your homework local to you. When I had a BMW, I had a great mechanic who specialized in Mercedes. He did very good work but the bills were astronomical. Eventually, I moved to Subarus and have had a bunch of them. Most of them have seen the dealer when I picked up the car new and again when I traded it in.
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bob60014
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by bob60014 » Wed Jul 01, 2020 7:40 am

A car geek friend of mine said his two best days was the day he bought a MB and the day he sold the MB. Kinda like buying a boat!

lazydavid
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by lazydavid » Wed Jul 01, 2020 7:45 am

The GLK is really small and not particularly impressive, IMO. It was replaced by the much better and 5" longer GLC in 2015. So I guess the plus side is the one you're looking at is the last model year and should in theory be comparatively reliable.

If you want a German in that price/size class, I'd take a hard look at the 2nd gen (2011-2017) BMW X3 or first-gen (2009-2017) Audi Q5. Or up your budget a bit and get a W211 (2011-2019) GLE-Class, which is the next size larger and a very nice vehicle.

VGisforme
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by VGisforme » Wed Jul 01, 2020 7:48 am

unclescrooge wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 11:38 pm
After owning only Japanese cars for 20 years, I'm thinking of turning in my 2010 Acura tax and going German.

I'm looking at a GLK 350. I can get a 2015 with 30,000 miles for $17,500.

I'm curious what to expect in terms of reliability, expense of repair, cost of tires, and ease of finding a good mechanic. Is it easy to find a non-dealer repair shop?

All experiences, suggestions, comments and alternative choices are welcome.

My main criteria is it be white, with tan leather interior.
There is a reason it is only $17,500... Heck I drive a Dodge and they depreciate and occasionally have quality issues but they generally aren't too expensive to fix if you take good care of the car. A $45,000 MSRP Dodge Charger from 2015 with 30k miles is still worth ~$30,000 used.

That GLK 350 probably stickered at the same $45,000 but people don't want a German car out of warranty. You can buy a ten year old V12 AMG that stickered over $150k for $25-30k but that doesn't make it a good purchase.

If you're a "car guy" which doesn't sound accurate then by all means go for it if you like the style and the ride but from a cost-benefit standpoint you're likely to come out behind.

I think your Acura sounds more reasonable (and more sporty than a Lexus) maybe look at a new or lightly used Acura (you will find they don't depreciate nearly as much as a German brand).

DS03
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by DS03 » Wed Jul 01, 2020 7:52 am

I too just made the jump from Acura/Honda/Nissan over to Audi. As long as you understand the cost of ownership is definitely more, and can afford it, you'll be fine. It also depends on how you look at driving (for enjoyment, or just for getting from point A to point B) and the costs associated with it.

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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by neilpilot » Wed Jul 01, 2020 8:10 am

runner3081 wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 7:28 am
Counterpoint, find a good mechanic and MB maintenance and repairs are really not much worse than any other vehicle. We had a 1999 ML320 that we bought and kept from years 12-20 of its age. Very few problems, and when we did, the mechanic we had was able to repair at a good price.

Would absolutely go back to a Mercedes SUV again.
Agree. Also, if you have even minimal DIY skills in car maintenance, the regular service requirements for my 2016 GLC300 are trivial. I recently posted this: viewtopic.php?f=11&t=318192&p=5329020&h ... e#p5329020

My GLC300 replaced a 2008 C240 my wife drove for 8 years, and the maintenance required wasn't excessive and easily done. It never visited the MB dealer after the warranty expired.

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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by midareff » Wed Jul 01, 2020 8:39 am

unclescrooge wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 11:38 pm
After owning only Japanese cars for 20 years, I'm thinking of turning in my 2010 Acura tax and going German.

I'm looking at a GLK 350. I can get a 2015 with 30,000 miles for $17,500.

I'm curious what to expect in terms of reliability, expense of repair, cost of tires, and ease of finding a good mechanic. Is it easy to find a non-dealer repair shop?

All experiences, suggestions, comments and alternative choices are welcome.

My main criteria is it be white, with tan leather interior.
I had a Mercedes with the fake leather for 5 years... dealer recommended against real leather for South Florida. It was great.. have real leather on new one now, also great. In 7.5 years of "Benzing" it I have had one radar sensor and one tail light connector replaced, all under warranty.. no other issues.

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BolderBoy
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by BolderBoy » Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:39 am

unclescrooge wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 11:38 pm
I'm looking at a GLK 350.
Understand that comfort comes with size - bigger wheelbase = better ride.
I'm curious what to expect in terms of reliability, expense of repair, cost of tires, and ease of finding a good mechanic. Is it easy to find a non-dealer repair shop?
Mine has been, IMO, very reliable (92k miles on it now): replaced the thermostat and an idler pulley that was wearing. Also one of the electronic door locks failed ($1500 to replace). MB vehicles are notorious for their electrical problems. A power steering seal finally wore out - dripping fluid. Tires: present set are Cooper branded and were $600+. NOT easy to find good MB mechanic outside the dealership. I use "German Motors" located in west Lakewood (Denver metro). It is cheaper than the dealership - the dealership service shop uses a commission-based fee structure.

