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Service Issues

19248 Views 13 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  aviator
There has been a lot of talk on this forum about the quality of service provided by Cadillac dealers. It seem like everything from the quality of the loaner car to the compencey of the technicians has been discussed. I thought I would rely an episode that happen to me over the weekend at the Local Mercedes-Benz dealership as a comparision to what we have experienced at Cadillac.

Basically, I am in the market for a large sedan to drive when the XLR is down for the winter. Anyway, was looking at a S-55 AMG. Get this. The car has a window sticker of over 113K. However, they happend to have a 1 year old model in just the color I wanted with only 2K miles on it. The asking price was 106K on the one year old "used" MB. I thought that the price was high so I left and told the salesperson I wanted to do some research on the car. I used MB websit to search national dealers certified used lots for the same car. When I went back the next day with 4 examples of the same car at other MB (out of region) dealers that were considerable less the dealer told me the following: "you can buy from those other dealers, but you will not get quality MB serivce from us if you bring the car hear for warranty work." He went on to say that MB car bought from another MB dealer does not receive 1. loaner car, 2. courtesy shuttle, 3. car wash when serviced, 4. less likely to be helpful.

I was actually pretty schocked to hear that from a dealer (this guy was a 8 year vetern at the dealership). Needless to say, I won't be buying from them.

I have read a lot of issues on this site that go something like " for 78K the dealer should.........". It seems like the MB guys take that to a whole new level. Guess I will stick to the STS & XLR at half the cost and better service.
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Other strings - Other dealers

These issues have been brought out in other strings (ie - the fact that MB will not service cars bought at another dealer).

While no one has said for sure that the Caddy dealers act or do not act the same way (if you took your XLR to another Caddy dealer for service), I have had similar experiecn with other American car dealers over the years (Pontiac and Lincoln). I had bought or leased a car somewhere else and never felt I got good service when I took them in.

On the other hand, I had a Corvette that I bought in OK and had service in SC and VA over the years (obviously different dealers), and always had great service. IN fact, the one Chevy dealer in SC always kept my Vette parked inside and I just walked up and got in (never had to wait for the valet driver to bring it).

May just be the dealership philosophy not the brand. Who knows.
Just to throw in one more example - the Infiniti dealers have a system where the service performed at one dealer is shown on all of the Infiniti dealers' computer systems. They actually seem to encourage use of the nearest dealer. There doesn't seem to be any difference between the service from one Infiniti dealer to the next. It always seems to be excellent, with the exception that sometimes parts take weeks/months to get to the dealer.

If Cadillac wants to play in the >$80K range, they really need to walk into a Lexas/Infiniti dealership and find out how they handle service.

Strangely enough, this doesn't mean we'll buy an Infiniti car next time. Dealing with Infiniti corporate on an issue was enough to make sure that doesn't happen - along with the very large depreciation on Infiniti cars. But, their service is top-notch.

I must report that I have had outstanding service for my corvettes from every chevy dealer that I had it , further; my XLR has been in caddy garages from the east coast to the west coast and they all provided outstanding service. service was from oil changes to recalls and repairs on my seat belt light. I might add my vettes were all modified. :jester :) :flag
I must agree with this same experience. The local MB dealer advised that if an auto was bought from them, the extra service perks (loaner car, etc) were included and if the MB was purchased elsewhere, the car would be serviced, but I would not be entitled to any of the perks. While on a trip to California in my XLR, the engine light came on and I went to the closest Cadillac dealer. I was treated very well and received "front of the line" service from the dealer even though I did not purchase the car from them and obviously was not even a potential customer. Our local Cadillac dealer treats us very well on all service issues. Maybe its because we purchased 3 XLRs and and an Escalade from him during the past year.
I just find it strange that where you bought the car determines how they treat you when it is time for service with Benz. I have had my Cadillacs and Corvettes serviced all over (usually whoever was closest to where I was at) without much difference. It seems to GM, warranty treatment is warranty treatment no matter the dealer (with a few exceptions).

I bought a 2000 vette convertible that turned out to have a persistant problem with a wiring harness. I never once had it service at the dealership where I bought it becaused they moved. The other dealer, (not the one who sold it to me) was great. It was clear to me that he was trying to earn my future business, which he did. He even serviced the car under the existing warranty for my neighbor when I sold the car to him.
I've always gotten a loaner from every Mercedes dealer I've brought my cars into. If i request it in advance, I will get an in-house MBZ, instead of a rental Ford or some such. Once, when considering buying an M Class, I was able to schedule that car as a loaner. By the way, didn't like the M Class at all and bought a Navigator. But the point is that no matter where I took my MBZ to, as long as I requested the car when I made the appointment, I got a loaner for free.

