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Old 06-14-2004, 10:50 AM
Coming back from burnout
Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: in the Pacific Northwest
Posts: 2,274
Guilt over owning/driving a Mercedes

Do any of you suffer from Mercedes Guilt? I've spent years crawling through junkyards and staying up to 4 am working on cars, but I have that feeling after buying an 87 300D
When I ran my 85 W123 300D low to 1/2 qt of oil back in the spring, I had no idea the engine would resurrect itself. For a month it smoked, used oil like crazy, and made terrible noises and had no acceleration or power. I didnt give up on it however, and now in June, the car runs like new..
The problem is, I panicked & ran out and bought an 87 300D which is the size of a luxury liner because the price was so good. It was the natural thing to do, to buy a Diesel, 6 cylinder Turbo and I love the car technically, its a lot of fun.
Driving the W124 87 it is a different matter. It really makes me feel like I am from Old Money or someone Rich although I am just a working grunt from the middle class. Sometimes I feel as if I am Lucky to have a rough over my head. the 87 300D is a big heavy Cadillac like car, and not the all purpose Jeep that the W123 is. I have heard the W124 87 cost $50,000 new.
My wife wont let me sell the W124 because her friend was badly injured in a Corolla this spring, so now I am stuck with this Queen Mary of a guess which car I still W123..The W124 is our "Spare" car for a rainy day..
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Old 06-14-2004, 10:57 AM
Jimmy Joe's Avatar
peace out
Join Date: May 2004
Location: California central coast
Posts: 1,004
Guilt? No way. I feel like I'm liberating a car from the rich, turning it into an alternative energy vehicle, and giving it to the poor (me).

Not to mention getting a high-class education on working on well made, beautiful machines.
Think Alternative Energy!
300CD '80 (now gone but not forgotten...)
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Old 06-14-2004, 11:22 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Montreal
Posts: 102
Guilt: No

Pride: Absolutely

1979 300TD 189,000 Miles, now running WVO with a home-made 2 tank conversion
1974 230 Gasser 189,000 Miles, For Sale
1961 VW Microbus 162,000 Miles
1961 Ford Fairlane 500, 53,900 original miles
1951 Oliver Super 55 Tractor
2002 Chocolate Lab
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Old 06-14-2004, 11:44 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: PA
Posts: 5,440
Guility, no I feel sorry for all the people that have a new POS that costs ten times as much to operate as my MB.

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Old 06-14-2004, 11:45 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Milford, DE
Posts: 1,421
As I recall you spent $2k on the W124 300D?

Why in the world would you care what other people think about your choice of transportation?

If the guilt becomes unbearable I'll be happy to give you 2k for the car - let me feel your pain.
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Old 06-14-2004, 11:58 AM
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Join Date: Sep 1999
Location: Miami, FL
Posts: 645
I don't think the 124 weighs much more than the 123.
My 123 wagon outweighs my 124 sedan by about 400 lbs. My 124 sedan listed new for $39995 in 1999, according to the sticker.
Of course, I have no idea what it really sold for, but I doubt that it was discounted more than 5% or so.

It does feel like a larger car. I don't really think anyone needs to feel guilt.

It might be silly to pay $50K for a car, but to buy one for less than half that only five years later, and drive it for the next ten to twenty years.
Semibodacious Transmogrifications a Specialty

1990 300D 2.5 Turbo sedan 171K (Rudolf)
1985 300D Turbo TD Wagon 219K (Remuda)