My typical, annual maintenance costs run $150-800 depending on what the shop finds that needs to be taken care of.

Bottom line is that I'd buy another MB SUV; finest auto I've ever owned (previously owned two E320s and they were just junk; MB and Chrysler were still married at the time). But you have to go into it knowing it will also be the most expensive-to-own vehicle you'll likely buy.
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UALflyer
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by UALflyer » Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:53 am

onourway wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 5:57 am
Maintenance costs will undoubtedly be higher. That’s baked into the incredible depreciation that brings you to the price you are looking at.
There is a few reasons for the depreciation, many of which make a number of these vehicles a very good value when they are slightly used. Quite a few people use luxury cars for status reasons, which means that they buy/lease them brand new. This causes their initial depreciation to be quite steep, but after that initial steep drop, the depreciation plateaus and starts to rival that of their non-luxury counterparts. This is the exact opposite of many non-luxury vehicles, as most Honda and Toyota models, for instance, undergo limited initial depreciation, which makes their slightly used models a rather poor financial value.

A number of luxury automakers, like BMW, subsidize their leases, so for a person who wants to drive newer cars, leasing can be cheaper than buying. This actually makes it easier to find gently used and extremely well maintained models that are still under their factory warranty (remember that with luxury cars, the factory warranty is 4 years/50K or 60K miles, while non-luxury cars have 3 year/36K mile warranties) that have already gone through the steepest part of their depreciation curve.

Likewise, there's these often repeated statements that European (and particularly German) cars should never be owned outside of their warranties, that their maintenance and repair costs are insane, etc... This all causes their initial depreciation to be quite steep, which also frequently means that while a lot of them represent very poor financial values when they're brand new, their slightly used models can hold their values pretty well, are pretty reliable and come with rather reasonable maintenance and repair costs.

There are quite a few of us out there who have been taking advantage of the above factors for many years, as it represents a good way to drive arguably better cars for way less than what a lot of people spend on their non-luxury counterparts.

Regardless, OP, as you can already tell from the replies, quite a few people responding to your question here don't have much, if any, experience with the brand or the model that you're considering. You will generally get much higher quality answers by heading over to benzworld.org and mbworld.org and checking out their model specific forums.

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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by unclescrooge » Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:56 am

snackdog wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 6:22 am
If you can handle crushing depreciation, many expensive trips to the mechanic and aggravation dealing with issues, go for it. Otherwise, I would get a Lexus. Scotty Kilmer on YouTube rants about them all the time.
The crushing depreciation has already occurred. A similar aged Acura or Lexus is 20-35% more expensive.

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unclescrooge
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by unclescrooge » Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:57 am

Cigarman wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 6:11 am
I own a 2014 GLK 350 4 matic with 45,000 miles on it. Each visit for regular maintenance runs in the neighborhood of $800-$1000. I replaced the tires at a local shop about 3 years ago and take it there for rotate, balance, alignment check, etc.

The biggest drawback is the lack of room in the back seat. The car was actually my wife's who has passed away. I keep it because it is paid for and I drive a 2009 Honda Pilot with 240,000 miles on it for work. If you plan to put 4 adults in it than you may want to reconsider the purchase. It drives exceptionally well and has had no major problems.

The AO service light came on the other day...here are the details on it from a forum:

Hi, I just recently bought a 2008 C230. It has about 63,000 kilometers. Service A0 has come up on the dash board. I couldn't find what that is in the manual. I called the MB dealerships and one said it just needs to be brought in for service which includes oil change, visual on brakes, and fluid check. They quoted me $325+tax. The other dealership said I would need to bring it in to get scanned so the could tell me and if it's minor service $500 and major could be around $700. I then found a couple independent places that specialize in Mercedes and first place said it just means oil change and they'll do it for $220-$230. Other place said I needed transmission work cause of the kilometers on top of oil change and everything. They quoted me $800-$900. I also don't really know much about cars so it's hard to for me to check things out myself to know if any of them are dishonest. Any thoughts would be appreciated.


Just food for thought.
Scary. :shock:

UALflyer
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by UALflyer » Wed Jul 01, 2020 10:05 am

unclescrooge wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:57 am
Cigarman wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 6:11 am
I own a 2014 GLK 350 4 matic with 45,000 miles on it. Each visit for regular maintenance runs in the neighborhood of $800-$1000. I replaced the tires at a local shop about 3 years ago and take it there for rotate, balance, alignment check, etc.

