Durability, maintenance and expected lifetime of Mercedes Benz Turbo 3.0 V6?
Mercedes-Benz dealership tells me that these engines are "bulletproof"... really?
And, that, the diesel Sprinter engine is literally in a class by itself apart from
other Mercedes Benz vehicles...and expected life is 500,000 miles or more?
Since owning the van for a little more than 3 months and 3,000 miles, it has not
used any oil consumption at all or nothing is registered on the actual dipstick or
on the computerized reading on the dashboard...
Robust torque and engine response....
Do you agree?
I've been around Mercedes for a quite some time now and with regular maintenance and care the car should last you 150,000 miles without a single problem. They really are great engines and I'd rely on Mercedes in terms of safety and reliability in comparison to the other cars that are in the Van segment.
Michael, thank you very much... I appreciate your answer.... You know, Mercedes Benz has had more experience than anyone else with respect to diesel engines.... A lot of other companies have come and gone and failed miserably.... Mercedes Benz diesel engines have stood the test of time... since 1936 I'm hoping to get 500,000 miles with regular maintenance .... For this reason, I'm marking your answer as "best answer"..... http://www.automobilemag.com/news/mercedes-benz-diesel-history/
I don't know the Mercedes Diesels but modern diesels have particulate filters that periodically burn off due to the engine management system dumping a lot of extra fuel into the engine. Watch your oil level - if it is going up you have a problem which can destroy your engine.
Today's diesels are not the bullet proof diesels of yesterday. Emissions systems are making them a lot less reliable.
F_O_R-. Well, interesting answer... You know a lot of posts I've found online says 300,000 miles up to 500,000 miles is achievable with proper maintenance.... You think it has a longer longevity than my 2010 Subaru Outback Limited with the CVT transmission? The Mercedes Benz Sprinter doesn't have a CVT... Oh, I'm getting rid of the trailer... not towing anything... but, if I had to the Mercedes Benz Sprinter has ample power for towing. YES, emissions controls... thank goodness for emissions... have you seen the air quality lately? It's MUCH better than the 60s.... but, it could still be better especially in Los Angeles.
http://media.daimler.com/marsMediaSite/en/instance/ko/Innovative-solution-for-diesel- and-gasoline-engines-Mercedes-Benz-invests-approximately-3-billion-in-new-engine- technology.xhtml?oid=10932250
I am not going to debate emissions with you Mark. It is a fact that for other diesels, emission systems have introduced a minefield of very expensive problems for owners. Watch out for the regen cycle and good luck.
I know about the DPF... and thanks for wishing me luck... understood.... I know that the Mercedes-Benz diesel and the entire vehicle is very expensive...it's a small motor home... there's many things that can go wrong.. Here's a picture of the inside of this vehicle... I got this for cross country touring... I figured that if I ever wanted to do this...I have to do it while I have the time and energy...... I actually do exercise my diesel engine regularly. Looked for 7 years or so before I found the perfect vehicle at the right price point and mileage. ( all the others were either too old or had a gazillion miles and excessive wear on the coach).. This baby had 26,000 miles on it when I purchased it. They are not easy to find used in this condition, and I wanted to avoid purchasing new.... This is a 2012 Roadtrek RS Adventurous conversion on a 2011 Mercedes Benz Sprinter 3500.... Basically replacement for my trailer... The video below explains how to clean out the diesel particlate filter without having it changed ... See this video...https://youtu.be/C1uM3GtzHTU
Picture of the 2012 Roadtrek RS Adventurous outside....
By the way...I know that you don't like videos from Australia... but, they have a lot of diesel cars there.... this guy knows what he's talking about.
http://www.stephensservice.com/bluetec-diesel-issuesproblems/ I have personal experience with this issue.
GuruDPBQJ- Yeah, I've read all that stuff .... show me one car with "no problems"...
Got a 2003 Honda Accord ,157000+mi.kept it from dealer service (,no real problems ,serviced it my self) after 1st oil change I own a 2010 Freightliner2500 sprinter w165000 mi. Runs good When it's running , at 64000mi ,i've spent purt.near what it cost new,all things considered. Couldn't do too much service myself , the dealers want my 1' St G.grandchild and my arm n leg to fix it telling me it's not a serious problem ,but I had to park it. Wanna buy it??
I took a chance on a 2010 pre/def Detroit in a Freightliner Cascadia. Had heard nothing but horrible and I was having issues till a friend suggested a diesel additive. No problems since, none. Engine at 640K and counting. Someone suggested earlier that these are not the diesels of old. Newer diesels: Clean air filters are crucial, if possible a water separator filter or at minimum a high quality diesel additive and use it like your life depends on it. Very crucial to not ask these new type diesels to do what their not intended to do. Mainly idle all day long and only use it for the wife to piddle around town in grocery shopping. These things are meant to be out on the road!
