While most high-end European vehicles are fabulous, repairs can be horrendously expensive due to complex engineering and expensive parts. We recently serviced a 2003 Volvo XC90 which required front strut and rear shock replacement. Shocks were only available from the Volvo dealer and the price was horrific. While these were very robust shocks there was nothing exceptional about them that justified the cost.
Fortunately the vehicle felt great to drive after the repairs and was definitely a worthwhile service. For most other vehicles this service could have been done for 1/3 the cost of this Volvo.
I am frequently asked “which cars are cheapest to fix” and it is a difficult question to answer. A given part from a Mercedes can often be half the price of that on a GM vehicle but another part on a GM car can be 1/4 of the Mercedes price.
Generally speaking, the simpler the vehicle, the lower the overall repair costs will be: that is your biggest consideration if you are looking for a car with lower repair prices.