The biggest drawback is the lack of room in the back seat. The car was actually my wife's who has passed away. I keep it because it is paid for and I drive a 2009 Honda Pilot with 240,000 miles on it for work. If you plan to put 4 adults in it than you may want to reconsider the purchase. It drives exceptionally well and has had no major problems.

The AO service light came on the other day...here are the details on it from a forum:

Hi, I just recently bought a 2008 C230. It has about 63,000 kilometers. Service A0 has come up on the dash board. I couldn't find what that is in the manual. I called the MB dealerships and one said it just needs to be brought in for service which includes oil change, visual on brakes, and fluid check. They quoted me $325+tax. The other dealership said I would need to bring it in to get scanned so the could tell me and if it's minor service $500 and major could be around $700. I then found a couple independent places that specialize in Mercedes and first place said it just means oil change and they'll do it for $220-$230. Other place said I needed transmission work cause of the kilometers on top of oil change and everything. They quoted me $800-$900. I also don't really know much about cars so it's hard to for me to check things out myself to know if any of them are dishonest. Any thoughts would be appreciated.


Just food for thought.
Scary. :shock:
I can't make heads or tails of the post. I have no idea what "regular maintenance" the poster is talking about that "runs in the neighborhood of $800-$1000," but where I live, MB dealers charge $100-$130 with a coupon for Service A. The same dealers charge $275 - $350 for Service B with a coupon. Service A is essentially your 10K-13K service, and your Service B is your 20K-30K service (they alternate).

wmackey
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by wmackey » Wed Jul 01, 2020 10:11 am

I have a 2014 E250 (Diesel). It is a joy to drive and gets ~ 45 miles to the gallon. That said, you will pay quite a bit more for maintenance. If I had to do it again, I'm not sure I would.

delamer
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by delamer » Wed Jul 01, 2020 10:34 am

UALflyer wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:53 am
onourway wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 5:57 am
Maintenance costs will undoubtedly be higher. That’s baked into the incredible depreciation that brings you to the price you are looking at.
There is a few reasons for the depreciation, many of which make a number of these vehicles a very good value when they are slightly used. Quite a few people use luxury cars for status reasons, which means that they buy/lease them brand new. This causes their initial depreciation to be quite steep, but after that initial steep drop, the depreciation plateaus and starts to rival that of their non-luxury counterparts. This is the exact opposite of many non-luxury vehicles, as most Honda and Toyota models, for instance, undergo limited initial depreciation, which makes their slightly used models a rather poor financial value.

A number of luxury automakers, like BMW, subsidize their leases, so for a person who wants to drive newer cars, leasing can be cheaper than buying. This actually makes it easier to find gently used and extremely well maintained models that are still under their factory warranty (remember that with luxury cars, the factory warranty is 4 years/50K or 60K miles, while non-luxury cars have 3 year/36K mile warranties) that have already gone through the steepest part of their depreciation curve.

Likewise, there's these often repeated statements that European (and particularly German) cars should never be owned outside of their warranties, that their maintenance and repair costs are insane, etc... This all causes their initial depreciation to be quite steep, which also frequently means that while a lot of them represent very poor financial values when they're brand new, their slightly used models can hold their values pretty well, are pretty reliable and come with rather reasonable maintenance and repair costs.

There are quite a few of us out there who have been taking advantage of the above factors for many years, as it represents a good way to drive arguably better cars for way less than what a lot of people spend on their non-luxury counterparts.

Regardless, OP, as you can already tell from the replies, quite a few people responding to your question here don't have much, if any, experience with the brand or the model that you're considering. You will generally get much higher quality answers by heading over to benzworld.org and mbworld.org and checking out their model specific forums.
All good points.

It costs more to maintain my Mercedes than it does my kid’s Honda. And the Mercedes requires premium gas too.

If all of that bothers you or you can’t afford the outlay, then buy a Honda.

Same decision as buying a less expensive, smaller house if you want lower property taxes and utility bills.

I’d be hesitant to purchase a GLK because the styling marks it as an older model and I’d be concerned about resale. But that’s probably why you can get one for $17,500. My E350 is a 2014 (bought as a CPO) and has been very reliable — no repairs other than expected maintenance.

bi0hazard
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by bi0hazard » Wed Jul 01, 2020 11:08 am

Never buy a German car out of warranty.

Also, buying a small, old, cheap MB makes it -seem- like you’re keeping up with the Joneses, which is also a bad idea.

Don’t get me wrong, I like German cars, and drive one one I bought new, but in your case I’d pass on this idea.

jimmy2040
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by jimmy2040 » Wed Jul 01, 2020 11:18 am

biohazard is right.

Lease German cars. Never buy them.

My coworker went from a Lexus SUV to a BMW X5 and had nothing but issues.

He said he was spending thousands to fixes issues here and there.

Money pits.

