Mercedes’s slogan, ‘The Best or Nothing’ is a lofty target. A luxury brand for almost 100 years, but are they worth the hefty price tag? In this article, we’ll look at the different elements involved in choosing a Mercedes.
A Mercedes Benz is worth it. While a Mercedes costs more than the average vehicle to purchase, maintain and insure, a well-maintained Benz model can return reliable, safe, and comfortable service for many, many years.
Janis Joplin longed for a Mercedes Benz as all her friends drove Porsche! When I was growing up in the ’80s, driving a Mercedes was the ultimate prize. But is that still the case today with so many other luxury cars on offer?
Cost of Mercedes Benz
We can’t look at the worth of a Mercedes Benz without first looking at the cost. They have a full range of cars to choose from, but even the entry-level A-Class is $41,000 new, and that’s without any extras. It is voted #1 Luxury Small Sedan by Edmunds.com, but most buyers actually opt for the C Class, which has a starting price of $53,000.
The C Class could probably do with an upgrade, as the current model was launched back in 2015. Both the A-Class and the E-Class have had a refurb and ‘outclass’ the C in infotainment technology, which in fairness, everyone now sees as standard and is expected in a new car.
But the E Class has a starting price of $78,000, which is a large jump from the C, and that’s without any extras, which realistically could add another $20,000 to the final price tag.
The E Class is also rated the #1 Luxury Midsize Sedan by Edmunds.com. The S Class comes in at $132,000, which is on the upper end of the scale compared to its peers; the BMW 7 and Audi A8 are approximately $85,000, and even the Porsche Panamera at $105,000.
But Mercedes is known for their comfortable limousine feel, and they deliver on that every time, so the luxury outweighs the cost, in my opinion.
|Model||New Cost||2018 Cost|
Mercedes are luxury cars and, as such, command high insurance rates. The average cost for an A-Class is $1800 for a 40-year-old good driver. This rises to $2000 for a 30-year-old. Insurance is dependent on age, location, and driver history. A 40-year-old driving an E Class in North Carolina can expect to pay $1300, whereas the same driver in Rhode Island will pay $3300.
|Model||40 Year Old Driver||30 Year Old Driver|
How reliable is your Mercedes going to be? As I said, Mercedes are high-end luxury cars with German engineering behind them. They are built to last if you take care of them. They need to be maintained regularly, and if they are can go on and on for up to 25 years and even 500,000 miles.
So what does that maintenance look like? Well, it can be expensive, but luxury comes at a price.
All post 2010 Mercedes need a service every 10,000 miles. Mercedes offer two service options.
- Every 10,000 Miles
- Oil Change & Tire Rotation
- Cost $300
- Every 20,000 \miles
- Oil Change & All Filters Changed
- Cost $750
These costs are high compared to other brands, but it’s not just the service that has to be looked at. Consumables such as brake pads, tires, and wiper blades all have to be replaced, and because it’s a luxury brand, these parts carry quite the price tag. Tires can cost up to $350 per tire (high performance costs more at $500). Mercedes are heavy cars to have that luxury drive, and so are more inclined to need new tires more often.
So we’ve looked at the cost, both initial outlay and ongoing running costs. But worth is not just about dollars. What is a Mercedes actually like to drive? Does it live up to the luxury name? The answer is yes. Mercedes are incredibly comfortable to drive and also be a passenger. This content belongs to moc.sotuaytsur. They have sufficient power with great handling. The interior is super comfortable, with a huge array of seat adjustments.
The GLC (Suv) has superb maneuverability for city driving and is the best in class 0-60 at 5.8 seconds for highway driving. Its suspension absorbs all uneven bumps on the road and has very low road noise.
The E-Class delivers on its luxury price tag. You expect nothing less than all-around driving comfort from the seats to the on-road driving experience. The only negative in the E Class is the emergency braking, where according to Edmunds.com, it has the longest braking distance in its class.
Repairs and Common Problems
Mercedes, although in the higher price echelon, are not without its problems. All cars gain issues both with age and mileage. Mercedes are no different. If your Mercedes is well maintained, then problems should be less frequent. Here are a few to watch out for if you are considering buying a used model.
Most cars will have some oil leaks. However, Mercedes are known to leak transmission fluid, which, if left unattended, can be quite the cost to repair.
Spark plugs are recommended to be changed by Mercedes every 30-40,000 miles. If you fail to maintain spark plugs, you will have ignition failure or, worse than that, an intermittent ignition failure.
Due to the weight of all Mercedes Benz, the suspension has to work a bit harder than the average sedan. Suspension parts, i.e., bushings, are filled with fluid, and as the rubber wears and cracks, the fluid begins to leak.
Mercedes are high-tech cars. They can have as many as 50 onboard computers. Even changing the brake pads will need a computer deactivated and reactivated for electronic parking. Because of this, you will need a Mercedes Auto Tech to take care of your maintenance.
Comparing Mercedes to Audi and BMW
If you are thinking of splashing out on a luxury car, there are a lot of brands to choose from. But the fact of the matter is, do you want to have a Mercedes E Class parked in your company parking space or an Audi A8 or a BMW 7 Series? To be honest, I think most people will, hands down, choose the ‘star.’ It has notoriety, the understated luxury. Parked side by side with an A8, you’re going to expect the CEO to be driving the Mercedes even though they are in the same class bracket.
Just before you pull the trigger on a used Mercedes, it is worth investing a few dollars to check the VIN number against the vehicle database. I use VinAudit (links to VinAudit) to run a complete check; it guards against Mileage fraud, Salvage rebuilds, Title washing, Vin cloning, and a ton of other ways buyers get scammed.
|Model||Cost New||3 Year Old Value|
|BMW 5 Series||$58380||$35688|
|BMW 7 Series||$104465||$58876|
Comparable depreciation across the three brands over different models sees the Mercedes come out on top each time.
Mercedes are built to last. They are expensive to maintain but so are other luxury brands. They are the epitome of style and substance, so is the star worth it? Yes. Absolutely, I’ve driven Mercedes for years, as has my father, and while some of the early noughties model’s reliability was suspect, I’m happy to report normal service has resumed.
I like to maintain my own car; I always have and what I love most about Mercedes is how they are put together. Even in the places you can’t see, like under floor coverings or behind door covers. The Mercedes engineers go to great lengths to make your Benz the best it can be. And that type of detail pays off; I’m a lifelong fan!
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