E43 Tyre Skipping

Discussion in 'Wheels, Tyres, Brakes & Suspension' started by Phil916, Dec 4, 2019.

  1. Phil916

    Phil916 New Member

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    I know this is a well discussed topic but I'm certainly not happy with the consequence of this issue and the response form Mercedes. My E43 had Yokohama tyres (20") fitted from new and has experienced tyre skip from day 1. Even in warm weather on full lock the car would judder. In winter things get worse so even pulling out of a T junction would cause tyre skip - no where near full lock.

    Mercedes admitted this as an issue and even documented this at the car's first service. They stated Mercedes were looking to replace the tyres with all weather tyres but due to the tyre size at that point no manufacturer produced a tyre for the front. The next option was supplying a set of winter tyres - very costly in that would require an additional set of rims too. Eventually they came back with a statement that the tyre skipping did not affect safety therefore they were doing nothing to rectify this issue.

    About 6 weeks ago the car had a recall and the dealer gave the car a safety check whilst it was in. The result of this was that the front tyres were illegal which was a surprise to me as tread was still way above the legal limit, which they confirmed at 3mm minimum. The tyres were worn evenly across the tread however the inner sidewall was worn so badly that not only was the metal banding uncovered but ha been worn so badly that some of the braiding was cut through. The tyres were in a very dangerous state. the dealer checked the tracking and front suspension geometry to report everything was within tolerance.

    I had the tyres returned to Yokohama who inspected for faulty manufacture. They have replied and confirmed that the tyres are OK and the cause would be down to either incorrect geometry or tyre pressures.

    As the dealer had declined to support me they directed me to Mercedes UK. In turn they passed me on to AMG Germany who could answer the query on the phone - obviously this was not an uncommon question. They stated that they had undertaken tests with the statutory bodies and the issue of tyre skip was not a safety issue.

    As the tyre skip unduly loads the sidewalls - on the E43 obviously the inner sidewall, then realising this issue of increased wear is not visible unless you lie down and look under the vehicle. So for the vast majority of drivers of a new car this would not be normal procedure!

    As the tyres still has 3 mm of tread and the inner sidewall was completely destroyed the tyres should have been changed a significant time before this, probably with at least 5mm or 6mm of tread i.e. at about 30% of tread wear!

    I am now about to take this up with Mercedes again as I do believe this is a significant safety issue and I will also inform the motoring ombudsman.

    I know when I searched the web previously I came across a statement from Mercedes (for the GLC) which admitted the design of the suspension/steering had an issue with the Ackerman geometry which was the cause of tyre skip and this also indicated that RHD vehicles suffered this more. I've tried to find this but without success so if anyone can help it would be much appreciated.

    Interested in others who have this problem but if you own an E43 please get down on the ground and check your inner sidewalls before suffering a blowout or two!
     
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  2. Riva811

    Riva811 Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    If Yokohama is a tough tire or you pumped too much pressure in them then yes it makes sense why the car skips. From experience new cars come with high pressure from the factory. I doubt its a manufacturing issue from either Mercedes nor Yokohama but I could be wrong.
     
  3. MrRight

    MrRight Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    All AWD cars including porsches etc have this "issue ". I'm not trying to be unsympathetic but it only 3mm of tread is left, how many miles have you done in the car since you got it ?
     
  4. Bluegnomes

    Bluegnomes Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    So I’ve had the e43 for two and a half years, running 20inch summer tyres and 19inch winter tyres.

    I’ve also had inner side walls go on two previous e350cdi so I don’t think that this is a 4wd problem as such. Or a tyre slipping problem.

    I do think that running winter tyres over the winter is very good for the life of summer tyres. We are on 24k miles and both the winters and summers look great.

    To the OP I would say - this does remind us to all check (not relying on garages) our tyres frequently.
     
  5. Marku

    Marku Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Didn't some one recently take legal action against Mercedes on precisely this problem? It was Mercedes Finance they took to the Financial Ombudsman claiming the car was not fit for purpose etc. The Ombudsman found for them and Mercedes paid up.
     
  6. OP
    OP
    Phil916

    Phil916 New Member

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    Absolutely correct Marku, this is a well documented issue for Mercedes and yes I've had many other performance 4 wheel drives including Porsche, Audi and BMW, yes they did show some tyre skip but nothing like the E43. Mercedes have issued free of charge hundreds of sets of all season tyres for the GLC, especially the 43, even provided replacement vehicles (again free of charge) for eight months until an all weather tyre in the correct size became available. The issue I really have is the serious deterioration of the sidewall which should never occur from a design perspective. Tyre pressures have been maintained at recommended levels, if fact have never really budged, easy to check with Mercedes Me. As I mentioned Mercedes have admitted design issues on suspension/steering angles previously and somewhere on the web is a copy of a letter from Mercedes admitting this.

    Mercedes state the tyre skip issue is not a safety risk, if the wear of a tyre doesn't get to 50% of tread wear when it needs replacing then there is something wrong with the car, I don't know of any other manufacturer who has this problem, yes you may wear tread out at a high rate but unless foreign object or tracking issues you wouldn't expect sidewall failure at such an early tyre life.

