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ECO Start/Stop

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Tonight I have the All-New GLK as a loaner car and all around it is a nice car and I would not mind owning one.
 
I have a few questions about the ECO start/stop feature. Don’t get me wrong it is a nice feature to have when saving gas. But I wonder how much damage it would cause in the long run when you are in start stop traffic every day going to and from work or just traveling in general. I know that they give these features tests everyday but there are times they don’t get them right.
 
I dropped my daily driver off for a NYS inspection and the dealer gave me a 2013 GLK. Like the GLK and many other cars in the Mercedes line up has the ECO start/stop feature and on my way home the cars ECO feature was in full use. When my foot was on the break the engine shut down but my AC was running. As soon as I let my foot off the break the engine started up. So my question with this feature on and people doing daily driving; will this cause damage to the engine?
 
I know you can turn this feature off during the duration of your commute if this bothers you. But once you turn the car off and start-up again the ECO system come right on and people might forget to turn it off.
 
I sometimes wish that the engineers or the big wigs at Mercedes would leave well enough alone and make the cars more customizable.

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We can only hope that

We can only hope that Mercedes owners continue to be intelligent and well read enough to be familiar with the owners manual.

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Sometimes, especially when it

Sometimes, especially when it becomes overly complicated, I think technology can turn into too much of a good thing! 

BTW, your dealer gives out loaners for a NYS Inspection?

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MTI wrote:We can only hope

MTI wrote:
We can only hope that Mercedes owners continue to be intelligent and well read enough to be familiar with the owners manual.

I don’t think the average driver or driver to be reads the brochure or the owner’s manual. I think if you are into cars and want to be informed as much as possible the driver or driver to be will read the brochure, the owners manual and the reviews.
 
The problem is that when you get a new car that you need a degree in Computer Science is taught to you by some kid and gives you a crash course on what does what in the car.

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NYYYCEandEEEEZY

NYYYCEandEEEEZY wrote:
Sometimes, especially when it becomes overly complicated, I think technology can turn into too much of a good thing! 

BTW, your dealer gives out loaners for a NYS Inspection?

Like I said before when you get a brand new car you need a degree in Computer Science just to understand your car and some kid is giving you a lesson on how to use your car.
 
When you said that technology can turn into much of a good thing I was reminded of a Mercedes commercial that had VP of Google driving a S-Class and he was distracted and did not step on the break and the car automatically applied the breaks for him. I can see that being good but what happens if you are in a rental or a loaner car and it doesn’t have this nice feature? I think you would be SOL.
With the ECO start/stop feature I was in the parking and I almost got out of the car with forgetting that the car was in gear. I can see this to happening to someone and getting injured or killed because of a feature like this. No beeps or bells going off letting me know that I was in “D”.
 
Like I said before I just wish Mercedes gave the driver the option to permanently turn off some features. You can turn off the coffee cup icon permanently. Why can’t you do the same for the ECO mode?
 
 
Also to answer your question: I guess so. Well I had other stuff done to the car that would have needed a longer stay. But I am guessing that they will give you a loaner car just for a NYS inspection. While I am in for a NYS inspection; I will have other things done to the car while I am there like fill the tires with air or no wiper blades or something.

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Speaking of technology, Car &

Speaking of technology, Car & Driver has an overview of the 2014 S-Class electronics

http://blog.caranddriver.com/detailing-mercedes-benzs-latest-tech-arriving-in-the-2014-s-class/

Radar and cameras galore!

But, where can I buy the red model?

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CA-B200 wrote:"Like I said

CA-B200 wrote:
"Like I said before I just wish Mercedes gave the driver the option to permanently turn off some features. You can turn off the coffee cup icon permanently. Why can’t you do the same for the ECO mode?"

As long as a car defaults to the ECO mode the manufacture can claim better fuel economy which gets them closer to meeting federal CAFE standards. 

You are right that the manufacture can claim better fuel economy and they can claim to the CAFÉ standards.
 
But I am sure they can still claim they get better fuel economy over it’s competitors however give the driver the option to turn them off.

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I think the governmental

I think the governmental issue may be along the lines of why there's no user switch to disable airbags, catalytic convertors or speed limiters. 

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CA-B200 wrote:The start/stop

CA-B200 wrote:
The start/stop function also reduces emissions. But as far as why you can't permanently disable it I wonder if it was done intentionally like the new cars defaulting to the C mode (E now?)...because they had to to be able to claim the better fuel economy. So in a way it is a 'type' of government regulation but not quite like the required airbags and catalytic converters etc. which is why the driver can turn off the s/s mode at will. Now that manufactures have been successfully sued for not getting the MPGs stated on the window sticker I'd be surprised that any manufacture is going to allow the start/stop function to be turned off permanently if indeed any of them already do.

I think having the car start out in E mode (C mode) is a Gov’t regulation. I asked my SA about it and he said that all of the newer MB’s have to have this feature. I can deal with this feature but like the coffee cup icon on the dash and some other features; I wish Mercedes can make the car more customizable. The ECO start/stop feature and the light switch come to mind.

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Documentation & ECO Mode

Documentation: from the [unedited] article I wrote for The Star about the 2013 GLK,

To assist in that task, Mercedes provides a 272 page, all-English manual to help. That manual is in addition to the 364 page, all-English GLK Operator’s Manual, and an 84 page English/French manual on the Linguatronic (voice activation) system. Throw in the 80 page all-English Maintenance manual, and that comprises one mighty impressive documentation package for the American market. 

(that level of detail was edited out in the edition that appeared in print...)

I seem to remember being able to turn off the ECO mode w/o incident; however I don't know if it was on or off by default.  I do know you do NOT want it "on" in the hot summer, because even for a few moments at a stop light, the a/c goes off and that gets uncomfortable VERY quickly!

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On the topic of customization

On the topic of customization of the various features in a modern Mercedes, there's quite a bit that the DAS Xentry system that the service guys use that can tweak the various in car computers and data storage.  I wonder if there's a software switch setting to alter the default Eco mode.

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To underline CA's point

To underline CA's point above, there is no government regulation requiring Eco start/stop.  Rather, the manufacturers have to test the cars with EPA to certify the mileage requirements.  If a certain feature is essential to the car obtaining the advertised mileage that appears on the sticker, then EPA rules will require that feature to remain active as the default setting.  If the case were otherwise, the mileage claims would be even more suspect than they are currently.  Personally, I think start/stop technology is a good thing but I would modify the parameters of its use to particularly long traffic lights.  I have a few on my commute each day and I already turn the motor off if I know I have caught the red at the start of a long cycle.   

There is also an analog here to the diesels that require urea.  The cars run fine without urea, but in order to be able to claim that the cars meet the required emissions standards, there has to be teeth to the requirement that the urea tank be refilled.  Otherwise, no doubt, when the cars got older they would be run without the exhaust treatment solution and the cars would be very dirty relative to the federal emissions requirements.

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I was at the dealership and

I was at the dealership and they gave me a 2013 E350 sedan and the car didn’t have the Eco start/stop feature on the car and it didn’t have the BlueEfficiency badge on the car as well.
 
Lets start with the Eco start/stop feature: As everyone knows I am not a fan of the feature in terms of where I can customize the car to my liking and when I restart the car the Eco feature remains off and I don’t have to push a button every time I start the car to turn it off. But I thought ALL MY 2013 cars that Mercedes makes have to have the Eco start/stop feature? Or do they add that when they do the mid-life update?
 
As for the BlueEfficiency badge on the car: I thought ALL cars since a year or two ago were supposed to have the badge. There are some cars that are newer then others that don’t have and some don’t.

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Our (brand) new C300 has this

Our (brand) new C300 has this "feature" and I am not a fan of it at all.  I find it to be annoying and introduces some anxiety into driving waiting for the car to restart.  Maybe because I am from the generation that owned cars which did occasionally stall at stop lights when something was wrong and so the idea of incorporating this into a car just brings back bad memories.  In the long run I don't see it saving any money for the owner as the extra wear and tear it puts on the drivetrain must more than offset any miniscule fuel savings.  Also, my understanding of the system is that it actually injects extra fuel into the motor to assist in a "smooth" and fast restart.  And, they are equipped with a better quality starter designed to last many more start-cycles than a "normal" one (which begs to question why don't they just make this better quality starter for every car???).

I was always told that engines produce the most emissions during the act of starting when some small amount of unburned fuel would pass and would result in damage to the catalytic convertor and very high hydrocarbons and CO out the tailpipe which is why we were always taught that it is wasteful to shut your car off at red lights unless traffic was at a complete standstill for several minutes.  This system will shut down if you come to a stop for just a second or two, it can't be saving any fuel then.  I am sure it actually is a net waste of fuel to shut down for less than a longer interval but of course, the car has no way of knowing how long you will be stopped so it assumes every stop is long enough to justify a shutdown.  It is a very dumb "smart" system IMHO.

I am just waiting for the day M-B conclude that they will have to offer the same modification to it that BMW does, to allow the owner to be able to "permanently" set it to off if he wishes.  Right now, if you shut it off it will default back to on the next time you shut the car off and restart it...that's the same way BMW delivers its cars but because of backlash from owners now offer to change it so the "last setting" mode is remembered (if you shut it off, it stays off until you turn it back on again). I'm sure M-B buyers will complain about this too and they will have to offer the same change but it will probably just take some time.

I am thankful mine is only a short term lease (24 months) because I could never see owning a car with this on it.  I want to see the owner's face when that super-duper starter does fail and he's handed a bill for $2000 to replace it - there goes the fuel savings over its life, times 10!

It's a shame because this is the only real complaint I have about the new C300, otherwise it is a very nice little car.  We had a 2009 C300 too and this is just a refined evolution of the same chassis.  Obviously this wasn't a deal-breaker for me and if it is any consolation the startup is less intrusive than BMW's which actually shakes the car quite a bit at restart.  I think this is offered to make people feel better about driving but in reality probably results in little or no net energy, money or emissions savings over the lifetime of the car. 

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MTI

MTI wrote:
http://eblog.mercedes-benz-passion.com/2010/10/the-new-mercedes-benz-cls-eco-startstop-sophisticated-technology-gives-the-highest-levels-of-efficiency/

Yes, that is pretty much my understanding of it...though terms like "almost imperceptibly" are certainly somewhat subjective.  I think anyone with a pulse would most certainly perceive the engine stopping and starting again.  As I said previously, the idea that as you come to a stop the engine suddenly "dies" does make me a bit anxious...maybe I will get used to it but I really think it's solving a problem that didn't exist for most buyers.  People compare it to a hybrid but I found the hybrid experience different in that while a hybrid's engine does periodically start and stop it generally isn't when you are stopping and starting off, at least not in the cars I drove.  In those, the electric motor did all of the work when you started off and the gas engine would periodically start and stop while you were driving, which is much less perceptible than the eco start-stop system in a gasoline-only car.

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Are M-B engineers wasting the midnight oil they burn?

The engine stop/restart feature is found in many cars these days and there must be long-term benefits or it would not have been put in. 

What has M-B done to make owners think it (M-B) is so dumb and stupid as to incorporate a feature that degrades long-term economy, or hinders the ownership experience?

Is a brief driving experience in a loaner car sufficient basis for criticizing such a feature?

