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Old 11-20-2001, 01:12 AM
JimSmith JimSmith is offline
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Old Lyme, Connecticut
Posts: 3,596

I will ran my route through MapQuest like I said and the computer says the trip was 2,508 miles, and that does not include some driving around looking for a hotel in Russell, Kansas (Hays was full, no beds so I had to go further East) as well as a few other gas detours and stops for food/nature calls. The odometer says I went 2,528 miles. And the bill says I bought 86.94 gallons of premium fuel. The only error that can exist is in the mileage, and I think that is insignificant (at 2,508 miles, that would be 28.84 mpg). The route I took was a little longer than the MapQuest route I mapped, as I made some slight modifications and detours around St. Louis. I got screwed up and went into the city rather than around it, and there were some serious construction sites along I-70 when you got into the city.

I ran premium 91 octane {(R+M)/2} gas, with fresh transmission and differential fluids, and the tires are 32 psi front, 35 psi rear (which makes the rough ride of the crummy tires worse, but it keeps them cooler and helped me eek out the extra 2,500 miles without incident). The book says the fronts should be no higher than 29 psi. It was reasonably cool, so I only ran the airconditioning from Kansas City to Cleveland. After that it was not called for so I turned it off.

Can't think of anything else that might affect mileage, but Larry says he gets similar mileage on long Interstate highway runs. I am very pleasantly surprised as I was expecting 4 to 6 mpg less, just based on size and weight compared to my other cars.

And I was very aware of how rare the car is. I went to an auction once about 8 years ago and tried to buy a 1986 5-speed, but the price for the car got over my limit quickly. It was higher mileage than the 1988 I just bought, was in rougher condition, and the 1986 ultimately sold for nearly twice the price I just paid. I started looking in earnest for one this summer and scoured the internet until 3 a.m. for weeks in a row, looking at every 300E, anywhere in the country at any price. I was amazed, there are literally thousands of them for sale and I had to ask about the transmissions for ones that did not say they were automatics. And this one showed up. I actually thought it might be a grey market car as I had never actually seen a 1988 with a manual transmission. I did a CarFax on it using one of the CarFax accounts someone posted on this board, and it turned up to be a clean car. And I started a dialogue with the now "previous owner" that led to the sale.

I am still amazed by the whole experience, and the car. Jim
1986 Euro 190E 2.3-16 (291,000 miles),
1998 E300D TurboDiesel, 231,000 miles -purchased with 45,000,
1988 300E 5-speed 252,000 miles,
1983 240D 4-speed, purchased w/136,000, now with 222,000 miles.
2009 ML320CDI Bluetec, 89,000 miles

1971 220D (250,000 miles plus, sold to father-in-law),
1975 240D (245,000 miles - died of body rot),
1991 350SD (176,560 miles, weakest Benz I have owned),
1999 C230 Sport (45,400 miles),
1982 240D (321,000 miles, put to sleep)
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