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  #1  
Old 12-01-2013, 04:14 AM
RunningTooHot's Avatar
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Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Here
Posts: 855
1992 400E California car, 177,000 miles

The alternative to selling this car is to part it out, and I'd hate to do that. It's a solid no-rust California car with plenty of (potential) life left in it - with an upper wiring harness and some TLC.

Here is a link to the ad I placed today: 1992 Mercedes 400E (W124 E420)

Here is the text of the ad:

1992 Mercedes 400E. This is my 84 year-old father's car. Only 177,000 original miles. Well maintained mechanically by a very reputable Mercedes specialist in Tarzana. "Bornite" color paint, but the sun has destroyed the clear coat on the hood, roof, and trunk surfaces. Has a dent on passenger side fender and some other minor divots, such as on the rear valence. (see pictures). Interior is light tan genuine leather (not "MB Tex" vinyl). The leather is in good condition with no rips, stains, or tears, but the interior needs cleaning.

Car has been sitting in their driveway for almost 3 years, but was running & driving well when parked. Recent spark plugs, caps & rotors, but the engine runs rough -- it needs an upper wiring harness. (A common problem area with these cars.) Tires have lots of tread left.

A good solid rust-free California car and a nice project for a "do it yourselfer" $1,250


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Current rolling stock:
1992 500E 217,000+
1995 E300D 412,000+
1998 E300D 155,000+
2001 E320 227,000+
2001 E320 Wagon, 177,000+
1995 E420 135,000+

Prior MBZ’s:
1952 220 Cab A
1966 300SE
1971 280SE
1973 350SLC (euro)
1980 450SLC
1980 450SLC (#2)
1978 450SLC 5.0
1984 300D ~243,000 & fondly remembered
1993 500E - sorely missed.
1975 VW Scirocco w/ stroked, slightly de-tuned Super-Vee engine - Sold after 30+ years of ownership.
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  #2  
Old 12-03-2013, 02:07 AM
Jorn's Avatar
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: TheFlyingDutchManInHollywood
Posts: 5,345
How costly and hard is it to install a new wiring harness?
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Black on Black 1979 300CD (sold), 1990 Black 300SE, Silver 1989 Volvo 780, 1988 300CE
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  #3  
Old 12-03-2013, 10:54 AM
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Join Date: May 2008
Location: Outside DC
Posts: 382
Not an expert but I would think an indy shop would charge the best part of a whole day at the hourly rate. That having been said, I saw a couple of techs doing it together change one on my W202 in about an hour. It was practically done by the time I came back with pizza and beer.
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Scott in MD/DC
94 E320 Wagon
"Money can't replace it, no memory can erase it
and I know I'm never gonna find another one to compare"-LW
85 TDT project (stay tuned)
W201, W202, W126 and lotsa VWs
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  #4  
Old 12-03-2013, 05:44 PM
RunningTooHot's Avatar
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Join Date: Aug 2000
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Posts: 855
I figure that a first-timer could easily knock it out in an afternoon. I don't know the current pricing for a harness, although there is a fellow on the boards that re-builds them for significantly less than the price for a new one.

I'm on the fence about just doing it myself and keeping this car around as a (another!?) spare car, but I've got my 500E for fun, and my E300D for economy. A 400E / E420 is an incredibly nice cruiser, but do I really need it?
__________________
Current rolling stock:
1992 500E 217,000+
1995 E300D 412,000+
1998 E300D 155,000+
2001 E320 227,000+
2001 E320 Wagon, 177,000+
1995 E420 135,000+

Prior MBZ’s:
1952 220 Cab A
1966 300SE
1971 280SE
1973 350SLC (euro)
1980 450SLC
1980 450SLC (#2)
1978 450SLC 5.0
1984 300D ~243,000 & fondly remembered
1993 500E - sorely missed.
1975 VW Scirocco w/ stroked, slightly de-tuned Super-Vee engine - Sold after 30+ years of ownership.
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  #5  
Old 12-03-2013, 06:13 PM
Jim's500E's Avatar
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Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Manchester, Connecticut
Posts: 1,325
It's VERY easy to switch out/in a M119 upper wiring harness...should only take a few hours laying the new one next to the existing and plugging in 17 or so connectors.
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Jim

1992 500E
2007 CLK63
2003 Audi RS6
2001 Audi allroad
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  #6  
Old 12-03-2013, 06:15 PM
Jorn's Avatar
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Location: TheFlyingDutchManInHollywood
Posts: 5,345
It's tempting, but do I really need it?
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Black on Black 1979 300CD (sold), 1990 Black 300SE, Silver 1989 Volvo 780, 1988 300CE
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  #7  
Old 12-03-2013, 11:33 PM
RunningTooHot's Avatar
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Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Here
Posts: 855
Quote:
It's tempting, but do I really need it?
Probably not.