Pomegranate
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by Pomegranate » Wed Jul 01, 2020 11:26 am

unclescrooge wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 11:38 pm
After owning only Japanese cars for 20 years, I'm thinking of turning in my 2010 Acura tax and going German.

I'm looking at a GLK 350. I can get a 2015 with 30,000 miles for $17,500.

I'm curious what to expect in terms of reliability, expense of repair, cost of tires, and ease of finding a good mechanic. Is it easy to find a non-dealer repair shop?

All experiences, suggestions, comments and alternative choices are welcome.

My main criteria is it be white, with tan leather interior.
I rented it once for 2 weeks. In 2 weeks - issues with transmission, trunk remote closing stopped working, major issues with AC :mrgreen:
Thanks, not need this car even as a gift :sharebeer

neilpilot
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by neilpilot » Wed Jul 01, 2020 11:39 am

bi0hazard wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 11:08 am
Never buy a German car out of warranty.

Also, buying a small, old, cheap MB makes it -seem- like you’re keeping up with the Joneses, which is also a bad idea.

Don’t get me wrong, I like German cars, and drive one one I bought new, but in your case I’d pass on this idea.
What's wrong with me? I've bought 9 German cars over the years, 4 of them already out of warranty. Three MBs, 2 Porsche, 3 VWs and a BMW. Only one, an old S430 that was already on borrowed time when I bought it, developed a significant mechanical issue.

Wish I could say the same about 2 of the last 3 GMs I purchased.

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unclescrooge
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by unclescrooge » Wed Jul 01, 2020 11:47 am

UALflyer wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:53 am
onourway wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 5:57 am
Maintenance costs will undoubtedly be higher. That’s baked into the incredible depreciation that brings you to the price you are looking at.
There is a few reasons for the depreciation, many of which make a number of these vehicles a very good value when they are slightly used. Quite a few people use luxury cars for status reasons, which means that they buy/lease them brand new. This causes their initial depreciation to be quite steep, but after that initial steep drop, the depreciation plateaus and starts to rival that of their non-luxury counterparts. This is the exact opposite of many non-luxury vehicles, as most Honda and Toyota models, for instance, undergo limited initial depreciation, which makes their slightly used models a rather poor financial value.

A number of luxury automakers, like BMW, subsidize their leases, so for a person who wants to drive newer cars, leasing can be cheaper than buying. This actually makes it easier to find gently used and extremely well maintained models that are still under their factory warranty (remember that with luxury cars, the factory warranty is 4 years/50K or 60K miles, while non-luxury cars have 3 year/36K mile warranties) that have already gone through the steepest part of their depreciation curve.

Likewise, there's these often repeated statements that European (and particularly German) cars should never be owned outside of their warranties, that their maintenance and repair costs are insane, etc... This all causes their initial depreciation to be quite steep, which also frequently means that while a lot of them represent very poor financial values when they're brand new, their slightly used models can hold their values pretty well, are pretty reliable and come with rather reasonable maintenance and repair costs.

There are quite a few of us out there who have been taking advantage of the above factors for many years, as it represents a good way to drive arguably better cars for way less than what a lot of people spend on their non-luxury counterparts.

Regardless, OP, as you can already tell from the replies, quite a few people responding to your question here don't have much, if any, experience with the brand or the model that you're considering. You will generally get much higher quality answers by heading over to benzworld.org and mbworld.org and checking out their model specific forums.
Thanks for the alternate viewpoint.
This is what I was hoping for.

I figure the $7-10k I save on a similar Lexus or Acura will go towards a lot of maintenance.

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unclescrooge
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by unclescrooge » Wed Jul 01, 2020 11:51 am

delamer wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 10:34 am
UALflyer wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:53 am
onourway wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 5:57 am
Maintenance costs will undoubtedly be higher. That’s baked into the incredible depreciation that brings you to the price you are looking at.
There is a few reasons for the depreciation, many of which make a number of these vehicles a very good value when they are slightly used. Quite a few people use luxury cars for status reasons, which means that they buy/lease them brand new. This causes their initial depreciation to be quite steep, but after that initial steep drop, the depreciation plateaus and starts to rival that of their non-luxury counterparts. This is the exact opposite of many non-luxury vehicles, as most Honda and Toyota models, for instance, undergo limited initial depreciation, which makes their slightly used models a rather poor financial value.

A number of luxury automakers, like BMW, subsidize their leases, so for a person who wants to drive newer cars, leasing can be cheaper than buying. This actually makes it easier to find gently used and extremely well maintained models that are still under their factory warranty (remember that with luxury cars, the factory warranty is 4 years/50K or 60K miles, while non-luxury cars have 3 year/36K mile warranties) that have already gone through the steepest part of their depreciation curve.

