Five Euro Car Myths?

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Originally Posted by jeepman3071
Any car regardless of brand will be expensive to own and maintain if the owner is ignorant about how the car works and what it needs. I'm not saying everyone needs to be a mechanic, but at least be somewhat familiar with what the price of a repair should be.
I agree- and I think that's the reason I haven't had many reliability issues with any of my cars.[B] German cars tend to be designed and engineered with the presumption that the car will be maintained by the book. Most other manufacturers assume the worst with respect to owner maintenance and design the vehicle accordingly.[/B]

Yeu must change zi oil at 9:45PM at zi nighttime or zi car will explodes.
 
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How about this may be now a myth: European cars like very heavy motor oils, 0W-40 and up because German.

My E30 liked heavy oil, however... I wonder if I could actually run regular thin oil in it and be okay. 5W-30, maybe a stout 0W-20 if I'm really brave.

For Mercedes, they typically spec MB 229.5 oils which is basically 0w-40. There are some newer models that go down to 0w-20 though. For MB 229.5, the lowest it goes is 0w30.

It's not a myth, it's just a spec.
 
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I just saw this thread for the first time. I got thru #'s 1 and 2 from the original post, which are "not all that much more expensive" and "DIY to save money"

Well the first proves it is more expensive, and the second is well a captain obvious comment. I skipped the rest of those "myths"
 
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I just saw this thread for the first time. I got thru #'s 1 and 2 from the original post, which are "not all that much more expensive" and "DIY to save money"

Well the first proves it is more expensive, and the second is well a captain obvious comment. I skipped the rest of those "myths"
The point is that if you DIY, they are not much more expensive than other cars you can DIY on, like say a Honda. A Mercedes-Benz dealer will absolutely be more expensive than a Honda dealer though.
 
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The point is that if you DIY, they are not much more expensive than other cars you can DIY on, like say a Honda. A Mercedes-Benz dealer will absolutely be more expensive than a Honda dealer though.

But it's all relative. I think the dealer is something like $150-$200 hour. Which isn't that much more than a Honda dealer and you do get a free Mercedes rental with any service along with the usual free snacks and car wash.

I just take mine to an indy ASE mechanic and most of the work he can and he's just around $50/hour but mostly he quotes by the job. He's fast and just charges actual time, not book time so he actually ends up being pretty reasonable. Then I can bring aftermarket parts or get OEM parts online cheaply. He actually prefers that I get the parts because if they fail, no warranty. Pretty much all the parts I've gotten so far have been fine or they just wore out on their own eventually. I try to only buy quality parts so he doesn't have to do it again.
 
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But it's all relative. I think the dealer is something like $150-$200 hour. Which isn't that much more than a Honda dealer and you do get a free Mercedes rental with any service along with the usual free snacks and car wash.

I just take mine to an indy ASE mechanic and most of the work he can and he's just around $50/hour but mostly he quotes by the job. He's fast and just charges actual time, not book time so he actually ends up being pretty reasonable. Then I can bring aftermarket parts or get OEM parts online cheaply. He actually prefers that I get the parts because if they fail, no warranty. Pretty much all the parts I've gotten so far have been fine or they just wore out on their own eventually. I try to only buy quality parts so he doesn't have to do it again.
For sure, I'm talking about the average know-nothing consumer who just blindly goes to dealerships and trusts them, the Mercedes dealer will be more.
 
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Between my wife and I we have owned 3 Hondas Accords and 3 VW Jettas. In 62K miles My Accord has needed a new half shaft (previous owner), a couple small rust repairs shortly after purchasing at 32K miles (no issues since), VTC actuator (rattling noise on start up), 2 rear calipers and 1 wheel bearing.

My wifes previous Jetta was sold at 62K miles, owed since new. It needed a water pump, 2 ignition tumblers, 1 rear wheel ABS sensor, 1 radiator fan, and a heater core ($$$). When we sold it the A/C was having issues with intermittently blowing warm air.

Neither car has been / was perfect but the VW needed a few more repairs in 60K miles. Both cars had what I would call major repairs for such low miles especially considering they have been immaculately maintained.
 
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I thought Myth #5 was a little weak. Who ever thought European cars were 100% European?

SUGGESTION: Replace Myth #5 with: European car makers had to resort to sourcing their "Glam Toys" -fancy electronic do-dads- from various companies. Since Glam Toys are sloughed from the marketplace, no electronics supply firm had any inclination to support them past warranty or a legally required time frame. This creates a big, in-your-face zone of unreliability. Dashboard data readouts in Saabs, bad ACC in Volvos.
 
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Every plastic clip, fastener and holder on the BMW breaks when you try and remove it. Not only that the design of the faster is non-intuitive compared to the Toyota or Honda clip, only once you've broken it do you find out how you should have removed it in the first place. Never do I say "why would they do it that way?" with the Asian cars, only the BMW. On many repair jobs I have spent as much on clips and fasteners as I have on the part that I'm replacing.
Exactly my feelings and thoughts when i work on my VW Golf Mk III winter beater, compared to my Honda.
On the VW, every littls plastic part breaks when you try to remove it. It´s just a annoying PITA.
Working on the Honda is allmost like Lego: Klick-Klack. Just a joy to work.
 
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Just one thing about reliability:

I am not a big fan of german cars. I also think that they are unneccesary complicated to work on and not so reliable as the used to be back in the 90s. But, untill today, most german Taxis are Mercedes. And this cars collect a lot of Klilometers, without problems. But this cars get maintained "By the book" at dealers with all the special tools. That makes a difference in my opinion.

