3 Cheapest Mercedes to Maintain (+ Costs)

When consumers consider buying a reliable, affordable, and fuel-efficient vehicle, they likely think of Toyota or Honda. While these makes provide advantages, most consumers will still spend anywhere from $500-$750 a year for maintenance. 

Let’s say that you’ve decided to go with a Mercedes-Benz because it’s reliable, has quality engineering and technology, plus it provides high engine power and performance on demand. How much would it cost to maintain a car like this per year? Keep reading to learn how much it costs to maintain standard Mercedes-Benz models. 

What is the Cheapest Mercedes-Benz to Maintain?

Generally, Mercedes-Benz vehicles are more expensive to maintain than your average carmakers like Toyota and Honda. In general, Mercedes-Benz vehicles cost an average of $908-$1,500 to maintain annually; that number will vary when considering sedans, SUVs, and hatchbacks. 

The A-class hatchbacks are the cheapest Mercedes to maintain over the year. On average, it costs $400s to maintain the most affordable A-class hatchback, $600 for sedans like the C-300, and $850 for the SUVs. 

Also read: 6 Mercedes-Benz Models to Avoid (with Years)

Types of Mercedes-Benz Maintenance

As with many makes and models, Mercedes-Benz requires maintenance at regular intervals. However, by adhering to the guidelines set by the automaker, consumers can keep their Mercedes in good working order. 

While they don’t offer free maintenance coverage for the first few years, they offer a maintenance program covering the car after the 110,000-mile marker. The automaker provides two types of maintenance levels: Type A and Type B.

  • Type A – this type of maintenance includes service after the first 10,000 miles, such as oil changes, air filter changes, and fluid checks.
  • Type B – this type of maintenance includes service after the first 20,000 miles includes Type A services and secondary services like changing the brake fluid and transmission services.

1. The Mercedes-Benz A-Class

According to the most recent data, the Mercedes-Benz A-class base model is the cheapest to maintain. As a result, many consider this model an entry-level four-door compact, luxury hatchback that offers plenty of comforts and satisfies its customer.

The base trim of this vehicle goes for $33,795 and comes with a turbo, 2L 4-cylinder engine capable of producing 188 horsepower. The car comes standard as an FWD, but other trim levels like the AMG A35 can be either FWD or AWD. Generally, the A220 can achieve a 28-mpg combined city/highway. 

The typical maintenance costs of the A220 can vary from $95 to $471, depending on the needed service.

Oil Change$194.78
Battery Replacement$619.99
Car Air Filter Replacement$165.61
Brake Rotor/Disc – Front Replacement$692.08
Brake Shoe Replacement (Rear)$298.55

Unfortunately, European imports like Mercedes-Benz are not immune from problems. Below are some common issues with the A220.

Description of the ProblemCost 
AC Compressor Replacement$1,438
Starter Replacement$1,200
Radiator Hose Replacement$230
Wheel Speed Sensor Replacement$230
Drive Belt Idler Pulley Replacement$150

Another important consideration when choosing your next Mercedes is the cost of owning one. While you own a Mercedes, it depreciates and costs money to insure. Below is another table that describes the cost of owning an A220.

Type of CostCost After Five Years

With the actual cost in mind, you’ll want to make sure that you buy reliable A220s without having to worry about surprising repairs or numerous recalls. For example, I would stay away from any 2015 A220 models because they were littered with problems such as gearbox failure, failure of an airbag deployment, and camshaft failures. 

The 2019 A220 is an excellent model to start with if you’re just beginning to join the luxury car club. 

2. The Mercedes-Benz C-Class

The Mercedes-Benz C300 is the next cheapest vehicle to maintain. While this class is more expensive, it doesn’t come close to the S-Class models. The car is a four-door sedan slightly bigger than the A-class, and it pairs performance and comfort with quality construction. 

The C300 comes as a coupe, convertible, or sedan body style and can seat five people. The base trim model starts at $41,600 and comes with a 2.0L, 4-cylinder turbo engine capable of producing 255 horsepower and achieves a combined 29mpg city/highway. 

Trending Video: How to Easily Bring Back to Life any Old Car Battery and Save Tons of Money (click to watch)

The C300 has many trim levels that can push the MSRP well into the $70,000-$80,000 range with the AMG line. The typical maintenance costs of a C300 can vary from $95 to $3800, depending on the mechanic and the vehicle’s condition. However, an average maintenance cost of $577 isn’t out of the ordinary. 

