Off-Topic Mercedes problems...

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Chat' started by Chunkylover53, Wednesday 9th Apr, 2014.

  1. Chunkylover53 Expert Advisor ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

    I've been hooked on this thread for the past hour now, reading each response and especially new members rants. Now I'm considering phoning up Mercedes to see what's what with my old man's car seeing as he has the same engine/model and year range as those with the injector problems but has only covered 15k miles - but I don't want him to know unless I'm certain because it'll be a right kick in the teeth.

    Blue efficiency injector problems - Mercedes-Benz Owners' Forums

    Post 117 on page 12 sums it all up really:
    "I like many purchased a new C220 CDi Blue Efficiency from MB Ascot and have now covered just 3000 miles; without breaking down - YET?

    I had waited along time to own a car of what I mistakenly thought was prestige quality; having driven Mondeos and the like for most of my 33 year driving career.

    I had a dream of driving to Italy this year and enquired from Mercedes Customer Services what may happen if my injectors were not changed; as they refuse to do so. The irritating man at MB assured me that it would all "be OK when I broke down", as the breakdown cover would look after me! - Not exactly the answer I was seeking having purchased a £30,000 car.

    As MB seem to be completely dodging the issue; even after emailing and wrting to their UK MD, I am very tempted to go back to a Mondeo as at least it has a higher probablity (i.e. lower engineering failure probablity that is) of getting to Italy and back!

    In all, buying a Mercedes has proved to be the worst motoring decision I have ever made. All I brought was a badge, and a badge that Mercedes themselves are managing to relagate from a prestige brand to a mainsteam cowboy!

    I can do without a Badge; prefering relaibility and low failure probabilities. At least Toyota admit their errors and, in turn, will salvage their brand value; Mercedes are fast loosing theirs and it will cost them dearly in the longer term as this issue gains momentum and publicity. Fleet managers are already advoiding the brand; private buyers will follow suite.

    Sad really, as I love the looks of the car but just cannot trust it. I cannot justify keeping the car on looks alone so will probably get rid of it over the next few months as I am now just fed up with driving a ticking bomb! Ironically, in 33 years of driving, including military vehicles in some fairly dodgy places, I have NEVER broken down. Probabilities are very likely that I WILL breakdown in a Mercedes of all vehicles; about the same odds (1 in 4) as getiing knocked down crossing Oxford Street in London in the rush hour with my eyes closed!"
     
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  2. Duc de Pommfrit Moderator Staff Team

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    They have been rubbish for years, they claim when the accountants took over from the engineers things went wrong. Both Merc and VW will tell you how good their cars are and the press will tell you that their cars are the BEST, but real world not the best by far.
     
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  3. exec Premium Member Club Supporter

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    The difference between the Japanese and German, with the Toyota recall and all, is that in Asian culture in general, such as the Japanese, shame and honor play a big part, that is why the Japanese go out of their way to fix any issues, Toyota quite easily could of not recalled those cars, they are 10 year old cars, nothing has failed yet, but they found potential issues and rectifying it, in German and to an extent European and American culture there seems to be a more arrogant attitude of being superior so they see it beneath them to acknowledge their products are shite or faulty and do any recalls or repairs.
     
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  4. exec Premium Member Club Supporter

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  5. Nels Moderator Staff Team

    Not surprised about the car.
    Sympathetic towards the couple who sank so much into a badge. :Frown:
    Maybe they'll get some sense now and get a Honda :Smile:
    But then again they had the sense to by an S-Class :Whistle:
     
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  6. FirstHonda Premium Member Club Supporter

    Wow.

    This is a real shame - Mercedes used to be such a great brand.

    The reliability surveys all say the same thing though...buy a Japanese car if you want reliability.
     
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  7. John Dickson Expert Advisor ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

    Mercedes used to be bomb proof indestructible now unfortunately they seem to have fallen into the same accountancy lead philosophy as the other crock of $#!te German brands...
     
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  8. Doc Expert Advisor ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

    Matt Peterborough
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    ....and the problem with accountants is.....? :Baseballbat::Baseballbat::Baseballbat::Baseballbat::Baseballbat:

    It's not an accountancy lead philosophy, its a management lead philosophy to maximise profits and keep share holders happy. Management make strategic decisions on build quality, increasing profits, or cost cutting, not accountants. Accountants just report the numbers on the management strategic decisions. If build quality was suffering and the management didn't want the resulting poor reputation then you can guarantee it wouldn't happen. But as usual the management are putting profits before customers.
     
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  9. John Dickson Expert Advisor ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

    Nothing wrong with accountants mate. As you say they're reporting the numbers but the decisions are still down to costs and return on investment - yes that is what business is about but surely it's better business sense to give people what they think they are paying for - for the long term plan anyway. It's a great job they've done really - charge the massive prices for Merc, Audi, BMW etc but spend Tata or Dacia investment levels into the development and reliability of these vehicles. Better still con the mugs out there into believing they are paying the high prices for "Quality" that isn't available anywhere else......however.....the reality is somewhat different....
     
