not-front-rule

The Crossfire Is A Mercedes SLK??

Welcome to the Mercedes-Benz Club of America Forums
Here, you'll find members en masse who can talk, guide, answer or listen to your Mercedes-Benz related questions and comments. Participation in the forums is free to Club members. If you're a guest of this site, you'll have access to our read-only discussions. Like what you see? Join the Club to get full Q&A privileges. If this is your first visit, be sure to check out our FAQ page.  To start viewing messages, select the forum that you want to visit from the selection below.

Forum Jump

50 replies [Last post]
System Admin
monarchd's picture
Offline

Posts:
9306

In another thread on RWD, Brian McGreevy posted:

"Mercedes is not Chrysler and the parts shared are only a couple percent depending on the model. It is Infinity and Nissan that share approximately 90% of the non-cosmetic parts."

I thought I had read otherwise, which prompted some research, and I found the following article on the Chrysler Crossfire (which, BTW, I think is a great looking car..and yes, it is indeed RWD...with HUGE tires) in Road & Track, dated July 2003:

http://www.caranddriver.com/article.asp?section_id=3&article_id=6747

According to this article, which may or may not be correct, the Crossfire has "Benz bones and powertrain", a 3.2-liter Mercedes V-6, the same platform as the SLK class roadster, suspension pieces from Stuttgart, with the upper control arms from a previous-generation E-class sedan, and the lower from the C-class sedan and SLK, multilink rear suspension form the SLK, and the SLK 320's brakes.

In addition it uses the recircualting-ball steeering system used in the SLK, and the transmission is the SLK's as are some of the controls.

Basically, they sum up by saying that the Crossfire is a Mercedes SLK in dressed-down form, only $11,000 less...with technology that is about to be made obsolete by the new SLK.

IMO, this seems to me to be Benz with a Chrysler name..or is it the other way around?? And..will they soon all be one and the same?

:rolleyes:

Share this
Member
4point5's picture
Charlottesville, VA
Offline
Joined: March 11th, 1993

Posts:
185

Vehicles
2001 E320 Sedan

I doubt they will be the same in the future- key point here is that the Crossfire uses platform (just look at the similar dimensions and footprint) and bits from the current SLK (that v6), to be made obsolete when the new SLK is intro'd very soon.

I think you'll see the Benz content trickle down to Chrysler cars about a generation behind, like the crossfire/slk relationship, when it happens at all.

__________________

2001 E320

1974 240D 4-speed

1971 350SL 4-speed

Member
vince's picture
Chesapeake, VA
Offline
Joined: September 1st, 1973

Posts:
1168

Vehicles
2014 ML350
1999 E430

D-C strategy is to maximize component sharing while using different platforms. This in contrast to the Ford, GM, VW-Audi, Nissan, Toyota strategy of sharing platforms. At those makers a Sable is a Taurus under the skin, a Lincoln LS is a Jag S type, a Pontiac something is a Chevy something, a Cadillac XLR is a C-6 Corvette, a VW Passat is an Audi A-4, a Lexus ES is a Camry, etc. In the case of D-C, Chrysler develops it's own platform and uses components from M-B. There won't be much difference in engines and transmissions, but with axles only the basic design is shared, with Chrysler saving cash on design development. In fact, when you don't share platforms, you really must alter nearly every component in an axle assembly to fit the platform. The Crossfire follows this strategy. It allows the individual companies a lot more freedom in designing vehicles that are unique (at least to the extent that cars can be unique these days). Some may not see the difference but none other than Toyota must think D-C is on to something. They have announced that they are separating Lexus and Toyota. Lexus will do it's own platforms and share components with Toyota.

Gotta love this global economy. I really enjoyed all the distinctive makers of the 50' and 60s. Every country had it's own wonderful quirks that showed up in their cars. Don't get me wrong - todays cars are better in nearly every way, but there is so much blandness.

__________________

Vincent Canepa Member since 1973 1999 E430, Smoke Silver w/Parchment full leather  2014 ML350 4Matic Diamond Silver w/Auburn Brown-Black leather

Member
vince's picture
Chesapeake, VA
Offline
Joined: September 1st, 1973

Posts:
1168

Vehicles
2014 ML350
1999 E430

One other thought about platforms. The platform is the most important part of the car. On a unit body, it is the frame. The platform determines the characteristics of the car from crash saefty to handling - virtually everything. So, you could hang all the components of one car, such as the SLK on another platform, and the two cars could end up very different.

Platform sharing saves cost in the manufacturing process because the same assembly machinery can be used (or easily modified). Even if the machinery is purchased for a different plant, the procurement can be planned to save cost because of the economies of scale.

__________________

Vincent Canepa Member since 1973 1999 E430, Smoke Silver w/Parchment full leather  2014 ML350 4Matic Diamond Silver w/Auburn Brown-Black leather

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

Quote:
Originally posted by vince
D-C strategy is to maximize component sharing while using different platforms. This in contrast to the Ford, GM, VW-Audi, Nissan, Toyota strategy of sharing platforms. At those makers a Sable is a Taurus under the skin, a Lincoln LS is a Jag S type, a Pontiac something is a Chevy something, a Cadillac XLR is a C-6 Corvette, a VW Passat is an Audi A-4, a Lexus ES is a Camry, etc. In the case of D-C, Chrysler develops it's own platform and uses components from M-B.