Likewise, there's these often repeated statements that European (and particularly German) cars should never be owned outside of their warranties, that their maintenance and repair costs are insane, etc... This all causes their initial depreciation to be quite steep, which also frequently means that while a lot of them represent very poor financial values when they're brand new, their slightly used models can hold their values pretty well, are pretty reliable and come with rather reasonable maintenance and repair costs.

There are quite a few of us out there who have been taking advantage of the above factors for many years, as it represents a good way to drive arguably better cars for way less than what a lot of people spend on their non-luxury counterparts.

Regardless, OP, as you can already tell from the replies, quite a few people responding to your question here don't have much, if any, experience with the brand or the model that you're considering. You will generally get much higher quality answers by heading over to benzworld.org and mbworld.org and checking out their model specific forums.
All good points.

It costs more to maintain my Mercedes than it does my kid’s Honda. And the Mercedes requires premium gas too.

If all of that bothers you or you can’t afford the outlay, then buy a Honda.

Same decision as buying a less expensive, smaller house if you want lower property taxes and utility bills.

I’d be hesitant to purchase a GLK because the styling marks it as an older model and I’d be concerned about resale. But that’s probably why you can get one for $17,500. My E350 is a 2014 (bought as a CPO) and has been very reliable — no repairs other than expected maintenance.
I actually like the styling of the GLK. If it was up to me, I'd trade in my white 2010 TSX for a white 2010 TSX wagon - I just have uncool taste in cars. :mrgreen:

But getting 2 kids in and out of car seats in the TSX is getting tiring. That's why I'm looking for a small SUV.

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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by unclescrooge » Wed Jul 01, 2020 11:53 am

UALflyer wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 10:05 am
I can't make heads or tails of the post. I have no idea what "regular maintenance" the poster is talking about that "runs in the neighborhood of $800-$1000," but where I live, MB dealers charge $100-$130 with a coupon for Service A. The same dealers charge $275 - $350 for Service B with a coupon. Service A is essentially your 10K-13K service, and your Service B is your 20K-30K service (they alternate).
Where do you live?
I live in a HCOL area, which I guess would impact the cost of service.

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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by unclescrooge » Wed Jul 01, 2020 11:56 am

onourway wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 5:57 am
Maintenance costs will undoubtedly be higher. That’s baked into the incredible depreciation that brings you to the price you are looking at.

I would personally find out who your independent mechanic is going to be prior to purchasing a vehicle like this. If there isn’t someone convenient to you that does Mercedes, look for a brand that has a good mechanic in your area.
good idea. I will ask my mechanic if he services german cars.

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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by BruinBones » Wed Jul 01, 2020 12:03 pm

Cigarman wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 6:11 am
I own a 2014 GLK 350 4 matic with 45,000 miles on it. Each visit for regular maintenance runs in the neighborhood of $800-$1000. I replaced the tires at a local shop about 3 years ago and take it there for rotate, balance, alignment check, etc.
2015 GLK 350 with 44k miles here. We take it in to MB for maintenance because my wife doesn't trust independent shops. Other than replacing tires at Discount Tire and changing the air filters on my own, we just take it in when the warning light reminds us of next maintenance. I have had no mechanical/electrical problems.

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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by inbox788 » Wed Jul 01, 2020 12:05 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 11:47 am
I figure the $7-10k I save on a similar Lexus or Acura will go towards a lot of maintenance.
What's a similar Lexus or Acura? Base 2015 RX is coming up between $15-20k at KBB. Same for MDX.

At Carmax, low mileage comparisons $24-27k are also close. Are the options on the Mercedes significantly different?

https://www.carmax.com/car/18884517 GLK
https://www.carmax.com/car/18909389 RX
https://www.carmax.com/car/18643144 MDX

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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by abuss368 » Wed Jul 01, 2020 12:17 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 11:38 pm
After owning only Japanese cars for 20 years, I'm thinking of turning in my 2010 Acura tax and going German.

I'm looking at a GLK 350. I can get a 2015 with 30,000 miles for $17,500.

I'm curious what to expect in terms of reliability, expense of repair, cost of tires, and ease of finding a good mechanic. Is it easy to find a non-dealer repair shop?

All experiences, suggestions, comments and alternative choices are welcome.

My main criteria is it be white, with tan leather interior.
Maintenance & insurance will probably be higher. Why not a new car for the same or little higher with less overall costs over time?
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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by UALflyer » Wed Jul 01, 2020 12:27 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 11:53 am
UALflyer wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 10:05 am
I can't make heads or tails of the post. I have no idea what "regular maintenance" the poster is talking about that "runs in the neighborhood of $800-$1000," but where I live, MB dealers charge $100-$130 with a coupon for Service A. The same dealers charge $275 - $350 for Service B with a coupon. Service A is essentially your 10K-13K service, and your Service B is your 20K-30K service (they alternate).
Where do you live?
I live in a HCOL area, which I guess would impact the cost of service.
You just have to look into it for your specific area. In general, what affects maintenance costs quite a bit is the amount of competition out there. A low cost area with only one MB dealer results in lots of captive audience and no competition, which can mean higher maintenance costs than a very high cost area with numerous MB dealers and independents all over the place.

