2004 S55 AMG buying advice

I am looking to purchase my 1st Benz, a 2004 S55 AMG. Would appreciate any advice on problem areas to look for. I hear AMG's are more reliable than stock cars. True?
Alfred Los Angeles
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My friend recently bought the same car but a 2001. He's paid a bit over $12k in parts and labor to fix it! In my opinion this car was NOT worth it but he's a mercedes fan so things like reliablity (lexus is much better) don't seem to matter. I've noticed german car fans are mostly in a head trip about their cars being superior. The truth doesn't matter to them. Japanese luxury cars are far better (much more reliable). The Lexus LS460 is a great example.
Front suspension was totally shot (bushings, tie rods, shocks, pretty much any parts that wear out). All brake rotors were replaced. Engine had MANY oil leaks. I've learned on these cars (as well as other MB models) there is a gasket in the engine near the heads that goes bad after about 100k miles. This gasket is hard to get to. To change this gasket is a lot of labor (so price for this work is high). Several MB cars I've seen have had lousy mechanics work on them and scam the customers by charging for replacement of the gasket but all they do is put a bead of silicon that hides the leak for a few months (maybe a few thousand miles). Be very careful of who is doing the work.
Car had lots of malfunction codes. Several sensors were bad. Several problems with electrical system (this is the Achilles heel of MB, very poor electrical systems). To fix electrical system problems and get rid of codes was difficult and several visits were required. The vacuum assist for the doors was also bad. One door (passenger) was not able to be fixed without changing the vacuum assy for the door. That part is very expensive so the mechanic suggested to just live without vacuum assist for that door. Several parts were changed for vacuum assist with rest of car.
I was simply shocked at the costs of repairing these cars. I would suggest you take this car to a good independent MB mechanic and have them look it over very well. You may find the price of repairing this car just isn't worth it. Unless of course you just have money to waste. If that's the case, go for it.
Good luck,
Oskar
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

what is a vacuum assist ?
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These cars have a vacuum assist mechanism to help close the doors. I've seen several MB model cars with this feature, I think it's an option on some models. Not all MB cars have this.
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