The airbox can be removed by just removing the the fasteners / screws / bolts that hold it in.
Your car has what is called a throttle actuator, and it sits underneath the intake manifold. You can remove it without taking off the manifold. Should take about 2 hours.
2001 E430, Bourdeaux Red, Oyster interior.
1973 280SE 4.5, 170,000 miles. 568 Signal Red, Black MB Tex. "The Red Baron".