However, a quote form the aforementioned article states as follows:

........ The bones, as we’ve already suggested, are robust, with rigidity characteristics that are not entirely astonishing, in light of their origin: the same platform supports the Mercedes SLK-class roadster. The wheelbase of the two cars is identical at 94.5 inches, and the Crossfire interior-design team was limited by the same hard points: notably, the front and rear bulkheads, making the cockpit a little snug for drivers six feet or taller. More on this later.
Although the SLK is far from rubbery, its rigidity doesn’t compare with the Crossfire’s, which tells you something about cars with fixed roofs versus cars whose roofs are foldable...."

This article seems to indicate that the Crossfire and SLK DO share the same platform. How exactly does that dovetail with D-C strategy to use different platforms?

Member
vince's picture
Chesapeake, VA
Offline
Joined: September 1st, 1973

Posts:
1168

Vehicles
2014 ML350
1999 E430

The Car & Driver article you mention does not jive with info I have read regarding hard points and bulkheads, nor does the statement about sharing the platform. However, I have never heard complaints about space in the SLK, whereas every article I have read complains about the Crossfire. C & D seems to be implying that the lack of space is inherited from the SLK, but they never said that in any test they did of the SLK. One might think that two cars on the same platform would share the same basic internal dimensions (distance between bulkheads for instance). I can think of tons of cars that share a 94.5" wheelbase including a bunch of Ferraris, so I'm not sure what that proves. I'm not sure what to derive from the fact that the one is $11,000 cheaper. One is a roadster with an expensive folding hardtop and the other one is a hardtop that should be far cheaper to build. Heck, why should anyone pay extra for a Lexus ES if it is really the same platform as a Camry?

At any rate, if indeed C & D is correct, M-B is hedging their statements. It should be remembered that the new SLK is out in Europe and has replaced the old SLK platform.

And I never said platform sharing was bad, per se, because done right it can work, as with the Passat/A-4. However, makers seem wary, as VW/Audi has announced that the next generation Passat will not share a platform with an Audi product and Toyota is headed in a different direction.

And I screwed up. I never noticed who originated this post. I'm outta here.

__________________

Vincent Canepa Member since 1973 1999 E430, Smoke Silver w/Parchment full leather  2014 ML350 4Matic Diamond Silver w/Auburn Brown-Black leather

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

Quote:
Originally posted by 4point5
I doubt they will be the same in the future- key point here is that the Crossfire uses platform (just look at the similar dimensions and footprint) and bits from the current SLK (that v6), to be made obsolete when the new SLK is intro'd very soon.

I think you'll see the Benz content trickle down to Chrysler cars about a generation behind, like the crossfire/slk relationship, when it happens at all.

In another Fortune article, titled "Can The Germans Rescue Chrysler",

http://www.fortune.com/fortune/investing/articles/0,15114,372737,00.html

it seems that Chrysler sharing the MB mechanicals is Dieter Zetsche's game plan for saving Chrysler..as evidenced in the following excerpt....

".......But Zetsche has a unique asset to help his company regain the edge: Mercedes-Benz technology. Zetsche insists that Mercedes will put aside fears of diluting its premium brand and begin to share components with Chrysler. New rear-wheel versions of the Chrysler Concorde and 300M, due in 2004 and 2005, respectively, will make use of Mercedes electronics, transmissions, seat frames, and other parts. "If Zetsche can sprinkle some Mercedes magic on the Chrysler brand without damaging the premium status of Mercedes, Chrysler has a shot at doing well in the future," says Detroit manufacturing consultant Ron Harbour."

Combine that with MB's use of Proquest Diagnostics, and Delphi electronics...it seems the homoginization is on track to continue. However, the up side, it may ultimately result in an MB line that is better than ever before....in having no choice but to keep on it's toes to stay ahead of it's supposed "lesser" out of date version...a Chrysler no less.

Time will tell if Chrysler's become merely a more affordable Mercedes, with only the body styles kept different in an attempt to maintain some semblance of brand ID.

However, I'm not too sure how pleased a high end Benz owner would be knowing that as soon as his/her model is redesigned by Benz..the same car will be reborn in the skin of a Chrysler...and cost far less.

:rolleyes:

Member
vince's picture
Chesapeake, VA
Offline
Joined: September 1st, 1973

Posts:
1168

Vehicles
2014 ML350
1999 E430

I know I'm breaking my promise, but I just found this in the January 2004 Road & Track:

"One of the first metamorphic yields of the Mercedes-Benz/Chrysler amalgamation, the Crossfire is built on a UNIQUE (caps mine) chassis by Karmann using many C-Class parts, including the German's 3.2-liter, 215-bhp V-6 and 6-speed manual, with a 5-speed automatic optional."

Who knows. I am very sure Karmann builds the car because that has been widely reported. The only Karmann cars I ever owned rusted terribly (BMW 2000CS, BMW 2800CS). I hope they are better now.

Sorry about the promise, see you later.

__________________

Vincent Canepa Member since 1973 1999 E430, Smoke Silver w/Parchment full leather  2014 ML350 4Matic Diamond Silver w/Auburn Brown-Black leather

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

And here is a quote from Edmunds.com:

"We have to give Daimler-Benz credit for what seems like a solid business plan. Take the outgoing Mercedes mechanicals (the SLK gets redesigned next year) and slide them under all-new bodies with Chrysler emblems. As the Crossfire (and Pacifica) proves, even Mercedes' "leftovers" feel as good or better than many of the competitors' state-of-the-art platforms. Mercedes gets to further amortize the SLK's original platform costs, Chrysler gets an all-new model with exceptional ride and handling qualities and the consumer gets a premium-feeling product for $35,000. Even more compelling is the fact that Chrysler already has a convertible version of the Crossfire in the works. Makes sense really when you consider the original platform started out as a drop top."