Even though we're all really smart around here and know everything there is to know about cars, wouldn't a more appropriate first reaction to such a new feature be "How interesting?"

And since we know so much about cars, how come we don't just design and build our own and tell M-B we don't appreciate its recent innovation efforts?

Alternatively, I'd like to see posted here a copy of a letter to M-B in Stuttgart, by one of our home-grown design engineers, in which the objection to the stop/restart feature is detailed, and a better way to improve economy is presented. Such a submission, aside from scoring points with the factory's car designers, would go a long way toward us earning the MBCA Loyalty Reward instead of feeling entitled to it because of our $49 contribution and appreciation of M-B's innovation efforts, as exemplified in this thread. 

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They dont always get it right.

If you watch either on youtube or mercedessource.com Kent Bergsma often says that the engineers offer predictable engineering and that they don’t always get it right. So with these two sayings I have to agree. NHDOC, I have to agree with you when I was in a loaner car (GLK) that has the Eco start/stop a lot of things ran though my mind. Yes the guy told me about the feature but this is easy to forget when you are sitting in start stop traffic or at a stop light for a little less then a few seconds.
 
At first I thought the car died but after this happened a few times I wonder if this will cause damage to the car but not the waste of fuel. Also my thoughts were going to the baby boomer generation and the generation before me when being taught about cars that the engine can die while on the road and this could happen in slow traffic. This might have brought a few bad memories to those generations.
 
My guess is that this is an “early phase” of fuel saving technology and that in time it will get better and better. When a company implements something new like this they have to start from the bottom and work their way to the top. I am more then sure that Mercedes will offer us the ability to disable this feature in the long run for those who don’t want it. We can all write letters and explain our dislike for this feature.
 
Alex, I can see this feature or features that offer something different that can help degrade long-term ownership experience. Alex, I do think having a loaner car for the day or a even a few hours (if you use it get your items of the day while your car is in for service) is more then enough to criticize any feature on a car. I like to think of it is as being able to test drive a car with out the hassle of dealing with a sails person. But on the other hand I do agree with you that features like the Eco start/stop, the automatic turn off of the high beams, the lane tracking sensor or the coffee cup feature has that “How interesting” or “Wow” factor but after awhile it can get annoying.
 
Also Alex I agree with you I would like to see a letter form someone here at MBUSA to the people in Germany explaining why the Eco start/stop feature is a bad idea and a way to improve on it. I have also wondered if the MBUSA engineers and designers get a say for the US bound cars.
 
Alex in the bottom part of the last paragraph on your post I don’t understand what you are saying about the MBCA loyalty program.

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I am guessing the reason they

I am guessing the reason they design it to be "default on" is because they know most people won't want it, otherwise why wouldn't they offer the owner the option of simply disabling it - like they do the auto-lock feature?  It's just forcing us to accept something most people don't want.  They need to make it inconvenient enough to disable it that people will just live with it and get used to it.  The government hasn't mandated this technology so they can't say it is something which is required.  My theory is they rolled it out in the lower-end mass market cars initially (like BMW has) to test the waters and the technology.  Frankly today's cars aren't designed to last more than 10-15 years, they are designed to be "used up and recycled" and their design team isn't concerned with the cost of ownership after the warranty expires. 

My daughter also pointed out what was stated above...if you were unaware of the "feature" and rolled up to a red light when the car simply "died" your first instinct would likely be to turn on the hazard lights and try to restart it. 

I forgot to mention one other small thing the wizards in Germany got wrong on this car - the chrome bezels around the instruments reflect in the windshield, which, to me is actually a somewhat more disturbing error that the eco system.  This was an oversight caused by "looks over safety" and should have been caught during their initial tests of the new design.  I don't recall our '09 having this problem so they must have changed something to cause it. 

About writing letters to M-B, the one thing you will learn about Germans is they never make mistakes...so don't try and tell them they did - so writing to them with helpful suggestions would be an exercise in futility.  My wife is German, so, of course I have come to realize this is universally true

And, Andrew, I see you are from Manhasset (or as we used to call it "Manhasset and women want it")...I grew up in Port Washington...small world.

The blind spot detection system is another idiotic invention available on these cars...it's another Rube Goldberg fix for a simple problem.  Drive any modern Ford car and you will see how cleverly they solved the blind spot issue...with a small inset convex mirror on each sideview mirror.  It doesn't cost $500 and isn't annoyingly distracting the way the Mercedes and Audi systems are.  Sometimes the answers are so simple...and sometimes we Americans actually get it right!

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I think auto correct on

I think auto correct on mobile devices are quite an amusing technology, not unlike auto start/stop.

What a great sails feature.

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MTI wrote:I think auto

MTI wrote:
I think auto correct on mobile devices are quite an amusing technology, not unlike auto start/stop.

What a great sails feature.

I cant stand auto correct on mobile devices.

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NHDOC wrote:I am guessing the

NHDOC wrote:
I am guessing the reason they design it to be "default on" is because they know most people won't want it, otherwise why wouldn't they offer the owner the option of simply disabling it - like they do the auto-lock feature?  It's just forcing us to accept something most people don't want.  They need to make it inconvenient enough to disable it that people will just live with it and get used to it.  The government hasn't mandated this technology so they can't say it is something which is required.  My theory is they rolled it out in the lower-end mass market cars initially (like BMW has) to test the waters and the technology.  Frankly today's cars aren't designed to last more than 10-15 years, they are designed to be "used up and recycled" and their design team isn't concerned with the cost of ownership after the warranty expires. 

My daughter also pointed out what was stated above...if you were unaware of the "feature" and rolled up to a red light when the car simply "died" your first instinct would likely be to turn on the hazard lights and try to restart it. 

I forgot to mention one other small thing the wizards in Germany got wrong on this car - the chrome bezels around the instruments reflect in the windshield, which, to me is actually a somewhat more disturbing error that the eco system.  This was an oversight caused by "looks over safety" and should have been caught during their initial tests of the new design.  I don't recall our '09 having this problem so they must have changed something to cause it. 

About writing letters to M-B, the one thing you will learn about Germans is they never make mistakes...so don't try and tell them they did - so writing to them with helpful suggestions would be an exercise in futility.  My wife is German, so, of course I have come to realize this is universally true

And, Andrew, I see you are from Manhasset (or as we used to call it "Manhasset and women want it")...I grew up in Port Washington...small world.

The blind spot detection system is another idiotic invention available on these cars...it's another Rube Goldberg fix for a simple problem.  Drive any modern Ford car and you will see how cleverly they solved the blind spot issue...with a small inset convex mirror on each sideview mirror.  It doesn't cost $500 and isn't annoyingly distracting the way the Mercedes and Audi systems are.  Sometimes the answers are so simple...and sometimes we Americans actually get it right!

NHDOC,
 
That is a small world we are towns apart. I live in Munsey Park or as you may remember it as Monkey Park. My dad has a 2012 C300 Sport and the gauge cluster is the same as yours and I am not a fan of the white face with the black numbers on top of it. It makes it hard to see the warning lights to come on such as the check engine and TPMS lights. I am sure it was a design flaw.
 
You are right about the Germans are reluctant to admit they made a mistake but they do. They don’t always get it right when they are drunk.
 
Your daughter is right if you are not aware of the feature as in you keep forgetting or you don’t know about it your first instinct would be to put on your hazards and restart the engine or call for road side help. I think this Eco start/stop feature is an evolutionary thing that it will get better in time and we can have the option to disable it in the long run. You can do it for the blind spot assist, high beam assist and the coffee cup icon thing.
 
I have a 2009 C300 4Matic that I inherited from my dad and I love the car. My only complaint about the car is the cover for the radio. It is kind of annoying to push it up and down all the time. What I love about the car is that it has what I call “SUV mirror” and reduced the blind spots.
 
And about the letter I was thinking about writing to MBUSA. I don’t think the Germans will understand how displeased I am with some of the latest annoyances Mercedes has put in their cars.
 
It is interesting that you say the blind spot detection system is an idiotic feature. While I agree with you but it can be useful for people like my dad who almost side swiped his car last year when he got it coming out of the dealership. However if I had the feature on my car I would turn it off.
 
My feeling on theses idiot proof features is that if you use them; you will come to rely on them and at some point be in the car that doesn’t have these features and get your self killed.

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Explanation of last sentence

syracusea wrote:
  
Alex in the bottom part of the last paragraph on your post I don’t understand what you are saying about the MBCA loyalty program.

The last sentence could have been written more clearly. 

 What it means to convey is that a letter, the kind suggested above, would not only score points with the real car designers (it probably wouldn't) but would earn us the Loyalty Reward (since we're doing something we think is constructive,) and that at this point the Loyalty Reward is based on entitlement from annual membership fee.  The last and more sarcastic part of that sentence means that our criticism of M-B innovation doesn't help our case in getting the Loyalty Reward because by criticizing we're biting the hand that feeds us.

 Just as you like to go with "they don't always get it right," I like going sarcastic when I read such things. Please forgive me.  

 

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Alex wrote:syracusea

Alex wrote:
syracusea wrote:
  
Alex in the bottom part of the last paragraph on your post I don’t understand what you are saying about the MBCA loyalty program.

The last sentence could have been written more clearly. 

 What it means to convey is that a letter, the kind suggested above, would not only score points with the real car designers (it probably wouldn't) but would earn us the Loyalty Reward (since we're doing something we think is constructive,) and that at this point the Loyalty Reward is based on entitlement from annual membership fee.  The last and more sarcastic part of that sentence means that our criticism of M-B innovation doesn't help our case in getting the Loyalty Reward because by criticizing we're biting the hand that feeds us.

 Just as you like to go with "they don't always get it right," I like going sarcastic when I read such things. Please forgive me.  

 

Alex,
 
I think I get what you are saying. Call me old fashioned but I think a letter of some kind can go a long way. I have always believed that you should express your opinions and let it be known regardless of the out come.
 
One letter may not do the trick but enough letters would be better.

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The loyalty award is supposed to be an entitlement of membership

The loyalty award is supposed to be an entitlement of membership (or at least WAS, before it became meaningless) - it more or less a gift for being both loyal to the brand (buying or leasing a new M-B car) and a being member of the MBCA, not by helping them to design cars - if they want me to help design cars (and I am an engineer) it would cost them a lot more than $1000. 

I personally think they do a very good job of designing (and building) fine cars and recognize that you cannot design a car that will please everyone and no car ever has been 100% perfect for me.  Sometimes they do it right (OK, 95% of the time they do) but sometimes they don't, at least for me.  I only can speak for myself and the few others who have experienced the ECO start-stop and none of them like it.  My sister refused to buy a new BMW because of it and bought a Chevy instead - had they announced their policy shift away from making it the default mode she probably would have bought one but is happy with the latest offering from GM and got free financing for 6 years to boot. 

I was loyal to Mercedes despite the "feature" (and despite their disloyalty to me by denying my use of the award certificate) because the car had most of the other things I do like about Mercedes in it and was still the best car I test drove.  I only posted here to add my experience with it, as the thread had already been started and 99% of the members here probably have never driven a car with the start-stop so it would probably be helpful for them to know about it.   I don't think BMW needed letters from people to tell them they were unhappy with the start-stop, it was all of the feedback they got from the sales staff when prospective customers came back from test drives and didn't buy one and those who did who complained to the service advisors about it that got them to change.  It's amazing what lost sales and unhappy customers can do to change the minds of the best intentioned engineer.

