I've pretty much given up on Mercedes. I've sold most of my cars, and I bought an old BMW coupe`. Between the BMW, the Silver Shadow II, and the two W109's and two W116's I've kept I'll be staying plenty busy. Rolls-Royce, Porsche, BMW......those companies alone (there are more) support for the classics blows Mercedes out of the water. I have no regrets having defected, yet so much to gain by doing so.
That's sad, but understandable. I think Mercedes made the best cars, but my view of the brand has soured over the years. When I first got into old Mercedes, you could get everything you ever needed directly from Mercedes, and at reasonable prices. They promoted their vintage models and took pride in so many of them still being on the road. They had a free electronic parts catalog and free roadside assistance for ANY Mercedes. Taking one to the dealership for work wasn't unusual.
Now parts are all becoming no longer available or the prices are being jacked up, Tom Hanson is retiring, the dealerships tell you to go away, they charge $75 a year for the electronic parts catalog, and they did away with free roadside assistance. There are people who say that Mercedes is under no obligation to stock parts for vehicles over 10 years old and say there is no money in it for them because Mercedes owners are "cheap". It's just a shame to see how things have changed in the period of about 10 years. I suppose the way of the future is doing Cuban mechanic repairs to keep them on the road as there will likely be no real parts support. It's sad, because now I question whether I'll be able to ever have an old Mercedes that's "nice" and not just rigged up with wire, duct tape, mastic sealant, and parts adapted from other vehicles.
The future is not looking very good for vintage Mercedes. I wish there was anything that interested me available in modern cars. Sometimes I feel like I just want to get a 1940s or 1950s American car instead, because they are extremely simple and there is a lot of support for the restoration process and parts are easy to rebuild or fabricate. But, they lack the safety features and handling that Mercedes pioneered, and didn't really have any diesel options. As time goes by, my dreams seem to fade because it gets more and more difficult to make them a reality. I wish there was more in the future for me to be excited about.