    I've replaced the tyres obviously but Mercedes need to recognise this as a safety issue, as the ombudsman stated the average buyer on the street of a premium vehicle should not have such issues.

    Thanks everyone for your replies and if anyone could lead me to the Mercedes admission letter this would be welcomed with open arms.
     
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  7. Bobby Dazzler

    Bobby Dazzler MB Club Veteran

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    Sorry to hear of your problems.

    If there’s 3mm left then that sounds like a lot more than 50% worn to me.

    Do you have any photos of the Tyres and depth across the tyre?

    Also which manufacturer/type of tyre have you replaced them with?
     
  8. Germgh0st

    Germgh0st Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I would beg to differ, I had an Audi S2 some years back and it didn't suffer from this issue. For me this is a safety issue, when I back out of my driveway, which can be quite tight, I don't want my car skipping towards other parked cars! Thankfully Mercedes have agreed to replace my tyres at their cost.
     
  9. Atavus

    Atavus Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Plenty of cars with the right steering geometry exhibit the problem. I’ve seen it on RWD Porsches and AWD was the same.
     
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  10. SarahAnn200

    SarahAnn200 Member

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    I've owned 30 cars in as many years including the 19 reg s3 on 19" tyres I traded for the c43 and none have done it.
    All I can go by is my own experience and I didn't think the level of judder/sideways skipping on 18" tyres was acceptable. It wasn't just a noise or juddering of the front end, the car was actually skipping sideways. I would rather have all weather tyres that don't judder than summer tyres that had the issue.
     
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  11. Germgh0st

    Germgh0st Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Same on the 19's, it actually does hop across the road.
     
  12. grober

    grober MB Club Veteran

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    Mercedes " admission" letter doesn't exist- there was no formal recall. Mercedes characterised the problem as a comfort/driveability issue NOT a safety one hence no official recall notice you can refer to -- AFAIK. The GLC issue is dealt with in detail here https://www.glcforums.com/forum/186...ion/6902-steering-knuckle-anti-clonk-fix.html
    You will notice the steering knuckle change does not apply to the 43 and 63 models implying they may already have revised suspension geometry?
     
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2019 at 10:04 AM
  13. Petrol Pete

    Petrol Pete Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Did someone on here say the steering knuckle change can not be done on AMG models ? I'm sure I read it on this forum recently, but can't find it.
     
  14. Bobby Dazzler

    Bobby Dazzler MB Club Veteran

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    What size were the tyres?
     
  15. MrRight

    MrRight Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Not taking sides here, Mercedes should have delivered the cars with tyres suitable for the environment they were in. Given it is cold for 4 months at least per year in the UK, all seasons would be great for the winter but not the summer.

    The clearly wouldn't release fundamentally flawed cars, and I dont think the skipping issues are a flaw at all at least in the GLC models (cant comment on the E 43) , but more of tyres and rims fitted to those cars which may be fine for 6 to 8 months of the year but not for the rest of the year.

    The only thing that merc have failed to do in my opinion is to inform potential customers that tyre skipping is a feature in the colder months as a result of the tyre set up. And further, that the customer should consider swapping tyres over for winter.

    Having not sufficiently disclosed this fact , it wouldn't be unreasonable to require them to offer an all season tyre remedy.

    For the customer though, consider that an all season tyre on a sporty car will not perform as well as the summer tyres fitted to the car for around 7 to 8 months of the year . However if you think you would rather have an all season tyre so your car doesn't skip while turning out of your driveway at the expense of braking and cornering , then you should be given that option by merc
     
  16. MrRight

    MrRight Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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  17. Germgh0st

    Germgh0st Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    It was a decade and a half ago so I can't actually remember. There were 18" wheels though.
     
  18. grober

    grober MB Club Veteran

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    Its possible that the steering knuckle modification which seeks to eliminate the skipping problem by improving adherence to ackermann geometry is not applicable to the high performance AMG models because they already run a degree of anti-ackermann to improve cornering on the limit?
    EXPLAINED HERE
     
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  19. Bluegnomes

    Bluegnomes Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I do wonder though if we are wishing for too much of our cars wheels and tyres to do everything, everywhere. 275section by 30 profile on 20inch alloys (I think that’s right for my e43) are not going to work as well as higher profile all season or winter tyres below average 7C (typical UK winter). That leads to crabbing but also driving a fairly high performance car on wide summer tyres in the winter. That’s why my two quicker daily cars are on winter tyres now and the other car is in storage for the winter.
     
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  20. Bobby Dazzler

    Bobby Dazzler MB Club Veteran

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    I bet the tyre size has a lot to do with it, hence my reason for asking.

    Whilst technically low profile I bet they’d be nowhere near the super low profiles we regularly see today. The compound would have been less extreme, and the tyre would be designed for a lighter car and so would require less stiffness engineered into the tyre wall compared to a modern tyre for a modern car.
     
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