The car I leased isn't equipped with the blind spot detector, but I test drove one with it (along with an Audi and BMW with it) and didn't like any of them.  I prefer my Lincoln's little mirrors which work just fine for helping me know when someone is alongside of me - in fact I bought two little stick-on versions at PepBoys for the new C300 and will save the $494 cost differential between them and the blind spot detection system for my daughter's college fund.

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Engine stop/restart feature

In their review of the magnificent new Ferrari F12 Berlinetta supercar, the Sunday automobile section of the NY Times reported that it comes with a 7-speed automatic transmission only and with engine turn off/restart feature.  Maybe, just maybe those of you who insist on manual transmission and hate the engine turn off/restart feature (after just a few hours of trying it out and not even reading the Owner's Manual) ought to reconsider.

 After looking at that 700 HP coupe I can't imagine a finer car.  Can it really be that Ferrari is just as dumb and stupid as M-B, but you guys are smarter? That "they don't always get it right" - but you do, after just a few hours behind the wheel?

 Respectfully, critics of new features that are offered and capabilities that are no longer offered, owe it to themselves to take some time and evaluate these things in the overall scheme of their usage, before criticizing.  At the very least, the criticism seems premature, which was the point I was trying to make in my previous post.  
 
When M-B and Ferrari car designers incorporate features like engine stop/restart or automatic transmissions that they insist are as good or better than manual transmissions, why is it that the detractors don't respect these opinions enough to give these changes a more thorough evaluation and report the findings in some technical detail and reasoned explanation, instead of dismissing them with a mere "I don't like it?"

 

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Alex, in my defense I did

Alex, in my defense I did give the Eco start/stop feature a try when the dealer loaned me a GLK for the night. As soon as I pulled out of the dealership on Northern Blvd I was in the middle of start stop traffic and I feel it gave me a good opportunity to try it out. After awhile I had to turn it off. It was driving me nuts. If you go on mercedessource.com and watch some of the videos Kent Bergsma often says that the engineers didn’t get it right. One example comes to mind with the gage clusters and on the W123’s that they are not always bright at night. Something with the bulbs melting the plastic over time.
 
I think it can be hard for a critic to give a proper evaluation of a new feature. I don’t know what it is like to be an automotive critic and how long they have a car to put it through its paces but they aren’t the ones buying the cars. People like us are buying or leasing these cars. That is why I don’t always trust the critics because I am not sure if they are Mercedes drivers or lovers for that matter.
 
I also think the engineers who work at the low end of the automotive industry (as in VW, Honda or Toyota) to the high end of end don’t always get it right in terms of what was a good idea turns out to be a bad one for whatever be that it was something that failed during the cars life time or that the consumer doesn’t like.
 
In my opinion the Eco start/stop feature is a nice feature to have for saving fuel but at the same time is annoying. I don’t know how much damage it will cause in start stop traffic and many baby boomers will find it annoying and go to that default thinking that something is wrong with their car and bring it back screaming at the SA. If these engineers were smart and gave the driver the ability to disable the feature that would be great.
 
And what I mean by disable the feature; I mean it doesn’t go to its default program when you restart the car.

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Something tells me I missed

Something tells me I missed my calling I should have been a reviewer of cars. Only if my spelling and grammar were better. But then that is why we have editors. 

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A proper try-out of the

A proper try-out of the feature would have involve several days if not weeks of use. 

Am I enthused by the feature?... No.
Do I think this feature will work its way into most makes and models?....Yes

Over my life I can think of numerous products that IMO were totally valueless and which today I would be lost without. That probably will turn out to be the case with many of the features we're seeing and complaining about on the new Mercedes.

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Just flip through old

Just flip through old magazines.  You'll find interesting comments from the motoring press from just a few decades ago about things like seatbelts, airbags, unleaded gasoline.  I recall that in Car & Driver's initial test of a Mercedes W201 model, they were openly hostile about the SRS system.  So it seem, hardly anyone, whether engineers, critics or consumers, gets it right all the time.

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questions

There are lots of questions we can raise about the new systems.  One is how long will the starters last under fairly constant use?  I hope the answer isn't that they figure starters will last at least through the warranty period.

Ed Schwab

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Ed Schwab wrote:There are

Ed Schwab wrote:

There are lots of questions we can raise about the new systems.  One is how long will the starters last under fairly constant use?  I hope the answer isn't that they figure starters will last at least through the warranty period.

Ed Schwab

The starter motor (starter) has also undergone thorough modification: it is now designed to cope with eight times as many starting procedures, ensuring that it will last a car’s lifetime in continuous urban driving involving frequent auto-starting. In addition, the on-board electrical system is supported by a second battery.

YRMV

http://www.sae.org/mags/sve/11406

According to Christian Bokich, Dept. Manager, Product & Technology Communications for Mercedes-Benz USA, “By the end of calendar year 2015, all Mercedes-Benz models in the USA will offer one or more engine variant with Eco start-stop technology."

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The text which states the

The text which states the starter is designed to last 8 times as many starting procedures makes me laugh.  Yesterday, while traveling less than a mile in start and stop traffic the car shut down and restarted at least a dozen times within the span of less than 5 minutes - and I don't frequently get caught in traffic like that.  For people who routinely drive in urban settings these starting systems could see literally hundreds of times the duty cycling they would see in a conventionally configured car.  I'm sorry, but there's just no way they could make this system reliable enough to last given the parameters it operates under.  You can say I don't know as much as the engineers who designed it but I can tell you this can't be good for the engine to be subjected to hundred or thousands of extra stop-start cycles per month.

I've only owned the car for a week and haven't changed my position from the first time I drove it.  I just don't care for this feature and while I can see some people would like it we, as owners, should be given the choice to permanently disable it if we want to.

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Time will tell. However I

Time will tell. However I haven't detected much alarm from the SAE or other groups of professionals in the industry. That's a good thing I suppose.

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Ed & NHDOC,   Both of your

Ed & NHDOC,
 
Both of your posts had me cracking up. Ed, I never thought of it lasting past the warranty period. NHDOC, I have to agree with you. As you know I live in Manhasset and I live a good 40 minute commute to the city and driving into the city in stop and go traffic and once you are in the city with stop and go traffic this system will see a great deal of us. I think a greater amount of use then the engineers tested it for. I agree with you that we should be giving the choice to permanently disable the program if we want to.
 
I can see this being useful if you live in an area where stop and go traffic is non-existent or if you hardly use the car.
 
MTI, I think the SAE or other professional automotive groups haven’t detected anything is because this system came out yesterday. It is so new that there is no telling how long this system will last. I think this is an early generation and will go through updates as time goes on.

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What makes you think the

What makes you think the concept and technology "came out yesterday?"

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Start-stop_system

I get it that some here don't like the technology, but lets not stoop to just making up things.

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Yes, the start-stop

Yes, the start-stop conceptually has been around for years, but the wiki article cites the most recent incarnations mostly being used with hybrid cars and other than the BMW none have been in wide scale distribution in conventional cars the USA.  No car using start-stop in a conventional gasoline or diesel engine has been commercially successful here and you haven't seen any ads boasting of this feature in today's cars, have you? 

It's something that's been thought of before, rejected by the market and now being tried again.  They are introducing it quietly and hoping it will gain traction but most people who test drive cars equipped with it don't like it. When I was shopping for my car the salesperson said she's sold several leftover 2012 models to people who specifically said they would not buy a 2013 because it had it.  I think that speaks volumes. 

For me, it's just another habit I will learn to live with when it get in the car - buckle my seat belt and shut off the eco system.  I'll be the first to admit I'm wrong if it catches on and becomes popular.

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NHDOC wrote:Yes, the

NHDOC wrote:
Yes, the start-stop conceptually has been around for years, but the wiki article cites the most recent incarnations mostly being used with hybrid cars and other than the BMW none have been in wide scale distribution in conventional cars the USA.  No car using start-stop in a conventional gasoline or diesel engine has been commercially successful here and you haven't seen any ads boasting of this feature in today's cars, have you? 

Well, I do remember that Buick advertised the heck out of it.

http://gmauthority.com/blog/2011/10/buick-touts-stopstart-feature-in-lat...

Again, just trying to inject facts into this discussion.

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Thank you Dr. Sheldon

Thank you Dr. Sheldon Cooper.
 
I don’t drive hybrids and don’t have an interest in driving one and I did not know that Buick had or has cars with this feature.
 
Like NHDOC I will get used to this feature and wait till the next generation till they make it possible for me to turn it off permanently.

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Clever retort. I'm

Clever retort. I'm speechless and in awe of the wit and wisdom here.

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MTI wrote:NHDOC wrote:Yes,

MTI wrote:
  Well, I do remember that Buick advertised the heck out of it. http://gmauthority.com/blog/2011/10/buick-touts-stopstart-feature-in-latest-lacrosse-eassist-ad/ Again, just trying to inject facts into this discussion.

The Buick you cite is a hybrid, not a conventional gasoline engine car and the start-stop technology used in that car is similar to that used in the Prius and other hybrids.  The fact that hybrids do have a source of propulsion other than the gas engine makes the comparisons not "apples to apples".  If the engine should hesitate or fail to restart the car can still move under electric motor power - in fact that's how most of them are designed to start off.  In the Mercedes and BMW systems you are solely dependent on the engine restarting instantly and perfectly each time. Also, I noticed the other day if you want to turn the wheel a little while the engine is shut down the car will restart just to turn the wheel and then shuts off again giving you a nice little jolt to the wheel...not very refined.

I'll admit I didn't test drive the Buick but did drive the 2013 Ford Fusion Hybrid and found its start-stop less distressing and almost imperceptible and I was really tempted to get one (in its Lincoln MKz skin) when I saw the EPA rated it at 47 MPG but after reading online reviews from real owners saying they see lower numbers, around 40 (which is still pretty impressive for the size of the car) I decided to wait and see how they do with them as they roll it out.  My current Lincoln lease is up in one year and I will likely replace it with the hybrid version then.

I have never seen an ad touting the eco start-stop technology used in the conventionally powered Mercedes and BMW - perhaps I have missed them but can honestly recall never seeing one.

If you're trolling here just to push people's buttons I guess you've accomplished your mission, but the one thing you have never said is that you have actually driven a car with this feature in order to render any real opinion of it...all you seem to do is try and dismiss or argue with other people's opinions - those who actually have experienced it first hand and want to share their experiences. I'd challenge you to visit your local dealer, give one a good long test drive in stop and go traffic and report back your impressions of it as a DRIVER not in some abstract conceptual argument, then we can have a more constructive and instructive dialogue.

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I have driven the Porsche

I have driven the Porsche Cayenne V6 with start stop.

As for "trolling" if that means pointing out mere opinions from facts, then guilty as charged. I've tried to separate mere personal likes an dislikes from actual engineering facts. As I said, I get it that some don't like the feature as being a technological intrusion in a drivers control of the vehicle experience, but thenrestmof it seems like mere speculation mixed with fiction.

It is typically the sign that a thread has run out of facts when the name calling starts.

