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Average Consumer Rating 68 Total Reviews
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Performance
Comfort
Value
Fun-to-Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
2 of 3 people found this review helpful
Sleek, powerful, problematic
By Lawman on
Vehicle
2003 Mercedes-Benz S-Class S430 4dr Sedan (4.3L 8cyl 5A)
Review
This is my 5th Benz, but first S-class. The car is beautifully designed and well-appointed. Handling is excellent, comfort is superb. It is one of the greatest highway touring machines ever made. At the same time, there have been irksome quality issues. I have had the car about one year, and in that time have endured five major (and costly) problems. A sensor malfunctioned in the trunk, effectively immobilizing the car. The gear shift assembly jammed in park and had to be replaced. The air seal struts developed a leak and had to be sealed. The V-belt broke during a highway drive, lost all power and the engine promptly overheated. Disappointing. Fuel economy is good, 26 highway.
Favorite Features
Interior is posh and extremely comfortable. Exterior design is handsome. GPS system is very good, although need to change disks is a nuisance. Voice recognition for audio commands is fun and it works well. When the car runs well, it is exceptionally smooth and powerful -- a joy to drive.
Suggested Improvements
Surprisingly cheap plastic at bottom (frame) of seats. Better to have fewer electronic gizmos and ensure that those retained do work. Allow autonomous operation of radio (now linked to COMMAND/GPS system).
Recommend (2) (1)
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