All things considered, seems to me that pehaps originally D-C did not want to come right out and say the Crossfire is a basically a recycled SLK...platform and all. After all, some SLK owners may get their feathers ruffled...understandably so. Who knows what is really true. All I do know is that just about everything I could find on the web about the Crossfire touts the paltform as being that of the SLK..and, as usual..perception is everything..especially if that "perception" is helping to sell the car.

Member
Tom Hanson's picture
Arrowhead Farms, CA
Offline
Joined: February 20th, 1997

Posts:
4790

Vehicles
1970 300SEL 6.3

As I've said in other posts, you could call this car a
"Cross dresser".

__________________

Tom Hanson
Supervisor, Parts Operations
Mercedes-Benz Classic Center USA
MBUSA, LLC
thomas.hanson@mbusa.com
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

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

Quote:
Originally posted by Tom Hanson
As I've said in other posts, you could call this car a
"Cross dresser".

Touché! :)

Guest
Peter Guenther 1's picture
Offline

Posts:
653

The good news is they did not use any ML stuff

Member
Tom Hanson's picture
Arrowhead Farms, CA
Offline
Joined: February 20th, 1997

Posts:
4790

Vehicles
1970 300SEL 6.3

P.S. I can't fit in a Crossfire either. I'm just a bit too tall. My atature has forced me into being a sedan kind of guy with a coupe personality. Not such a bad thing, I guess ??

__________________

Tom Hanson
Supervisor, Parts Operations
Mercedes-Benz Classic Center USA
MBUSA, LLC
thomas.hanson@mbusa.com
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

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

Quote:
Originally posted by Peter Guenther
The good news is they did not use any ML stuff

Not yet...but perhaps in the next generation of Chrysler SUV's....after all, MB is going to have quite a few ML spare parts left over once the redesign comes out in 2005....:rolleyes:

Member
dan holm's picture
New Canton, VA
Offline
Joined: January 20th, 1989

Posts:
412

Vehicles
1995 E320 Wagon

It's quite smart using old MB technology and platforms. Think of the cost savings.

A new Chrysler based on an old Mercedes, is better than a new Chrysler, based on who knows what.

The SLK chassis is a very competent platform. The Crossfire drop top has been introduced as well.

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

Quote:
Originally posted by dan holm
It's quite smart using old MB technology and platforms. Think of the cost savings.

A new Chrysler based on an old Mercedes, is better than a new Chrysler, based on who knows what.

The SLK chassis is a very competent platform. The Crossfire drop top has been introduced as well.

Overall, I have to say that I do indeed agree...except with regard to the ML's...which have been so problematic I think even the current Chrysler SUV's might be reliable.
In addition, if this becomes the norm (existing MB's recycled in a Chrysler skin when new MB models roll out), what effect will that have on residual/resale value of the existing MB that is also being sold as a brand new Chrysler, dressed in Chrysler clothes? :confused:

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

I just happened to come across this post. Since it begins by incorrectly refering to a comment I made in a previous post ...let me correct the comment. That Miss Hutton incorrectly posted.

I had earlier refered that Mercedes is not a Chrysler. This was in relation to a negitive comment made about my S class. I believe the comment was..." S as in ChySler". It was pretty obvious that this was simply a jealous statement...however it inferred that Mercedes was using Chrysler parts.

By making this type of statement the implication is that Mercedes are cheapening their cars. As I said before, this simply is not the case.

I never said that Chrysler was not using parts from Mercedes. Chrysler is wise to use anything that they can from Mercedes. It will be a great help to their lack luster image and create superior cars.

Besides...we aren't talking about Nissan and Infinity here.

Brian :D

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

Quote:
Originally posted by Brian McGreevy
I just happened to come across this post. Since it begins by incorrectly refering to a comment I made in a previous post ...let me correct the comment. That Miss Hutton incorrectly posted.

I had earlier refered that Mercedes is not a Chrysler. This was in relation to a negitive comment made about my S class. I believe the comment was..." S as in ChySler". It was pretty obvious that this was simply a jealous statement...however it inferred that Mercedes was using Chrysler parts.

By making this type of statement the implication is that Mercedes are cheapening their cars. As I said before, this simply is not the case.

I never said that Chrysler was not using parts from Mercedes. Chrysler is wise to use anything that they can from Mercedes. It will be a great help to their lack luster image and create superior cars.

Besides...we aren't talking about Nissan and Infinity here.

Brian :D

Hi Brian,

Glad to see you managed to find this thread. And actually, I wasn't talking about Nissan and Infiniti. You were..apparently needing to prove something...the result of which is still wanting.
In addition, since I cut and pasted your statement directly from your original post, please share how that could be "incorrect".

Now...as for your post to which I referred, an excerpt follows:

"Oh, but the clown girl has forgotten...Mercedes is not Chrysler and the parts shared are only a couple percent depending on the model. It is Infinity and Nissan that share approximately 90% of the non-cosmetic parts....."

No sugar, Sherlock! As I would imagine that you SHOULD already be aware, Infiniti was born out of Nissan simply to create a more upscale luxury line based upon the Nissan premise and reputation...so of course they have Nissan bones. That is indeed one of the pluses of the Infiniti..it's a Nissan...only more luxurious...therefore, it's literally a non-issue.

Next? We have your position is that "Mercedes is not Chrysler". Correct?

Now, let's go onto the rest of your statement:

"...and the parts shared are only a couple percent depending on the model..."