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No name calling, please

No one can argue with someone's experience, only with the conclusion drawn from such experience, which is the subject of this discussion.

 Saying that one doesn't like the ECO start/stop feature is one thing; saying "they don't always get it right," which implies that they got it wrong, is something different.

 When car makers such as M-B, BMW, Porsche and Ferrari, all having prodigious engineering resources, deliberately incorporate a feature such as ECO start/stop into some of their products, how does it sound for someone to say that it's a bad idea, badly done, or imply that this feature is not yet ready for prime time?

 To me it sounds disrespectful and foolish, which has nothing to do with the report of the experience but with the conclusions drawn.  It's these conclusions rather than our experiences that draw the arguments.

 On the other hand, the point about M-B saying that the starter is eight-times stronger than a standard starter has to be an error of some sort.  That starter will have to be hundreds of times better to function reliably for a long time.

 No doubt the ECO start/stop feature came about to significantly improve fuel economy.  If 40 miles per gallon or thereabouts is not a requirement, and such a feature is unpleasant to endure then cars with the feature can be avoided. 

 But I have to confess that if $400K was available to me I would rush out and get me a Ferrari F12 Berlinetta, and ignore the minor shudder that its ECO start/stop feature imposes. Such hardships are endurable for thrills and economy's sake.

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So If I understand what you

So If I understand what you are saying that the engineers don’t get it right is an insult to the company and what you are paying for?
 
Well look at Toyota with all of their problems 4 years ago. Obviously they didn’t right and had to recall their cars. 

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Ok lets put it this way. When

Ok lets put it this way. When Mercedes first came out with the A-Class the car had one huge issue. The issue was that it would topple over during the avoidance maneuver test. So to correct this issue Mercedes pulled every car from production and when they re-introduced the car; the A-Class had ESP. This would apply to the M-Class with its gaps between the bumper and the frame of the car.
 
Alex, have you checked the instrument cluster on your W123? People are finding the light tunnels (a white plastic peace) in their W123’s are melting over time due to age and ware. I refer you to the video provided below.
 
 
 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J56G_ihObWc

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Eco-stuff

I am trying to be objective as I read all the emotion on this topic.  Let's acknowledge that this was done under pressure to make some numbers (mpg levels); it's not about offering anything pleasant and pleasing to customers.  They probably saw no other way to satisfy the number crunchers in Washington and Brussels.

Personally, I am frustrated with the fact that my newer cars auto-revert to "C" when they are shut off.  Part of my starting process for those cars is now to start the car, put the car back to "S", and then put it into gear.  I dislike it very much and am disappointed that my older cars stay where I put them and the newer ones have been revised to make them less driver-friendly.  I asked the dealer service tech if he could lock it on to "S" for me and he said "No" that he wasn't allowed to do that.  It is nothing but software; I'm surprised that no enterprising person who wants to make some money hasn't created the software patch yet.  I'm a believer in the superiority of what the manufacturer creates (vs. aftermarket) but in this case I might try the patch.

As to the eco-start/stop, my first experience was in a taxi cab in Barcelona.  The cabbie hated it as he kicked and screamed every time it shut down.  I could see why because the car disappointed him at every start when he tried to aim for an opening across the intersection and was overtaken by just about anything beside him.

I'm happy to say that I'm not programmed for another car until 2014.  By then, I hope they have figured out that it is worth a software switch buried somewhere to satisfy those of us who passionately don't want the function (not feature).  Maybe the enterprising programmer I am hoping will fix my C vs S problem will fix this too.  I guess the other option is to go look at a BMW if they really do have the option to switch the function off.  But then, if they have it, MB can't be that far behind.

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I have read through the

I have read through the comments above and I totally understand the concerns expressed by those who are not a fan of stop/start technology.  Let me offer this as an observation, one day removed from the "fiscal cliff" discussions that have been prominent in the news:

As a culture, we want things but we don't want to accept the consequences and costs that come with those decisions.  This is prevalent in most aspects of society and includes cars.  So we want cars that go from 0-60 in 6 seconds and get 30 mpg while also providing all conceivable luxuries and being as safe as a tank at the same time.  Our government, and politicians of all stripes, are unwilling (or perhaps unable) to grapple with reality because they simply reflect the electorate.  As applied to cars and environmental considerations, we have thus set up a system where the government, via administrative regulation, sets certain fuel economy standards for cars and consumers (and voters) seem to believe those standards are achievable without compromise -- certainly we can't go slower, we can't be less comfortable, we can't be less safe, and, oh, btw, the car still has to get 30 mpg or whatever the impending standards require.  

Why do we do CAFE as it is called, instead of something more transparent such as a carbon tax or engine displacement tax?  Because it allows us to hide the costs of the choices we make, like putting excessive purchases on a credit card instead of paying cash.  In any event, the result is that it permits us to avoid reckoning with the costs of our choices.  So now automakers have to achieve higher and higher CAFE averages and do so in an environment where the consumer can deceive him or herself into thinking the fuel economy gains are "free."  They certainly aren't free, because nothing in life is free -- those costs will be reflected in higher purchase costs, maintenance costs, etc., in other words the costs referenced in the above discussion.  

The only thing we do know for certain is that some of the smartest engineers in the business, working for some of the best car companies in the world -- Ferrari, MB, BMW, etc. -- are all coming to the same conclusion -- that the only way to hit these averages is to embrace some sort of start/stop technology.  Don't like this as a consumer?  There are choices that can be made and the discussion, for me at least, is probably best left there so as to avoid veering entirely too far off the appropriate path for a car forum.  

Happy New Year!

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The driver can shut off the stop / start function at least in the CLS model that is described in post #16 by MTI.  That post has a link to a brochure that describes the function in the 2011 CLS model.  The brochure says you can turn off stop / start by pressing the ECO button.  The function is also disabled it you don't buckle up your seat belt or do other things that I can't remember now.

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Ed Schwab wrote:The driver

Ed Schwab wrote:

The driver can shut off the stop / start function at least in the CLS model that is described in post #16 by MTI.  That post has a link to a brochure that describes the function in the 2011 CLS model.  The brochure says you can turn off stop / start by pressing the ECO button.  The function is also disabled it you don't buckle up your seat belt or do other things that I can't remember now.

Ed Schwab

You CAN shut it off, but it will default back to on the next time you start the car so if you don't like it and never want it to operate you have to remember to shut it off every time you start the car.  BMW has agreed to change their cars to default to last setting if owners want it which means if you shut it off once, it stays off until the next time you turn it on.  That, to me, is a reasonable way to implement it.  Then if it is something the owner doesn't want to use he can shut it off once and not be bothered with it ever again.

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A Positive View of Stop/Start

Three years ago I had opportunity to rent an Audi A3 Diesel in Scotland. It came with manual trans and stop/start. It worked beautifully, shutting down the engine when the vehicle stopped and was put in neutral, and restarting instantly with no shake as soon as you touched the clutch. I found it no problem to adjust to it, and it seems like a highly sensible addition to the drive train, especially where the fuel cost is probably at least 50% greater than in the U.S. I was very disappointed to find that Audi did not include that feature in U.S. models. Given the government regulations requiring improved fuel economy I expected them to add the feature eventually, but instead they dropped the A3 hatchback in favor of a sedan. As far as I'm concerned, it's a sad story, and I'm still waiting for an equivalent or better solution….

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I can see the advantage of

I can see the advantage of having it in a manual car as it sounds like you have more control over when it stops and starts.  In rolling stop and go traffic or at a stop sign I would never put a manual transmission car into neutral, but rather just feather the clutch in and out to keep moving.  In that case it sounds like the engine would keep running.  If you were stopped at a red light and could see it would be a relatively long stop then you could put the car in neutral and it would shut down.   My problem with it in the C300 which has an automatic transmission is that it seems to stop and start almost every time you come to a complete stop (once it is warmed up and meets the other operating parameters) and I find that to not only be annoying but can't see how it saves anything in the long run.  So, you see, I can say I would probably not object to it if I had a manual transmission (or if they made it so I could control it more) but the system, as it is set up now, isn't "ideal" IMHO.

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I have always felt that Audi

I have always felt that Audi has been the leader in fuel saving technology or at least has done something along toughs lines.

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I recently drove a Mercedes

I recently drove a Mercedes that had the Eco Start/Stop and I noticed with it turned on there a slight drop in performance.

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syracusea wrote:I recently

syracusea wrote:
I recently drove a Mercedes that had the Eco Start/Stop and I noticed with it turned on there a slight drop in performance.

So, you're saying that the car was performing better with the engine off?  Fascinating.  I suppose fuel economy did take a hit.

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I don’t know if fuel economy

I don’t know if fuel economy took a hit but I felt with the start stop feature turned on I did feel a drop in power. 

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Your sensitivity to your

Your sensitivity to your surroundings is duly noted. 

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syracusea wrote:I recently

syracusea wrote:
I recently drove a Mercedes that had the Eco Start/Stop and I noticed with it turned on there a slight drop in performance.


I'm regrettably ignorant of the start/stop integration in the newer models. Is it an independent button from the C/S option on the transmission? If its tied in, and the Eco s/s correlates to the comfort/economy mode vs the sport mode then I'd say you bet your butt your situational awareness is right on cue.

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ECO

Just picked up my 2013 GLK. Love the car HATE the ECO. I called MB and asked them how to shut it off permanently, they told me what I just read above, you can't.
That means everytime I use the car, as soon as I start up, I have to press the button on the dash to turn it off. They're going to get huge amounts of calls on this. It really changes my mind about this car. With it on, each time you stop, the car feels like it's about to stall.
I traded in the 2011 GLK for this. Maybe I should have gotten the Lexus.
I've been a memember of the MBCA for 30 years now. I have only driven MB's. This is my 10 MB. This is the only one I haven't loved. I wish I could give it back.
Very disapointed in MB NA for not giving an option for using this.

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Mark Russell wrote:Just

Mark Russell wrote:
Just picked up my 2013 GLK. Love the car HATE the ECO. I called MB and asked them how to shut it off permanently, they told me what I just read above, you can't.
That means everytime I use the car, as soon as I start up, I have to press the button on the dash to turn it off. They're going to get huge amounts of calls on this. It really changes my mind about this car. With it on, each time you stop, the car feels like it's about to stall.
I traded in the 2011 GLK for this. Maybe I should have gotten the Lexus.
I've been a memember of the MBCA for 30 years now. I have only driven MB's. This is my 10 MB. This is the only one I haven't loved. I wish I could give it back.
Very disapointed in MB NA for not giving an option for using this.

Mark,
 
I would like to say congrats on buying or leasing your new GLK. But I think that would be adding insult to injury. Please tell me you had a test drive or at last the sales rep told you about the feature.  
 
I agree with you that it stinks the Eco Start/Stop. I think BMW and Porsche have the same feature BUT you can go through the menu to turn it off permanently. If you write MBUSA about it (and I am sure a number of us haters have done so) maybe MB will make a modification to it.
 
I should also add that I don’t like the Automatic headlight feature. They go on when you don’t need them. BMW has the same thing but you can turn that feature off.
 
 
Other then the annoyance of the Eco start/stop feature, how do you feel about the upgraded GLK-Class SUV?

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getting it right?