@Markw1952: How do you like your 2012 Roadtrek RS Adventurous? What do you LIKE and DISLIKE about it? I'm considering a similar vehicle. Thanks.
Richard, I love the way it drives and is very fuel efficient. It's kinda expensive to maintain...every 10,000 miles service is about $250 to $300....and the 20,000 miles service is around $800..... Let me tell you this... don't purchase a brand new one.. you're going to be hammered on the depreciation... however, the risk of buying a used one is higher..... make sure it's in excellent condition... When we purchased this, the tires looked brand new.. but, I discovered that they were already 6 years old...and we took a USA trip last fall around 11,000 miles....... didn't want to risk a blowout....A friend advised me that this vehicle is almost 10 feet tall, 23 feet long and 80 inches wide.....a blowout would have been disastrous... could have easily lost control, flipped it and caused major damage and injury.....you really don't want to risk this over money.... Take a look at the various people selling on RV trader...we purchased this from a dealership ... original owners were turning it in for a newer larger unit... I was a little surprised that I've had some interesting repairs/ maintenance on this 2012 RS .... don't know if I can really call shocks repairs...? What do you think? Had to replace them around 39,000 miles.... don't really think they build these RV conversions for the constant weight of an RV?? Changing out the shocks, replacing the original anti sway bar and adding a rear track bar made a huge difference in handling for the better..... What don't I like; limited storage... although I knew that going in...we just take less stuff...it's kind of funny how the larger your rig, the more stuff you'll wind up taking.... And, fortunately, weight is not a big problem for us..we have a greater weight capacity than we have space for....lots of people with large rigs have an overload problem due to weight........ Also, the dual wheels, in my opinion, provide more safety...it's very unlikely that you are going to have both tires fail at the same time.... still, I purchased a tire pressure monitoring system... actually pretty cheap, around $300... there's a wireless sensor at each wheel with a dashboard monitor..... check out Truck Systems Technologies for details..... We purchased this 2012 in May 2017..so, it's effectively a five year old model, but, realize that they always build them on the previous vehicle model year...so, it's a 2011 Mercedes Benz Sprinter 3500..... If I were you..I'd definitely getting the V6... Mercedes Benz also offered a 2.1 FOUR..... some people like it...this is an awfully heavy vehicle... they made it work with a 7 speed transmission.....mine is a V6 with the 5 speed.. automatic...and it's a wonderful transmission.... works like an Allison transmission... completely shfitable on demand... I used it frequently descending long grades...no problem.... If you haven't driven the Sprinter...go out and test drive it... steering response is better than my Toyota Prius, handling is very assured, and for a diesel it's remarkably quiet.... Also, you won't find yourself slowing down on mountain passes...it's extremely powerful.... thanks to the 325 foot pounds of torque. Condition is everything....I found one with 26,000 miles and very clean..... Good luck.... hope that helps....
Hi mark I have sprinter 2011 and have 109 000 miles but I feel now when I puch diesel sometime I feel like cut and after start to run are you any idea
Mark, your information is very interesting and most helpful. I am deciding between a 2010 Winnebago Era/Dodge with 13,000 miles, and a 2011 Airstream Interstate with 50,000+ miles, and I believe that I'm going with the Airstream. Only $4,000 difference in money for a year newer plus, it's an Airstream vs. Winnebago and there is definitely a materials as well as a 'fit & finish' difference between the two. What do you think? I would be most appreciative of your opinion. They both have the Mercedes turbo, and pretty sure both are the V6, which I will confirm. I didn't realize that they even offered this in a 4 cylinder....for a motor home?? Thanks, Libby
GuruXWHSD, it would depend on the condition of each, look carefully and get it evaluated by an independent mechanic......make sure you can see if they serviced the vehicle at the appropriate time..it's time or mileage.... 13,000 is pretty low mileage...but, it may be OK.... check out the generator hours...too low means that it was either never serviced or not exercised enough... I ran into this with my rig....had to get work done on the generator.. I think the V6 is in both of these vehicles, Airstream and Winnebago... What's the price difference between the Airstream and Winnebago? You mentioned $4,000.... what's the actual price? Really, I might save the money on this...for suspension and tires? How does it handle? My Roadtrek RS needed new shocks at 39,000 miles...I understand that Airstream does a much better job on the suspension?? Check this out. The Dodge name is from 2010 and before when Mercedes Benz and Dodge were joint partners....MBZ took back the Sprinter in 2011... Don't worry, the engine in the Dodge is Mercedes Benz... The 2.1 FOUR works because it's a 7 speed transmission...I understand it's fine if you are not climbing a lot of steep mountain grades..... Overall condition is everything on a used vehicle......I do think that the Airstream name holds it's value better....
