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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
It was at my (former) Saab dealership, I was getting the oil changed on my '07 9-5 Aero wagon and thought I would take it for a ride. It has 59k on it.

It was obviously rather quick, it's got 507 bhp. It needed to be revved a bit though as the torque figure is 465 lb/ft at 5200 rpm. Once the engine got to 4k though quite a bit of hell broke loose, and it was amazing from there to the 7K-ish redline. 7-speed auto shifted quite a bit, and I was used to the Merc 7-speed in my former R350. Very smooth transmission, this one tuned by AMG for quicker shifts.

I didn't like the airMatic suspension very much. In the comfort setting the car wasn't very pinned down, it got better by putting the suspension into sport 1 and sport 2 - but sport 2 felt very much like the suspension in my Aero, but more artificial. The car wasn't any quieter than the 9-5, but it did have a much better exhaust noise :D.

I wasn't able to take it on any real hair-raising turns as the salesperson was present, but cornering felt pretty flat and I loved that I could steer the car a bit with the throttle. It had the same tires that my Aero wagon has on it, Michelin Pilot Super Sports. I had dreams of turing off the stability control and burning around on ramps, but with the sales guy and the kids in the car...

I wanted to love the AMG, I was ready to trade my Aero in on the thing. There were some pretty annoying interior rattles though, and the $45k price for a car with no warranty was a little scary.

What changed my mind was getting back in my Saab Aero and feeling like I was with an old friend, it has more than enough speed to get me in trouble and I just couldn't justify paying that much more for a car that was essentially very similar (the fact that they only offered me $8k for mine in trade didn't help either) - this one had the rear-facing third row though, something I really wish I had in my Saab wagon. The seats in the Aero are more comfortable than the AMG seats too. Fuel econ was another thing that swayed me, I can get nearly 34 mpg on the highway if I'm judicious with the throttle and leave my roof rack/box at home, I'd be lucky to get 18 on the highway in the Merc - and it would eat rear tires for breakfast.

It really does amaze me how special the 9-5 Aero estate is (especially for the money when bought used - I paid $16k for mine 14 months ago), the combination of cargo room/ride/fuel econ/acceleration/braking/handling is quite tough to beat. Too bad Saab went under before releasing the NG 9-5 wagon.
 

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How odd. I had a very early deposit on an ML-320 before they came out but was warned by my buddy who took delivery first, that his had rattles as if the spare was loose so I went and test drove one and sure enough it was horrible and the salesman panicked and got nasty when I headed for some rail tracks, we then had a battle with the radio with him turning it up to mask the rattles and me finally telling him to leave it off "I am buying a car, not a rolling radio".

Needless to say, I cancelled my order and it took Merc 6 months to give deposit back.

Now, I was not shocked by the American produced ML making noise especially on the first production run but I expected more from a German made car. I also tested a 300 4-Matic and it seemed very solid. Your test was of a German car right?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
It was a German-built car, an AMG one at that. I bought a 2008 R350 new, and didn't have any rattles at all. It made quite a few service visits to the dealer though, in the two years I had it I had at least 10 C-class service loaners, and they were all rattle-free.

This E63 had noisy interior door-pulls, when I went around corners the plastics would rub against each other in the door pull. My Saab does this on occasion, I keep meaning to take the door pulls apart and lubricate them with something - but I was surprised to see this in a car that cost almost $100k new.
 

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Be careful with any "lube" or sprays on plastic. I used Armor-All dash renewal stuff to quiet a few squeaks since it seemed to be a harmless silicon. :confused:

It turned most of the black plastics (a Volks Sirocco), a hazy milky white and it looked horrible. :roll:
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yikes - thanks for the tip. I was going to investigate using gummi pflege, I have three bottles of the stuff sitting around from when I had my R-class as it had door seals from hell. They were replaced by the dealer twice, and still squeaked like mice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The other thing that put me off about the E63 AMG Estate is that it's a car that almost begs to be driven like a hooligan. When I'm in the wagon I usually have the dog in the car, and more often than not the kids, so I just can't see how I'd really use that car to its real potential. I could track it I suppose, but that seems a bit silly. I'd take a major fuel econ/tire expense hit and wouldn't probably drive it any faster than I drive my 9-5 Aero. I'd also have to get winter wheels/tires for the thing, I already have those for the Saab.

It's a very neat car though - but when I looked at the math I'd be paying somewhere around $850/mo. for the thing, and I think I'd rather pay $1k/mo. for something like a new CTS-V estate with a proper manual gearbox - or keep the Saab, and get a used Lotus Elise to use on weekends and at the track :D.
 

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We loved my girls C-class but ended up trading it in on a new 2010 jeep liberty. The liberty has been in for service once since ownership and the merc went in countless times in it's 2 years. 2 radios, 3 ECU's, some transmition stuff. We were afraid to take it for a road trip in fear we wouldn't make it home. The dealer told her it's because it's a fine crafted automobile intended for acational driving not daily use. As soon as she told me I drove straight to the dealer in my 89 dodge raider with a dodge stealth turbo motor, Dana 44s, hybrid tube chassis, on 39" swampers straight up to there front door and wanted him to explain to someone who builds **** in a shed to drive over anything in his lot on a daily bassis is more reliable than the faimed German engineering? So now we have a jeep with more Mercedes influence than jeep. Oh well.

Granted the first 3 months she had the car it was beautiful in every way, but then the radio started muting it's self and that was the beginning of the end!!!!
 

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Sounds like an interview I heard with Richard Carpenter of "The Carpenters", about his Ferrari collection. His first was reliable as hell so he traded up and it was a breakdown train wreck and kept leaving him stranded. When he complained the dealer pretty much told him that you shouldn't be relying on a Ferrari and perhaps shouldn't own one.

Like my 1989 MGB Limited, I sold it because I was getting kind of antsy and weird (superstitious), because it never broke down like all the other MG's did. Yeah, I actually sold it because it was too good. It was still on the road a few years ago.
 

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They are quick but if you had a tuned ECU it'd be a different story.

My 00 9-5 Aero back in the day had Nordic stg lll and was neck-toneck with a similar era M5 from 100-130 mph. Those things have a trap speed of about 108 mph similar what this guy ran in his E63 wagon.

http://www.dragtimes.com/Mercedes-Benz-E63-AMG-Timeslip-9842.html

I rode in a friend's E63 sedan at Mid-Ohio. He had race rubber and extra front camber and it was a rocket! But it was over 3 seconds off my 05 CTS-V that has been lightened to almost 1,000 less than the E63 but with 50 less HP.The weight of new cars kills the fun. But the cubic cargo is almost identical between the E and SC.

You just need a tune and some hardware and you can play tag too plkus almost double the E63 wagon gas mileage.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I'm thinking the same thing, my '07 will be out of powertrain warranty next month and I'm going to investigate a few modifications. I don't know if I'll go to III, might start with II and see what happens.
 
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