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This is my first post on this board (aside from the welcome section). I wanted some opinions about the higher-end M-B cars and their depreciation as some friends and I were having a discussion about it the other evening.

It’s no secret that high-end (including AMG) M-B models depreciate a great deal, and very quickly. That, and the reasons why (expensive repairs are cited as one factor) have been discussed ad-nauseum. But let’s assume for a moment that you purchase a used or CPO 2013 Mercedes CL 550. Could be the AMG model also, doesn’t make that much difference. When new, these vehicles were in the $130,000-plus range for a model nicely equipped. Here it is nearly 3 years later, and a search through CarGurus shows that you can pick up a beautiful example for around $65,000. Now let’s also assume that, say, one or two years later, a catastrophe occurs: Your air-ride suspension goes “kaput” (as they say in Deutschland). You have to shell out around $5000 for repairs.

As I see it, you’re still getting a nearly new, nearly top-end Mercedes for, what...$65-$70,000? To have that kind of vehicle, for that kind of money seems like a pretty good deal, assuming that’s the kind of vehicle you enjoy and you have the means to maintain them.

I realize I’m generalizing a lot. I’m new to the M-B world and there's a LOT I don’t know about these cars, so be gentle. But perhaps some of you could shed some light as to why people tend to shy away from these purchases even though they may very well be able to afford it?
 

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I think buying a CPO, especially a late model low miles non-accident vehicle, is the most cost effective way to enter car ownership. As we all known the very second you take ownership of a new car from the dealer, you now have a 'used' car that just dropped in real world value. Not so when you buy a used car, you could even make some money, flipping it, under just the right circumstances. But back to higher end Mercs, I think some of the market buyers in that class of vehicle don't care too much about price, or loss when moving the car on, they want 'that car', and will pay the money to buy it, and just absorb the loss when then move it on. If you think about it terms of percentages, you are paying 50%, and most likely have well over 80% left in the vechicles life. Of course there are generalizations in my very quick take, and also of course making the assumption that the CPO has been a well maintained car, and will give you some years of trouble free use. But as you noted, even if you do get hit with a big repair bill down the road, you most likely would still come out ahead. My 2cents.
 

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When I owned a 2004 SL-500 from 11/2012 until 5/2015, I frequented the appropriate forums. One of the biggest Bozo no-nos was to EVER put anything that wasnt OEM into it. It was taboo for me to even think of swapping out the COMAND system for something that actually played MP3s or performing any mods. The general feeling is that it ruined the long-term resale value. Happily I see a less draconian attitude here.
I purchased it at a fair market value and traded it in at market value. The price and frequency of repairs drove me nuts. It seemed like it needed to be taken in for major repair every 2 months. Granted, this model had a lot of hydraulics and other parts which were reaching end of life but this was hardly the famed German durability I had heard so much about.
One of the selling points on the CPO I purchased was that it did still have 9 months of MB warranty on it. A wee bit of piece of mind even tho I take it to an Indy for work. In my opinion its the cost and complexity of repairs that is a turn-off (remove a tire to replace a headlight?). There are a number of MBs down hyar in So MD, but they are leased.
 
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