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  #1  
Old 09-16-2012, 08:16 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Pittsburgh
Posts: 119
2001 S430 W220 rust - Body Transplant?

The S430 has rust on every panel except the hood, which of course has stone chips. The roof is rusting around the sunroof opening, and the driver's corner. Car runs great with over 225K.

Did some research, talked to the dealer parts guy, and the body shop they use for rust repair. He says that any rust repair will not last. If I got new fenders and used door shells, and did mechanical work myself, I think I could get somewhere. But new quarter panels are expensive, and even though MB has lower quarter panel replacements, they are well over $1,000 each. Junk yards have 'em for $400, but the body guy tells me there's a lot of labor involved in installing them. He says I'd wind up spending $10,000 on a car that will be worth $3,500 when I'm done, rather than the $2,000 it's worth now.

Is it time for me to sell it to someone who wants a nice ride, and doesn't care how it looks?
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1996 C280 289K Traded
1997 E420 167K Traded
2001 S430 240K Traded
2010 E550 4matic 80K
2000 GMC Jimmy 198K Gone to Boneyard
2003 Camry LE 196K
2011 Mazda3 i Sport 31K
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  #2  
Old 09-16-2012, 10:15 PM
stricht8
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Boston, MA
Posts: 127
Yes. Sell it. The W220 is a rust prone disaster! I've seen many, many examples of unacceptable rust on these cars. They survive well in drier climates though. Really a shame that they built a beautiful car with such a built in flaw.
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  #3  
Old 09-19-2012, 07:33 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Pittsburgh
Posts: 119
I've heard and read different things about whether or not the W220's were improved at some point during their production to reduce the rust problems. Does anybody know whether the last year (I think 2006) would be less rust prone than the early ones? If I find a 2006 in the southwest somewhere maybe I could keep it going for a few years.

If I do buy another used S Class, I'm leaning toward the W220 so that I can get the S430; I think the smallest engine in the newer, heavier chassis is a 550, which I assume would consume more fuel. I will do more homework before I decide.
__________________
1996 C280 289K Traded
1997 E420 167K Traded
2001 S430 240K Traded
2010 E550 4matic 80K
2000 GMC Jimmy 198K Gone to Boneyard
2003 Camry LE 196K
2011 Mazda3 i Sport 31K
Reply With Quote
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