European Delivery Program in Germany

Oct 15th, 2006, 08:07 PM
  #1  
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European Delivery Program in Germany

Can someone please share his or her experience picking up a Mercedes in Germany? I will be going next week and any more expertise or advice would be great. When I return, I will share the pros and cons of doing this by providing details of my trip if there is an interest. Steve
Sibelius is offline  
Oct 15th, 2006, 08:13 PM
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I've been a few times with my dad to pick up a Mercedes and they take very good care of you! Probably the most important advice I could give you is to make certain you know how to interpret the road signs in Germany. That upside-down white triangle outlined in red is a "yield" sign. (Important safety tip.)

Was there anything specific you wanted to know?
Trophywife007 is offline  
Oct 16th, 2006, 08:15 PM
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Thank you Trophywife. How long do you spend at the factory when you take delivery of the car and is there a wait if it is crowded since I understand this is a very popular thing to do now. Also, again, when you drop the car off at E.H.Harms, is it a simple procedure? We have an exciting itinerary planned and I appreciate the tip about the road signs!
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Oct 16th, 2006, 09:32 PM
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How long you spend at the factory depends on whether or not you take the factory tour, have lunch, etc.

I believe you get a voucher for a taxi ride to the factory or to your hotel, a voucher for a meal in their cafe (might as well use that!) and a factory tour, including a short movie on their history. (You may also want to spend a few euro in their souvenir shop.) It could take about four hours or so... but while you're there, take advantage. It's a lovely facility.

I seem to recall that after you finish the paperwork, they schedule a time for you to take delivery. They have to schedule someone who speaks English (if you don't speak German) to go over the car with you.

We went during Easter (2005) and it wasn't too busy... I think their fall break should be over by the time you get there next week, so you may not find it crowded at all.

Dropping the car off at Harms goes quickly... probably finding the place will be more challenging depending where you choose to drop it off.

By the way, when we were there, they told us that if we wanted the medical kit, etc. that came with the car we should take them with us, and they warn that you shouldn't leave any personal items to send back to the U.S. with it, (No, duh!) so pack accordingly.

We've found it to be a very enjoyable process. Being able to travel in your own vehicle, whenever and wherever you choose feels like quite the luxury, especially when you consider the hassle of train schedules, stations, taxis, lifting luggage over your head, yada, yada. I'm certain you'll have a memorable time!

Mercedes also has a nice museum nearby, in Sindelfingen I think.

What model are you getting? If it's a diesel, that will save you a couple of bucks...

That's all I can think of at the moment. I expect a full report when you return!
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Oct 17th, 2006, 06:31 AM
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>>"Mercedes also has a nice museum nearby, in Sindelfingen I think."<<

Or maybe it's Untertürkheim...
Trophywife007 is offline  
Oct 17th, 2006, 08:01 AM
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Does BMW have this program too? I looked on their website but couldn't find anything?

Thanks,
Lydia
lydialikestotravel is offline  
Oct 17th, 2006, 09:46 AM
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BMW has a great European Delivery Program. Been there, done that, got the t-shirt. http://www.bmwusa.com/bmwexperience/europeandelivery/

My recommendation is shop for dealers/prices. Some offer much better details than others.
Budman is offline  
Oct 17th, 2006, 09:55 AM
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My recommendation is shop for dealers/prices. Some offer much better details than others.

It's very worthwhile to prowl through the boards at http://www.bimmerfest.com/ for serious money-saving advice on BMW ED.
Gardyloo is online now  
Oct 17th, 2006, 09:56 AM
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can you save a decent amount over the US price (would it at least pay for your trip?)
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Oct 17th, 2006, 10:16 AM
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Can't speak for Mercedes, but done right you can save at least 7%, or as much as 15% off the US sticker for BMWs, around 7-8% for Volvos.

Volvo usually has a promo where they'll include two free RTs on SAS from the US to Goteborg when you set up an ED. BMW has a deal for discounted (or 2-4-1) deals on Lufthansa, but not as good a value as Volvo's deal. But savings on the Bimmer will outweigh Volvo's almost all the time.

You can easily save the price of the airfare for 2, and of course the price of a rental car. The downside is that you then have to wait a month and a half or 2 months for the car to arrive at your home.
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Oct 17th, 2006, 10:28 AM
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Gardyloo, good link. That's where I get my info.

I saved close to $4,500 on my 2002 525I. There are basically 4 prices for BMW's: Dealer MSRP and Dealer Cost, European Delivery MSRP and European Delivery Cost. Depending upon make/model, you can negotiate anywhere from $1,000 to $1,500 over ED Cost.

With regard to the Lufthansa 2 for 1 airfare, you have to purchase a more expensive economy ticket, so it comes out to about $1100-1200 for the two of you.


