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  #1  
Old 08-15-2013, 06:16 PM
A guy who likes to Benz
 
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New (to us) family hauler

Okay, so my wife and I have two kids right now. We're planning on four (total). She turns to me the other day and tells me that we're never selling her car (95 E300) because she loves it too much. But that we can't fit four kids in it, and definitely not three car seats.

Her requirements:
  • Diesel (I love my wife)
  • not a large SUV
  • sylish (unfortunately this means no G wagen or LR Defender)
  • can seat at least 6
  • slightly higher up than a car (she has had back problems and putting kids in carseats is easier)

My requirements:
  • that her requirement list is mostly fulfilled
  • diesel
  • not a crazy "you could stuff X engine in Y vehicle"
  • not too expensive (i.e. 5-10k)
  • decent to wrench on (shops are for alignments and tires)
  • decently economical
  • Not a US brand
  • safe


She really liked the Subaru Tribeca a few years back. I asked her about it after that comment and she said "I'm never going back to a gasoline vehicle again.... so unless you can find one with a diesel..."

I'm willing to import something from Europe or Canada if it's a decent fit.

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  #2  
Old 08-15-2013, 06:38 PM
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Mercedes-Benz is selling new GLK diesel SUVs that fit your needs and desires perfectly! Almost.....

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  #3  
Old 08-15-2013, 07:02 PM
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VW Touareg, imported in 2004, 06, & 09-present, if I piece wikipedia together correctly.

Autotrader has a V6 in abilene TX, $26k. V10 is thirsty.
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  #4  
Old 08-15-2013, 07:17 PM
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How bout a used passenger Sprinter?
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  #5  
Old 08-15-2013, 07:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by engatwork View Post
How bout a used passenger Sprinter?
Any Sprinter even though badged MB is a lot Freightliner, Chrysler / Dodge. "*Not a US brand" - criterion

The muddled defining of; "who made what" vans are a combination of several manufacturers - 3 to 4 at least if wiki is to be believed.

The OP has set forth criteria that cannot be met - as defined, IMO.
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Last edited by Skid Row Joe; 08-16-2013 at 01:49 AM. Reason: clarifications
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  #6  
Old 08-15-2013, 08:27 PM
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What about the new BMW 328d x drive sport wagon.

They have the option of two rear facing seats in the wayback.

Its not a high up ride though.

BTW, I take offense at the assertion that a G-wagen is not stylish.
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  #7  
Old 08-15-2013, 10:31 PM
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I'd say Sprinter and Touraeg are about all I can think of that were/are available domestically... and the Touraeg diesel that would be closer to your price range would be a V10. Here's a Sprinter.

In terms of importing cars, it's complicated. If the car was also sold in the US but did not come with a diesel, (but shares the same body, with minor correctable differences in the bumpers/lights), "all" you you would need to do is swap on the US equipement and convert the car to US emissions. Please know that that is my understanding of the law and that I may be wrong. I would suggest you contact a registered importer, (the only entity which is allowed to import such a vehicle to the US), and ask them about it. Here is a list. Of course, most of this is irrelevant if you import a that is a 1988 or older (1989 or older if you wait about four months ). I have a car buying guide that I got in Finland in 2005 -- I'll look through it and see what there is (doubt there is much, if anything). I'm afraid that there wasn't much made before 1989 that would satisfy most of your requirements. If you could go with a station wagon, more doors would be opened... such as 1987 300TD that you spend big $$$ fixing up into a genuinely reliable.

Links on importing:
https://help.cbp.gov/app/answers/detail/a_id/218/~/requirements-for-importing-a-vehicle-%2F-vehicle-parts
http://www.nhtsa.gov/cars/rules/import/web_RI_list01122006.html
http://www.convert2us.com/index.htm
http://www.nsxprime.com/FAQ/BuySell/importing_an_nsx.htm
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  #8  
Old 08-15-2013, 10:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skid Row Joe View Post
A Sprinter is a Dodge. "*Not a US brand"
The Sprinter is basically a 'Benz. I'm assuming that Ben isn't denying any car out of hand because it has a domestic badge on the front -- and if he is, some minimal badge-swapping could fix that. Besides, some Sprinters were sold in the US as 'Benzes, such as the one I linked him to.
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  #9  
Old 08-15-2013, 10:39 PM
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With a budget of 5-10k for a vehicle that seats six....and diesel....I agree that a touraeg and sprinter are about it. And a touraeg may not fit that many car seats comfortably...they're really not that big...