So...exactly what is it that you were attempting to say? Mercedes DOES use Chrysler parts in Mercedes Benz cars anointed with the tri-star? If so, that is something that I heard to be rumored, but wasn't quite certain if indeed it was true. By all means, expound.

However, be that as it may, in the reverse, at least one CHRYSLER model is sharing far, far more than a "couple percent" of parts....and is far closer to the 90% that you claim that Infiniti and Nissan share.

Now...take MB...long known to be the gold standard of luxury, reliability, safety and engineering innovation....did you note MB was recently awarded by, I believe, "Motor Trend" for said reasons?

And NOW they are merging their technology with a manufacturer that has always been considered to be far, far inferior, it's almost almost akin to dumbing down..instead moving up...as in Nissan to Infiniti. This of course might be a good thing in the long run for the Chrysler name...that remains to be seen. However, IMO, it really is not such a plus for the MB name...when some Chryslers are really MB's in Chrysler suits...with no way of knowing for sure if the reverse is not also on the agenda.

Sort of seems as if it will take away whatever panache MB has managed to maintain despite all of the reliability issues.

Now for your next statement:

"I had earlier refered that Mercedes is not a Chrysler. This was in relation to a negitive comment made about my S class. I believe the comment was..." S as in ChySler". It was pretty obvious that this was simply a jealous statement...however it inferred that Mercedes was using Chrysler parts.

By making this type of statement the implication is that Mercedes are cheapening their cars. As I said before, this simply is not the case."

LOL!! I hate to break this to you...but you just proved my point.

You took the S Class comment as being negative...a comment I made in response to your factual statement that an Infiniti is a Nissan.

Any "negativity" that you apparently percieved is therefore more about what you inferred...which is IMO exactly what many other MB drivers will infer when the general buying public crow about their crossdresser MB in a Chrysler suit. Realistically, the average buyer won't know that their last year model MB in a Chrysler suit is not new MB technology....nor will they care. In addition, there really is no way for anyone to equivocally KNOW what parts are actually being used in which cars. They will only know that they bought a Benz in a Chrysler skin....because that is what has been marketed to them..for less money than they would have spent to have the tri-star...period.

Consider that the general buying public (and not the enthusuaists, collectors and/or aficiandos) is what ultimatley determines residual and resale values, and the picture should become a tad more clear. You can't un-ring a bell once it's been rung... once again, it's the perception, and perception is everything.

Couple that with the fact that Daimler Chrysler has a rocky road ahead..with earnings down sharply, strikes affecting their plants...and the Kerkorian trial's resumption...and it seems plausible that although they may make decisions that will ultimatley benefit the company as a whole (ESPECIALLY the financially ailing Chrysler division), those same decisions could very well result in adveresly affecting the MB image in the process...and residual and resale values are indeed an intrinsic part of that image.

And..as for THIS question:

"So, how much sand can you put in your rice burner?????

LMAO!!!!!

Brian"

I can honestly admit that I don't know. Pet names for auto manufacturer's that border on being ethnic slurs are definitely not MY area of expertise...so why don't YOU tell ME?

:D

Member
dan holm's picture
New Canton, VA
Offline
Joined: January 20th, 1989

Posts:
412

Vehicles
1995 E320 Wagon

I'd love to see these two in a wrestling match... on second thought naaa.

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

Quote:
Originally posted by dan holm
I'd love to see these two in a wrestling match... on second thought naaa.

Wise decision. :)

Member
dan holm's picture
New Canton, VA
Offline
Joined: January 20th, 1989

Posts:
412

Vehicles
1995 E320 Wagon

Thanks

Member
cchalverson's picture
Dallas, TX
Offline
Joined: May 11th, 1992

Posts:
55

Vehicles
1984 300SD

Can it be said that the Crossfire is what the SLK used to be? Ya, I definitely think that will have some marketing blowback on the MBZ brand, but they must have considered that, don't you think?

__________________

Member
4point5's picture
Charlottesville, VA
Offline
Joined: March 11th, 1993

Posts:
185

Vehicles
2001 E320 Sedan

So, should I be antagonistic and bring in the notion that the Crossfire is styled exactly after the Audi TT coupe...?!

Nah, didn't think so....

:eek:

I think it is pretty safe to say that there are no Chrysler parts in new M-Benz's, and that some Chrysler models will benefit from some M-B content (if from previous generations).

So yes, the Crossfire has some (okay, a lot) of SLK bits, but from the outgoing version. The new SLK will be all M-B, and parts from it will not show up in same model year (read: new) Chryslers.

This platform sharing and American and German company merging thingees are confusing...

__________________

2001 E320

1974 240D 4-speed

1971 350SL 4-speed

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

Quote:
Originally posted by cchalverson
Can it be said that the Crossfire is what the SLK used to be? Ya, I definitely think that will have some marketing blowback on the MBZ brand, but they must have considered that, don't you think?

Yes...it seems as if they have considered that....to some degree. In the April 2001 Fortune Magazine article, "Can The Germans Save Chrysler?",

http://www.fortune.com/fortune/investing/articles/0,15114,372737,00.html

about Chrysler President and CEO Dieter Zetsche it states:

"...... But Zetsche has a unique asset to help his company regain the edge: Mercedes-Benz technology. Zetsche insists that Mercedes will put aside fears of diluting its premium brand and begin to share components with Chrysler. New rear-wheel versions of the Chrysler Concorde and 300M, due in 2004 and 2005, respectively, will make use of Mercedes electronics, transmissions, seat frames, and other parts. "If Zetsche can sprinkle some Mercedes magic on the Chrysler brand without damaging the premium status of Mercedes, Chrysler has a shot at doing well in the future," says Detroit manufacturing consultant Ron Harbour.