Looking at a 2011 Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Cargo 2500 144 WB 3dr Cargo Van..... used as an Ambulance originally, 249,000 miles, I know.... asking at a dealer $20k, but online KBB is about $10k max. Interior looks good. Want to convert into a stealth camper. If I can get this for $15k and needed a new engine sounds like this would cost $10-18k? Mark above you mentioned your 10k mile service being $250 and 20k being $800.. that sounds pretty stiff. Is this an average service check for all Mercedes sprinters? If so, I'll think I'll dump the good MPG and extra miles on the engine for something more simple? What are your thoughts?
Julie, yes, here's the thing....my independent mechanic charges me $100 per hour.... parts for the 20,000 miles service was almost $400..... Mercedes Benz dealership charges $200 per hour...... Here's what I did for a 20k miles service.. complete oil, filter change, water separator, transmission service new wipers. The engine has just over 13 quarts, transmission is around 7 quarts ...it's all very expensive for parts from Mercedes... I just don't fool around with aftermarket parts... In the long run..too risky. And, maybe I could have skipped the transmission service....? When I first got my vehicle used... I did take it to the dealership and they said I should change the transmission fluid every 20,000 miles...I think they might have done that but, my personal mechanic doesn't think they changed the filter on the transmission.....it was pretty dirty...now I know it's changed...I can trust my personal mechanic... The key thing is the water separator and the oil changes... every 10,000 miles.... If you're looking at a 2011 with almost 250,000 miles...they should show you the service records.. My Roadtrek RS Adventurous has 43,000 miles...I did have a problem with the emissions system and I was extremely grateful to Mercedes Benz dealership for replacing the entire system with the new updates recently at 39,000.... Keep an eye on the DEF.. very critical... OR... just look for a gasoline engine alternative... probably will cost less overall... I love the way the diesel performs...but, it's probably more expensive....
Ended up buying the Airstream and am loving it! Interior is basically close as you could expect to 'mint' from a 7 year old vehicle. Handles great, and as my Dad would have said, "it runs like a sewing machine". I've had a 40' Bluebird Wanderlodge and now have for sale a custom Marathon Coach; 40' with Detroit 8V92 turbo, made from a new coach in 1984, which has around 120,000 miles on it. In spite of the mpg on the big bus, I have always loved the sound of the big Detroit, and didn't really know what to expect from this Mercedes engine, but it's great. Joined the national Airstream owners' club, and camped at an absolutely gorgeous Airstream campground in the mountains for $15/night. Wow. I really am a happy camper!
I once had a farm in afrika
Libby, congratulations on your new coach.... YES, these are luxury touring vehicles...we enjoy ours every time we go out whenever we can..... they're good for day trips and even cross country.... very private.. post a picture of your interior...do you have the Airstream Interstate? I'm familiar with that layout...it's very nice. YES, the newer diesel engines are pretty quiet...----Mark
Mark, I came across your post while looking up similar information on our 2013 Roadtrek (2012 model Sprinter) Adventurous RS we bought last summer. If the picture upload works, it should look almost identical to yours (first time on this forum). I also looked for years, same goal as you with not wanting the depreciation hit of a new one, but not one that was worn out. Ours had 51k miles when we bought it, and was in really good shape. We actually haven't got to use the RV yet, but I did get the pleasure of an engine light coming on during my first drive to the MB dealership for a Takata airbag recall. Two NOX sensors, and we were just outside of the warranty. I left with about $1800 less in my pocket. I know this is an expensive vehicle, but that first bill before even using up a full tank of diesel hit us hard. Luckily we budgeted a good amount for the first year's expense, since we thought the 50-60k mile maintenance items would be pretty expensive. I've lined up an independent service place near me with a good reputation. Just did not leave the dealership with a good experience, and it was more than just the price of the NOX sensors. I thought I'd post this up because we do have what looks to be almost identical RVs from the pics you posted. I'm just trying to learn, and build up some confidence in this vehicle. Hopefully we'll start taking some trips in the next few months. Edward
