Tuesday, September 15, 2009

A little German engineering

I don’t know if its because I am getting older or if its because I drive a lot more than I use to but when I head out on a weekend road trip there are two things I want comfort and great acceleration at high speeds. I have found the Germans figured this out long ago. Don’t get me wrong I will load up the ol Avalanche and hit the road but I do prefer my BMW for the 4 or 5 hour drives it handles the high speeds so much better.

Today I took out a 2006 E350 Mercedes Benz for a drive nice little car I would say if you have a small family this car is perfect. As an adult I wouldn’t want to ride in the back seat for long but kids should fit nicely. The V-6 puts out plenty of power and hooked up to a 6 speed automatic transmission its good for the interstate or around the city. The interior as always in a Mercedes is nice, wood grain trim Chrome accents in all the right places. Seat, mirror, heating and cooling controls all easy to reach. My only complaint on the interior is why, why Mercedes do you still put a phone pad on the dash of these cars please stop I have a cell phone put something useful there like another cup holder. For those of you who don’t own or have rarely been in a German car they are stingy with the cup holders this car only has 2. I can’t name a sedan built here in the USA that has less than half a dozen! But they have the autobahn we have McDonalds. Also the trunk on this thing is huge plenty of room for luggage and golf clubs or gun cases whatever you are into. The exterior is just as easy on the eyes as the interior nice body lines good looking wheels and chrome in the right spots, less is more ya know.

All in all a nice car which if with proper maintenance will last decades. Which bring me to another problem many may have with these cars. Me, I can do all the repairs on my car but for most people it’s a little more tricky if and when something does go wrong I believe it is imperative to take it to a shop that specializes in European car repair not your local oil change, brake and tire shop where Hank just built the carb for your 84 Silverado not saying that he cant do it I just don’t think it’s a good idea. You will have a little more down time from your car and will cost a little more but you will be happier with the end result.

Simply put, they live up to the long-time Mercedes slogan of "Engineered like no other car in the world."

Thursday, September 3, 2009


I recently had Chrysler Crossfire here and I have never drove one and since it was a beautiful day and the car was a convertible I decided I had to take it out for a spin. Once I got the top down I really started to look the car over. Now even though this car is made in Germany the Chrysler people will tell you that there is nothing Mercedes-Benz about the car other than a few underpinnings while the guys that work on these say there is more M-B in it than Chrysler says.

The interior lay out to me looks like a Mercedes from the simple round gauges to the design of the a/c controls. The leather seats are nice there are also a few little storage spots cleverly placed around the very tight cockpit. Now for me to drive this car with a
smidge of comfort I had to have the top down but my knees were still pressed firmly into the dash and I had to drive it with my head cocked down because the top of the windshield is eye level for me. So if your several inches under 6 foot tall this maybe a comfortable ride.

The power band on this v-6 is nice though with the manual transmission, driving this car through traffic and some winding back roads was fun, plenty of power at any rpm in any gear. The steering on the car is very very tight is uses an older style steering setup not a rack and pinion they car handles well and is a ball to drive although I would have enjoyed it much more were I shorter