Budman is offline  
Oct 17th, 2006, 12:06 PM
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I always wondered how long it takes for shipping the car to get from your drop-off spot until it gets to you back home. Is it a matter of weeks or just a few days? Did you do a trade-in?
Zeus is offline  
Oct 17th, 2006, 12:59 PM
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I always wondered how long it takes for shipping the car to get from your drop-off spot until it gets to you back home. Is it a matter of weeks or just a few days? Did you do a trade-in?

Depends on where you live (east, west, gulf.) Generally around 6-8 weeks, sometimes as little as 4-5, but that's unusual. Last time I did it (Saab) I dropped in Paris (then it's trucked to the port) and fetched it in Tacoma exactly 41 days later. Remember you're paying lease/mortgage payments on the vehicle while it's floating your way.

Dealers will accept tradeins (or not) as per the norm. Remember you have two or three months between when you order and pay for the car and actually have it in your garage. If you do a tradein you're car-less until the new one arrives. Hence most people don't.
Gardyloo is online now  
Oct 17th, 2006, 01:11 PM
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Has anyone here done European delivery with the Saab? Is it true that you can only pick up the car in Nov. or Dec.?
FlyingMaltese is offline  
Oct 17th, 2006, 03:01 PM
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We picked up our BMW 330i last December and dropped off in Munich. BMW also uses EH Harms - we went to the Harms Munich delivery center on a Friday to process the paperwork (it didn't take more than 30-45 minutes) and didn't drop off the car until Saturday (when they're closed). The previous poster is correct - the drop-off locations can be a bit hard to find. And you might need to have a taxi waiting for you to carry you to your hotel. Also, make sure you know what will get removed prior to delivery to you - you need to take the first-aid kit, safety triangle and front (or rear? I forget...) license plate with you.

The BMW program saved us 7%, and the savings paid for our 3-day European Delivery trip and then some. Gardyloo and Budman are correct - some dealers are better with their European Delivery pricing than others - it certainly pays to research and shop around. I imagine it's the same for Mercedes, so go to the Mercedes boards.

As for time for delivery, our BMW took 40+ days from Munich to DC, but almost 2 weeks of that was sitting in the New Jersey port - you can track your car through their website.

If you buy a car with navigation, check with your dealer or on the message boards to see if someone will lend you, rent you, or sell you their German navigation DVD's. That made getting around Germany so much easier, and allowed us to wander the countryside with our very poor German skills.

Finally, Audi just announced that it has brought back its European Delivery program.

I LOVED European Delivery, so I may try to buy all our cars that way from now on.
kgh8m is offline  
Oct 29th, 2006, 07:04 PM
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Trophy Wife and others: Just to let you know I am back from Germany where my son and I picked up our Mercedes and drove it for 5 days around Germany. We used a taxi voucher to get from Stuttgart Airport to the factory in Sindelfingen and had our car for the rest of the trip until E.H. Harms Transport Company picked up the car right from our hotel (pre-arranged) in Stuttgart before we left for the airport(using our other taxi voucher). The second convenience I remember most is the outstanding Navigation DVD they lent us. Our technical advisor even programmed in all our towns and stopovers in the system before we left the factory. Even though I had practically memorized the map of Germany ahead of time, you have no idea how nice and convenient it was to have the navigation system especially when you are jet-lagged or thinking about other things, etc. Our itinerary consisted of Baden-Baden and some exciting driving through Black Forest roads, Heidelberg, the Nurburgring Race Track (the ultimate test for one's car), Rothenburg and the Romantic Road, Schwabisch Hall and ultimately, Stuttgart, which I enjoyed much more than I thought I would. AND, you might have read on another post about my impression of autobahn traffic which held us back, but did not ruin the trip. In a word, I would do European Delivery again. It was a neat experience, although it does require some planning and dexterity. I do have some suggestions and would be happy to answer any questions about the program (or even about co-ed spa bathing at Friedrichsbad in Baden-Baden if you want!) Steve
Sibelius is offline  
Oct 29th, 2006, 07:48 PM
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Flying--when we looked into Saab's program this past summer, you could pick up the car any time except for one month when the factory was closed. Can't remember which month that was.
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Nov 3rd, 2006, 06:35 AM
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Thank you for letting me know that.
FlyingMaltese is offline  
Jun 4th, 2007, 08:27 AM
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I'm sorry for resurrecting an OLLLLLLLLD thread, but, is the car you order through this program the same car (extras-wise) you would get in the US or would it be different - more, or less extras?

How about getting warranty work done, how tough is that? Do you need to find a local dealership to "sponsor" you for that or are you on your own for any warranty work once it's in the US?

Sibelius, I'd love to hear more about your experience, either here or at my email..
flygirl is offline  
Jun 4th, 2007, 09:04 AM
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Check with your local (USA) dealer. Chances are valuable removeable items (radio)will disappear.
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