Hi Edward, first congratulations on your purchase....YES, these used Roadtreks are very difficult to find used and 51,000 miles is nothing on a diesel...in fact, if you look at the NADA ( National Automobile Dealers Association) website for RVs...( They have a special one for this.. Google it), you will find that mileage is EXCLUDED for value on diesels. Now, back to your emissions....the warranty for this is 8 years or 80,000 miles...I recently got Mercedes Benz to replace my entire emissions system, NOX sensors, catalytic converter pretty much everything under warranty and update the software to a brand new vehicle... I did that in December 2017....my vehicle is a 2011 Mercedes Benz 3500 and you have a 2012 model....it's interesting how Roadtrek rebrands their vehicle after the conversion and sells it in North America as a one year newer version..My 2012 Roadtrek ( 2011 Mercedes) had 39,000 miles when they did that. I was using an excessive amount of DEF and blew out a back pressure exhaust sensor in the emissions system...it stopped me on a road trip back to California when I was in Flagstaff Arizona...I had to pay for this ... didn't know what was going on until the check engine light came on a short time after this fix.... Since then... I have not used hardly any DEF ...I drove 1000 miles and refilled my DEF... took less than 1/2 gallon.. not much at all.....A Mercedes Benz Sprinter mechanic told me if the system is working fine... I should be able to to go the full 10,000 miles between services and refilling the DEF... I'm a little cautious about this.... It's a very good idea to take your vehicle on some shorter "shake down cruises.... Let me tell you some things I ran into... maybe it will help you...... First, the vehicle is extremely heavy and I soon discovered that Roadtrek did absolutely nothing to beef up the suspension... around 39,000 miles I put Koni FSD shocks on the vehicle, got a Roadmaster anti-sway bar and a special track bar from a company in Oregon called Super Steer....call them...they will explain a lot to you.... Before you take any really long trips.. check out the date of your tires..if they are 6 years old or older.... get them replaced all of them including the spare...a blowout on a 10 foot tall vehicle is very unforgiving..... Next, get a tire pressure monitoring system....I found one from Truck System Technologies... very good and not too expensive.........I also had a solar panel system put on the roof and replaced the navigation system and radio for a clearer picture out the back....it makes a huge difference....The propane sensor inside the vehicle has an expiration date...needs changing every 6 years.... And speaking of every five or six years...we experienced battery failures for the coach and starting battery... get AGMs.... they're the best... Your vehicle looks very nice... enjoy.... keep up with the maintenance... and if you can find a local mechanic for changing your oil and water separator.... even better...... ..The propane refrigerator is good for anything under 3,200 feet... after that you have to be plugged in or it won't work properly..... And finally.... exercise your propane generator at least 2 hours per month...this is important.... I discovered that ours had virtually no hours of use and after a year it failed... bottom line on this is if you don't use them they will not work... Cummins Onan said that they typically last 4,000 hours or more if you have them serviced and use them. Ours had about 15 hours on the clock... I thought.. it's practically brand new when I purchased it 5 years old in 2017...it should have had about 200 hours or more.... These vehicles are a BIG learning curve.... Don't worry about the latest news about Roadtrek... our vehicles were built from the old company before the merger..... I found out from a company representative that they only built our model only if they had a customer order...the RS Adventurous is a pretty rare vehicle... only made about 200-250 of the 2012 model.... yours is pretty much the same... I purchased mine for one reason...the experience.....it's not a good financial decision... but at my age..it was now or never....I hope have wonderful trips.. our first year we traveled all across the USA... put 11,000 miles on our rig.....we got it with 26,000 and now have 43,000... plus.... still enjoying it.. Good luck....
Julie, SO... what did you decide to do??? Go for the Sprinter or look for another van...? Regarding the 2011 Sprinter... WHY do you think it might need a new engine? These diesels are extremely robust...did someone tell you that? Always have this checked out by an independent source first before spending money.......the 2011 is pretty quiet compared to the older models..... Someone told me that the old 5 cylinder models without DEF are an emissions nightmare once they fail..... good luck.
Mark, I'm still talking to folks about those NOX sensors. My manual states 7 yrs /70,000. Saw that after getting home from the dealer of course. I learned a lot from reading some of your other questions on this forum. THANK YOU for that help in the learning curve. So far other than new NOX sensors, 7 new tires, rear wheel valve stem extenders that actually hold air, new air filters, and purchased extra long serpentine belt mention in Roadtrek manual as I build a tool kit for the not so handy. I have similar reasons for buying what may be an MP (money pit) vs. MB. You only have one life, As long as I have the money to fix it, hoping to wear it out using it so much.