"Time flies like and arrow, yet fruit flies like a banana"
---Marx (Groucho)
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Old 06-14-2004, 12:10 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Whidbey Island, WA
Posts: 98
I'll never forget, a family friend said that when they had just met us, my little brother (about 6 years old at the time) told them "My dad drives a Mercedes." They wondered if we were rich or something, but I'm sure when they found out it was a fifteen year old diesel the picture became a little clearer.
I would only feel guilty about driving a car if I knew that in some way I was doing it in an attempt to out-class people. I have absolutely no qualms about flashing any moniker, be it Ford, Mercedes, Honda, or whatever. Obviously you have to be prepared to deal with whatever preconceptions people have about certain cars (BMW = aggressive "big shot" driver, for example). I have no problem if it makes me look richer than I am though, as long as it's not actually costing me.
Once and future king:
'64 Ford Fairlane w/approx 238,000 - looks rough, but amazingly reliable if you know how to look after it; I will soon begin work to totally restore and modernize it.
Family vehicles that I lay some claim to:
'78 300D w/approx 350,000 original, '62 Ford F100 4x4, '90 Ford E150 w/171,000 original
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Old 06-14-2004, 01:13 PM
R Leo's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: En te l'eau Rant
Posts: 5,367
Originally posted by P.E.Haiges
Guility, no I feel sorry for all the people that have a new POS that costs ten times as much to operate as my MB.

Don't forget the debt service too.
Never a dull moment at Berry Hill Farm.
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Old 06-14-2004, 01:19 PM
Jorn's Avatar
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: TheFlyingDutchManInHollywood
Posts: 4,149
I was helping a friend for a week on a construction side, the owner of the building came to my buddy and asked him how much he was paying me while pointing out to my '79 300CD!

A lot of people look at you when you tell them it's such a cheap car to own.
Black on Black 1979 300CD (sold), 1990 Black 300SE, Silver 1989 Volvo 780 Bertone...
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Old 06-14-2004, 01:19 PM
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Location: PA
Posts: 5,440
R Leo,

That would be included in my estimate. Actually the debt service is very resonable now and even zero in some cases of new car factory incentives.

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Old 06-14-2004, 01:20 PM
sixto's Avatar
smoke gets in your eyes
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 20,115
I think the guilt should lie with the folks who buy new cars every couple of years. That's an awful lot of depreciation down the drain. As well the folks who buy a stripper Honda and fit $5000 worth of big wheels and accessories. I can buy an MB and keep it running for a couple of years for $5000. Plus whatever the environmental impact of the SDL and S420 might be, it's nothing compared to building a whole new car.

... not that people should feel guilty about spending their money.

A friend of mine got a BMW because his wife doesn't want to be seen in an MB. Nice lady and I love her dearly but... whatever

95 S420
87 300SDL
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Old 06-14-2004, 01:24 PM
I told you so!
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Motor City, MI
Posts: 2,804
Never in my life did I think I'd own a car such as Mercedes. The car I have is a statement to the fact that I've done well buying cheap cars and working on them so I can save up and buy something 'special'. Now my time has come.

Sometimes I wonder why I didn't do something like this sooner. I once picked up an old Hemmings Motor News and looked at the price of used Benzes 20 years ago and got my answer. Prices were incredibly high compared with what I was making, and high even compared with the price of used Benzes today!
95 E320 Cabriolet, 140K
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Old 06-14-2004, 01:24 PM
boneheaddoctor's Avatar
Senior Benz fanatic
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Hells half acre (Great Falls, Virginia)
Posts: 16,007
I have no guilt whatsoever.........................but I do have a bit of smugness when I know I paid far less for mine then most people paid for their used jalopies.
Proud owner of ....
1971 280SE W108
1979 300SD W116
1983 300D W123
1975 Ironhead Sportster chopper
1987 GMC 3/4 ton 4X4 Diesel
1989 Honda Civic (Heavily modified)
Section 609 MVAC Certified
"He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you." - Friedrich Nietzsche
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Old 06-14-2004, 01:28 PM
sixto's Avatar
smoke gets in your eyes
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 20,115
Good point. It's the 80-20 rule in action. I have 80% of the function of the S420 at my disposal and it cost me 20% of what it did when new. What other car can offer that value?

95 S420
87 300SDL
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Old 06-14-2004, 01:48 PM
Hatterasguy's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Milford, CT
Posts: 19,267
Guilt? No I will never feel guilty to drive what I buy with my hard earned money. Be it a $2,500 SDL or a $300,000 Rolls.
2017 Chevy Silverado 1500 LTZ

"No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms. The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government."
-Thomas Jefferson
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