It sure seems to me that the way MB has chosen to implement ECO isn't working the way US customers would really like - thus, it would be nice if they listened to feedback and enabled customers to disable it.  That should be a simple fix.

I'm bucking the trend, I guess - I went with the E550 instead of the far more popular E350 *because* I wanted the power (but not the ride of the E63). This car checked off all the right buttons.  But, in  2014, I understand they're lopping off a few cylinders, putting on two turbos (and maybe also this ECO-feature?) and dropping ~60HP. That's not really the approach to the solution that will attract me when it's time to change out my car....

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"automatic" manual mode?

Bill - long list...

I was in the passenger seat of a friend's S63 and discovered that I wasn't able to reach the door handle (it was all the way open, and he had the passenger seat all the way back). To solve that, he just gave it some gas, and poof, problem solved!

I'm in agreement with others who think that the car should remember your preferences (it remembers a lot of other settings.. .and these can be tuned to your key!) -- this is a MB, and it's silly that anything other than seatbelt on, door closed, car started and in gear shouldn't have to be done.  That's my opinion, and it seems that it's shared by others in this forum. If I wanted 64 variations in transmission settings/shift speeds, I would have chosen a BMW.

Regarding the early upshifts in manual mode, doesn't that behavior rather defeat the purpose of manual mode?

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Interesting exchange

Just skimmed through this (very long) thread and there's some interesting stuff here about the introduction and acceptance of new features. Given that our cars are going to continue to change rapidly in pursuit of ramped-up efficiency, increased emissions pressure, emphasis on safety features to protect the occupants from harm, and the variety of stuff going on in the centerstack re infomatics and connectivity, this is going to continue to be a hot-button in the automotive world. Maybe I'll work up an article based on the issues and these comments. Having now responded, at least I'll be able to come back and find the thread again.
G.

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I wonder if Veyron owners are

I wonder if Veyron owners are as miffed when they have to insert a special key to unlock the settings for full performance mode . . . cool

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I tend to hold on to my cars...

I don't hold on to my cars as long as SOME people (there's a guy who bought a Rolls new in the '30s and drove it until he passed away...), but many people buy and flip cars within a few years. Nothing wrong with that, just not what our family does. The last car I had, I had for 8 years. The one prior to that, 7 years.  For me, getting comfortable with the technology in a car is very important, because my outlook is longer than the person who leases or flips the cars every 3-4 years. It also means that because my current car does not have the ECO feature, I won't be 'subject' to it (except for loaners) for a long time.  Thus, this is an academic discussion for me.

It's fun to watch the rapid change in technology (and a bit agonizing to watch how slow our regulators are to catch up in some areas, like the steerable headlights).  The BMW I owned was well before the "M" button was invented, so I'm a bit behind how BMWs are configured these days. Bill, you're right that you can just hit the go button, and go. What I meant to say and didn't articulate it properly, is that it's silly that MB has chosen to reset these features every time you turn on the car. It should be a simple matter to add ECO button, suspension settings, transmission preferences, and so on to personalizations specific to your key. If you want to be out of ECO mode, in sport and be able to redline it at every gear, you should be able to - by default. If your wife chooses to drive in a different manner with different preferences, her key should tell the car to change the settings accordingly.  It's "silly" that it's not done today because this seems to be a fairly trivial level of programming that could make this part of the discussion moot. I also do not understand why their "manual" modes are not programmed properly.

Gary - do you think it's more a matter of time before these features/preferences are truly tied to the key fob?  Surely we haven't seen the last of innovative ideas (that cause controversy)!  For example, Tesla is competing directly against the S-class with their Telsa S (in terms of size and power). Instead of having a cockpit filled with options and switches, there is one very large touch screen.  As impressive as the new S-class is with the cool technology it's bringing, it already looks behind the times compared to that (in my eyes). I'm not much of a battery fan, so it's unfortunate that you can't get one of their cars with a big v10..... When solenoid-driven valves are "finally" added (and hopefully with the promised efficiency/power gains), there are many more options in terms of how the motor is tuned, how it functions at altitude, and how it functions on a race track/"sporty" driving. Will we complain if instead of them turning the motor completely off at a stop, that it goes into a very low-use state (two cylinders, idle timing)?  If you're cruising at the speed limit (cough) on the interstate, we all know that we do not need all 8 or 10 or 12 cylinders.. Cadillac had a technology a long time ago where they could turn off 1/2 of them when cruising (as all you really need is some silly little amount of HP to overcome rolling and wind resistance). Will variable valves bring this back en-masse?More importantly - will we complain about it? (Surely, we will....)

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MTI wrote:I wonder if Veyron

MTI wrote:
I wonder if Veyron owners are as miffed when they have to insert a special key to unlock the settings for full performance mode . . . cool

Most Veyron owners aren't going to be complaining about replacing their $30k+ tires every 3k miles... but dialing the power back down will help those tires last longer.  Certainly, if you ever hand it to a valet, you will want the power dialed way down!  I've never driven one, but I would imagine that in 'full' performance mode that it's quite a handful and could easily get you in trouble on the streets....

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I was just looking at a new

I was just looking at a new E350 day before yesterday, and immediately expressed my reservations about this new ECO Start/Stop feature. Sounds to me like something similar to what the hybrids do. The salesman was quick to point out that it could be turned off by pushing a button on the dash, but failed to mention I would have to do that each time I started the car!

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Bill Graham wrote: I agree

Bill Graham wrote:
I agree all settings could be tied to the key fob but it simply isn't that way and I knew that when I bought my car

You are quite right. For future cars, Mercedes could choose to tie these functions to the fob (I doubt they would ever tie stability control to it, but I would love to have different levels of intervention as it is pretty aggressive. A less aggressive stability control would let me have more fun without going completely nuts - which I can also do if I turned it off). They have not to date, and it does not appear to be hurting sales.

I rather think that the "tying of features/functions to the fob" is a function of who do you want to market to? Someone who wants the car to just be there for them (which is me most days of my daily commute), or someone who wants more fine control over their driving experience, which seems to be someone like you. Indeed, a menu item that lists "tie-able to the fob" functions, and lets you enable or disable each of them would give us each what we want!

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Tesla's not alone...

Bentley just joined the "17" touchscreen club, started by Tesla:

http://money.cnn.com/2013/03/21/technology/qnx-auto-software.pr.fortune/...

It's a matter of time before these large screens become the defacto minimum standard for large luxury cars. I think that trend is well defined. What makes this interesting is what direction each automaker decides to go (the new S-class screen having different views depending on where you are sitting - apply that to the big screen....)

I really hope someone's listening (and they turn the screen the other way, or allow us to do that if I want to watch a movie so the aspect ratio is right).

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editorgary wrote:Just skimmed

editorgary wrote:
Just skimmed through this (very long) thread and there's some interesting stuff here about the introduction and acceptance of new features. Given that our cars are going to continue to change rapidly in pursuit of ramped-up efficiency, increased emissions pressure, emphasis on safety features to protect the occupants from harm, and the variety of stuff going on in the centerstack re infomatics and connectivity, this is going to continue to be a hot-button in the automotive world. Maybe I'll work up an article based on the issues and these comments. Having now responded, at least I'll be able to come back and find the thread again.
G.

Gary, I think you or someone should write up an article on the ECO star/stop feature. I would like to learn more about it opposed to what the owners manual will tell me and other peoples experiences.
 
In the mean time this would be a good issue for the Star talk section in The Star. When is the dead line for the next issue? 

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After a few months...

I can say that after living with the eco stop-start function for a few months I still find it very annoying and it's really my only complaint with the new car. I admit I forget to shut it off each time I start the car, so I am "reminded" to the first time I come to a stop and it implements its auto shut-down feature.  Until they come up with a smarter system that can sense you are rolling along in stop and go traffic and which automatically disables the stop-start I don't see it really being a practical feature. 

I still feel that in the long run it saves no energy and will result in premature failure of the starter and its added complexity will only make diagnosing problems with it much more complicated than the "standard" models but the car has it and there's nothing I can do about it now but shut it off each time I drive.  My 24 month lease will be up before I turn around so it isn't like I will have it forever anyway and if they haven't at least altered the system by the time I am looking again I can always look for something else then.

My sister just got a new GLK which has the eco function.  She said in her opinion it wasn't as bad as the BMW's which she felt was more "abrupt" and shook the car more when restarting.  I agree with her that Mercedes does it smoothly...just wish it didn't do it at all!

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It sounds like there is a

It sounds like there is a growing number of us on here (maybe more in hiding) that the ECO start/stop feature is annoying, not practical and could cause more problems then we need. I think Mercedes has the power to give us the option to disable it on a perm basis but right now don’t want to. However there is the possibility they don’t know how to yet.
 
I think BMW’s and Porsche’s ECO start/stop has the ability to be disabled and will remember it when the car is started again. If that is true then the technology is out there.
 
Also I feel when the ECO stop/start feature is turned on and you are at high way speeds, there is a little bit of a lag when you want to go faster. 

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syracusea wrote:It sounds

syracusea wrote:
It sounds like there is a growing number of us on here (maybe more in hiding) that the ECO start/stop feature is annoying, not practical and could cause more problems then we need. I think Mercedes has the power to give us the option to disable it on a perm basis but right now don’t want to. However there is the possibility they don’t know how to yet.
 
I think BMW’s and Porsche’s ECO start/stop has the ability to be disabled and will remember it when the car is started again. If that is true then the technology is out there.
 
Also I feel when the ECO stop/start feature is turned on and you are at high way speeds, there is a little bit of a lag when you want to go faster. 

Maybe the next generation of the C, E, GLK-Class will have the a feature where you can turn it off and it will remember it when you start your car again. 

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As everyone knows (and I know

As everyone knows (and I know I am the only one) I am not a fan of the start/stop feature that Mercedes uses. I have said before that BMW's start/stop feature remembers the last setting the driver had when the car is restarted. 

Audi on the other hand has taken it further. Not only will the car remember your last setting upon restart but if it is on it wont turn off the engine if the car has not gone beyond 3mph to reduce wear and tare on the on the starter. 

Why cant Mercedes offer this?

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Recently, we had two loaners

Recently, we had two loaners with start/stop.  Frankly it was unsettling at first but we got used to it in short order.  The car makers are under tremendous pressure to hit EPA targets and if the fuel savings from start /stop are to be considered "good" for purposes of that calculation, likely the feature cannot be permanently disabled.  I am also a little perplexed by some of the complaints.  Start / stop is good insofar as it lessens the environmental impacts associated withe driving.  Moreover, the reliability concerns are not new -- every feature that lessens the environmental harm associated with cars carries a cost and over time the manufacturers learn how to get these features to be cost effective and reliable.  The alternative to these technologies is additional harm to the environment in the form of greater carbon emissions and dirtier air.  As a consumer, the only caution I would have is with respect to being an early adopter, but luxury cars, by their nature and to be different and more special than other more standard cars, adopt these technologies earlier.  No different than having the latest and greatest with anything - it is nice, but it is not cheap.  

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Well I am sure that it can be

Well I am sure that it can be permanently disabled if you go into the computer with a programmer. But like BMW and Audi you can disable the start/stop feature by as simple as pressing the button to turn it off and when you re-start the car the program will remain off instead of going to it’s default programming when you start the car again for your next trip to the in-laws.
 