By 2003, Zetsche hopes to reduce Chrysler's breakeven point to 83% of plant capacity, vs. 113% today. Whether he succeeds will depend not just on his own efforts but also on the health of the U.S. car market. So far in 2001, sales have outperformed expectations, but Schrempp, for one, believes they will turn down sharply before the year is over."

Fast forward to now...almost 3 years later. Although Zetsche apparently did convince his fellow Daimler execs to allow the crossover, now the true test of the impact will be in the market place. IMO, with MB and Chrysler JD Powers ratings as low as they are (both below industry average) Chrysler was still rated 5 notches or so above MB. So perhaps faced with such perception, combined with the earnings drop, they don't really care about the impact on the MB brand name...as long as they can sell more cars..and make more money...which they apparently need.

To muddy the waters even further...it seems as if there is platform sharing between Mitsubishi and Chrysler as well...not to mention the impending use of Delphi (aka GM) electronics in the "C" Class as of 2005, and domestic Proquest Automotive for diagnostics...and of course the vans built in China.
Globalization? Yes. Teutonic as it's come to be known? No.

Consequently, IMO, as time goes on, the brands will become indistinguishable, with consumer purchase decisions being driven more by preference for style (IMO, a big player in the now and near future), body type, options etc. between the three, rather than "brand".

This may very well result in better automobiles being produced by Daimler Chrysler AG across the board...which will certainly benefit the buying public...which is a good thing. However, it won't do much for the MB as a brand when it comes to demanding high prices..unless they manage to once again to somehow roll out MB's that are CONSISTANTLY head and shoulders above it's Chrysler and/or Mitsubishi siblings in quality and reliability...as well as style and engineering...because for the consumer, the latter are superfluous without the former.

Last but not least, this is one of the reasons why I believe they have introduced the Maybach...absent the tri-star. It would not surprise me at all if Maybach becomes the new gold standard of automobiles, with other, more practical models added to the line, taking over the spot once held by MB as THE automotive gem to which enthusiasts aspire.

After all, too many folks can afford MB's these days..they are no longer the car of the elite and/or wealthy, and seem destined to become a melange of brands..rather than just one.

My guess is that things will stay this way...eventually causing many MB owners to pine away, hoping to be able to some day afford the Maybach line.

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

Quote:
Originally posted by 4point5
So, should I be antagonistic and bring in the notion that the Crossfire is styled exactly after the Audi TT coupe...?!

Nah, didn't think so....

:eek:

I think it is pretty safe to say that there are no Chrysler parts in new M-Benz's, and that some Chrysler models will benefit from some M-B content (if from previous generations).

This platform sharing and American and German company merging thingees are confusing...

LOL! Good point about the TT....I hadn't realized it before.

Now..maybe there are no Chrysler parts in MB's...but I seem to recall reading somewhere that DaimlerChrysler AG had pooled together with other auto makers in buying certain parts in order to maximize cost efficiency. If I can find the article again, I'll post here.

In addition, one day when whining about my gas gauge (BTW, which I'm sad to say, has just started to malfunction AGAIN..although it actually did work for the past 6 months or so)
an MB tech told me that many of the car manufacturers get the parts for the gas gauges from the same OEM supplier, including MB...therefore MB was not the only one having the problem. Perhaps Tom Hanson can shed some light on whether or not this is true.

And yes..all this share and share alike is confusing indeed.
:rolleyes:

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

I found the above mentioned article. It's titled "Merger Straining Mercedes" dated 10/2003.

http://www.delawareonline.com/newsjournal/business/2003/10/08mergerstraining.html

It starts out with:

Merger straining Mercedes
Many say Chrysler unit has affected quality, status
By CHRISTINE TIERNEY
The Detroit News
10/08/2003

STUTTGART, Germany -- Nearly five years since the Daimler-
Chrysler union, venerable Mercedes-Benz is creaking under the pressure of sustaining the DaimlerChrysler AG automotive empire.......

and goes on further down in the article to say:

.....Publicly, Mercedes executives say their plans have not been affected by Chrysler's cash burn - estimated by analysts at more than $1 billion this year. Furthermore, efforts to wring out more savings through joint purchasing efforts with Chrysler and other brands seem to be hurting Mercedes' quality.
That's Mercedes' biggest problem now. In a recent survey of German car owners conducted by Auto Motor und Sport motoring magazine, Lexus, Porsche, Honda and BMW captured the four top slots, while Mercedes came in 17th. In J.D. Power and Associates' 2003 U.S. vehicle dependability survey, Mercedes sank to 26th place, from 16th a year ago.

"It's such a stark contrast to where they had been. In 1990, they were No. 1," said Brian Walters, J.D. Power's research director. "They just haven't been able to keep up with the likes of Lexus and Toyota as a whole."

So..anyone want to venture an opinion on exactly what "joint purchasing efforts with Chrysler and other brands" means?
I have mine....and it would certainly explain MY car....which sure LOOKS like an MB....tri-star and all.

:rolleyes:

Member
Chappy's picture
Alpharetta, GA
Offline
Joined: March 6th, 1995

Posts:
918

Vehicles
2002 CLK55 AMG
1995 E320 Wagon
1991 300CE

Can't wait to see the new Smart Plymouth :p

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

Quote:
Originally posted by Chappy
Can't wait to see the new Smart Plymouth :p

ROFLOL! The epitome of the oxymoron, perhaps?;)

Member
4point5's picture
Charlottesville, VA
Offline
Joined: March 11th, 1993

Posts:
185

Vehicles
2001 E320 Sedan

Lorhutton-

I was just doing some research (on the other M-B forum shhh, don't tell) and I saw your post about the troubles with your c230k- I can see why you take the position you have in the previous posts of this very thread-

The newest M-B I have ever owned is one of my current rides, an 84!!!

