Irregular and premature tire wear can be caused by the lower control arm bushings cracking, resulting excessive movement at the control arm pivot point. Ball joints can also wear out prematurely, causing similar tire wear symptoms. I some cases it may be necessary to replace the lower control arm, including bushings & ball joint to correct this concern.
Premature Tire Wear Due to Cracked Lower Control Arm Bushings on Mercedes-Benz SLK230
Average mileage: 121,800 (115,000–140,000)
14 people reported this problem
1999 Mercedes-Benz SLK230 115,000 mi, Visitor
Front tires were balding on the edges; to remedy problem I had to purchase new tires for the front, 4 wheel alignment, plus Both front Axle Lower Ball Joints, Center Steering Link with tie rods. Cost was $1376.31 plus two Michelin Pilot tires, $466.00.
purchased car 2 years ago...bushings done shortly after and had uneven tire wear. Had to purchase new tires.
1999 Mercedes-Benz SLK230 119,000 mi, Visitor
Outer tread wear on front tires due to cracked lower control arm bushings; replaced two new tires, four wheel alignment, and new ball joints and drag link--total cost $1700
Replaced control arm bushings at 50,000 Replaced front ball joints @ 72,000 I was just told that controll arms bushings are torn and need to replace control arms at 140,000
1998 Mercedes-Benz SLK230 115,000 mi, Visitor
Front tires showing premature wear on inside and outside treads. Told I need front axle lower ball joints on both front sides and center steering link with tie rods. Total cost with new tires-$2100.