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Old 01-31-2008, 02:53 PM   #1
Rod Barajas
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Exclamation Mercedes finally admits R-Class was a failure!



R-Class not being the most successful vehicle in the history of Mercedes-Benz is no big secret, but after staunchly espousing its virtues for year, the automaker has finally admitted it. And as any recovering addict could tell you, admitting you have a problem is the first step on the long road to recovery.

Mercedes had pegged production of the crossover at its Vance, Alabama, plant at 50,000 units annually, with half of that staying in the United States. Last year, however, American dealerships sold only 18,000 units. According to Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche, the R-Class "has definitely not lived up to our original plans."


Mercedes is planning a replacement for R-Class, and while it could retain the same big CUV/wagon set-up, the next R is more likely to take another format altogether. Mercedes biggest competitor at BMW, meanwhile, is evidently thinking otherwise with the X6 crossover it just unveiled recently.
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Old 01-31-2008, 09:50 PM   #2
XDCX
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Default "Mercedes is the Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde Car Company.."

I never liked the R-Class the first time that I saw it and it appears that the marketplace saw it the same way.

I've recently taken to reading the website www.autoextremist.com

The author of the site described Mercedes as the Official Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde Car Company. It's either a total hit or it's a total failure.

He cited the release of their upcoming GLK as the new low point:


To me, it looks like a Subaru Forester - not the kind of vehicle I'd want to purchase at a Mercedes Dealership.
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Old 02-02-2008, 08:59 AM   #3
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The R class was just a re-bodied Chrysler Pacifica. Horrible product!
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Old 02-04-2008, 10:14 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by SHACOS View Post
The R class was just a re-bodied Chrysler Pacifica. Horrible product!
Are you sure about that?

I remember reading that Mercedes was very reluctant to have any Chrysler content in their vehicles - fearing that it would diminish the value of the brand.
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Old 02-04-2008, 11:45 AM   #5
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OK, maybe re-bodied is too strong, but it's definetly styled very similar to the Pacifica.
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Old 02-05-2008, 07:09 PM   #6
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http://www.mbusa.com/models/features...R63&class=07_R

You don't have to like It... But with Numbers like these You should Respect It!
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Old 02-07-2008, 11:33 AM   #7
Rod Barajas
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Originally Posted by Prestige View Post
http://www.mbusa.com/models/features...R63&class=07_R

You don't have to like It... But with Numbers like these You should Respect It!
When I sold Mercedes I never once sold an R63 AMG...It was a heavy paper weight on our showroom floor
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Old 05-20-2011, 02:50 PM   #8
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I just wanted to comment on this old thread. I was reading and I got a big laugh when I made a few clicks and found the R class that certainly looks like a reskinned Chrysler Pacifica. I never have paid attention to Mercedes but as a Chrysler Fixed Ops guy I thought the Pacifica was a total pile. I shouldn't complain, they paid alot of my bills for sure. By the way, we have a ton of customers @ my current store who love them and are mad they are no longer made.
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Old 05-20-2011, 07:00 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by ghostrider View Post
I just wanted to comment on this old thread. I was reading and I got a big laugh when I made a few clicks and found the R class that certainly looks like a reskinned Chrysler Pacifica. I never have paid attention to Mercedes but as a Chrysler Fixed Ops guy I thought the Pacifica was a total pile. I shouldn't complain, they paid alot of my bills for sure. By the way, we have a ton of customers @ my current store who love them and are mad they are no longer made.
Wow, you sure bring back some old threads - that's cool.

When I think back to the Pacifica I remember that Auburn Hills was still in the ether of believing that DaimlerChrysler was a merger of equals and the new company was going to rule the world.

The Pacifica and the Crossfire were supposed to be the first vehicles that were going to lift the image of the Chrysler brand. Sadly, both vehicles missed their mark.

I think the Pacifica was a decent vehicle but I recall that Auburn Hills butchered the mix when they launched the vehicle. The factory was only building fully loaded vehicles and the customers were having sticker shock.

It's interesting that you still have owners who are loyal to the Pacifica and they're sad that it's gone. I guess the closest vehicle in the current line-up is either a Dodge Journey or a Jeep Grand Cherokee.
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Old 05-24-2011, 03:30 PM   #10
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I know that its sales haven't been what Mercedes wanted, and that it has polarizing looks but I got one of these for my wife. R500. She was REALLY sick of the minivan double-negative; you know, the stigma that you are actually driving a minivan, and the fact that it's one of the least satisfying vehicles you can drive.

R series seats six in comfort, with all of the amenities that you'd expect in a Mercedes. And on long road trips, it is an absolute dream on the expressway.

...I think that Mercedes will find the same customer-response phenomenon with the R, as Chrysler did with the Pacifica. Gotta kill it, cause the volume just isn't there (largely due to polarizing styling aesthetics). But kill it, and the people who have been driving them since launch will hate you for it (because it's actually a helluva vehicle, with no real replacement in the market).
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Old 05-25-2011, 08:12 AM   #11
possum
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Pacifica was ahead of its time. Now, that is a hot segment.
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Old 05-25-2011, 09:32 AM   #12
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Quote:
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Pacifica was ahead of its time. Now, that is a hot segment.
That's a good point.

Although I never had a chance to drive one, I heard the 4.0 engine in the Pacifica was a big improvement and it was a pretty decent vehicle by the time Cerberus killed it off.
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Old 05-25-2011, 09:57 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by XDCX View Post
That's a good point.

Although I never had a chance to drive one, I heard the 4.0 engine in the Pacifica was a big improvement and it was a pretty decent vehicle by the time Cerberus killed it off.
Though I never owned one myself, I drove a large number of demo units when we still had our Chrysler-Jeep franchises and I will deginitely agree that the 4L was a huge improvement in the Pacifica.

...Now consider a similar vehicle with a 5L V8 and Mercedes amenities and you arrive at the R-Series that I bought. Newer versions can be had with the Bluetec diesel and represent the best way to maintain minivan-esque utility with greatly improved fuel economy and without the associated soccer mom stigma.
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Old 05-25-2011, 10:41 AM   #14
The StraightShooter
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I actually drove the 1st series Pacifica as my rider for nearly 2 years. 3.5 V6 was a dogsled but actually was a nice riding car. The problem with the Pacifica was its launch absolutely the worst in terms of marketing and price. Epic Fail. The only person who made out '03-'04 was Celine Dion w/ the Pacifica. Sold a few here or there and it was an expensive car to own long term after a lease. Agreed 4.0 was big improvement though.
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Old 05-25-2011, 10:46 AM   #15
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When Pacifica's were available as new, it had far and away the highest satisfied customer ownership for any model we sold as well as and the highest repurchase (even higher than minivan). When it was discontinued we lost virtually all of the leasee's as the Journey was too small and the minivan was...well a minivan. We were able to convert some of the buyers to used low mileage ones but most ended up in Toyota Veria's and Buick Enclaves. It was definitely ahead of its time. We also delivered quite a few of them for Wheel's and other courtesy fleet deliveries. Most were to pharmacutical reps who loved the room to store their stuff in the back and was far more comfortable than the Equinox's, Edge's and others.
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