Luxury vehicles have a peculiar knack for depreciating faster than a melting ice cream cone on a scorching summer afternoon. One of the prime culprits behind this phenomenon is the jaw-dropping cost of maintenance, which often rivals the original price of the car.
A 2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class serves as a prime example of this phenomenon. While it may not have held the title for the most expensive model of its era, one particular example now commands a jaw-dropping $20,000 for essential repairs, complete with a labor-intensive 40-hour effort.
When the 2008 C-Class arrived in the States it was largely considered as the entry-level Mercedes. As such, it had a starting price of around $35,000 and today, it’s not uncommon to find these cars for less than $10,000. While we don’t know the exact trim level of this particular car, the owner says that it has 200,000 miles on the odometer, meaning that it’s likely not worth anywhere near five figures. The maintenance it needs detracts even further from its value.
According to the original post on Reddit where each line item is documented, this car came in with an initial complaint about rust on the rear sub-frame. The automaker actually covers that component on said car with a 20-year, unlimited mileage warranty. It turns out that this car needs a lot more than just a new rear sub-frame though.
The list of necessary repairs for this 2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class starts with a leaking oil filter and cooler housing, a task that requires 3 hours of labor. The vacuum pump also demands attention, accounting for an additional 3.5 hours of work. The transmission pan, in a “severely rusted state”, must be replaced, tacking on an extra 2.5 hours of labor. To complete the laundry list, all four corners require new brakes, consuming a total of 5 additional hours of labor. And we haven’t even reached the most time-consuming task yet.
That honor goes to removing the exhaust which is welded in places that it wouldn’t usually be. According to the tech, it’ll take 7 hours if the sub-frame is already removed and 9 hours if it’s not. The tech doesn’t quote exactly what the labor rate is but in most dealers, it’ll be somewhere around or north of $190 per hour. There’s no word on what happened after this quote but we can’t imagine the owner signed off on all of it.