Nightmare at MB dealer - Help needed/advice

4 replies [Last post]
arvalente's picture
Joined: 05.04.2009
Location: Portugal

To: President Mercedes Benz

Dear Mr. …

My name is António, Portuguese citizen and Mercedes Benz customer and long-time passionate about the cars and the brand.

I’m a mechanical engineer with a track record in the automotive industry and in the list of my previous cars, 1992 and 1993 Mercedes 220 and 300CE24V cabrio, 1993 300GE, 2002 270Cdi and now a 1993 GD350 which is my current desert travel vehicle.

I would like to take the opportunity to share an event with a MB dealer that I qualify as unacceptable.

In April 2013, during a trip to Morocco a blown turbo finished my journey to Morocco and vehicle was towed to Mercedes Benz Portugal – Mercedes Benz Comercial in Sintra – Abrunheira.

Vehicle was repaired and turbo unit was reconditioned (by local BOSCH shop Servidiesel) and also some small other aspects as documents attached.

In June/July a strange noise starts/scream to develop and I went to Mercedes Benz Comercial in Abrunheira where vehicle was repaired.

Of the two three times I’ve been with local repair shop responsible, the noise was listen but not clearly identified.

On some of those occasions some of the most experienced staff were on holidays and we postponed the scheduling of intervention.

August arrived, as you understand not good time to schedule repairs due to shortage of mechanics.

In this period I’ve decided to buy a newer OM603.972 engine as you might now 350 Turbo engine is a bit problematic and due to my trips to the desert I wanted to ensure I had a more reliable unit.

I decided to perform an engine swap with my local mechanic and we fitted the recently repaired turbo unit.

Engine runs perfectly, injector pump and injectors revised at local BOSCH – Servidiesel (same place where the turbo unit was repaired)

The strange turbo noise continues and again I went to MB Sintra – Abrunheira.

On this time I informed the mechanics and responsible staff I decided an engine swap and that the repaired turbo unit was fitted.

Cracks were find on the plastic suction tube and a new tube was fitted.

Noise continues and it sounds a not so healthy problem and my concern builds up as I booked hotels (already paid) for a trip to Morroco by end of the year.

This week finally I was able to schedule a maintenance at MB Sintra – Abrunheira, I left the vehicle Sunday 13 in order it could be evaluated by MB technicians.

In the middle of the week I received a call where initially I was presented with the doubt that the Turbo unit was the unit repaired by the previous intervention.

Again I explained that in August as I shared before to the local MB dealer staff I decided an engine swap but I obviously decided to fit the April repaired turbo unit.

Anyway I insisted that if that doubt was in place and my wording was not enough it was easy to verify and for that it was only necessary to take the turbo unit out and confirm.

That was refused.

I offered to pay the cost/shop hours to take the turbo out, that was refused and we have arrived to a dead end.

MB dealer refuses to take turbo out at my cost to make a turbo test to eliminate or confirm the origin of the noise.

Today 18th October I was informed to pick the car and as I arrived the MB dealer I asked a written letter of their refusal to take turbo (face letter attached).

On this letter they confirm the repair, they warrant the 2 yrs repair warrant of the turbo but if any repair to be made on the turbo I had to bring the unit itself.

It means MB dealer refuses to take turbo out and I have to make it by myself and bring unit for testing (external supplier BOSCH specialist as referred Servidiesel).

As I was waiting for this document to be issued and signed I’ve met an old friend also a mechanical engineer and former MB dealer shop responsible.

He left his GLK for maintenance and I give him a lift home for this convenience and my pleasure to see a long friend.

As we drive off the MB dealer the turbo noise appeared and he immediately evaluated to be a potential problematic noise.

Obviously I shared what has been happening and he read the letter just been issued by the MB dealer.

For his dismay we could not believe what he was reading where the MB shop responsible demands that in order the turbo to be repaired I had to dismantle and bring the unit by myself.

To clear MB dealer warrants the turbo unit repair but it requires the customer (ME) to dismantle the unit and bring it in for testing.

So today I arrive home with a “once in a while scream” turbo, not sure on it’s origin, if the turbo, exhaust, intake or turbo itself and the refusal of MB dealer to take it out for inspection.

I could of course go to another MB dealer and request a turbo test but I think the principle is so wrong I decided to fight the principle and not the turbo possible problem.

I look forward to your advice before I decided to go make a formal complain that can end to somebody to lose his job.

All the best


Pistonhead's picture
Joined: 17.12.2006
Location: Loughborough
GWOA Groups: Committee, Members
Re: Nightmare at MB dealer - Help needed/advice

Ordinarily I would have said complain, no one is likely to loose their job as their actions were in the interest of the dealer.

Secondly, you have taken it upon yourself to change the engine; how this affects your warranty now, I don't know - get some legal advise. 


Pistonhead's picture
Joined: 17.12.2006
Location: Loughborough
GWOA Groups: Committee, Members
Re: Nightmare at MB dealer - Help needed/advice

Deleted by Pistohead 

tony.bruegger's picture
Joined: 31.10.2010
Location: Somerset
GWOA Groups: Members
Re: Nightmare at MB dealer - Help needed/advice

Mountain out of a molehill.....

There must be a good non franchise turbo/diesel man within 300km

If you were here I would substitute a good known turbo

Have you considered alternator belt idler....I have known them take a long time to fail and give occaisional squeals

You should always service pulley system with new parts when engine is out [c. Euro 100 from ebay]














mercfan's picture
Joined: 31.07.2004
Location: Hertfordshire
GWOA Groups: Members
Re: Nightmare at MB dealer - Help needed/advice


What was the eventual outcome of this?