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S600L - Not going straight - very sensitive?

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My friend recently bought a S600L as a 2004 model. He noticed that on stragiht road where other cars go straight (leaving the hands off the steering wheel), the S600L gently moves to the right.

We went to a isolated road, and did the test in both direction, and found that the car went right in one direction, and on the other reverse direction, swerved to the left.

This means that the car is very sensitive to the road inclination, and not a problem with the wheel alignment etc. We had a Lexus LS430 do the same, and it went dead straight.

We asked Mercedes about this and they replied that they got many such complaints and had to explain that the Merc body is very symmetrical, and also, in the S600 it will be more apparent due to the heavy V12 engine on the front making the car front heavy, hence very sensitive to even minor road inclinations.

I would like to know from other owners of Merc or even the BMW, if they face the same problems and whether this is much to bother about?

Also, the S600 came without the tyre pressure mointor, the dealer did not mention about it to my friend. Do you know of any third party tyre pressure/temp. monitors which does not require cabling etc?

Any advice is appreciated.

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My S500 never had that problem, if there is an incline in the road then I'd say that it is a wheel alignment problem rather then weightdistribution. Maybe you should try the same on a flat road. But then again if MB sais it's so.

Your friends dealer is an idiot. The tyrepressure system is an added 700 euro's rightthere, obviously he doesn't want to make money.

You could go for these:





Motorola, Philips and Bosch have sensors for these kind of applications but you'll have to setup and program them your self. Even then it's a pain in the arse to install and get it to work correctly.

I think the best thing would be to take it to another smarter dealer and have them install it for you. It will cost you a little more then if you would order it from the factory. The stock system is much nicer then anything else I have found.


I know this is really late, but I'd like to add my two cents regarding this wandering issue.

We had a 350SE and a 300D and a 280E and what I can tell you is that your friend's car is NOT normal. There's something wrong. And what might be expected, certainly heavily based on how he drives it, is that if Mercedes are driven hard, their front ends are fragile in that they require frequent alignments. That having been said, every Mercedes that I have ever driven (some at well over 120 mph), should feel rock solid and track straight and true when properly aligned.

My indirect understanding from my instructors at school (who are ASE Master Techs) is that Mercedes uses quite a bit of caster in their front ends (the angle of the suspension set either forward or backward from the center line of the wheel [straight up and down]). While this promotes great straight line stability (freeway), it also lends itself to getting itself out of whack because of how drastically the geometry of the suspension changes when you turn (steer) the wheels.

I don't know if Mercedes has changed these angles on more recent cars, but this is how all of the older ones I dealt with were. You can tell it when you crank the steering wheels to the left or right. On Mercedes, they lean when you really turn them hard.

Anyway, just an idea to look into. Your friend needs to look into an alignment somewhere other than that dealership.



I don't know how many times you did this "experiment" but it was probably neither the lie of the road or wheel alignment. It was probably winds. Wind can have dramatic effects on the handling of cars, especially land yachts like an S-class.


also, believe it or not, the tires can have a large effect on this too. Be sure they are worn evenly and correctly balanced.

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