DUDE! I finally did it! I just drove home my first Benz!! After six months of religiously reading this forum and bugging my friends, I finally became the proud owner of a '97 E420 last Thursday. It is Black/Beige with 58,000 miles.
Can I just tell anyone who might be reading this forum wishing they had a benz or specifically a V-8 powered 210, YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT YOU'RE MISSING. I happen to be an airline pilot and I think this car is the closest thing to flying a turbine-powered aircraft there is. It is smooth, quiet, responsive, and has a deceptive amount of power. Please, for the love of god, BUY ONE OF THESE if you can afford it. You'll thank me later.
So far these are the things I've done to polish up and customize my ride.
-Removed ugly pinstriping...$50 (Benzes shouldn't have chrome or extra pinstriping)
-Four-Wheel hand alignment and balancing...$160
-R/R Lower Control Arm Bushings and Camber adjust...$380
-Oil/filter Change w/Mobil 1 Synthetic...$70
-Transmission Fluid/filters change w/synthetic...$250
So I'm already into her a Grand and I haven't fixed the tapping noise yet. Oh yeah, the tapping noise. After the maiden voyage from Dallas to L.A., the top end started making a tapping noise like a lifter. Three different mechanics told me it's a lifter. Luckily for this forum, I believe it is a different problem having to do with an oil tube that feeds the lifter. Check out this link if you're interested. JimF and Donnie really seem to know what they're doing. Tick, tick fixed tnx to Donnie!
My mechanic didn't want to take the valve cover off to inspect the oil lines even after I showed him a printout of the above post. He told me that the change to synthetic should take care of it after a few hundred miles of driving, but if it doesn't, then we'll go further. Doesn't this seem like something I should fix regardless of whether the tapping goes away. Keep in mind, this model does not have an oil pressure guage, so I have no way of knowing if the pressure has dropped.
I guess I could dig into the valve cover myself, it's just intimidating to do even minor surgery on such a beautiful machine. So far the ticking has disappeared and then come back again a few times. The ticking doesn't seem to have any correlation to eng. temp or otherwise. It just has a mind of its own. Thanks in advance for the help. Pictures to come.