As far as the level of service, I think MBZ has way too many models out these days and some serious issues with some of these cars. One local dealer I took my SL to now has two 8-hour shifts in the service dept. to try to keep up with the problems.

MBZ is not what it used to be, so when it came time to either buy a new SL or an XLR... well, you know the decision.

Depends on the dealer. My Mercedes has been serviced perfectly and graciously by three different dealers, two of whom were not the selling dealer. We had identical experiences with two cars each at two Lexus dealers and two Audi dealers. They didn't care where we bought the car. I had two Allantes, and while three servicing dealers were all perfectly polite, only one had a clue about the car -- and the second Allante was a '93 so they should have figured it out by then. We had two Jeeps which received incompetent "service" from three dealers and great service from one outside California. Truth is most of the people in the car business are way behind where Lexus has been since they entered the market in terms of quality and service. Especially with first year cars we are beta sites, the last stop on the assembly line, or a pit crew for the manufacturers be they American or German. Toyota and Honda/Acura are a cut above ... but generally speaking their cars are not exciting.
I agree with the above postings. In researching the MB S-55 AMG on car fax I found 0ut that the car was constantley in the service shop. 9 times in the first year. I found two more on ebay that carfax showed as a manufacturer buy-back. That's a nice way of saying the car was so bad that MB bought it back from the owner. Maybe GM is much better at turning out first rate equipment and fixing it then the auto magazines give them credit for.. I don't know of any problems with the XLR that were so drastic as to warrant the implementation of the lemon law.
Bad luck with Mercedes


I will never own another Mercedes. :banghead Lousy service, overpriced. I couldn't wait to get out of my lease. We've had good luck with Beamers, however.

My company ride dictates a need for a big sedan, and had first one brand and then another for years. But clients, employees, and family all seem very comfortable in the '05 Escalade. On the client side, I seem to get a better reaction when driving American cars.

Something about Mercedes makes some people :cuss

Many of my affluent (former) German car drivin' friends are now switching to Detroit iron. The reasons are obvious. US realtions with Germany are not great right now. (Uh-oh! politics again :reddevil ) I personally believe the Germans need to feel our wrath for a while. :smash :smash :smash :smash

But more significantly, American car manufacturers have closed the technology gap and are providing tremendous vehicles at a fraction of the price. Since buying that '94 torch Red C4 Corvette last month, I've become particularly attuned to 'vette issues.

Have you seen this article in the current Road and Track:

It speaks volumes.

Why-oh-why did I wait so long to buy a 'vette?
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It just so happens that I have an 04' escalade which I truely enjoy. However, in some situations a sedan is better. Namely, when with a beautiful young date in a short shirt.

rick1827 said:

It just so happens that I have an 04' escalade which I truely enjoy. However, in some situations a sedan is better. Namely, when with a beautiful young date in a short shirt.
Shirt? Things must have changed while I've been out of the market. Obviously, I haven't been single for a while, but there must be less expensive ways to get THAT done, amigo! ;) >Sigh!< Babes were still wearing buffalo skins back in....oh well, never mind.

I agree with you that there are not many choices with US made sedans - Caddy DTS and the Lincoln Town Car are the only large luxury sedans around. The new STS is roughly the size of a BMW 5 series or a Mercedes E-Class.

I think the vacuum at the top of the US sedan market is now being mostly filled by SUVs. A Presidential motorcade was formerly Cadillac Fleetwood Limos. Now it is jet black Suburbans.

If I were picking a full sized luxo sedan it would probably be the Lexus, and if I were going to spend just north of six figures I like the Maserati Quattroporte. I climbed around in one, and it was sweet! Size wise somewhere between E and S Class, but blows past the E-55 AMG. And I love the Italian Leather look.

Here's a link:

And a comparison:
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Did I hear Maserati Quatroporte? If anyone wants to buy one, I've got deposits down on a few to be delivered in April.
A Few??

Quixotic said:
Did I hear Maserati Quatroporte? If anyone wants to buy one, I've got deposits down on a few to be delivered in April.
Since only a couple thousand (if that) are being imported, I am curious as to how you have positions on "a few".
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