They all also run various promotions and specials, so it's not any different than the non-luxury dealers that have high list prices for various services, but which end up much lower with coupons.

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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by unclescrooge » Wed Jul 01, 2020 12:41 pm

inbox788 wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 12:05 pm
unclescrooge wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 11:47 am
I figure the $7-10k I save on a similar Lexus or Acura will go towards a lot of maintenance.
What's a similar Lexus or Acura? Base 2015 RX is coming up between $15-20k at KBB. Same for MDX.

At Carmax, low mileage comparisons $24-27k are also close. Are the options on the Mercedes significantly different?

https://www.carmax.com/car/18884517 GLK
https://www.carmax.com/car/18909389 RX
https://www.carmax.com/car/18643144 MDX
These options are definitely worth considering. On carmax, in my zipcode, MDX is similar in pricing to GLK, with Lexus being higher.
Also, a lot less variation in Lexus models pricing for some reason. They are all roughly $26k.

I was looking at facebook marketplace for my original pricing. A lot more variation there.

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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by unclescrooge » Wed Jul 01, 2020 12:44 pm

abuss368 wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 12:17 pm
unclescrooge wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 11:38 pm
After owning only Japanese cars for 20 years, I'm thinking of turning in my 2010 Acura tax and going German.

I'm looking at a GLK 350. I can get a 2015 with 30,000 miles for $17,500.

I'm curious what to expect in terms of reliability, expense of repair, cost of tires, and ease of finding a good mechanic. Is it easy to find a non-dealer repair shop?

All experiences, suggestions, comments and alternative choices are welcome.

My main criteria is it be white, with tan leather interior.
Maintenance & insurance will probably be higher. Why not a new car for the same or little higher with less overall costs over time?
Are you talking about buying a new civic? That's the same cost as what I'm looking at.

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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by mrspock » Wed Jul 01, 2020 12:55 pm

Honestly, if you want German, buy a VW SUV (Atlas, Tiguan, Toureg). When they make 200k of a car it becomes your problem when things break down.... when they make 10m of them, it’s the manufacturer’s problem (warranty claims, marketing nightmare, lawsuits, recalls).

VW parts are ubiquitous and lower cost compared to MB, and you won’t get the instant price gouging every-time you take it for service. You also won’t get that arrogant attitude from their service desk when they stick you with a 1.5k bill (for something that has maybe $200 in parts) and then look at you like “I’d you can’t afford the bill, you shouldn’t have bought one of our cars.”

I’ve owned both.... if you want German quality go VW. No comparison to MB for ownership costs and sourcing parts.

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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by unclescrooge » Wed Jul 01, 2020 1:00 pm

mrspock wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 12:55 pm
Honestly, if you want German, buy a VW SUV (Atlas, Tiguan, Toureg). When they make 200k of a car it becomes your problem when things break down.... when they make 10m of them, it’s the manufacturer’s problem (warranty claims, marketing nightmare, lawsuits, recalls).

VW parts are ubiquitous and lower cost compared to MB, and you won’t get the instant price gouging every-time you take it for service. You also won’t get that arrogant attitude from their service desk when they stick you with a 1.5k bill (for something that has maybe $200 in parts) and then look at you like “I’d you can’t afford the bill, you shouldn’t have bought one of our cars.”

I’ve owned both.... if you want German quality go VW. No comparison to MB for ownership costs and sourcing parts.
I like the way you think.

I've never seriously considered a VW because in 1999, my friend owned a Jetta and it was falling apart within a year. The bumper came off, the interior roof fabric started peeling off. ( In 2009, the same friend bought a 2005 Audi, and it had another set of problems. Maybe he just had bad luck).

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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by abuss368 » Wed Jul 01, 2020 1:10 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 12:44 pm
abuss368 wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 12:17 pm
unclescrooge wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 11:38 pm
After owning only Japanese cars for 20 years, I'm thinking of turning in my 2010 Acura tax and going German.

I'm looking at a GLK 350. I can get a 2015 with 30,000 miles for $17,500.

I'm curious what to expect in terms of reliability, expense of repair, cost of tires, and ease of finding a good mechanic. Is it easy to find a non-dealer repair shop?

All experiences, suggestions, comments and alternative choices are welcome.

My main criteria is it be white, with tan leather interior.
Maintenance & insurance will probably be higher. Why not a new car for the same or little higher with less overall costs over time?
Are you talking about buying a new civic? That's the same cost as what I'm looking at.
My respond above: "Why not a new car for the same or a little higher". Maybe the $20K + but maintenance & insurance less. But a new car nonetheless.
John C. Bogle: Two Fund Portfolio - Total Stock & Total Bond - “Simplicity is the master key to financial success."

