(For many decades Mercedes-Benz technical service department published a feature they called “Did You Know”.  It was intended to pass on helpful technical information to Mercedes-Benz mechanics around the world.  It was information that didn’t fit the standard mold for a official service bulletin, but still needed to get into the field.  I always liked idea, but now it‘s intended for customers.)


March 23, 2015 U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, Case No. 3:12-cv-05493.
During the course of this engine defect class action lawsuit, Mercedes-Benz attempted to dismiss the suit from court.  The presiding Judge would not allow the automaker to duck liability charges.  Mercedes-Benz finally agreed to provide monetary relief to the 300,000 owners of the defective engines.
  Mercedes-Benz will reimburse eligible engine defect Class Members for past repair cost they incurred while attempting to repair the allegedly defective engine.  All past and current owners of Mercedes-Benz vehicles equipped with the M272 V6 and the M273 V8 engines are included in this settlement.  Owners will be reimbursed up to $4000 for these engine defect repairs.  The repair did not need to be performed by a authorized dealer.  Owners can submit repair bills to Mercedes-Benz for a refund.

(For what it’s worth; this engine problem would have never happened if the engine oil had been changed every 5000 miles with the highest quality synthetic oil.  In our opinion, the factory recommended mileage and oil caused 90% of the problem.  We have customers that changed their oil every 5000 miles and used the Redline 5W/50 oil we recommend.  Many of these owners have over 200,000 miles on their engines, without the failure that triggered this Class Action lawsuit.  Mercedes-Benz still recommends the same service intervals and the same oil that ruined these engines.  Mercedes-Benz has already published service bulletins about timing chain failures on current production engines.)


Customer’s spend a lot of money on Service Contracts.  Unfortunately, most people don’t understand what they really bought.  You might think you bought protection from an expensive mechanical failure, but that’s not exactly what you bought.
Here’s how a Service Contract really works.
Dealer’s love selling service contracts because it’s free money.  People often buy the contract when they get a new car.  By the time the car’s out of warranty, they forgot they have the contract, sell the car, or it was wrecked.  Customers seldom read the contract because they don’t understand all the technical lingo.  They see a bunch of stuff listed and the salesman tells them it’s just like the warranty.  Right!  Contract companies know exactly what breaks & what doesn’t.  Take a guess what’s covered by the contract?
Service contracts will only pay for a repair if it is specifically spelled out in the contract.  Assume nothing!   The contracts are also written with obsolete Domestic car terminology.  That’s so it kind’a looks familiar to people.   Two thirds of the “covered items” aren’t used by Mercedes-Benz.  If something like the transmission fails, yes, it’s on the list of covered items.  But only if you had the transmission oil & filter changed every 30,000 miles.  You did have the transmission oil & filter changed?  (Here’s the cool part.  Transmission’s don’t fail if the oil and filter is changed.)
The dealer wants you to spend $5000 for coverage of a car you’re likely not to own.  If you do own it, most of the covered parts aren’t even on your car.
It gets better.  The dealer doesn’t like sharing his hard earned profit with a service contract.  The dealer is the service contract.  The name’s are different to avoid the appearance of a conflict of interest.  The dealer hires a third party administrator to play the bad guy.   You might also notice the official Mercedes-Benz sponsored service contract is not mentioned or “poo pooed” by the salesman.   That happens because the dealer doesn’t make much profit on the genuine Mercedes-Benz contract.   There are are a very few legitimate service contracts.  Zurich is one.   (No, we don’t sell them.)
The best trick of all; the dealer sells you a contract with some other company name on the contract.  When you’re told something isn’t covered, they blame it on the service contract company.
If the customer thinks they have a claim for the service contract, the service contract requires the car be repaired by the selling dealer if you’re with-in 40 miles.  That solves two problems for them.  1) The dealer doesn’t want a competitor explaining any of this to THEIR customer.  2) The dealer can express his sincere regret that your claim was denied.  And, because you are such a valued customer, you will receive a 10% Preferred Customer discount.
The coup de grâce.  The service contract says, “yes, it’s a covered repair” & you‘re beyond the 40 mile limit.  How lucky can one person get?  But there is one tiny thing left to do .  The service contract wants the repair shop to diagnose the problem, and provide them all the part numbers required for the repair.  The service contract locates the parts at the local Salvage Yard and tells the repair shop they‘ll supply the parts ….free.  If the repair shop doesn’t like working for free, the customer can return to the selling dealer and they will handle things.  After all, it’s against the law for them to refuse to honor the contract.
One alternative to the dilemma of a service contract.  Take the $5000 & put it in a cookie jar on top of your refrigerator.  Actually maintain you car.  And if something actually fails, you can file a claim with the administrator of the cookie jar.  At the end of the contract term, I promise you’ll have a nice chunk of money in the cookie jar (and a well maintained Mercedes-Benz).  If you have a change of heart, & wish you had given your $5000 to your Mercedes-Benz dealer.  You can always forward the remaining funds in your cookie jar to the attention of your charming dealer.  I’ve heard the dues at his Sant-Troupès Yacht Club are quite expensive.  I’m certain any help in this regard will be most appreciated.  (I really don‘t know how much his dues are, I‘m just messing with ya.)



MERCEDES Pangaea_Bild_4



The Bluetec diesel has a exhaust driven turbocharger.   That means the hot exhaust going out the tail pipe is also used to turn the turbocharger.   It’s a very efficient way to produce extra power.   But, it has a dark side.   The exhaust temperature routinely runs at over 1200F.   When you shut the engine off, that heat literately destroys the engine oil.   Even the very best synthetic diesel motor oil will breakdown & revert back to tar, at 600F.  If you read the Mercedes-Benz owners forums about the OM642 diesel engine, you will see hundreds of owners with long list of complaints.  It does not need to be like this.  The OM642 diesel is a good engine.  If you change the oil every 5000 miles and use Redline 15W/40 Diesel oil, you will have far fewer problems.  Change the engine Air Filters every 20,000 miles and it will greatly reduce Blow-by.  Change the Oil Separator at the first sign of oil leaking from the Turbo.  (We’ve seen owners that have wasted thousands of dollars trying to fix oil leaks that are caused by the Oil Separator.)
Owners think they must go to the dealer for service when their car is new.  Dealers lead them to believe it is a warranty requirement.  This is not true.  The sooner a new car starts using better oil and more frequent oil changes, the fewer problems it will have.  We’ve seen so many so called “experts” tell owners to follow the manufacture recommendations.  This is a sure fire way to ruin the engine and end up outrageous repair bills.  We can prove what we say with Mercedes-Benz own service bulletins.