This was a Christmas present to myself- boy what a great first car!!! I love driving it- it is extremely dependable and despite being told not to drive it in the winter I gave it a go with the rear wheel drive, got stuck and was able to get myself out by shifting the gears from reverse to drive(I have a CDL) so I am an excellent driver!!! Anyone thinking of passing this on to a younger sibling it is a wonderful idea - I am so proud of my car and it keeps a young person focused since it's like a baby with constant upkeep... makes you responsible and educates you(foreign and all electric... if the battery goes everything goes). I have to make sure to start it up each winter day if I leave the battery in and run it for about 20 minutes or else pay the price once the battery dies! I RECOMMEND TAKING THE BATTERY OUT WHEN LETTING IT SIT LONG PERIODS OR HAVING IT IN STORAGE SITUATIONS. Other than that guys.... take it from a chick, this vehicle rocks and I love it!!!! Currently have over 200k miles and will keep it... never selling it- just will do upgrades and replacements!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I love Mercedes !!!!
When you bought an older S-class, you should have expected it to cost you $$$ in repairs. My 2000 S500 has cost me $12,000 in repairs since I bought it 4 years ago. Now that sounds like a lot, but when you spread it over the 4 years, it has cost me $250 per month to drive the sweetest production car on the road. When you throw in depreciation, it has cost me about $400 per month to drive it. Show me a comparable vehicle that you can drive for that cost--it's not out there. So although the S500 gives you heartache and wallet-ache at times, do the math and you'll realize it has been well worth it!
I purchased this car used in January of 2012 with 480k miles. Now, before you think I'm crazy, my reasoning was that after I test driving the car, it appeared to be mechanically sound in every way. The engine was as quiet as if it had 60k miles and the transmission shifted to perfection. Being a long time lover of Lexus, I can now appreciate the maintenance-free GS300. Since purchasing the car, I've replaced the water pump and the pulley, along with the brakes and rotors all around. So far my air suspension has been fine, although I suspect the ball joints will need replacing soon. Despite that, I'm very happy with the car. It's a joy to drive and gets a lot of attention.
Powerful 5.0L V8 engine. Very smooth and agile for its size. The timeless look of this vehicle can fool most people as to it's actual age. Also, the many MB forums on the web are great and full of very helpful information that any MB could ever need.
Putting air suspension into this vehicle was a horrible idea. Mercedes could also have done a better job with the electronics in this car. I didn't pay MSRP for this car, but I couldn't imagine buying this car brand new and dealing with the issues that I've read about so far.
Its like a cardboard......falls apart probably as I wright this just standing in parking lot.....What broke: transmission at 100k, cooling fans, airmatic pump, gear box shifter, navigation system, tape player, 1 door locking mechanism, and thats after i bought the car used, I would imagine previous owner had nightmares too. One of my friends had 00 or 02 model and had to lease Honda Accord because this MB was simply NOT drivable due to constant breakdowns
I have owned this car for 11 years and have never had the kind of problems others mention. The tires and brakes last as well as my Volvos have. Repairs are quite expensive but I go to a MB specialist who is honest and reliable for considerably less than MB dealers.
I do drive intelligently and take prope care of the car. 120,000 miles so far and many more to go.