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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by delamer » Wed Jul 01, 2020 1:13 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 11:51 am
delamer wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 10:34 am
UALflyer wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:53 am
onourway wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 5:57 am
Maintenance costs will undoubtedly be higher. That’s baked into the incredible depreciation that brings you to the price you are looking at.
There is a few reasons for the depreciation, many of which make a number of these vehicles a very good value when they are slightly used. Quite a few people use luxury cars for status reasons, which means that they buy/lease them brand new. This causes their initial depreciation to be quite steep, but after that initial steep drop, the depreciation plateaus and starts to rival that of their non-luxury counterparts. This is the exact opposite of many non-luxury vehicles, as most Honda and Toyota models, for instance, undergo limited initial depreciation, which makes their slightly used models a rather poor financial value.

A number of luxury automakers, like BMW, subsidize their leases, so for a person who wants to drive newer cars, leasing can be cheaper than buying. This actually makes it easier to find gently used and extremely well maintained models that are still under their factory warranty (remember that with luxury cars, the factory warranty is 4 years/50K or 60K miles, while non-luxury cars have 3 year/36K mile warranties) that have already gone through the steepest part of their depreciation curve.

Likewise, there's these often repeated statements that European (and particularly German) cars should never be owned outside of their warranties, that their maintenance and repair costs are insane, etc... This all causes their initial depreciation to be quite steep, which also frequently means that while a lot of them represent very poor financial values when they're brand new, their slightly used models can hold their values pretty well, are pretty reliable and come with rather reasonable maintenance and repair costs.

There are quite a few of us out there who have been taking advantage of the above factors for many years, as it represents a good way to drive arguably better cars for way less than what a lot of people spend on their non-luxury counterparts.

Regardless, OP, as you can already tell from the replies, quite a few people responding to your question here don't have much, if any, experience with the brand or the model that you're considering. You will generally get much higher quality answers by heading over to benzworld.org and mbworld.org and checking out their model specific forums.
All good points.

It costs more to maintain my Mercedes than it does my kid’s Honda. And the Mercedes requires premium gas too.

If all of that bothers you or you can’t afford the outlay, then buy a Honda.

Same decision as buying a less expensive, smaller house if you want lower property taxes and utility bills.

I’d be hesitant to purchase a GLK because the styling marks it as an older model and I’d be concerned about resale. But that’s probably why you can get one for $17,500. My E350 is a 2014 (bought as a CPO) and has been very reliable — no repairs other than expected maintenance.
I actually like the styling of the GLK. If it was up to me, I'd trade in my white 2010 TSX for a white 2010 TSX wagon - I just have uncool taste in cars. :mrgreen:

But getting 2 kids in and out of car seats in the TSX is getting tiring. That's why I'm looking for a small SUV.
I was pointing out that because the GLK is no longer made and is such a distinctive style, that it mat negatively affect the resale value when you sell.

I think it’s kind of cool looking myself.

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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by inbox788 » Wed Jul 01, 2020 1:21 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 12:41 pm
These options are definitely worth considering. On carmax, in my zipcode, MDX is similar in pricing to GLK, with Lexus being higher.
Also, a lot less variation in Lexus models pricing for some reason. They are all roughly $26k.

I was looking at facebook marketplace for my original pricing. A lot more variation there.
I was mainly commenting on the $7-10k savings that I wasn't seeing. Mileage and a year or two might also make some difference or equalize price comparisons. A base model vs fully loaded might be $10k price difference, but I don't think you'll get a 2015 of any of these top of the line with everything under $20k yet. (If you are consider Acura/Lexus, don't forget to look at the smaller RDX/NX options)

You might just go with the one you like best, even if it costs a little more and and knowing it has higher potential issues. Or let the marketplace decide based on what great deal you come across. If the GLK hasn't sold, make a much lower offer and add the difference to the repair and maintenance fund, using that expense are the reason for the lower price. But do have the car you buy checked out by your mechanic to reduce the change of buying a lemon.

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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by hmw » Wed Jul 01, 2020 1:29 pm

UALflyer wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 10:05 am
unclescrooge wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:57 am
Cigarman wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 6:11 am
I own a 2014 GLK 350 4 matic with 45,000 miles on it. Each visit for regular maintenance runs in the neighborhood of $800-$1000. I replaced the tires at a local shop about 3 years ago and take it there for rotate, balance, alignment check, etc.

The biggest drawback is the lack of room in the back seat. The car was actually my wife's who has passed away. I keep it because it is paid for and I drive a 2009 Honda Pilot with 240,000 miles on it for work. If you plan to put 4 adults in it than you may want to reconsider the purchase. It drives exceptionally well and has had no major problems.

