W203 - Camber bushes replaced - cured wandering?

Rory

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My C270CDi had its MOT today as it approaches 5yrs old. It's only done 42K due to a job change just after I bought it, at 5K miles. And when I do use the car, it tends to be only for long motorway runs.

I've never been happy with the "feel" of the car - as though it wasn't "planted" on the road. The MOT threw up an advisory on both front camber bushes being deteriorated, although not having any movement.

Despite it only being an advisory, ServicePlus agreed to replace the bushes, and I have to say that on the short drive home, the car seemed noticeably better than before.

It's a bit concerning that the bushes would deteriorate with such light use, and if there was no movement in the bushes, why could it feel better than before, better indeed that it's ever done?
 

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Probably castor bushes, not camber. Usually called thrust arm bushes. I dont think I've ever changed camber ones. Either way, at least it's a good result!!
 

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Good result from ServicePlus. Not your usual experience eh, Rory?
 
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Rory

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Good result from ServicePlus. Not your usual experience eh, Rory?

Actually I'm annoyed. I have asked them everytime it goes in to check the suspension carefully due to the car's lack of stability. The car has never felt right.

They changed the front discs too after the MOT advisory noted them as pitted. Last year they would have changed them all round but they assumed ServicePlus would refuse - they hadn't realised they were the originals.

They also fixed an SRS fault with the steering column wiring - apparently as goodwill, as there's a service bulletin.

Had a palava trying to get the a/c regassed - they decided NFF then that it could do with regassing after all when I asked for air outout temp reading. However the ServicePlus online system doesn't allow regasssing to requested on its own. They finally got authorisation 15mins after I'd collected my car, so need to waste more time on a repeat visit.

The service and attitude was still poor though - took 25 mins to drop the car off and 30 mins to pick it up. The service advisor there keeps me waiting longer than my dentist does! Mrs R was with me when I went to collect and she was very close to getting cross! The place did seem more busy than usual though - there were certainly 3 groups of people in discussions over buying cars.
 

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..........

The service and attitude was still poor though - took 25 mins to drop the car off and 30 mins to pick it up. The service advisor there keeps me waiting longer than my dentist does! ....

Surely Service Plus will expire shortly and you can begin to enjoy the far superior customer experience an indie can offer. My main dealer experience sounds similar to yours. Having never returned I can assure you there is far better service waiting for you out there.
 

television

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You have grumbled about the stability ever since you bought it
 
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Rory

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You have grumbled about the stability ever since you bought it

Yep. It's definitely not right, or, if it is, then MBs feel weird to drive. I'm of sufficient age that I was brought up on RWD cars although before buying this MB I had several FWD company cars.
I am probably driving the MB in less of a "get hold of it by the scruff on the neck" style than I did my company cars and I wondered if that was the issue, but I drove a colleagues older 5 Series BMW a while ago and it was sublime.

I would like to take the car to WIM but it's a long way to make a special journey and I haven't been able to tie it in with anything else. I do feel miffed that my dealership has avoided this issue by refusing to acknowledge that it exists.
 

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After nosing around the net and finding this 99% is about the dealers and MB lack of care
 
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Rory

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I'm sure it's a lot to do with ServicePlus in my case. There's an attitude of "push-back" on everything from the dealer, as I guess they know they'll have trouble getting paid.
I had exactly the same experience for many years driving company lease car - the maintenance controllers at the lease companies won't pay for anything.

I have no doubt that if I was a cash paying customer they would be delighted to spend many hours diagnosing every issue I raise.

My problem is that having paid a considerable sum for ServicePlus, I really don't feel inclined to spend more money to correct issues that MB should sort out.
 

HelpThisDude

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Probably castor bushes, not camber. Usually called thrust arm bushes. I dont think I've ever changed camber ones. Either way, at least it's a good result!!

Sorry for a(nother) silly question, what are the camber bushes? Or should I say where?
 

HelpThisDude

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Cheers Malcom, I know a little more about Camber now.
But what worn arm/bush on the W203 results in just a camber issue?
 

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Cheers Malcom, I know a little more about Camber now.
But what worn arm/bush on the W203 results in just a camber issue?

When bushes wear the camber angle changes, and can be responsible for the car pulling to the left, or being over sensitive in the directional stability
 

HelpThisDude

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Ok, so other then the upper and lower thrust arms, is there any other worn component that would cause camber problems?
Just curious as I have changed the thrust arms, and I know mine still feels like it is wondering on a straight road.... not quite tramlining.... but it could just be me :)

On my R5 GGT, I used to get the same kind of wondering, but alot worse (with added torque steer). It was caused by, what looked like a universal joint just after the firewall on the steering, had worn out.
 

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Not unless they are set up wrong,,and like all these things only as good as the operator of the set up, torque steering can be from the rear subframe bushes, when worn
 
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Rory

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Rolled around under the car yesterday and I can't see that anything has changed on the lower arms. Bolts look undisturbed. Curious.

Went for a long run and I *think* it's better - the car seems more more inclined to go where it's pointed. One time it ran to the right after I pointed it that way - previously it would quickly run left.
 

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It is the inner bolts furthest away from the wheel both top and bottom
 
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Rory

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It is the inner bolts furthest away from the wheel both top and bottom

That's where I was looking - where the bushes go.

When you say top and bottom - both arms are on more or less the same plane, but one connects upwards, and the other downwards, at the strut.

I'm assuming that it's one of those bushes but am confused by everyone using different names for those arms. MOT advisory stated camber bushes, but othere suggest that's unlikely.
 

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I do not have diagrams that I can put up for your car
 
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Rory

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I do not have diagrams that I can put up for your car

I can't find one that makes sense either. The one on the Russian site has the bottom (the crucial part) cut off!
 

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