I don’t know what BMW’s excuse is but Audi’s reasoning is to reduce wear and tare on the starter.

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When is everyone buying their

When is everyone buying their next Audi or BMW?  

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Gentlemen,Considering this

Gentlemen,

Considering this thread I have to say a fully loaded black 2014 Audi S8 Sedan Quattro® 4.0 TFSI® is looking good to me right about now.

Regards,
Nic

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Andrew,Not sure what you

Andrew,
Not sure what you mean.  Audi offers this feature to save fuel but then says, "hey, if you use it, you'll likely wear out the starter so here's how to turn it off".  That doesn't make sense to me. 

As far as Audi goes, the A8 is a fantastic car, to lease.  But I would not put Audi in the same class as Mercedes Benz in terms of offering long-term build quality.  I think the recent Mercedes offerings, particularly the 221, 212, and 204 chassis cars have proven to be very robust and reliable.  As a customer, I notice that our local dealership, which was positively inundated with customers 6 years ago, now has the ability to offer you an appointment whenever you want.  I asked the advisor about the reason for this, and he said quietly that, "the new cars don't come back for warranty work, just the regular service once a year or so."

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I think Audi has come a long

I think Audi has come a long way and is in the same class as BMW and Mercedes. Audi connect is similar to mbrace or what BMW has.

At time index 1:00 the narrator says it will stay in whatever mode you put it in until your press the button again. Meaning if you don't like the feature you can turn it off and when you start the car again the the start stop will remain off. I like that idea. If Mercedes can adapt that to it's start stop feature that would be great!!

As for wearing out the starter, what they are saying is that car can not exceed more the 2mph to prevent excessive restarts. During rush hour traffic or waiting in a line at a fast food place that is annoying. This is 2 minutes into the video. (Not my examples.)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xIUgflpbXOU&feature=youtube_gdata_player

Nic, an Audi A8 with a 3 litter engine sounds good to me.

MTI, I will get a BMW when they get rid of runflats.

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When one has been around

When one has been around awhile, one realizes how much better cars are now today than they were 20+ years ago.

I resisted even air bags and ABS.

I've grown use to NAV systems and rear view cameras.

But ECO start/stop and touch screens is where I draw the line!!

Humbug I say!!

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I don't believe that the

I don't believe that the tires on a car ever prevented me from purchasing a car I wanted, but some folks are different about things I guess.

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I would take some time getting used to it

Driving my son's new Porsche 911, the defeatable ECO Start feature was strange at first.  The engine turned off after the car stopped for a couple of seconds. The restart was instantaneous when I stepped on the gas pedal - hardly felt the minimal cranking. 

Chances are that in heavy traffic I would prefer to keep the engine running rather than enduring all those restarts, but such a choice may be more habit than science. 

When the car must stop for longer than 30 seconds a lot of the time  I can see the fuel savings adding up - not otherwise. This fuel economy feature does not appeal to me.  But since I'm not in the market for a new car at this time, what appeals to me or not, with regard to new cars, is moot. Chances are good that modern car buyers are OK with this feature, otherwise M-B and others would not include it.  

On the other hand, getting used to it might be a good idea because we will probably be driving hybrid or all-electric cars pretty soon and they all come to a dead quiet stop.

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Like everything else this is

Like everything else this is something we are all going to get used to. I would like to see James May, Richard Hammond and Jeremy Clarkson talk about this. I can see it now. James would be in favor for it and Jeremy would hate it. As for Richard I have no idea.
 
I guess this is ironic but I am probably the only person in my generation who doesn’t like or hates Eco Start/Stop.
 
I have yet to try this technology in the city or in traffic but I will tell you this it would drive me nuts.
 
From my understanding for the feature to be activated is that some conditions have to be met. Now lets say you are driving in the summer in 100 degree heat and you have the AC running, the engine wont shut off. I don’t know. I find this technology needs to go under a lot of refinement for it to be useful.

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syracusea wrote:Like

syracusea wrote:
Like everything else this is something we are all going to get used to. I would like to see James May, Richard Hammond and Jeremy Clarkson talk about this. I can see it now. James would be in favor for it and Jeremy would hate it. As for Richard I have no idea.
 
I guess this is ironic but I am probably the only person in my generation who doesn’t like or hates Eco Start/Stop.
 
I have yet to try this technology in the city or in traffic but I will tell you this it would drive me nuts.
 
From my understanding for the feature to be activated is that some conditions have to be met. Now lets say you are driving in the summer in 100 degree heat and you have the AC running, the engine wont shut off. I don’t know. I find this technology needs to go under a lot of refinement for it to be useful.

Your condemnation of the Eco Start feature would make more sense if you commented after you actually use it under the conditions you mention.

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Alex wrote:syracusea

Alex wrote:
syracusea wrote:
Like everything else this is something we are all going to get used to. I would like to see James May, Richard Hammond and Jeremy Clarkson talk about this. I can see it now. James would be in favor for it and Jeremy would hate it. As for Richard I have no idea.
 
I guess this is ironic but I am probably the only person in my generation who doesn’t like or hates Eco Start/Stop.
 
I have yet to try this technology in the city or in traffic but I will tell you this it would drive me nuts.
 
From my understanding for the feature to be activated is that some conditions have to be met. Now lets say you are driving in the summer in 100 degree heat and you have the AC running, the engine wont shut off. I don’t know. I find this technology needs to go under a lot of refinement for it to be useful.

Your condemnation of the Eco Start feature would make more sense if you commented after you actually use it under the conditions you mention.

What conditions? You mean in the summer and or driving it in the city?
 
I think what I said makes sense.
 

  1. When I said: “From my understanding for the feature to be activated is that some conditions have to be met. Now lets say you are driving in the summer in 100 degree heat and you have the AC running, the engine wont shut off.” That is something that I have heard/been told/read.

 

  1. “I have yet to try this technology in the city or in traffic but I will tell you this it would drive me nuts.” I have been told by other drivers who have this feature on their cars that is annoying.

 
Alex, you are right I have not had a car with the Eco Start/Stop feature and driving it in NYC. I will give you that. But I do know what annoys me and what doesn’t and the engine shutting down in NYC traffic would drive me insane.
 
Also for you to say in not so many words that I don’t know what I am talking about is insulting. It is implying that I have not used the feature at all where in fact I have. Yes not in city driving like NYC but I have used the feature in other small cities on LI and that is where my experience comes from.

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The isssue is Responsible Criticism

Andrew,
 
As has been pointed out a few times in this forum, the relationship between MBCA and MBUSA doesn't get any better when MBCA members criticize M-B products that MBUSA distributes to be sold in the USA.  Unfortunately, suggestions along these lines seem to fall on deaf ears around here, yours included. 
 
You seem not to like so many features of current M-B cars even though you really don't have any of your own new cars to speak from.  If not from personal experience then where does your expertise come from – the kind of expertise needed to fairly judge new M-B cars and explain such judgments to the rest of us?  Your enthusiasm is evident but clearer and more responsible expression of your ideas are needed. "Why don't they …." doesn't make it.
 
We members are not obligated to like everything that M-B makes. Respectfully worded criticism abounds in these forums, but for it to be useful to other members the criticism needs to be full, fair and valid.  And for it to be useful to MBUSA or M-B designers and engineers the criticism needs to be accurate and incisive.  "It's no good and I hate it" doesn't make it.  "I hate it because …." would be a step up. 
 
If I was connected with M-B or MBUSA I would take offense from some of your comments about M-B cars and policies.  Since you are an MBCA member writing in an MBCA forum, such critical comments, unopposed, would make me look unfavorably toward MBCA.
 
Furthermore, it has also been pointed out to you in the past that M-B is an established and responsible enterprise that employs talented and dedicated designers, engineers and competent workers worldwide.  For suggestions about improving M-B products to be taken seriously by any of the people involved in decision making that you'd like to reach, such suggestions need to be made fairly and accurately. Unsupported comments may be OK in Twitter but have limited usefulness in attracting attention from the people involved in decision making.  
 
When we criticize M-B products in an MBCA forum unfairly we mustn't complain when MBUSA makes policies that are unfavorable to MBCA.  It is in this spirit that my comment to your post about Eco Start/Stop was made.  Respectfully, please read this post again to help you remember it.

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Alex,   Again you insult me

Alex,
 
Again you insult me at every turn. Saying I don’t have experience in what I am talking about. I think I do. Ok yes I don’t have a newer car that has the Eco Start/Stop feature. Maybe at some point in my life I will get a new car that has it Ok there is nothing I can do about that. But when I bring my car or my parents cars in for service, I am given a loaner car and the loaner car will have the latest feature(s) that Mercedes brings to us. So that is where my experience comes from.
 
Maybe the relationship between MBUSA and MBCA is not in good standing because there are people on here (me being one of them) who do not like everything that Mercedes brings to us. It is called feedback and last I checked feedback is a good thing. Maybe someone at MBUSA on the corporate level should read some of the forums and see we say. See what we like and dislike and what they could improve on. I think that the club and the company need one another. But I guess that is discussion for another day and on another forum.
 
Yes, I know that Mercedes employs people that are talented but like I have said the engineers don’t always get it right. They have made some mistakes in the past and they have corrected them. Rust issues on the W123 & the W203 and the panel gaps on the W163 that spring to mind.
 
I am willing to bet that people from Mercedes regardless if it is in Germany or in here in the US have the same discussions. Seeing what they think their customers will like and dislike. Maybe discussing what they want in a future car. Sharing ideas.
Also if I were connected to MBUSA and I had a position that was high up and I could make changes I would read the posts and bring it to corporate and tell them to listen to MBCA members.
 
I feel that Mercedes-Benz Club of America best form of research to see what we like. I feel there is a huge difference between our members and the average person that buys a Mercedes because it is nice car to have. Our members buy the cars because we appreciate what Mercedes has to offer if that is technology, support or styling.
 
I don’t like many of the features because I feel it takes the away control from the driver. Some of these features take away control from the driver because we will get used to them. For example lets say you have a car that has DISTRONIC and the feature is on all the time and you get used to it. You use it day in and day out, almost like 2nd nature to you. Whatever you want to call it. And then lets say you bring the car into the dealer for service and for some reason you the mechanic turns it off and forgets to turn it on. You get back from the dealer put on cruse control and you think that DISTRONIC is enabled and then all of the sudden you find out it’s not You are SOL. The same applies to you if you have a POS rental and you have to remind your self that it is not a Mercedes let alone you have to remind your self it doesn’t have all of the safety features you have come accustomed to.
Come to think of it with features like DISTRONIC, PRE-SAFE or whatever, what are your legal obligations? Something my dad was wondering at StarTech2013. The point being that these features are a catch 22. Yes they do help us be safe by at the same time it takes away intuition. I look at it like GPS. The GPS may calculate the shortest route possible but you may know a shorter route.
 
But with that being said I think we have gone way off topic so I would like to post the question again.
 
Why can’t Mercedes allow us to turn off the Eco Start/Stop feature and leave it off like BMW or Audi when the driver restarts the car?
I understand it is to lower the carbon footprint or reduce the waste of fuel. Or so the say.