I have not dealt with the seemingly endless service troubles of the new M-Benzes, and as such, I am really trying to learn about the newish 230K engine (thinking about a 99 or 00 C230 K sedan).

And yes, it is generally recognized that automakers source components from the same maker- this is especially the case (or at least has been traditionally) with American cars- i.e. the wiper motor in a Chevy pickup is probably the same unit found in your grandad's Lincoln, etc.

I agree with a lot of your sentiments- in the current automobile buying climate, prestige nameplates all offer something in the $30k range, and some lower (like the MINI, the upcoming BMW 1-series, or the A-class M-B in Europe, among others) and so there is really no longer a distinction between an M-B as either 'the pinnacle of engineering' or the 'car that the masses aspire to own' as they can go out and drop $50k on a silly full-size domestic pickup turned SUV. It seems like size and height matter more than the nameplate on the grille, thus we have mega-expensive domestic SUV's with more market appeal than a tight handling, smoothly-styled, 6-speed manual equipped, supercharged C-class sedan for a reasonably good price.

It seems that the days of 'having arrived' when you can afford your ten year old, solidly built M-Benz have disappeared, never to return again, especially when you can get previous-generation, cast-off M-B greasy bits in your new Chrysler...

__________________

2001 E320

1974 240D 4-speed

1971 350SL 4-speed

Member
4point5's picture
Charlottesville, VA
Offline
Joined: March 11th, 1993

Posts:
185

Vehicles
2001 E320 Sedan
parts suppliers to manufacturers

Well, if M-B and Chrysler are going in on component purchasing together, then maybe there are more shared parts in the two than we care to recognize- that is, those parts that nobody ever sees, unless you have a penchant for taking aprt wiper motors or turn signal stalks...

In (weak) defense of M-B, I will say that I think the slide from JD Powers no. 1 slot in 1990 compared to the lower scores of today is directly related to the number of electronic components in the car. Getting all of the sensors, triggers, actuators, flux capacitors (just kidding!) and such to harmonize is not a small task, as witnessed by the myriad of quality complaints that you can read on these forums. And we're the people who love these cars!

__________________

2001 E320

1974 240D 4-speed

1971 350SL 4-speed

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

Quote:
Originally posted by 4point5
Lorhutton-

I was just doing some research (on the other M-B forum shhh, don't tell) and I saw your post about the troubles with your c230k- I can see why you take the position you have in the previous posts of this very thread-

The newest M-B I have ever owned is one of my current rides, an 84!!!

I have not dealt with the seemingly endless service troubles of the new M-Benzes, and as such, I am really trying to learn about the newish 230K engine (thinking about a 99 or 00 C230 K sedan).....
......It seems that the days of 'having arrived' when you can afford your ten year old, solidly built M-Benz have disappeared, never to return again, especially when you can get previous-generation, cast-off M-B greasy bits in your new Chrysler...

Sad. But true.

I've posted on this forum as well in other threads about the trials and tribulations of our car.

However, as far as the engine in our car (a 2002) is concerned, other than having to have it's headgasket replaced at a mere 10,000 miles, it has performed very well..although I shudder to even type that because of the old Murphy's law thing.

The car is FAST. It's fun having a 4 cylinder that causes you to inadvertently leave others in the dust..the Kompressor is indeed a thing to admire.

On the flip side...my car now also smells of exhaust each time I start it...told MB when it was in having it's power steering pump replaced at 31K in December, and they said they could find no reason. Then today, having dropped a friend off to pick up her van at Toyota service, I couldn't open my window to ask for directions even after 5 toggles (they were already replaced for the same problem quite some time back). I had to open the door to ask. I think the Toyota guys were smirking...and I'm counting the days.
Siiigh. Oh..and I think the sunroof is starting to stutter.

:rolleyes:

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture
Re: parts suppliers to manufacturers

Quote:
Originally posted by 4point5
Well, if M-B and Chrysler are going in on component purchasing together, then maybe there are more shared parts in the two than we care to recognize- that is, those parts that nobody ever sees, unless you have a penchant for taking aprt wiper motors or turn signal stalks...

In (weak) defense of M-B, I will say that I think the slide from JD Powers no. 1 slot in 1990 compared to the lower scores of today is directly related to the number of electronic components in the car. Getting all of the sensors, triggers, actuators, flux capacitors (just kidding!) and such to harmonize is not a small task, as witnessed by the myriad of quality complaints that you can read on these forums. And we're the people who love these cars!

I agree on both counts entirely. However, the one thing I can't quite understand is exactly why MB is having such a difficult time with said electronics, whereas apparently other manufacturers don't seem to be having nearly as many problems.

The MB decision to go with Delphi for the C class in 2005 is interesting..but I can't find any info regarding the other classes...even though they are equally fraught with glitches...and their warranty repairs must be costing them a fortune.

:confused:

Member
cchalverson's picture
Dallas, TX
Offline
Joined: May 11th, 1992

Posts:
55

Vehicles
1984 300SD

Maybe Mercedes has caught Jaguar(substitute your favorite English marque from the 80's)-itis with the electronic problems?

__________________

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

Quote:
Originally posted by cchalverson
Maybe Mercedes has caught Jaguar(substitute your favorite English marque from the 80's)-itis with the electronic problems?