An R-class diesel would do the job, they are huge....but finding one under 10k probably isn't going to happen.....you'd need about 14-18k for a decent one....and they are rare...and high maintenance.
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  #10  
Old 08-15-2013, 11:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jooseppi Luna View Post
The Sprinter is basically a 'Benz. I'm assuming that Ben isn't denying any car out of hand because it has a domestic badge on the front -- and if he is, some minimal badge-swapping could fix that. Besides, some Sprinters were sold in the US as 'Benzes, such as the one I linked him to.
On edit - this van is a lot of different branding of countries/components - but certainly not 100% foreign in nature. wiki pretty well defined it's from several countries including wherever Freightliner originates.
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Last edited by Skid Row Joe; 08-16-2013 at 01:46 AM. Reason: post clarifications.....
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  #11  
Old 08-15-2013, 11:21 PM
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Mercedes-Benz Sprinter: Passenger Van Highlights


better get on the phone and tell them to take down this site...unless you're saying that since daimler chrysler merger that all mb;s are dodges??
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skid Row Joe View Post
You're wrong......re-badging a Dodge doesn't make it a MB - that's bogus, and everyone knows it. The Sprinter is basically a Dodge NOT a Mercedes-Benz. Even if it did have MB badging, it would still be more Dodge than MB.

Some dealer sales rep in Houston tried to sell a Dodge van here two years ago with the BOGUS MB badging, and was the recipient of one of the biggest beat-downs we've had here!


The OP has strict requirements, that as I wrote above - cannot be met - to some degree, that's kind of his M.O. here I've observed. He does NOT want a US brand - period.
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  #12  
Old 08-15-2013, 11:28 PM
JB3 JB3 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skid Row Joe View Post
You're wrong......re-badging a Dodge doesn't make it a MB - that's bogus, and everyone knows it. The Sprinter is basically a Dodge NOT a Mercedes-Benz. Even if it did have MB badging, it would still be more Dodge than MB.

Some dealer sales rep in Houston tried to sell a Dodge van here two years ago with the BOGUS MB badging, and was the recipient of one of the biggest beat-downs we've had here!


The OP has strict requirements, that as I wrote above - cannot be met - to some degree, that's kind of his M.O. here I've observed. He does NOT want a US brand - period.
I'm confused by this. We all know its a mercedes sprinter van, even if it has a dodge emblem, or now a freightliner emblem. Heck, they didn't even bother coming up with a different name for the model
I can tell you having worked on several dodge sprinters, the only thing that makes that van a dodge is the word "dodge" written on it. Underneath, every component has a star.
You might as well tell us a mercury grand marquis isn't a ford crown vic with some bling, but a true mercury product
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  #13  
Old 08-15-2013, 11:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JB3 View Post
I'm confused by this. We all know its a mercedes sprinter van, even if it has a dodge emblem, or now a freightliner emblem. Heck, they didn't even bother coming up with a different name for the model
I can tell you having worked on several dodge sprinters, the only thing that makes that van a dodge is the word "dodge" written on it. Underneath, every component has a star.
You might as well tell us a mercury grand marquis isn't a ford crown vic with some bling, but a true mercury product
You made my point - they're NOT really Mercedes-Benz - they're badged out as being Mercedes-Benz.

In fact, their countries and manufacturers of origin are numerous including Freightliner. It all depends on the parts on any particular van. As sixto has uncovered through wiki, they're from a lot of places around the globe of various manufacturers of components including Freightliner.
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Last edited by Skid Row Joe; 08-16-2013 at 01:45 AM.
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  #14  
Old 08-16-2013, 12:19 AM
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Damn in this world and this economy....who would want to plan to have four kids....I don't even want to have a car.....
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  #15  
Old 08-16-2013, 12:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skid Row Joe View Post
You made my point - they're NOT really Mercedes-Benz - they're badged out as being Mercedes-Benz, when everyone knows they're mostly Dodges.

If you can prove otherwise - I'll be happy to back off my belief they're Dodges with an MB engine. The OP wants a European, NO-US vehicle. This IS NOT 100% European. No way!
If Wiki is to be believed, "From 2001 until 2006, cargo van versions of the Sprinter were manufactured in Düsseldorf, Germany, partially disassembled and shipped to a facility in Gaffney, South Carolina where they were reassembled. The cargo versions, classified as light trucks, are subject to the 25% chicken tax if imported as a complete unit, which is avoided by the disassembly and subsequent reassembly. Passenger vans were not subject to the same tax classifications and were imported as an assembled unit through Mercedes-Benz in Jacksonville, Florida.

The second generation (VB Chassis) Sprinter debuted in early 2007. The cargo version of this model is re-assembled at a plant in Ladson, South Carolina which was previously used as an American LaFrance factory. Like its predecessor, the passenger version is imported as a complete unit. The previous reassembly facility in Gaffney, South Carolina continues to be used by Freightliner Custom Chassis Corporation. The second generation North American Sprinter is a complete redesign, with the W5A380 transmission being the only significant carryover part.
"

I scanned a few Sprinters on eBay and the VINs begin with WD-. US built MLs and GLs have 4JG prefix VINs.

$10K and no conversion pretty much reduces the options to:

Vanagon Diesel - Volkswagen : Bus/Vanagon GL in Volkswagen | eBay Motors

The practical answer is a non-Diesel minivan or mini-minivan like a Mazda 5.

Sixto
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