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PS

[QUOTE=Why can’t Mercedes allow us to turn off the Eco Start/Stop feature and leave it off like BMW or Audi when the driver restarts the car?
I understand it is to lower the carbon footprint or reduce the waste of fuel. Or so the say.

I think Mercedes not allowing the owners to disable something like the Eco Start/Stop feature and allowing it to default to whatever mode we want to is a good example of taking away the power away from the driver. I remember a few years ago that there was a whole threat on the C/S feature for the transmission and that Mercedes would have the Comfort mode as the default.
 
Only if Mercedes can allow us to customize our cars again. That would be great. 

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Quite a long discussion here.

Quite a long discussion here. I followed this with some interest as we looked at 2013 models of the C300 as well, this feature would be a show stopper for me.  I suppose given no other option one could get used to making the switch to override the ECO feature as part of one's normal routine, but that is a bit of an inconvenience on a premium car.  The truth is all manufacturers, even MB make choices from time to time that represent a means to an end - earlier on someone suggested giving MB this feedback equates to "biting the hand that feeds us" - I don't follow, as a customer I would think MB would be the one getting fed? 

In any event, I am comfortable enough in my knowledge of mechanics to know this is not a feature designed to assist the individual owner.  If one understands the basic that most engine wear occurs at startup this is hard to accept as a positive long term solution to a minute CAE average improvement - starter wear is a concern as well, but to a lesser degree.   As has been pointed out not every customer grew up around collector cars as a hobby or is a lifetime enthusiast - they just happen to enjoy a premium car.  This group may be more apt to accept this but hopefully owners such as NH DOC are sharing feedback with MB.  Will be interesting to see if these features have staying power or not, it would influence my buying decision and I will certainly take the time to research the system options in the future. 

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Steve,You make a fair point

Steve,
You make a fair point to be concerned about wear but bear in mind that with modern motors, they are microfinished to such fine tolerances that when you combine their internal tolerances with quality modern engine oils, let alone quality synthetic oils, wear on the block and valvetrain is likely negligible.  Certainly it is fair to say that starting them once they are warm would not be distinguishable from running them at idle.  And with the loaners we had, I noticed that they did not engage stop start until the motor had warmed into the center of the gauge.  Frankly, I would be more concerned about wear on the starter but even here there are ways to engineer around these issues.  Not to say there are zero reliability concerns but they are issues that can be addressed, and certainly have been addressed by the manufacturers in the context of, for example, hybrid cars.

As far as BMW goes, they have come up numerous times here.  Suffice to say I am a fan of BMW as well but BMW has taken a slightly different approach to fuel economy averages -- going with smaller, twin scroll turbo motors with direct injection, valvetronic, and variable valve timing.  Take the BMW N20 -- impressively powerful and efficient, and as Andrew has stated I believe start / stop can be disabled permanently.  However, while BMW may opt to offer the customer the ability to permanently disable the feature -- perhaps BMW did not need it because of the N20's impressive efficiency and power -- it is also fair to say that a small, highly turbocharged four cylinder motor with variable valve timing, valvetronic, and direct injection may very well have its own issues as it ages.  No free lunches as they say.  So as enthusiasts and consumers we have to make a judgment about whom we trust to get it right.  Right now, given our experience with our current E350, and the relatively distinguished engineering history of Mercedes Benz, I would give the firm the benefit of the doubt that its implementation of stop / start will be relatively reliable as the years go on.   Not to say the firm is perfect, and that adults that carry their own wallets can't buy something else if they don't like it.  But right now I think MB is doing a superb job with its cars and I wouldn't pass one up for this reason.  That's my view.  Others may differ.  It's just a car.

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In terms of a car accident

In terms of a car accident then it is just a car. But in terms of longevity it is an investment.

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rlombardo, I agree engine

rlombardo, I agree engine wear in general like just about every other aspect of build quality in today's cars is much improved - the changes in the last 20 years have been impressive - having spent my life around collector cars I always say "they don't make them like they used to, they are SO much better today!"  I am definitely a fan of technology - that said, this is a feature I would just as soon do without.  The quibble I have with MB is the lack of ability to shut down the ECO permanently, echoing Andrew's suggestion that it would make sense to be configurable to the driver's preference.  Not sure I would pass on a car on that alone, but it would be a factor. 

Also been following the various comparisons with Audi and BMW, and while I am a fan of those cars as well, having had examples of all 3 in the house until recently, I would agree Audis may show wear a bit quicker than MB.  Our 2008 BMW & Audi A-4 both hit the 50,000 mile mark this spring, the BMW still "feels" like 25,000 on the road, the Audi was showing its age and felt like, say,75,000, so we elected to replace that one.  So far, the C-300 feels rock solid but it just turned 13,000 miles to be fair.  This is my first MB that is a daily driver, so far we love the car, I have put around 1,000 miles on and have been unable to come up with any concerns yet.

Last, Andrew, I think mentioned the gent who bought his RR "in the 30s and kept it for his whole life" - here is the story, Mr. Swift and his legendary Springfield RR are both form my home town of West Hartford, CT and I would see this car from time to time growing up - it now resides in a museum in Springfield, MA, where RR built cars for around 10 years or so -

http://scottsdalesportsandclassics.wordpress.com/2012/12/27/man-drives-rolls-royce-for-78-years/

Those interested can Google "Allen Swift" for more info - when I grabbed the link I was not surprised to see this amazing story is still circulating the various car sites on the Internet. He did keep a modern driver "for trips to the grocer's" but drove this car quite regularly over the years.  Makes me wonder about long term MB ownership - I wonder if the club has ever polled members to see who the longest term owner is?

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Long Term Ownership

Steven Mackinnon wrote:
  Makes me wonder about long term MB ownership - I wonder if the club has ever polled members to see who the longest term owner is?

A long term owner poll sounds like a good idea.  It has not been done here before.

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syracusea wrote:In terms of a

syracusea wrote:
In terms of a car accident then it is just a car. But in terms of longevity it is an investment.

Andrew,
You strike me as about 10-15 years younger than I am so I offer this in the spirit of "learn from my mistakes" and not to be, or sound, condescending:  cars are not investments, not in any sense of the word.  They are tools you use to get around, and they can be enjoyable in providing that service.  

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I don't see how it is not an

I don't see how it is not an investment. I am not the one who will buy a car and keep it till it is not possible to keep the car anymore. That is why I think it is an investment. 

If someone just will lease a 4 years then to that person it is a car. 

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-Andrew 2009 NYC-Long Island Section

My Car: 2009 C300 4Matic Luxury Sedan

My Dads Car: 2014 C300 4Matic Luxury Sedan

My Moms car: 2009 E350 4Matic Station Wagon
              (soon to be my brothers car)
     

                   Keeping it in the family.

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Whom we trust to get it right

rlombardo wrote:
No free lunches as they say.  So as enthusiasts and consumers we have to make a judgment about whom we trust to get it right.  Right now, given our experience with our current E350, and the relatively distinguished engineering history of Mercedes Benz, I would give the firm the benefit of the doubt that its implementation of stop / start will be relatively reliable as the years go on.   Not to say the firm is perfect, and that adults that carry their own wallets can't buy something else if they don't like it.  But right now I think MB is doing a superb job with its cars and I wouldn't pass one up for this reason.  That's my view.

Mine too.

While no manufacturer is perfect, M-B has not made so many mistakes as to make us distrust it to the extent that we should beat it up just because a particular feature in some of its models is not to our personal preference.  Especially so with regard to the controversial Eco Stop/Start feature, which can probably be disabled with a programming change by the dealer. 

The accelerating rate of technology's encroachment on our personal control of tools and toys, cars included, is unstoppable.  Young people today spend more time on the computer than with all other activities, including driving their cars, so it stands to reason that personal control of the tools and toys we use will erode as time goes on.

The man-machine interface is leaning toward the machine.  If we don't like it we'll have to turn off the computer and start walking - or buy very old cars we'll have trouble keeping. I don't see any other way out.

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Alex, to clarify, I would

Alex, to clarify, I would suggest voicing one's opinion in a courteous manner as I would with any other business.  In theory that should help the mfg. decide what the customer wants - if you never tell them, they make assumptions.  One of the biggest criticisms auto historians have of Detroit and look where that got them.

I will say I agree on technology.  I was mildly amused when my son took delivery of his '12 VW Jetta last summer  - during the traditional sales walk through the sales person was able to explain the sound system and Ipod connectivity, "command center screen" and hands free phone link in great detail, however he never lifted the hood to show my son where the vital fluid levels were to be checked, etc.  He seemed surprised when I suggested that would be a nice idea...  Truth is, the boy will likely check his oil as often as I go to the dentist - and that is probably OK as long as you stick to the mfg. maintenance schedule at a minimum - times have changed, not necessarily bad, especially for those of us who remember seasonal tune ups, tires that last 15,000 miles, etc ...

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I had an interesting

I had an interesting experience (at least to me) with a 2013 C300 as a loaner and the ECO Start/Stop feature. Today I feel I got some good use out of the technology. (Still don't like it.) After I started the car the ECO light on the instrument cluster will illuminate green. Obviously telling me that is in use. But sometimes during driving the ECO light will illuminate yellow and when I come to a stop it wont turn off. Is this something new?

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-Andrew 2009 NYC-Long Island Section

My Car: 2009 C300 4Matic Luxury Sedan

My Dads Car: 2014 C300 4Matic Luxury Sedan

My Moms car: 2009 E350 4Matic Station Wagon
              (soon to be my brothers car)
     

                   Keeping it in the family.

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Problems with the ECO System

I have had nothing but problems with the ECO system since I bought my 2013 SL 550

The system only works about 10% of the time.   I have even had it turn off them on again while stopped at the same red light.

I have taken it in to Fletcher Jones in Newport Beach CA many time and have been told there is nothing wrong with the ECO system.

Took it in today and here is how they handled the continuing problem.........

I took my car in today because of the ECO system still failing to work properly.
 
The conversation with the Service Writer basically went as follows after they had the car for about 5 hours:
 
SA  We checked your ECO system and the computer says it works properly
ME  Did you drive it?   Did the ECO system light turn green and did the system work properly?
SA   We drove it.  The system light did not turn green and the system did not work, but the computer says the system is working properly.   You just are not meeting the right conditions/parameters for the ECO system to enguage.
ME   How far did you drive it?  I test drove a new S class while I was waiting and it's system worked on the test drive.
SA  We drove it for a little way.  The S class is a different car.
ME  Can you tell me which of the parameters are not being met to cause the system to not enguage.
SA  No, we are not the factory, we just sell the cars!    The computer says the system is working so we have to assume it is.   Sorry!
 
{sigh}    I just want what I pay for to work properly!!!  I LOVE my car, but, feel the car should work as advertised.
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Jim, if you read all of the

Jim, if you read all of the posts on this subject you will find out how much I hate this system. I have found that system has a rough start and idle. Non-Mercedes like.
 
Your SA maybe right in that some conditions have to be met for the system to work. The kind of driving and the air temperature outside for example. 

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-Andrew 2009 NYC-Long Island Section

My Car: 2009 C300 4Matic Luxury Sedan

My Dads Car: 2014 C300 4Matic Luxury Sedan

My Moms car: 2009 E350 4Matic Station Wagon
              (soon to be my brothers car)
     

                   Keeping it in the family.