The AO service light came on the other day...here are the details on it from a forum:

Hi, I just recently bought a 2008 C230. It has about 63,000 kilometers. Service A0 has come up on the dash board. I couldn't find what that is in the manual. I called the MB dealerships and one said it just needs to be brought in for service which includes oil change, visual on brakes, and fluid check. They quoted me $325+tax. The other dealership said I would need to bring it in to get scanned so the could tell me and if it's minor service $500 and major could be around $700. I then found a couple independent places that specialize in Mercedes and first place said it just means oil change and they'll do it for $220-$230. Other place said I needed transmission work cause of the kilometers on top of oil change and everything. They quoted me $800-$900. I also don't really know much about cars so it's hard to for me to check things out myself to know if any of them are dishonest. Any thoughts would be appreciated.


Just food for thought.
Scary. :shock:
I can't make heads or tails of the post. I have no idea what "regular maintenance" the poster is talking about that "runs in the neighborhood of $800-$1000," but where I live, MB dealers charge $100-$130 with a coupon for Service A. The same dealers charge $275 - $350 for Service B with a coupon. Service A is essentially your 10K-13K service, and your Service B is your 20K-30K service (they alternate).
I think your MB dealership is unusual. Service A is basically a glorified oil change with lots of inspections. But MB will require synthetic oil. Even at cheap quick lube type of places, it will cost over $100. I haven’t had any service at a MB dealer for a while. I remember service A cost about $300 to $400 dollars at a MB dealer in CT 10 years ago. Service B will cost more. Maybe $500 and up depending on how much work is done.

I have owned two MB in my life. I did not have any major problem with either one. Maybe I was just lucky.

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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by UALflyer » Wed Jul 01, 2020 1:37 pm

hmw wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 1:29 pm
I think your MB dealership is unusual. Service A is basically a glorified oil change with lots of inspections. But MB will require synthetic oil. Even at cheap quick lube type of places, it will cost over $100. I haven’t had any service at a MB dealer for a while. I remember service A cost about $300 to $400 dollars at a MB dealer in CT 10 years ago. Service B will cost more. Maybe $500 and up depending on how much work is done.

I have owned two MB in my life. I did not have any major problem with either one. Maybe I was just lucky.
The concept that a lot of MB dealers use is the exact same one used by many other dealers. Namely, you offer an attractive service deal, which is either a loss leader or just causes you to break even on it, with the goal of getting people in the door. This then gives them an opportunity to sell other services to their customers.

I've had a number of different luxury cars and still do. Because of the above, it's actually fairly common to have these situations where dealer maintenance ends up costing the same or even less than what a lot of indy's charge. With repairs, however, indy service has pretty consistently ended up being cheaper.

You're exactly correct about the A service, which is a full synthetic oil change with a bunch of inspections. My indy charges $150 or $175 for it, so this dealer with a coupon is cheaper (without a coupon, it is $250 or $275). As I mentioned above, this is not a particularly unusual situation with all brands.

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Re: Thinking of buying a Mercedes SUV

Post by mrspock » Wed Jul 01, 2020 2:55 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 1:00 pm
mrspock wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 12:55 pm
Honestly, if you want German, buy a VW SUV (Atlas, Tiguan, Toureg). When they make 200k of a car it becomes your problem when things break down.... when they make 10m of them, it’s the manufacturer’s problem (warranty claims, marketing nightmare, lawsuits, recalls).

VW parts are ubiquitous and lower cost compared to MB, and you won’t get the instant price gouging every-time you take it for service. You also won’t get that arrogant attitude from their service desk when they stick you with a 1.5k bill (for something that has maybe $200 in parts) and then look at you like “I’d you can’t afford the bill, you shouldn’t have bought one of our cars.”

I’ve owned both.... if you want German quality go VW. No comparison to MB for ownership costs and sourcing parts.
I like the way you think.

I've never seriously considered a VW because in 1999, my friend owned a Jetta and it was falling apart within a year. The bumper came off, the interior roof fabric started peeling off. ( In 2009, the same friend bought a 2005 Audi, and it had another set of problems. Maybe he just had bad luck).
I think the trick to VW is buy the ones made in Germany vs. USA, Mexico or Asia, and go with 2nd or 3rd year of the generation to give them some time to work out the kinks.

My VW has honestly been the best car I've ever owned (albeit I keep them so long my sample size is small :D ). The thing is just a tank (after almost a decade the suspension has even held up), and everything just "works", with the MB there was always some nick-knack which would break down and overtime it was just sad (you just couldn't keep up).

That all said, I'm not saying VW has higher reliability than Honda or Toyota, but just that if you have the itch to go German, it's the brand I'd go with. You'll get all the German fit and finish, the clever gadgets you didn't even know existed (nor do they often mention them because they want you to find them yourself), the satisfying "thud" when you close the door and the stern -- but not stiff -- suspension they are known for -- without most of the negatives.

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