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  #1  
Old 01-06-2010, 01:46 PM
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Bring me to my senses w140

OK so I know the 350sdl's downsides, maybe not first hand but i've read the rod bender / electrical nightmare horror stories....But something about the cars appeals to me, plus wife's friend has a 320SEL and i always hear how nice it is to drive in.

There is one for sale near me, a man with a heavy accent owns it. No records, he claims all systems function but vacuum and it doesn't burn oil. I think claims is the active word there.

The car is a 1994, 184K assuming he is telling the truth and you had little if any sense what would you pay for it?

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  #2  
Old 01-06-2010, 07:55 PM
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If I had a replacement engine in my garage, I'd go $2k for a clean sample.
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1983 300D, bought new, 215k+ miles, donated to Purple Hearts veterans charity but I have parts for sale: http://www.peachparts.com/shopforum/mercedes-benz-cars-sale/296386-fs-1-owner-83-mb-300d-turbo-rebuild-parts.html
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  #3  
Old 01-06-2010, 08:04 PM
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That mileage sounds kinda high. I would look for one with no more than 150k. Also make sure the AC is working, because that means that it has more than likely already had it's evaporator replaced, and you won't have to deal with that. It is also a great indication as to how well the car was kept up. Also check the engine wiring harness for cracking.

Make sure it runs properly, with no warning lamps, no misfiring, and that it shifts properly, not overheating, etc. The stock Bose stereo system is also a known trouble area, and what usually happens is it gets very crackly, poppy while playing, or a whole channel will decide to stop working randomly. (usually the right side for some reason) This is about a $500 repair. The Silverstone CD changer is also known to go bad, and usually can't be fixed.

The central door-closing system is also a problem area. The trunk usually stops working first.
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  #4  
Old 01-09-2010, 05:33 PM
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If the car has 184k and isn't burning oil yet it might have one of the "good" factory engines. As I understand it most of them (mine included) didn't make it past 150k with a defective factory engine.

-Jason
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  #5  
Old 01-09-2010, 09:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by compu_85 View Post
If the car has 184k and isn't burning oil yet it might have one of the "good" factory engines. As I understand it most of them (mine included) didn't make it past 150k with a defective factory engine.

-Jason
It may already have a replacement block in the engine compartment as he states he has no records. Any mercedes dealer may be able to pull up the cars records to verify or not. THe replacements apparently are somewhat better. Whatever the real cause of the problem has never been totally rectified though.
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  #6  
Old 01-09-2010, 09:45 PM
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Go to a MB dealer with the VIN. They should be happy to search data on the car for you. Strange that he has no history on the car! Is the title clear?
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1967 230-6 auto parts car. rust bucket.
1980 300D now parts car 800k miles
1984 300D 500k miles
1987 250td 160k miles English import
2001 jeep turbo diesel 130k miles
1998 jeep tdi ~ followed me home. Needs a turbo.
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  #7  
Old 01-09-2010, 09:50 PM
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Well I'm gonna say this, so please don't flame me. . . .

You should really look into a 96-97 Passat TDI

they get 50mpg and are really comfy. They don't really hold a candle to the 140 it terms of luxaury, but they are nice cars.


If your serious about a 800 mile a week commute, you NEED the extra MPG's

If you must have a M-B. go for the 124, 87 or 90-93. or even the 1995 non-turbo. comfy and good mileage (30's for all those vs 26ish for the 140)
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  #8  
Old 01-09-2010, 11:23 PM
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I just bought a 92 W140 with the 603 engine about a month ago, 154k miles, needing some maintenance and repairs. I too had read all the hate and discontent regarding the 3.4L engine but I did it anyway. That said, I didn't pay as much as the one you're looking at mostly because the owner knew there were some suspension issues etc. that needed to be dealt with. I bought it also knowing that it has some hvac issues and likely a problem evap unit.

The car doesn't use oil and I've driven it about 300 miles now just for enjoyment...mostly in town. It did need front suspension work and still needs more before I can have it aligned reliably. It also had leaky injector return lines and some leaky valves on the IP, which I think now have been resolved.

Something about the car has made me want one for years. So when I finally saw one in my area for sale I decided that it ought to be mine.

That said, I have religiously driven VW TDI / diesel cars for over a decade, and the mpg of those vehicles is great. I took the 97 Jetta TDI to Chicago and back last summer and got 53mpg running at 70mph+, often over 75. The benz, no matter how comfortable, will not do this...but I wanted it anyway.

my .02

steve a
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  #9  
Old 01-10-2010, 02:44 AM
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Someday I'm going to have a W140, if even for a year or so... I just think we should experience a car like that once in life.
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  #10  
Old 01-10-2010, 08:13 PM
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Like Billhard I have recently been admiring the W140 diesels and have read all the warning threads about Rod Bending Issues and overly complex design making it expensive to maintain. Something about that model though still draws me in and therefore I've been searching for a good example of one heeding all the warning on the forum. Why do the W140's tease us so much?

Having said all this I think I'll probably need to take the advice of wiser men and look more into a W124 since i need a daily driver come this summer.
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  #11  
Old 01-10-2010, 10:38 PM
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Well. The interesting thing about a 140 diesel is that you can drop the 3 liter block into it should the engine go. They aren't too expensive. Last one I bought was $1500 shipped. It was used but had good compression.
The 140 teases you because you know it was possibly one of the finest cars engineered when you hear the the Maybach is built on it.
My 140 has been relatively trouble free. It needed some suspension repairs because I didn't drive it nicely, and a few things needed readjusting such as the vacuum pump and the door closing assist pump. That was just time to tune it right...
I have spent less money on my 140 than I have on my 126 sdl....
The evaporator was the big issue in the 140s. if that's been fixed, it's not really that bad of a car.
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  #12  
Old 01-14-2010, 02:26 AM
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is $4900 for a '92 300sd with 97K miles too much? The owner is in a bad way after losing his job and is selling two of his 3 cars. He has some records but not all... Is it worth looking at? He mentions there is an issue with one of the rear windows so trying to find out more.

After reading a lot of posts, it sounds like most here feel sellers should pay buyers for W140 diesels.
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  #13  
Old 01-14-2010, 03:00 AM
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It's probably a nice car, and worth that much. Maybe try to get 500-1000 off, depending on how persuasive you're feeling.

I would own a W140 diesel in a heartbeat. I used to own a 400SEL from 1993, and it was a great car! Had a lot of work done in the past (evap included) but it was nice to drive, look at, and the interior was just a nice place to be overall.

I think that most people on this site are just used to their old "simple" cars, so anything that's even slightly more sophisticated is seen as "unnecessary" and "more to go wrong".
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  #14  
Old 01-14-2010, 11:23 AM
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Before I decided on the 740iL, I determined that an S320 is a far better vehicle than an 300SD or an S350D. No issues with the engine, a bit more power, and identical fuel economy.

If you must have a low powered W-140, this is the way to go.

However, the 740iL gets the same fuel economy with nearly double the horsepower. It's really a pleasure to drive, but, it's admittedly a bit smaller and lighter than the W-140.
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  #15  
Old 01-14-2010, 11:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Carlton View Post
Before I decided on the 740iL, I determined that an S320 is a far better vehicle than an 300SD or an S350D. No issues with the engine, a bit more power, and identical fuel economy.

If you must have a low powered W-140, this is the way to go.

However, the 740iL gets the same fuel economy with nearly double the horsepower. It's really a pleasure to drive, but, it's admittedly a bit smaller and lighter than the W-140.
Has the 740iL been a good car after you got the initial troubles sorted out?

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