"If i want to drive mercedes, i just simply call a taxi" is a saying here. :)
 
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Just one thing about reliability:

I am not a big fan of german cars. I also think that they are unneccesary complicated to work on and not so reliable as the used to be back in the 90s. But, untill today, most german Taxis are Mercedes. And this cars collect a lot of Klilometers, without problems. But this cars get maintained "By the book" at dealers with all the special tools. That makes a difference in my opinion.

"If i want to drive mercedes, i just simply call a taxi" is a saying here. :)
Funny you say that, I have a 2008 E-350 and a 2011. Never really take it to the dealer. Had the 2008 for 6 years now. Got a copy of the EPC/WIS and the forums are really good. There's a few people on there that seem to work for Mercedes dealers so you can really get some good advice on there. I actually do like some of the engineering that I run into occasionally, some of the stuff is quality but then yeah, some of it is a little too complicated for nothing but what that really means is that the engineering isn't there. It takes more engineering to make things simple than to leave it a complicated mess. Oh and there's really very few special tools that you need, I use aftermarket code readers to read MB specific codes and there's a few tools that you need for specific jobs, but sometimes there are workarounds.
 
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I just bought my first German/euro vehicle (assembled in Chattanooga with a Japanese Aisin transmission, go figure).

I’ve had to pick up some new tools (triple squares, etc.) and learn a bit about VW oil specs, but otherwise it doesn’t look too terribly challenging to do basic maintenance and service. I’ll take it case by case if I want to farm out any work.
 
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I just bought my first German/euro vehicle (assembled in Chattanooga with a Japanese Aisin transmission, go figure).

I’ve had to pick up some new tools (triple squares, etc.) and learn a bit about VW oil specs, but otherwise it doesn’t look too terribly challenging to do basic maintenance and service. I’ll take it case by case if I want to farm out any work.
What have you done or plan to do about service information? In years past I've bought the OEM paper manuals but I'm looking around to see what I'll do for the Tiguan.
 
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What have you done or plan to do about service information? In years past I've bought the OEM paper manuals but I'm looking around to see what I'll do for the Tiguan.

As in documentation or updates?

Quick photo of receipts and an update in my spreadsheet tracker as with my other vehicles.

For service info I plan to do a daily erWin Online subscription and DL everything I need. Lots of good YouTube vids by ECS etc. that detail the usual maintenance items (plugs, trans, etc.)
 
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As in documentation or updates?

Quick photo of receipts and an update in my spreadsheet tracker as with my other vehicles.

For service info I plan to do a daily erWin Online subscription and DL everything I need.
Yeah, the maintenance or repair manual.

One thing I found is that there are sellers that take the erWin information and package it as a PDF file, some of those are quite cheap.
 
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I just bought my first German/euro vehicle (assembled in Chattanooga with a Japanese Aisin transmission, go figure).

I’ve had to pick up some new tools (triple squares, etc.) and learn a bit about VW oil specs, but otherwise it doesn’t look too terribly challenging to do basic maintenance and service. I’ll take it case by case if I want to farm out any work.
My sister owns a 2013 Jetta with the 2.5L/Auto. It just hit 150k miles, and has required less repairs and maintenance than her 2005 Honda Civic did at that mileage. Above all, the important things to me are these two things; being in the rust belt the body on this car is in way better shape than the Civic was at this mileage, and the Jetta is much more fun to drive with more power while getting the same if not better mpg.
 
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Yeah, the maintenance or repair manual.

One thing I found is that there are sellers that take the erWin information and package it as a PDF file, some of those are quite cheap.

Thanks, I’ll look around. A single PDF would be super handy.

I was pretty adamant about “no German cars” when my wife was shopping but she asked me to reconsider, so I did. The 25/250k powertrain warranty offered by the dealer didn’t hurt either 😅
 
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Thanks, I’ll look around. A single PDF would be super handy.

I was pretty adamant about “no German cars” when my wife was shopping but she asked me to reconsider, so I did. The 25/250k powertrain warranty offered by the dealer didn’t hurt either 😅
After looking at Honda cars we were on our way to look at Toyota but a railroad crossing gate malfunction had traffic backed up to the road leading to the dealer. So we decided to turn around and go look at Mazda cars in the meantime (same dealership as VW). When we got there we got distracted by the nice looking post-Dieselgate cars for sale, but then found out there was 0% financing on new VW cars. So we bought one.

As you can see we had a completely rational process for that selection :)
 
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The 2002 Beetle I just picked up for my daughter to drive has sworn me off of European cars. I had to do a pile of work to get it safe for her to drive, and give me peace it would not leave her stranded.

The interior is junk. This car has lived in the Midwest it's whole life, so Southern sun isn't an issue. It's just cheap junk that cracks easily, and formed a gooey, sticky mess. it smells like melting crayons in side. Don't get me started on the junk headliner.

The wiring is brittle....even worse than my 95 Wrangler that lived out West in the heat most of it's life.

Working on it was better than I thought, but there are hoses and plastic parts all over that are in the way. There is an air injection system that broke that is $1500....thankfully glue and zip ties fixed that.

The use of cheap foam for the blend doors in the HVAC is one of the dumbest designs I have ever seen.

A special scanner was needed specifically for the car.

I started life as a MOPAR guy, moved into Nissan and Toyota, and my preference goes to the Japanese cars now. They are a dream to work on, during the rare instance they need repair, and just hold up to the salt much better than any American car I've owned ever has. Before anyone brings up the CVT's in the Nissan, my son is driving my old Rouge with the original trans at 129000 miles, whereas this Bug (106,000 miles) is most likely going to need transmission work in a year or so (bad 2-3 shift and doesn't like to move immediately after putting it in drive). I'm just holding off to see if my daughter wrecks/totals it first......she is a good driver, but a brand new one.

My youngest son's GTI is darn fun to drive though.....he plans on getting rid of it soon knowing that it will have many issues, and it's in a sweet spot for selling.
 
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