Firstly let me apologise for reading the Sunday Mirror occasionally . The great Quentin Wilson has a motoring page including readers questions and this week a Mercedes owner claiming to be hard-up asks for advice on servicing , his petrol E-class has done 60k without even an oil change !
We all know that owner is an absolute twit. He will destroy the engine doing 60,000 miles with no oil change. Secondly it is indeed possible to actually own an E class and be hard-up. In the present recession I can't afford to buy any other car for years and years. I keep my excellent 1999 Seat. The AutoExpress had an article quite a while back on an E class which was totally dismantled after 60,000 miles and 3 years. It actually did better in that test than most cars. They said Mercedes used quality parts. So at least that was something positive. I actually have great respect for Quentin Wilson.
I wouldn't do it, but I know a lot of people who don't service cars and seem to get away remarkably lightly.
I took over a Focus TDDi when I joined my last company which had done 63,000 miles and had never been serviced. Despite 5mm of watery black gunk on the bottom of the dipstick it sounded OK and pulled OK.
I'm just trying to work out what 60,000 miles worth of Mercedes servicing costs, and how that compares to the price of a recon engine.
You have a point. The servicing costs would be awful. When visitting Northern Ireland a year or so back when the new C Class first appeared, there was a main Mercedes dealership in Craigavon and that was outstanding. They had won the top award in the whole of the UK for their excellent customer service.At the time I went in there and they even gave me a test drive on the spot no prior warning and offered me the usual drink etc. Obviously some dealers are appalling towards the customers. I have heard far too many bad stories. Understandably they are all now probably running after the customers to keep afloat now during the recession.
Mercedes with service history ? -
>>Just out of interest, how much is a service for an e or s class?
Can be just oil service or inspection-type service. With labour rates (min) £75ph (on older cars) you don't really get away with less than £300 usually - even for an A-class - and it can go up to £550-600 with higher-mileage higher spec/range models.
How anyone can sabotage their residual value (aside from any mechanical/functional deterioration) by not getting a dealer service on a new-ish car astounds me.
For a 60K E-class (petrol or diesel) from new, I don't imagine the servicing would top £1500 - maybe less with variable servicing & lots of motorway miles. The punter in question has probably lost out on the 'Mobilo' guarantee as well as the 'standard' warranty too - daft all round really.
Just out of interest how much is a service for an e or s class?
A normal service for my E320CDI is usually about the £250 mark all in, obviously rising if more is needed (brakes, etc.). The biggest cost is obviously the labour, so as long as you can find a sensible hourly rate the cost of servicing a Mercedes is no worse than other brands. And by maintaining Mercedes service history you benefit from (allegedly) better trade-in values, as well as Mobilo breakdown cover.
Mercedes dealers also discount labour and parts for older cars. Which is nice.
If he traded it in the amount they'd knock off for no service history is almost certainly less than the servicing would have cost so from a strict financial point of view if he does not intend to keep the car for ever it makes sense never to service cars and indeed many people do just that.
Because this is a motoring forum it tends to be populated with people who think about servicing but that shouldn't be confused with how most owners regard their cars in the big wide world.
The simple reality is that a very large number of cars in the UK only see the inside of a garage at MOT time or if it stops going.
I would also add it is a tribute to modern design standards that many cars can and do go 100,000 miles without ever being serviced.
If he traded it in the amount they'd knock off for no service history is
almost certainly less than the servicing would have cost so from a strict financial point
of view if he does not intend to keep the car for ever it makes
sense never to service cars and indeed many people do just that.
I agree, but it's crazy when you think about it. Who in their right mind would buy a car like this unless it was seriously, irresistably cheap? There could be £2k+ worth of work sitting there now (brakes, suspension components) without the risk of longer term damage lurking in the engine.
on the other hand ive had cars back from a service at a main dealer with no work having being done other than the booked stamped, and when its been a company car and ive been short of time ive just let them get away with it, obviously presence of the old oil filter and dirty oil would be a major problem if it were my own car but when its a company car sometimes other priorities get in the way
i think many cars go longer between services than we think simply because many company cars never get serviced properly when in the main dealers
so stamp in book doesnt prove anything to me
however my own cars have always been done properly as far as its easy to tell with quick look
>>I agree, but it's crazy when you think about it. Who in their right mind would buy a
>>car like this unless it was seriously, irresistably cheap? There could be £2k+ worth of
>>work sitting there now (brakes, suspension components) without the risk of longer
>>term damage lurking in the engine.
>>I'd want it for next to nothing, personally.
I should be very surprised if any car - let alone an MB, which is a rather better engineered motor than most - would require suspension or brake work after only 60k miles. New set of pads, and possibly discs maybe.
What I would have done, had I been its poverty-stricken owner, would have been a £25 (or more likely £50 given quantity and spec) oil change at Kwik Fit. Otherwise, cars don't really need much "servicing".
Main dealer servicing really doesn't amount to much more than an oil change and a quick check over. Post check over it is down to the owner / company whether anything which is picked up gets done.
Frankly, a 60k petrol Merc may have some extra long term engine wear but in most respects it won't be a lot different to one with a full history.
Most things only ever get fixed on cars, history or not, if they fail the MOT, make an annoying noise or result in a light on the dashboard.
Only times it can make a big difference is on necessary replacement work on some cars, mainly diesels, such as necessary particulate filter replacement intervals etc. & recall work on electrics and software upgrades.
My Merc has done 40K and all it's ever had is 2 oil and filter changes (an it's not many miles since it had the second), pollen filter, and brake fluid change. And 2 MOT's.
They're the only 4 times it's been to the dealership in its 4.5yr life. If I'd been paying the bills then it would be the cheapest car in our family fleet to service. I do think the minimal work that has "needed" doing is in no small part due to the fact that the car is covered by a Mercedes maintenance contract though.
I'm not sure I believe the original story referred to - OK, it's possible, but the car would have gone through a fair number of tyres so it would have had to have some money spent on it. And unless it was doing mainly motorway mileage, 60K from the front pads on a heavyish car is good going. And why would somebody with an E Class be reading, never mind write to, the Mirror? :)
Cars, including Mercs, big, heavy objects propelled along our roads at high speed.
The government, for all its faults, recognises how dangerous these objects can be.
The government, therefore, arrange for these cars to be inspected every year from their 3rd year.
Rather naievly, the government expect that these cars will either remain safe for the first 3 years of their lives or that market forces will force their owners to visit the dealer annually for the car to be examined by a professional to ensure that the vehicle remains safe.
I'm not being daft. I know so many folk today who will gladly ignore safety issues regarding their cars.