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Old 9th April 2014, 16:37   #16
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Default Re: Mercedes E-Class, S-Class, etc : Steering wheel offset towards center console! Wh

Although I have test driven loads of Benzes including old timers, I had never noticed this Offset.

I can still remember very clearly the day I purchased my own W124 (about 3 years ago) and driving home from Raichur to Hyderabad.

The minute I hit the highway it struck me that the steering was slightly offset to the left.

Then just to be sure - I went and checked a few other W124s and W123s. All have the same offset to the left (in RHD models) and this is irrespective of whether the cars have air-bags or not. All models have this offset.

The thing I feel is that it doesn't actually have any ill effect or reduce comfort in your day to day driving.

But the fact that it stays in your head once you have actually noticed that the offset exists.

Wonder why Benz continues to keep this offset.

Last edited by laxmanrk : 9th April 2014 at 16:41.
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Old 9th April 2014, 20:13   #17
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Default Re: Mercedes E-Class, S-Class, etc : Steering wheel offset towards center console! Wh

The offset is not noticeable immediately.But it is certainly there and in case of the W204, its off by a big margin. I have not come across any reported fatigue from my drivers. I like the Merc driving positions. Never had fatigue when driven myself. Except for maybe right shin pain because you need to keep the heavy accelerator under precise control in traffic. The cars are comfortable. I guess the anomaly has more mental side effects. Usually people expect premium cars to be perfect. And the offset to me at least, seems like a toddler level error.
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Old 9th April 2014, 21:55   #18
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Default Re: Mercedes E-Class, S-Class, etc : Steering wheel offset towards center console! Wh

The off set results in poor ergonomics.I have owned Lexuses and Infinitis in the middle east.None of those `premium cars' have these problems.The driving position is spot on.

The alignment of my car has been double checked.Its perfect.
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Old 10th April 2014, 01:07   #19
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Default Re: Mercedes E-Class, S-Class, etc : Steering wheel offset towards center console! Wh

Great. Here I am cursing the newer Mahindras (Bolero and Thar) for their offset steering, and here comes Mercedes. Having being brought up on Suzukis with their near perfect ergonomics, I can say for sure that an offset steering is definitely disorienting, if not painful. Given the sheer amount of space in these barges, how difficult is it to have a centred steering? Even an 800 is better in this respect.
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Old 10th April 2014, 12:01   #20
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Default Re: Mercedes E-Class, S-Class, etc : Steering wheel offset towards center console! Wh

Ok.. Now I though mine was strange. I feel this issue even on my Polo GT.... slightly offset and at a different angle. Is it something to do with the "Famed" German Engineering?
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Old 10th April 2014, 12:22   #21
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Default Re: Mercedes E-Class, S-Class, etc : Steering wheel offset towards center console! Wh

This is the case with many cars. I have experienced this with Santro and now with Vento!

Last edited by Rehaan : 15th April 2014 at 15:05. Reason: Typo "may" corrected to "many". Let us know if you meant "my" instead.
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Old 10th April 2014, 13:48   #22
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Talking Re: Mercedes E-Class, S-Class, etc : Steering wheel offset towards center console! Wh

Reminds me of some auto-rickshaw guys
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Old 11th April 2014, 13:28   #23
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Default Re: Mercedes E-Class, S-Class, etc : Steering wheel offset towards center console! Wh

I had attended a 3 day training on the new Porsche Macan & we had an Audi Q5 among other CSUVs for comparison. The test drivers mentioned that the Q5 has a .5 degree offset of the steering wheel towards the LHS (LHD car) and the explanation was that many German cars have that by default although they corrected it for the Macan. The comments from the group included 1) ease of ingress/egress & 2) that the offset gives a feeling of spacious interior, none of which was either agreed upon or disagreed by the testers/product development team.
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Old 11th April 2014, 18:45   #24
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Smile Re: Mercedes E-Class, S-Class, etc : Steering wheel offset towards center console! Wh

Safety might definitely be one of the reasons for the offset. Considering you would reach more with your right hand (in RHD) you would effectively align yourself to be held in better by the shoulder strap coming in over the right shoulder. Also, the slight leftward twist would dissipate a higher amount of side-impact energy onto your back instead of squarely into your shoulders and side-ribs. Reaching with the right hand would ensure that there is a smaller kink in your elbow. Perhaps this would lead to less interference with the door in case of impacts. All this is utter conjecture and reverse justification though
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Old 14th April 2014, 16:44   #25
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Default Re: Mercedes E-Class, S-Class, etc : Steering wheel offset towards center console! Wh

The offset steering wheel is not for increasing safety or ingress/egress. I think it is a design issue with a mismatch between seat not aligning up with the center line of the steering wheel.
There could be two possibilities:
Due to the design flow from the door on to the Instrument Panel or vice-versa, the Steering wheel is offset from the center of the seat to give precedence to the design
OR
The center floor console is too wide to accommodate everything needed and due to a fixed wide seat. The seat had to be offset from the steering center.
My hunch is it could be one of the two.
Well if the steering wheel is moved inboard, yes it will improve Ingress/Egress.
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Old 15th April 2014, 13:11   #26
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Default Re: Mercedes E-Class, S-Class, etc : Steering wheel offset towards center console! Wh

Quote:
Originally Posted by sreejith1830 View Post

The steering wheel is markedly offset to the left side and the pedals are biased towards the right.What I mean to say is that the steering wheel is not positioned in the appropriate way, i.e dead centre of the driver,its more to the left side.

Now what this position leads to is driver fatigue on long drives. A drive more than 1 hour is a torture with this setup.
Has any other owner of a W212 on this forum noticed this quirk or is it only me?
I own a 2011 w204 C-Class in left hand drive configuration. On long drives my braking ability reduces significantly due to strain of my ankle. In order to reduce the fatigue, I remove my shoes and drive to put myself at ease. Since I am very happy with the vehicle I did not part with it citing this as a reason. I however second your point of view on this quirkiness.

Last edited by Got BHP? : 15th April 2014 at 13:15.
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Old 17th April 2014, 22:47   #27
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Default Re: Mercedes E-Class, S-Class, etc : Steering wheel offset towards center console! Wh

I read somewhere that while driving long distances people prefer to rest their arm on the window sill and drive with one hand, hence the steering in Mercedes cars are intentionally offset to accommodate a more comfortable driving posture.
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