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I've owned too many cars over

I've owned too many cars over the years that had this start-stop feature. But it had absolutely nothing to do with ECO. And sometimes it was just a stop feature. Wouldn't start again...

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949 598-4842 direct.

Prior MB cars: 2010 ML350 Bluetec, 2003 C320 Coupe, 1986 300SDL, 1971 300SEL 6.3, 1973 450SE, 1959 220S, 2011 C300

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You CAN shut it off, but it

You CAN shut it off, but it will default back to on the next time you start the car so if you don't like it and never want it to operate you have to remember to shut it off every time you start the car.  BMW has agreed to change their cars to default to last setting if owners want it which means if you shut it off once, it stays off until the next time you turn it on.  That, to me, is a reasonable way to implement it.  Then if it is something the owner doesn't want to use he can shut it off once and not be bothered with it ever again.

I agree. Audi has the same feature. Why cant Mercedes give us this?

Jim, has your issue been resolved on your SL?

Tom, when you have used cars with the ECO start/stop, why wouldn't the car start again?

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-Andrew 2009 NYC-Long Island Section

My Car: 2009 C300 4Matic Luxury Sedan

My Dads Car: 2014 C300 4Matic Luxury Sedan

My Moms car: 2009 E350 4Matic Station Wagon
              (soon to be my brothers car)
     

                   Keeping it in the family.

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Is there anyone in the

Is there anyone in the MBCA who is uncertain about Andrew's view of Eco Start Stop?  

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MTI wrote:Is there anyone in

MTI wrote:
Is there anyone in the MBCA who is uncertain about Andrew's view of Eco Start Stop?  

I don't see why anyone should question the uncertainty on my view of the ECO Start/Stop. They are my opinions. Either you like the feature and think that it is the next best thing since whatever or people don't like it.

In my opinion I feel this feature is useless. When I took the AMG Driving Academy in September, I asked the instructors in my group how they feel about the feature and they said they didn't like it. They felt it can do more damage to the car in the long run. I feel the same way. I don't see the point of the the ECO system in a V8 and up. In stop and go traffic with the engine starting and stopping, it can do more damage to the engine, the starter and the battery. Yes, I can understand that environmentalists love it and that it will give you "more" fuel economy. I know car manufactures are scrambling to meet Gov't deadlines for cars to meet higher MPG. I just feel this is hardly one of them. <---This is just my opinion.

I think I would not have a problem with it if Mercedes gave the option to turn it off and leave it as default for the next time time you turn on the car. Mercedes used to give us this feature with the W/S modes aka C/S modes. Now they don't with the E/S modes.

If BMW and Audi give its drivers the option to turn off the ECO start/stop feature, why cant Mercedes do the same?

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-Andrew 2009 NYC-Long Island Section

My Car: 2009 C300 4Matic Luxury Sedan

My Dads Car: 2014 C300 4Matic Luxury Sedan

My Moms car: 2009 E350 4Matic Station Wagon
              (soon to be my brothers car)
     

                   Keeping it in the family.

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 . . . and just in case there

I'm sorry, I must have misinterpreted your posts.  Tell us again, are you for or against the way Mercedes has deployed the Stop Start Eco function?

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MTI wrote:I'm sorry, I must

MTI wrote:
I'm sorry, I must have misinterpreted your posts.  Tell us again, are you for or against the way Mercedes has deployed the Stop Start Eco function?

If you have read my posts, it will say that I don't like the feature.

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-Andrew 2009 NYC-Long Island Section

My Car: 2009 C300 4Matic Luxury Sedan

My Dads Car: 2014 C300 4Matic Luxury Sedan

My Moms car: 2009 E350 4Matic Station Wagon
              (soon to be my brothers car)
     

                   Keeping it in the family.

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I agree with syracusea

The start-stop function is irritating.  If I were to buy a car with that "feature" I would certainly find a way to disable it either as a default or permanently.  It may be functional in green terms but cannot be good for the engine and is just asking for trouble some time in the future.

We of the diesel persuasion have a similar cross to bear with urea injection on the newer cars.  It is a sop to the environmental weenies and does nothing for the car except to add expense.

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That is a good point the with

That is a good point the with AdBlu for diesel cars. You are limited to the number or starts and once you use your last start, you are SOL.
I am sure that if anyone found a to modify the ECO start/stop feature, they would void the warranty. You are right as well, that down the road, it possibly cant be good for the engine in the long run when it is somewhere between 50,000-100,000 plus miles. I feel that Mercedes will get wise to this idea and give the option that BMW and Audi drivers have.
It is similar to the credit card sized key that Mercedes had when the S-Class first came out. It was nice that it can fit in your wallet, but people forgot that it was there and when they would sit down, they would break. Also with this, people would forget to give the key to the valet attendant. I  think that is why Mercedes has the Keyless-Go system. It gives people the option turn-on and turn-off the car by turning the key when they remove the button.

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-Andrew 2009 NYC-Long Island Section

My Car: 2009 C300 4Matic Luxury Sedan

My Dads Car: 2014 C300 4Matic Luxury Sedan

My Moms car: 2009 E350 4Matic Station Wagon
              (soon to be my brothers car)
     

                   Keeping it in the family.

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Mercedes-Benz rewarded with EPA credits for adopting start-stop

I know this is more or less an ongoing and controversial subject, but this came on my feed when I just signed on to the website.

My take on this article is that the EPA is uncertain how beneficial the ECO Start/Stop feature is considering that the car doesn't always shut down after every stop and that people can turn the car off.

http://www.epa.gov/otaq/regs/ld-hwy/greenhouse/documents/420r14025.pdf

October 8, 2014 - 8:01 pm ET 

Mercedes-Benz will get extra credit on U.S. fuel economy standards for putting start-stop systems in its luxury cars -- but not as much as the automaker had hoped.

In a ruling released in September, the EPA signaled that it remains uncertain about the benefits of start-stop systems, which usually turn off the engine when a vehicle comes to a stop and restarts it when the driver lifts his or her foot from the brake.

But the ruling suggests the EPA is willing to reward car companies in the form of credits -- good toward compliance with the agency’s standards -- if they can prove that their customers’ start-stop systems are indeed cutting pollution.

“Retroactive credits may be granted,” the EPA says in its ruling, “if supported by actual real-world customer vehicle data.”

Start-stop systems, sold by Tier One suppliers such as Bosch, Continental, Delphi, Denso and Valeo, are a key part of auto companies’ strategy for meeting strict new emissions regulations around the world. That includes the latest U.S. standards, which require an automakers' new cars and trucks achieve an average of 54.5 mpg by the 2025 model year.

Getting credit for the use of start-stop systems is especially important to Mercedes-Benz, which relies on selling luxury cars with powerful gasoline engines.

The company paid $349 million in fines for falling short of U.S. fuel economy requirements from the 1985-2011 model years. But under new fuel economy rules, paying fines is no longer an option.

To help its case, Mercedes-Benz submitted a petition last September seeking “off cycle” credits, which reward automakers that improve efficiency through technology that does not show up on the standard city-and-highway test cycle.

In last month’s ruling, the EPA gave Mercedes-Benz most of the extra credits that it requested -- for use of high-efficiency lighting, ventilated seats and infrared glazing on windows -- but drastically scaled back its request for start-stop credits.

Without submitting an application, car companies can receive credits worth 2.5 grams per mile for cars and 4.4 grams per mile for trucks.

Mercedes had asked for 9.1 to 19 grams per mile, citing data showing that vehicles spend more time idling than the EPA originally thought.

“There is a real savings here, and we have been able to definitively prove it,” William Craven, the general manager of regulatory affairs at Mercedes-Benz parent company Daimler AG, said last year in an interview with Automotive News.

Regulators largely agreed with that, but fretted about something else: how often the start-stop system actually turns off the engine. When the climate control system needs power, for instance, the engine may not idle.

As a result, the EPA awarded Mercedes-Benz credits equal to just 3.6 to 4.3 grams per mile -- only a little more than what the company could have received without submitting a petition.

In its ruling, the agency said that it used a “conservative” estimate of the system’s effectiveness at turning off the engine. It asked Mercedes-Benz to come back with more specific data, suggesting that Mercedes-Benz may well prevail because the agency is “very likely underestimating the overall system effectiveness.”

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-Andrew 2009 NYC-Long Island Section

My Car: 2009 C300 4Matic Luxury Sedan

My Dads Car: 2014 C300 4Matic Luxury Sedan

My Moms car: 2009 E350 4Matic Station Wagon
              (soon to be my brothers car)
     

                   Keeping it in the family.

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After nearly 2 years living

After nearly 2 years living with it I can say I have not warmed to Eco Stop/Start.  I still shut it off every time I drive the car, and if I forget to I am reminded to at the first stop after it warms up.  I just really dislike this feature and don't care for the fact that it is forced upon owners without a way to permanently shut it off.  Another reason I am looking forward to returning the C300 when its lease ends.  While our new Audi A6 is also equipped with this feature, they had the consideration to allow the driver to shut it off once and it stays off until the driver turns it back on.  If Audi and BMW can do this why can't Mercedes?

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NHDOC wrote:After nearly 2

NHDOC wrote:
After nearly 2 years living with it I can say I have not warmed to Eco Stop/Start.  I still shut it off every time I drive the car, and if I forget to I am reminded to at the first stop after it warms up.  I just really dislike this feature and don't care for the fact that it is forced upon owners without a way to permanently shut it off.  Another reason I am looking forward to returning the C300 when its lease ends.  While our new Audi A6 is also equipped with this feature, they had the consideration to allow the driver to shut it off once and it stays off until the driver turns it back on.  If Audi and BMW can do this why can't Mercedes?

I agree and I cant stress that enough. It is an imperfect system in that the driver can just turn it off and Mercedes could learn from other car companies like Audi and BMW.

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-Andrew 2009 NYC-Long Island Section

My Car: 2009 C300 4Matic Luxury Sedan

My Dads Car: 2014 C300 4Matic Luxury Sedan

My Moms car: 2009 E350 4Matic Station Wagon
              (soon to be my brothers car)
     

                   Keeping it in the family.

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Although I've only had the

Although I've only had the 2014 for about 3 weeks, I also find the Eco stop/start feature annoying. The other day in traffic, it stopped and restarted 3 times in less than 15 seconds. This may be good for fuel economy under certain circumstances, but it can't be good for the car under these circumstances.

When not in stop and go situations, I find it to be less bothersome, but when it starts going on and off, I simply switch it OFF. If I could turn it off permanently, I would!

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I have said many times and I

I have said many times and I will keep saying this that I cant stand the ECO feature. But maybe Mercedes is learning. I am not sure but i think with the Agility Select feature, you can set the car up that the ECO start/stop feature wont be active (if you want) in the individual setting. BUT every time you start the car, the car will automatically select to Comfort ("C") mode. I am not sure if this is on the W222 but is on the W205.

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-Andrew 2009 NYC-Long Island Section

My Car: 2009 C300 4Matic Luxury Sedan

My Dads Car: 2014 C300 4Matic Luxury Sedan

My Moms car: 2009 E350 4Matic Station Wagon
              (soon to be my brothers car)
     

                   Keeping it in the family.

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