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What is an automobile? Is it a mode of transportation, or is it an object that defines our personality and who we are? For most of us, it is a combination of both. However, there are variables that influence the decision about which make and model we will drive. The cost of acquisition and maintenance, in most cases, is the limiting factor. Often times, the maintenance consideration is neglected. Our objective is to educate and provide a facility which makes owning a high calibre vehicle, such as Mercedes, possible.

Tuesday, December 27 2011

Back in the day when I started this business, Mercedes Benz had about 5 models. These cars were made to last, the resale was great, and owning one was a true sign of status. These were cars people bought to keep for a lifetime. Of course, at this time, most of the sales were from diesels: the iconic 240D, the popular 300D, and the venerable 300SD. These cars were true investments, made like no other car in the world, and they had a loyal following. You would never see an ad in print or on TV for the sale of a Mercedes – they did not need to. No MB was manufactured until there was an actual order for a specific car, either by an individual or by a dealer. Owning an MB was a true status symbol. If you owned an MB you truly made a statement of your success. Today, the market has become truly segmented. There is a car for every price point and for every economic situation. These cars are engineered to last 60k miles, and then tough luck. All cost considerations are factored by the bean counters. The Germans cannot compete with the Japanese (or Koreans) as far as price, durability and longevity are concerned. The Mercedes marque still has its mystique and brand, but for reliability, value and longevity, I think I would look elsewhere.

Posted by: Ken Redmond AT 09:56 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, December 27 2011

 Approximately 3 years ago MB of North America initiated its “TRP” program. To the uniformed, “TRP” is an acronym for “Theft Related Parts.” This is arguably the death knell for all independent MB repair facilities, because it takes away the incentive and the ability for the independent to repair the customer’s car on a timely and cost effective basis.  So what is a “theft related part?” I suppose this is a part that an individual who has the intention of misappropriating someone else’s car should not have the ability or the right to obtain. From what I can understand, this program was initiated with keys, and then with electronics. This was completely understandable for obvious reasons. These are items for which Mercedes has a completely captive market—the dealers are the only ones who can supply these if you need another.  So bend over if you need one. If you are an individual who needs a replacement key, you must provide proof of ownership and identification – and the two must match. However, the key must be picked up by you in the car, or it must be delivered by MB to the car for an additional charge. If you are a repair facility getting the key for a customer, there is another layer of documentation from signed repair orders, with shop documentation, etc., et al.

  Ok, I can understand the key thing, but this has morphed, at least in my mind, to other items, for which I cannot understand the theft relationship.  Virtually all control units that need to be version code, from some trans shifters, transmission control units, engine control units, and alarm and central locking units. The last trans control unit we purchased had to be version coded by the dealer even though we clearly had the ability to do so! If you need a transmission for a newer MB (722.9) Mercedes has virtually made it so that only a Mercedes dealer can do the repair because of the coding that must take place after the transmission is installed.  The end result is that the repair environment will be less competitive, TRP will be whatever MB says it is regardless of application, and it will not make sense for the consumer to own a newer Mercedes once it is out of warranty. The heritage of Mercedes has always been longevity at a reasonable cost. The independent repair facility has always had its role in realizing this concept, but this is no longer the case. If you want reliable economical transportation in the future, you will have to place your trust in another manufacturer.


Posted by: Ken Redmond AT 09:47 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email

The Benz Store specializes in the early mechanical speedometers, and early electronic S-Class 1981 and newer and SL Models starting in 1981 thru 1995 on most models. 

 Mechanical repair $75.00/Exchange.

Electronic $95.00/Exchange and the correct mileage it provides.

2 Day Turnaround. Email any questions.

The Benz-Store
4321-C Buford HWY | Chamblee, GA 30341 | Phone: 800.631.4170 | Email:
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