Edward, hmm, I was told by the dealership that it was 8 years and 80,000... it's an academic point for me.... I got my emissions system replaced under warranty.... I'm a little worried that this COULD happen again.... although with a brand new system and updated software.. would be years in the future. I'm not sure I'll have the vehicle that long. ... besides, your vehicle is 7 model years old.... UNLESS you are saying that you missed the anniversary by a few months?? These vehicles are extremely expensive and you can't really focus on the money with an RV...it's the experience. Where else can you have a private room on wheels, your own kitchen, bathroom and shower...it's a luxury item for sure. I absolutely love the experience, but, let me tell you, it does come with more drama... We've had equipment failures on the road....I hope you have AAA Premier RV or something...I've been thinking about trying Coach Net.... another RV towing company....they don't have a mileage limit like AAA....AAA Premier RV will only tow the RV for the first 100 miles...and they count the mileage when they leave their station... AND... unfortunately, not all Mercedes Benz dealerships have the capability of servicing Sprinters...the dealership network is not so good......We have been pretty lucky to have been close enough to the network .. Remember, I drove across the entire USA...11,000 miles ... across the northern states, down the East coast to Florida and back across the southern part of the USA.....I got lucky... We had a failure on the last segment of the trip.... Here's the thing...the base engine of the Mercedes Benz diesel is FANTASTIC...it would take a lot before that failed... but...it's everything else hanging on the engine.. emissions system is a big deal.... Just enjoy it while you can.... More regional trips for me now in the Western States... I don't think we'll take this on a cross country trip again...it was great though.... what an amazing experience. Also.... don't get too focused on the cost... you'll make yourself crazy thinking about it...these vehicles depreciate fast which is WHY I think it was a better idea to purchase used and deal with some problems... watch out for the dump hose ...be careful not to pull it out to fast..ours was brittle and cracked... that was a mess and expensive to replace as well as a blockage in the gate valve for the toilet......all of this is neatly packaged in a very small space...... good luck.
Read the article "The Fatal Flaw of Mercedes Benz Sprinters" by Tom Robertson who owned 47 Sprinter Vans: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/fatal-flaw-mercedes-benz-sprinters-tom-robertson
I've seen a few articles on the "fatal flaws" of the Sprinters....it's an opinion. Many cars have problems.... any one of them have issues. If you drive carefully and are meticulous about maintenance you can reduce the risks.
I run a plumbing business and I will just chime in briefly to concur absolutely 100% with Tom Robertson’s fact filled empirically-based assessment which irrefutably concludes that the Mercedes Blue DEF-Efficiency emissions system is an unmitigated disaster of a ticking time bomb.
I also have a business that requires a small fleet. I have a 2011 2500 with just over 100k miles. Over the last two years, my sprinter has been in the shop on average every 6 weeks for failed sensors, emissions problems etc. Up until now, it has been an annoyance. This week, it displayed yet another check engine light. We took it into the dealer yesterday and I'm told it needs a DPF filter and a SCR convertor. No big deal, its only $6500 to fix it!!!!!!!! If they don't back this up in some way, I'm done with MB.
I bought a 2019 MB Sprinter in December. I put 23,000 miles on it and the diesel motor blew up. MB is replacing the motor but it has been out of service for a month so far
Please excuse me if you are reading this again. I am looking everywhere for tips on how to work with MB. In June 2017 I purchased from a small RV dealer in AZ a 2015 Airstream Interstate EXT. It is on an MB Sprinter. I keep excellent care of her. I have the MB dealer change the oil and look at her every year. I travel on my own all over the place. Maybe not anymore. I have lost my confidence in my MB Sprinter. I currently have 69,000 miles. I did not use it much this year due to covid. I was on a trip from Chicago to Steamboat Springs, CO, and motor seized. I was stranded along the side of a busy road. I was going up a small hill and I could feel that I was losing power. I pulled over to the side of the road and the AI would not start again. It was towed to a MB dealer in Davenport, Iowa. They told me my motor was seized but could not tell why. I had good oil, good diesel, fluids.... I then had it towed to a MB dealer in St. Charles, IL that told me the same thing. Motor dead and they could not tell me what happened. They said a repurposed engine would take several weeks to get from Germany. I am not sure I want a repurposed engine for $17K. A repurposed engine will not look so good for resale. I called MB this morning - my warrantee was up in March. I begged for mercy. They are going to look at my maintenance records, mileage, talk to the dealer, and also ask about my brand loyalty. I have the Airstream Interstate and a Unimog (my husbands's). My dad is a MB collector. I think he has like five MB. I am hoping my dad's loyalty will help. Does anyone have any suggestions for me? MB is going to call me again within 24 working hours. Thanks
Quick update. I just got a big, fat NO from MB. They said it is not covered. What a total waste of money.