This is a fabulous thread to read and raises great questions and viewpoints. I , for one, am one of the biggest fans of luxury cars that I know. I study this crap to a point of obsession and I KNOW that the current S class is the best car in the world and will hold that position for at least 5 years if not longer.
As in any business/product life, it takes years to build a great reputation but only minutes to destroy one. The Chrysler era is the only thing that messed up dear old Daimler and we need to be understanding of this and get back to the grass roots of what is real and that is: Mercedes Benz is the best car company across the board. They made a mistake and they know it. When I was 5 years old, I distinctly remember crawling into a 1968 Mercedes S class and even at that young age, I knew this was a special vehicle. I just didn't know it would develop into a sickness for me
Rest assured, your decision to buy an S550 is not to be regretted. You will be happy. What little problems I've mentioned over the past year are so minor that it simply adds entertainment for the forum if nothing else.
I LOVE MY W221 !!!!!! Best car I've ever driven. That doesn't mean I don't miss my W215. That too was one of the best cars I've ever owned. Still wish I could grab a 2005 CL65 just for fun. This fellow just can't squeeze it into his budget