It does indeed seem that way...the question is, why? Also..does anyone know the origin of MB electronics? Are they German designed?

Member
4point5's picture
Charlottesville, VA
Offline
Joined: March 11th, 1993

Posts:
185

Vehicles
2001 E320 Sedan
From my experience...

Traditionally everything electrical in (old) M-B's has been Bosch or Hella, both certainly German suppliers.

__________________

2001 E320

1974 240D 4-speed

1971 350SL 4-speed

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture
Re: From my experience...

Quote:
Originally posted by 4point5
Traditionally everything electrical in (old) M-B's has been Bosch or Hella, both certainly German suppliers.

I'm not familiar with Hella...but Bosch certainly has an excellent rep with regard to consumer goods..if indeed it's the same Bosch of kitchen appliance fame....
You say old. Do you know up until what year Bosch and Hella electronics were utilized in MB's?

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

Lorhutton, since you have so many issues with Mercedes it surprises me that you spend hours each day placing posts on our website.

Seems they all go something like this...
...oh poor me, my C class is junk
...Mercedes isn't what it used to be
...Japan wouldn't sell cars like this
...I can't wait to get my Luxury Nissan/Infinity
...I am so knowledgeable about Mercedes

And your latest...
...Is it a Chrysler or Mercedes

Now I wonder why you spend so much time writting posts if you are so unhappy and have traded your Mercedes on another car. Could it be that you are just an unhappy person? Or maybe you have some other adjenda??

Move on, get over it, find a life...whatever. We have heard you and most of us here do not agree.

Brian :p

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

Quote:
Originally posted by Brian McGreevy
Lorhutton, since you have so many issues with Mercedes it surprises me that you spend hours each day placing posts on our website.

Seems they all go something like this...
...oh poor me, my C class is junk
...Mercedes isn't what it used to be
...Japan wouldn't sell cars like this
...I can't wait to get my Luxury Nissan/Infinity
...I am so knowledgeable about Mercedes

And your latest...
...Is it a Chrysler or Mercedes

Now I wonder why you spend so much time writting posts if you are so unhappy and have traded your Mercedes on another car. Could it be that you are just an unhappy person? Or maybe you have some other adjenda??

Move on, get over it, find a life...whatever. We have heard you and most of us here do not agree.

Brian :p

That's cool....life would be pretty boring indeed if everyone agreed with everyone else all of the time...don't you think?

Now..if you REALLY only want to read posts that concur with your opinions, why don't you? Seems a simple enough thing to accomplish.

Or..is it that you find my posts so fascinating that you just can't ignore them? Or..maybe it's really that you have an inexplicable obsession with clowns....

Whatever, relax, have some cookies and milk...perhaps a little soothing nap...and then, have fun! :p

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

Regarding the issue of electronics, I did a bit of searching, and I found the following article...which seems to indicate that there may be some light at the end of the MB electronic tunnel.

http://www.carkeys.co.uk/news/2004_february/09/2005.asp

Dated today, titled "Mercedes Benz Addresses Quality Issues", it starts out with the line:

"Lord, won't you buy me a Mercedes-Benz that works" is the theme song of many disgruntled owners across the world, if the results of various recent quality surveys are anything to go by."

Apparently, Schrempp and company are actually admitting the problems exist and Hubbert is quoted as follows:

"Hubbert also says that Mercedes-Benz has set itself a target of 2006 to reach the top of the quality charts, a position generally agreed to be held at present by Toyota."

I hope they reach their target..an MB at the top of the quality charts would be a thing of beauty to both drive and own.

:)

Member
Chappy's picture
Alpharetta, GA
Offline
Joined: March 6th, 1995

Posts:
918

Vehicles
2002 CLK55 AMG
1995 E320 Wagon
1991 300CE

Quote:
Originally posted by lorhutton

I hope they reach their target..an MB at the top of the quality charts would be a thing of beauty to both drive and own.

:)

Me too, but then what would there be to complain about ;)

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

Quote:
Originally posted by Chappy
Me too, but then what would there be to complain about ;)

Nothing! Wouldn't that be terrific? Just think of how pleasent a place the world (and this forum) would be if all the MB owners had nothing to complain about! Why..it would be just like 1990...only better! :)

Member
cchalverson's picture
Dallas, TX
Offline
Joined: May 11th, 1992

Posts:
55

Vehicles
1984 300SD

Or the 80s since my 84 300SD is simply one of the greatest cars of all time. Actually, it is kind of hard for me to understand the recent MBZ issues since mine works so well, but from all that I hear from qualified sources there must be something to it. Unfortunately, it was probably from the reputation of those wonderful MBZ cars of years past that motivated the current customers and maybe MBZ just got complacent; that is really, really too bad for everyone concerned.

__________________

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

Well since the articles concerning quality are flying I thought you might like to see one that refers to Nissan/Infiniti quality. Here it is:

http://www.japantoday.com/gidx/news218791.html

According to the article:
"GM, with a score of 130, down from 146, moved into third spot from fourth last year ahead of Nissan Motor Co, the only automaker whose problems increased."

"Nissan scored 152 problems, up from 145 last year, while Volkswagen had 152 problems, down from 159."

"The results were surprising and disappointing for us," said Emil Hassan, Nissan's senior vice president of North American manufacturing, quality, purchasing and logistics.

The article also refers to Mercedes:
"DaimlerChrysler finished fourth with a score of 141, down from 145, while Ford, plagued by high-profile recalls last year when it finished in seventh with a score of 162, moved up to fifth with an average of 143 problems per 100 vehicles. Ford's results include Mazda Motor Corp."

