I have owned my car since 2003, it currently has 212,000 mile runs as new, everything works. Maintenance is a must- after warranty never never take to a MB dealer - find an independant shop that work on MB's. The car drives better than the new S550, just missing the technology of the newer car, but rides and handles much better. take care of the car and it will take care of you in comfort.
i purchased my 2001 s500 with 86K miles on it for $12K. i now have 188K miles and it still drives like new. i am still amazed that people still bring their cars to the dealership for repairs??!! ANY vw mechanic can work on your benz. it is not rocket science. i needed to have my water pump replaced and it cost me $500.00 out the door including parts and labor. other than that, i just bring it to jiffy lube for the fluids and oil changes. this car has cost less in repairs than any other car i have owned and gets about 20 mpg.
I bought my 2001 S500 with 8,000 miles back in 2004, and it presently has 110,000 miles on it. I have been generally happy with the vehicle. My worst experience in owning this vehicle is having to deal with Mercedes Benz Dealers/Dealerships/Service Departments. Once your Mercedes warranty runs out, the service departments at Mercedes dealers are forever trying to recommend unnecessary repairs to the vehicle. The dealers are constantly looking to fabricate repairs to bill to the extended warranty company. Most, if not all of these repairs are unnecessary. The Mercedes dealers make the ownership experience miserable. Stay away from them and you'll do fine.
I bought it in 2013, thinking I was getting a good deal, but it is old and now the car is starting to deteriorate quickly. I spent over $4,000 this past year on the AC, Motor Mounts, Transmission mounts, oil valve cover, O2 sensors, hoses. It hit 100,000 miles and the tune up is due. Even without labor and wholesale, the cost of 16 spark plugs and wires is $500! Now my suspension is going and its in the shop. Waiting for a revised estimate since they keep adding more parts. I would not buy a old Mercedes again. I spent another $3000 on the car in 2016. I loved the car, but it is a money pit.
I bought my car with 50k on it. It now has 75k so I fell I know the car pretty good. I had to replace the air suspension($350) if you do it yourself. Also the radiator fan motor(bought fan onling) and a fuse for the left side of the car electronics(not happy about that). Also some rust at seams of the body. If you are unable to do some work yourself and dont like car repair bills by a lexus or bmw. This car is nice to ride in, very comfortable. A bmw is a nice car to drive. Great pick up for a big car. Timeless look.