Mercedes-Benz S-Class (1991–1999)

What's good

Mercedes was rated by Motor Warranty Direct as Britain's 2nd most claim-free used marque.

Mercedes had fifth lowest average cost in warranty claims for cars up to 10 years old in 2002 Warranty Direct index.

Mercedes generally 9th lowest average warranty repair costs in 2003 Warranty Direct Reliability index (index 70.79 v/s lowest 31.93) www.reliabilityindex.co.uk

Club: www.mercedes-benz-club.co.uk

Usergroup linked to 'Mercedes Owner' magazine www.mercedesclub.org.uk

Useful online forum: www.mbclub.co.uk

What to watch out for

European mid-90s slump left a lot of 'S'-Class unsold - sitting outside in Baltic Sea dockside compounds which won't have done them much good.

Used prices went up and down like a lift in a department store.

All were slow sellers in the UK, particularly in 1997-98.

Official UK sales hit by diverted RHD Far East exports at up to £17,000 less.

Continued to be built in India until late 2001, but some local component quality not up to normal MB standards.

Tyres are enormous, wear heavily and are very expensive, so budget for this.

Recalls

1997 (1995-96 build): May lose brake fluid from hose.

8-5-2001: Build dates 1/9/1995 to 31/12/1996: high humidity may cause corrosion of trigger mechanism leading to airbag inflating. Airbags to be replaced.

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