Drive Belt Tensioner Replacement$238
Water Pump Replacement$978.01
Car Air Filter Replacement$138.71
Brake Rotor/Disc – Front Replacement$372
Cooling System Flush$206

The following table describes some C300 issues and the average cost to fix them. 

Description of the ProblemCost 
Car Radiator Replacement$1,500.10
Windshield Wiper Motor Replacement$796.51
Headlight Bulb Replacement$130
Fuel Injector Replacement$930
Oxygen Sensor Replacement$275

It’s essential to understand the actual cost of owning the C300, and another table describes the costs associated below.

Type of CostCost After Five Years

Whether you’re looking to buy a newer or used C300, I would ere on the side of caution. The years 2008-2016 are littered with problems, with 2011 as the worst year because of transmission replacements at 40,000 miles. 

Other issues were failure to start, faulty steering components, and faulty interior accessories. Luckily, the 2017-2020 generation made improvements and is mainly free of complaints. 

Also read: 5 Serious Reasons Why Mercedes are so Expensive

3. The Mercedes-Benz GLC

The last cheapest vehicle I will touch on is the Mercedes-Benz GLC300. This vehicle is a compact SUV that is comfortable, luxurious, and sporty. While this model isn’t as spacious as the GLS series, it still seats five passengers and has plenty of cargo space. The base model comes with a 4-cylinder turbo with an automatic transmission capable of producing 255 horsepower. 

The GLC300 base model starts at $43,200, achieves a combined 25mpg city/highway, and comes standard as an FWD drivetrain. In the 4Matic series, the drivetrain is AWD with certain trim levels, sacrificing one mpg city/highway. As a result, the MSRP for the higher trim levels can move well into the high $70,000-$80,000 range.

The maintenance costs for the GLC300 vary widely from $95 to $2,451, depending on the issues and the shop itself. However, an average of $877 is typical for this SUV. 

Car Battery Replacement$357
Headlight Bulb Replacement$1,320
Brake Pad Replacement$181.00
Brake Caliper Replacement$829
Turn Signal Switch Replacement$614

Unfortunately, as high-quality as the GLC300 is, it comes with a list of its issues. The table below describes some common problems with the SUV. 

Description of the ProblemCost 
Car Radiator Replacement$967
Water Pump Replacement$1,155.16
Windshield Wiper Motor (Front)$776.51
Door Mirror – (Passenger Side)$1,365.59
CV Axle/Shaft Assembly Replacement$793

Unfortunately, the GLC300 can still break the bank if you’re unprepared for the cost of owning one. The table below describes the true cost of a GLC300. 

Type of CostCost After Five Years

The GLC300 is a short-lived model and has only been manufactured for five years. But, so far, there have been little to no complaints about the model, considering how well it is selling. 

Although, the 2016 model has had the most reported issues, six to be exact. The 2017 model follows closely behind with four reported problems overall. Therefore, I suggest the newer models (2018-present) if you’re in the market for a compact SUV. 

What Are the Cheaper Alternatives for Mercedes-Benz? 

While the German automaker undoubtedly has style and a stellar reputation, there are many alternatives to consider that could be less demanding on your wallet. 

I will describe comparable models to the Mercedes discussed in this article in the table below. The vehicles below are listed as base models only and are competitive alternatives.

Mercedes ModelMerc (MSRP)Comparable ModelMSRPComparable Model MSRP
Mercedes A220$33,795Acura ILX$25,900BMW 1 Series$29,900
Mercedes C300$41,600Acura TLX$34,000Audi A4$37,400
Mercedes GLC300$43,200Volvo XC60$41,700Lincoln Corsair$36,105


Mercedes-Benz is well-known for its high-quality and luxurious design and engine power. Despite that, there are plenty of affordable options for consumers that want to dip their feet into the luxury car market. 

The automaker competes with its less luxurious alternatives, offering sleek and comfortable rides for singles and families alike. However, the cost of owning a Mercedes-Benz paired with the risk of buying used vehicles is cause for concern. The best advice is to thoroughly inspect and research any used Mercedes for recalls before buying. 

Mercedes-Benz isn’t alone, as many German-made cars are expensive to maintain, but with that fact usually comes a reliable and beautiful machine that gets you from Point A to Point B. I am confident that anyone can find a Mercedes that suits their needs, whether used or brand new.


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