(Aren't I a fantastic salesman?)
__________________
Current rolling stock:
1992 500E 217,000+
1995 E300D 412,000+
1998 E300D 155,000+
2001 E320 227,000+
2001 E320 Wagon, 177,000+
1995 E420 135,000+

Prior MBZ’s:
1952 220 Cab A
1966 300SE
1971 280SE
1973 350SLC (euro)
1980 450SLC
1980 450SLC (#2)
1978 450SLC 5.0
1984 300D ~243,000 & fondly remembered
1993 500E - sorely missed.
1975 VW Scirocco w/ stroked, slightly de-tuned Super-Vee engine - Sold after 30+ years of ownership.
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  #8  
Old 12-04-2013, 12:19 AM
Jorn's Avatar
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: TheFlyingDutchManInHollywood
Posts: 5,345
Quote:
Originally Posted by RunningTooHot View Post
Probably not.

(Aren't I a fantastic salesman?)
But an honest one, that's half the sale!
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Black on Black 1979 300CD (sold), 1990 Black 300SE, Silver 1989 Volvo 780, 1988 300CE
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  #9  
Old 12-04-2013, 08:25 AM
Jim's500E's Avatar
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Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Manchester, Connecticut
Posts: 1,325
The upper harness is several hundred dollars new from MB. I don't believe there is an aftermarket one. But the new-made OE ones last much longer...mine is prolly 12 years old now. You could find a used newer one for much cheaper...they are date stamped usually.

A better built repro of the M119 harness(es) would be really nice; I'd like to see that.

A $1200 M119 that runs with a decent car attached? Who doesn't need that?

Is that all the car needs - motor wise?
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1992 500E
2007 CLK63
2003 Audi RS6
2001 Audi allroad
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  #10  
Old 12-04-2013, 11:58 PM
RunningTooHot's Avatar
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Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Here
Posts: 855
Funny - "a perfectly good M119 (and trans!) with a good car attached to them for only $1,200". Maybe I should advertise it that way!

To answer your question - yes, the motor is in excellent mechanical condition. It has only 177K on it, with methodically performed maintenance it's entire life. The only issue is the wiring harness. It's really a shame to see it sitting there like this.

Other than the wiring harness, this is a running, driving car... albeit an ugly one with the clear coat in such horrible condition. Of course, after sitting for almost 3 years, the fuel tank should be emptied, as well as changing out all other fluids too. The only other issues with the car is the radio amp is intermittent, and I believe one of the window regulators was on it's way out. Other than that, everything else works, including the A/C.

Some bozo offered $500 via craigslist, sight unseen. The 1st-gear start trans valve body and M119 aluminum oiler tubes alone can be sold for that much money. I just hate the idea of parting out any car with ZERO rust.
__________________
Current rolling stock:
1992 500E 217,000+
1995 E300D 412,000+
1998 E300D 155,000+
2001 E320 227,000+
2001 E320 Wagon, 177,000+
1995 E420 135,000+

Prior MBZ’s:
1952 220 Cab A
1966 300SE
1971 280SE
1973 350SLC (euro)
1980 450SLC
1980 450SLC (#2)
1978 450SLC 5.0
1984 300D ~243,000 & fondly remembered
1993 500E - sorely missed.
1975 VW Scirocco w/ stroked, slightly de-tuned Super-Vee engine - Sold after 30+ years of ownership.
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  #11  
Old 12-05-2013, 10:17 AM
Jim's500E's Avatar
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Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Manchester, Connecticut
Posts: 1,325
Any talk of parting it is just silly. Your buyer is out there, keep at it.

That color is very nice and other than the little things; sounds really nice ! If you were near me, it be sold by now.

Why can't you throw a new or used harness on it ? I bet you'll get 3-4 grand for it after ironing that out..but if it were me, I'd be keeping in in my Dad's honor.
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1992 500E
2007 CLK63
2003 Audi RS6
2001 Audi allroad
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  #12  
Old 12-05-2013, 05:01 PM
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Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 2,754
I agree, parting it out wouldn't just seem right for a nice example like this one. Give yourself a beer (or two) and a few hours of free time and that harness is done. I've done a few M119 harnesses. Simple plug-n-play job. Plus, I think the 400E's have really dwindled in numbers sadly as I hardly ever see one anymore.
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1999 E300 220k
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  #13  
Old 12-06-2013, 06:43 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Towson, MD
Posts: 184
You can get a good used harness on ebay for way less than a new one. Just get one made after 1996 to insure that the wiring is good. I made my own harness (which took a long time) and it was in the car in less than an hour. Very straightforward process. I just passed 280,000 miles and it's still strong and alot of fun to drive.

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1992 400E current
1988 300E sold
1973 280C totalled
1973 280SEL never got it running
1971 250C my first love but rusted out
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