    Last edited: Tuesday 15th Apr, 2014
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  10. sunbeem Club Member ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

    Maximising profit for the shareholders is the primary aim of business.
    Everything else is secondary to that legally enforceable dictum, resulting in short-term gains at long-term expense.

    I think this partly explains the last financial crash -- when I told my bank manager that I don't see any difference between fractional reserve banking and a Ponzi scheme, you could have cut the silence with a knife. Heigh ho ...

    Sunbeem.
     
  11. Doc Expert Advisor ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

    Matt Peterborough
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    The last financial crisis wasn't caused by the banks they were just the public face of the result of the financial crash, which everyone then assumed was the cause because of the ignorant media choosing not to do their research properly and jumping on the angry public bank wagon and telling people to blame something they can point at.

    It was actually caused by the regulators. The banks were all following the letter of the law.
     
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  12. Ichiban Founder Staff Team

    England CJ Leeds
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    Well there is half truth in the Doc's assessment but in the current economic scenario you will see top accountants positioning themselves strategically on the board circle. The recession has highlighted lean efficiencies and measures to improve productivity these don't come from engineers these stem from accountants who are appeasing the board and shareholder by forecasts and projections with fancy excel sheet presentations .Key decisions are made on the the share value of the stock at each days trading there is no long term vision its survival of the fittest . This has a cascading effect on vendors and supplier too so they make the same decision ... you got yourself in a chain reaction and a vicious cycle.

    Lets be honest accountants know all the hard & dark secrets of balance sheet management and they can expose any cough cough irregularities in a drop of hat.. call that pessimistic view but IT DOES happen.

    The auto trade is one tough market to be in today.
     
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  13. exec Premium Member Club Supporter

    United Kingdom London
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    The myth of Porsche quality and reliability



    surprised it hasnt catched fire yet....

    Great customer service to boot to
     
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  14. Doc Expert Advisor ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

    Matt Peterborough
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    I think having accountants on boards is a good idea. Not just because I am one, but when the financial crisis kicked in and members of the Bank boards were sacked some of them were found to have no financial qualifications or experience at all and they are in charge of a financial institution. The same goes for government bodies, members of the boards have no experience or qualifications which relate to the industry they're in. Then the public wonder why legislation is passed with huge loop holes which qualified experienced accountants take advantage of.

    Yes you're right efficiencies are highlighted by accountants but it's the board members who push for the continuing efficiencies to be found year after year to maximise profits.

    You're completely right about accountants knowing the hard and dark secrets. In that respect they're the same as lawyers, the good ones can follow the law, the great ones argue the precedent and find the loop holes in the law and use them to their advantage. But once again who are they finding the loop holes for? Who are they reducing tax bills for? Who is paying them to find them? The board members who want to please their share holders.
     
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  15. sunbeem Club Member ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

    Doc, I agree it was not down to the banks, I didn't blame them for the crash in my post, they are a tool of those whose names we don't know and whose faces we never see. I did say that shareholder protection is partly to blame, but that is part of the scam. I understand why you came to that assumption, but though I see bankers as mendacious, they are also pawns in a far larger system.
    Where we differ, is that I don't hold the regulators to be culpable either. Guilty of turning a blind eye, (you don't get to be a regulator unless you can be relied upon to do that), but not ultimately responsible.

    The major weakness of fractional reserve banking is that there is never enough money in the system to pay back all the investors -- hence my likening it to a Ponzi scheme. Anyone working within this system is part of a duplicitous charade, whether they know it or not, but they are merely perpetrators, not the real instigators of the fraud.

    When Nixon abandoned the gold standard in 1971, and gave us fiat money, he was following orders.
    Now, as a result, more than 90% of the dollars in the world have no physical reality, they are simply numbers on a balance sheet -- they do not actually exist as folding money, and they represent history's emptiest promise. They cannot "repay the bearer" since there's no gold backing them up any more.
    There's no way anyone can successfully regulate that situation - so regulators were always, and are always knowingly going to fail.

    If we knew who gave Tricky Dicky that order, we would be a lot closer to the complex issue of "who caused the crash." Compared with that, the burglary of the Watergate building was a sideshow, and our present difficulties but another step in a far greater disaster.

    Sunbeem.
     
  16. Chunkylover53 Expert Advisor ★ ★ ★ ★ ★



    You have to remember that a Ponzi scheme is essentially a closed system where the scheme pays interest to depositors from their initial investment with the aim to rake in as much money as they can before the model becomes inevitably unsustainable. However with the fractional reserve system a bank lends money and charges interest, people can do things with that borrowed money which are worth it. (Building factories, starting businesses etc). In effect the economy is more of an open living thing that develops and becomes more efficient constantly seeing as some people have the ability to invent new professions and thus require money which generates even more money in the long run.

    Also we are forgetting the control of money supply by the CB - the supply increases to keep up with economic growth hence new money pops up out of nowhere which means some of the money isn't loaned in the long run. Even in periods of recession we still saw inflation around 3 percent here in the UK - again money supply was increased to help ease the artificial inflation on the prices of goods + services.
     
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  17. sunbeem Club Member ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

    You could say that banks lend money, but to put it another way, they are creating debt. I think that's more accurate.
    Ponzi schemes, as you rightly say, are inevitably unsustainable, and I would say the same applies to fractional reserve banking.
    Thanks for a thoughtful response.