So, it sounds to me like you are trading in your higher quality Mercedes for a diminishing and lower quality ranked Nissan? Oh, wait...Maybe if you add leather, change the car into a bath tub shape and call it an Infiniti the problems will go away????LOL!!!

Brian :D

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

Quote:
Originally posted by Brian McGreevy
Well since the articles concerning quality are flying I thought you might like to see one that refers to Nissan/Infiniti quality. Here it is:

http://www.japantoday.com/gidx/news218791.html

According to the article:
"GM, with a score of 130, down from 146, moved into third spot from fourth last year ahead of Nissan Motor Co, the only automaker whose problems increased."

"Nissan scored 152 problems, up from 145 last year, while Volkswagen had 152 problems, down from 159."

"The results were surprising and disappointing for us," said Emil Hassan, Nissan's senior vice president of North American manufacturing, quality, purchasing and logistics.

The article also refers to Mercedes:
"DaimlerChrysler finished fourth with a score of 141, down from 145, while Ford, plagued by high-profile recalls last year when it finished in seventh with a score of 162, moved up to fifth with an average of 143 problems per 100 vehicles. Ford's results include Mazda Motor Corp."

So, it sounds to me like you are trading in your higher quality Mercedes for a diminishing and lower quality ranked Nissan? Oh, wait...Maybe if you add leather, change the car into a bath tub shape and call it an Infiniti the problems will go away????LOL!!!

Brian :D

A) The article is almost 2 years old..dated May 31 2002.
B) It sites figures for D-C AG as a whole..no break down for divisions.
B) Since then, JD Powers has done another study. That study ranks Chrysler a full 5 notches ahead of Mercedes-Benz #26 in the VDS....Nissan #4.

See? Even you are having trouble differentiating between MB and Chrysler under the Daimler Chrysler AG moniker. Think how confusing it will be for those non-experts!

Try paying better attention next time...it can be very helpful when attempting to prove a point.

Have another cookie. :o

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

The point is that figures lie and liars figure. Seems to me like you use a few figures too many...so you figure out where you fit in.

By the way, since I dropped the cookie on the floor...you can have it.

Brian :D

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

Quote:
Originally posted by Brian McGreevy
The point is that figures lie and liars figure. Seems to me like you use a few figures too many...so you figure out where you fit in.

By the way, since I dropped the cookie on the floor...you can have it.

Brian :D

LOL! I'm not the one who needs to figure that out. Apparently you do..so, knock yourself out.

Now..that said...

Ask yourself: Have you been kind today? Make kindness your daily modus operandi and change your world.
Annie Lennox
;)

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

For more on the Chrysler/MB crossdressers, check out this Autoweek article:

http://www.autoweek.com/cat_content.mv?port_code=autoweek&cat_code=carnews&loc_code=index&content_code=03215785

titled:

Made by Mercedes? Chrysler salespeople likely to tout shared parts

For all those good intentions, seems as if there is definitely some concern about keeping those Chrysler salesfolk in line.
This should be interesting. :rolleyes:

Member
4point5's picture
Charlottesville, VA
Offline
Joined: March 11th, 1993

Posts:
185

Vehicles
2001 E320 Sedan

lorhutton,

Just when you thought this thread was dead....

Check out Jamie Kitman's "Noise, Vibration, and Harshness" article in the latest Automobile magazine, titled "Crapulent Luxury."

In a nutshell: crazy, advanced, (mostly) unnecessary electronics (in most new cars, but mainly BMW and M-B)+ cost-cutting= brand new German cars with the reliability of old British ones!

Pretty much sums it up.

-JAS

__________________

2001 E320

1974 240D 4-speed

1971 350SL 4-speed

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture

Quote:
Originally posted by 4point5
lorhutton,

Just when you thought this thread was dead....

Check out Jamie Kitman's "Noise, Vibration, and Harshness" article in the latest Automobile magazine, titled "Crapulent Luxury."

In a nutshell: crazy, advanced, (mostly) unnecessary electronics (in most new cars, but mainly BMW and M-B)+ cost-cutting= brand new German cars with the reliability of old British ones!

Pretty much sums it up.

-JAS

Thanks for the info. I tried to access the article on the web; although I was able to access other Kitman articles, this one did not materialize...

Hopefully Border's has Automobile Magazine...the article definitely sounds like a very interesting read....:cool:

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous's picture
Experience with the Chrysler Crossfire?

Chrysler Crossfire?

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Hello, all.

My first posting, so please bear with me. Unfortunately, only after I posted on the general discussion did I see this search and find this thread. Well, I think I'll add to it.

I've had an SLK 230 since new and my wife and I love it. The other day she saw a Chrysler Crossfire and really liked its looks. I think she likes the SLK-ness of its cabin but also likes the rather radical look of it. I think she also wants a pretty sports car of her own. It looks like the Crossfire hasn't been selling around here, so we can probably get one at a very good price.

Any experience with this car or opinion of it? With the help of the M-B Club, I do a bit of maintenance and repair on my SLK--those experiences and skills might transfer to a Crossfire.

Thanks for ideas!

Mark

'01 SLK230

Member
lkchris's picture
Albuquerque, NM
Offline
Joined: January 29th, 1998

Posts:
3164

Vehicles
2007 GL320 CDI 4MATIC

The coupes are an acquired taste, and the convertibles look pretty good IMHO.

No retracting steel hardtop for the Crossfire.

Otherwise, it's a Mercedes through and through.

Forum Jump

Share this