I have a 2001 CLK 320 which I purchased new in 2000.
Before, I purchased it I would read this forum and read stories of coffee getting in the gear shift and it would kill the car. Well I couldn't believe something that simple could disable the car.
Well, you can guess what happened.
My girlfriend spilled some lemonade from a bottle into the automatic gear shift. I saw it happened and knew the possible consequences and immediately went to wipe it up. Literally, only about 2 sipfulls spilled into the outer casing and some lemonade evidently got into the gear shift.
I drove 50 yards and the car locked up totally. I wasn't even able to put the car in Neutral for the tow truck.
Nightmare...Mercedes dealer said "there was an electric problem with the gear shift and I would need a new gift shift." Very expensive, I'm certain. Still waiting on the quote. Car has 57,000 miles so it's BEYOND warranty.
Lesson to all: this is a REAL problem ie- coffee or juice in the gear shift will kill your CLK. I can go on for days about this poor design by Mercedes with a few 4 letter words injected but I'll hold off.
This matter is not over. I will be talking with Mercedes main national center regarding this ridiculous gear shift design.
ACHTUNG: COVER YOUR GEAR SHIFTS WITH SOMETHING, ANYTHING.