    Sunbeem.
     
  18. Doc Expert Advisor ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

    Matt Peterborough
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    The rules of the regulators were such that the banks were forced to follow the letter of the law but not the spirit of it. The auditors when auditing the banks books could see the banks were following the letter of the law. However they could also see they were not following the spirit of it. This put the auditors in a very difficult position because they were forced to sign off the accounts when they could see potential problems with the way in which the business was being run. But as the banks weren't breaking any laws the auditors were powerless to act. A fact which the regulators knew for several years and chose to drag their heals and do nothing about because it was a boom period and they didn't want to strangle the banks with rules and limit their revenue generation. Plus while it was all going well the regulators didn't see a need to change a system which wasn't broken. But as soon as it went wrong politicians and regulators were lining up to accuse banks of not following the spirit of the rules.

    Some of the regulators frankly aren't fit for purpose. How many times has the FSA been restructured or revamped, and the Home office (immigration) for that matter. Most regulators are government bodies so they 'get to be a regulator' because of a need to regulate not because they've a private firm appointed on merit. A lot of regulators are out of touch with the dealings of modern day banking and slow to react. Being 5 steps behind and continually playing catch up is not a good position to be in.

    I agree with you on the fractional reserve banking. It was only foreseen that a single market the banks were trading in would at most fail, but likely just devalue so the reserves the banks had to hold were very low. When the financial crash occurred many markets were devalued at once leaving the banks in a position where they couldn't cover their debts resulting in banks going bankrupt over night. But once again this is something the regulators also knew and chose to do nothing about because, in times of plenty, it was seen as unnecessary.

    For 18 months before the recession some very clever and influential people in the financial markets were warning of the potential for a big recession. Lots of directors of big companies called them scare mongers choosing to ignore them and bury their heads in the sand focusing on riding on the good times. The regulators were warned well in advance of the possibilities but chose to ignore them because the times were too good and they knew forcing such regulation, as holding bigger reserves, on the banks during a boom wouldn't go down well with the banks or the markets. Now the board members have all been sacked. The people who called it right have been elevated to very important jobs, the banks got bailed out, and the regulators got made to look like they were asleep on the job.
     
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  19. sunbeem Club Member ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

    Doc, I'm going to have to read your post several more times to do it justice.

    Imagine if you will, a coin suspended in mid air between us. I see heads and you see tails, and striving for agreement would be futile. We observe the same phenomenon from different viewpoints, and our opinions reflect our differing points of view. I'm delighted to be learning something of the other side, something inaccessible from where I stand.

    Your differentiation between the spirit and the letter of regulation rings very true for me. Would it be helpful to postulate that the former is used to sell the idea, and the latter to make the rich richer and the poor poorer? I see it that way. Perhaps with echoes in legislation which purports to counter terrorism and is actually used to quell free speech?

    I've been having a pleasant exchange with Harvey regarding photography, where I mentioned the way taking pictures involves art and craft and science, as does my own trade of metalwork -- and I'm now wondering if the same can be said of those who work with finance? I can see the scientific aspect of accountancy, and suspect the presence of artistic and craft skills as well ... and surely from some viewpoints there is also artistry in the invention of the Ponzi scheme, for the profitable manipulation of greed and reward satisfies my definition of art, in that it is skillfully put together, and if craft involves dexterous handling, then surely that is also an essential requirement.

    Now I need to refer again to your response, or I'll be so far out on this limb that I'll fall into irrelevance.

    Right, I think I've understood your position fairly well, and even to a cynical blacksmith it comes over as cogent within its parameters. As an outsider regarding the world of finance, I have less respect for the regulators than you seem to have - perhaps that's to be expected. Rather than thinking they were asleep on the job, I'm one of many who believe that the entire system is set up to keep the few several steps ahead of the majority, and therefore the regulators are knowingly, (if they admit it to themselves) part of the scam.
    Thus the concentration of money among those at the top of the pile continues, and food banks now cater for those who are working as well as those who aren't.

    An example of this long term strategy is seen in the rise of big agribusiness. Farmers have been squeezed from all angles for many years, by the supermarkets and other factors. Most farms are now owned by people over pension age, since their children have seen the folly of continuing to flog a dying horse - and over the next decade these will be bought up by the big conglomerates, and farmed as pure industry, for short-term gain to satisfy the shareholders. My son will see the landscape change in a way hard to imagine.

    So it's not just the quality of Mercedes cars that is suffering -- this malaise will affect us increasingly, and in ways impossible to see from where we are now.
    Just my opinion, and thanks for sharing yours, I hope I've reflected it accurately.

    Sunbeem.
     
  20. Ichiban Founder Staff Team

    England CJ Leeds
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    A colleague of mine has an Audi A5 petrol engine its eating oil at a rate of 150 ml for every 100 miles. Audi said this engine has faulty batch of piston and piston rings installed so you need a new engine and since you are of warranty you need to buy a new engine.

    Great ain't it, guess what he doing selling the car ASAP to another sucker who loves these POS.
     
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