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Old 05-21-2006, 02:10 AM
3 MB's and counting!
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Toronto, Canada
Posts: 1,825
When did MB put water based paint?

What year did MB start using the crappy chipping water based paint? I beleive my C230 1999 has it as it feels soft but i pamper the paint due to its cheapness.
99 C43
98 S420
99 C230K
01 C240
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Old 05-21-2006, 03:13 AM
JCE's Avatar
JCE JCE is offline
Down to the Wear Bars
Join Date: May 1999
Location: So Kalifornia
Posts: 2,189
My 98 C230 has the enviro paint. Our 87 300E is the exact color code as the 98, and they look identical in color tone, but the 98 is a little cold, hard, and shallow looking after waxing, more of a shine than a gloss look, while the 87 has a deep and warm wet look gloss after the same treatment. In fact, if the 98 has just been waxed, and the 87 is just about due for a wax, they look pretty close. I think the 98 seems to get rock chips more readily as well.

I had a very good body shop take out some key marks on the 87, and they said it was a royal pain having to use the new CA approved paints on my older car. Matching the color tone was no problem, but they had to do multiple coats of color and clear in order to try and match the depth and warm effect - they came pretty darn close, but if you know where to look or have a lot of pro painting/detailing experience, you can find the touched up spots.

2003 Firemist Red/grey leather SL 500
2015 Palladium Silver/black mbtex GLK 350
1987 Smoke Silver/burgundy mbtex 300E Sportline (SOLD)

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Old 05-21-2006, 08:05 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 3,160
Originally Posted by BenzOnline
What year did MB start using the crappy chipping water based paint?
What does that have to do with M-B ?
Check with some of your local tree-huggers, maybe they will have the answer for you..
Btw. in my experience tree-huggers don't care one little bit about the appearance of their cars ( certainly not the paint condition ).
Heck, they don't even wash their cars ( water preservation and all.
They're driving either some delapidated POS or, the more affluent ones, may drive a Toyota Prius or some other Hybrid.
2007 C 230 Sport.
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Old 05-21-2006, 03:04 PM
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Southern California, U.S.A.
Posts: 8,538
I believe 1994 is the first year of the enviro paint.
Paul S.

2001 E430, Bourdeaux Red, Oyster interior.
79,200 miles.

1973 280SE 4.5, 170,000 miles. 568 Signal Red, Black MB Tex. "The Red Baron".
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Old 05-25-2006, 12:35 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Sacramento-Bay Area Corridor
Posts: 1,110
the older pre enviro-paint certainly looks RICHER, DEEPER, WARMER, and of higher quality. But I will say, the enviro-paint is much easier to care for, and when coated with NXT wax it can produce a beautiful gloss. I have noticed though that METALLIC OE enviro-paint can sometimes look inconsistent in color vibrance- showing a slight change in shade on a body panel when inspected under direct sunlight- esp. silver, smoke silver, and light blue. I have noticed this on new MB's sitting on the dealer lot. Luckily my C280 doesnt display this variance, otherwise id go nutty! But the paint HAS chipped rather easily on the front of the car.


Nothing is worse than 1980's Volvo paint though! My 745 Turbo is Gold metallic, and while it has no oxidation, and has been cared for extremely well, it reproduces minimal reflection... just shine- no matter what you treat it with.

1995 E420
1992 BMW 525i
1984 300D Turbo sold
1993 Volvo 244 sold
1995 Volvo 944T R.I.P!

"The details are not details. They make the product."
-Charles Eames
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Old 05-25-2006, 10:57 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Plano, TX
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Paul is correct, 1994 is the first year of the water based paint.

The older paints seem much more resistant to rock chips. Looks is subjective. Fewer of the older colors used clear coats, but just about all the newer colors do. I'm a bit of a retro-grouch in that I prefer non-metallic, non-clearcoated colors - but that's just me.

- JimY
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Old 05-25-2006, 02:33 PM
3 MB's and counting!
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Toronto, Canada
Posts: 1,825
1994 really? My friends 94 C220 silver paint is much more "harder" and can take abuse pretty well. The silver paint on my 99 C230 is much more soft.

The 01 C240 is much more softer. Aswell I did also notice the "unbold" look on the darker paint of the C240 when waxed...just no depth to it at all.
99 C43
98 S420
99 C230K
01 C240
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