We are looking to replace my wifes's 2003 M-B SL500. She wants a toy, not a daily driver (although the SL handled both roles). She has always been partial to the look of the Mondial. If she likes the car enough to buy it she'd be willing to learn how to shift. So, what's the real story about reliability and cost of ownership? Am I right to look for a t rather than an earlier model? I understand the major is engine out, but apart from that is it unusually expensive to own? Can it be a reliable car if well maintained? Any land mines? For reference, I used to own a '98 456 that was very reliable and not particularly expensive to keep running smoothly.