The first generation Mercedes M Class, the W163, was designed to be a luxury midsize SUV that could fit in the market niches between the GLK Class and the GL Class. It was also intended for the M Class to replace the 11 year-old G Class, and with its spectacularly high marks in insurance industry crash tests and its unique sales platform (including appearances in Jurassic Park: The Lost World) it quickly became a massive sales success in both the U.S. and Mexico. The following are a few of the more prominent issues that owners experience with the W163:
Rough Engine Idle: This phenomenon is usually accompanied by a check engine light and manifests itself by shakes and shudders when the car is in park and during initial acceleration.
Central Lock Failure: Owners say that their remote key suddenly stops being able to lock or unlock the car, and replacing the keys batteries don’t do a thing to fix the problem.
Engine Shut-Off: The engine starts up fine, but after a few minutes it dies. Unless it is left to sit for a while, it will not start again. This issue might be due to a faulty fuel pump, but it could be a whole host of other things as well.
Window Switch Malfunction: The windows won’t go up, or maybe they won’t go down, and there is not a thing you can do about it. The problem could be electrical, but it could also be mechanical.
Windshield Wiper Malfunction: It usually starts with some jerky movements, and then the wipers get stuck in the up position, impairing your vision of the road.
Nothing should keep you from fully enjoying the benefits of owning a Mercedes, and these issues are, if nothing else, incredibly aggravating. The best bet for solving such problems is to take your W163 to an independent German auto service center for a thorough diagnostic and repair.
Search for a local, independent Mercedes-Benz repair shop with Mercedes-Benz mechanics that have dealer-level expertise at a fraction of the expense.