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Old 02-14-2002, 06:14 PM
Posts: n/a
Shop Totalled my 500 SEL!!!

My mercedes shop was installing a new transmission in my 1985 500SEL and during the test drive they totaled it!!!!

I don't have the details, they just called about 10-minutes ago. He said they were waiting for the police and then they would notify their insurance company.

Does anyone know what will happen as far as the insurance company setting a value?

The car was VERY nice but I only paid $4,000 for it. It became VERY nice after I put many hours of work into it.

What should I expect from the insurance company?



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Old 02-14-2002, 06:36 PM
longston's Avatar
Another View. . .
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Mark West, CA
Posts: 787
Exclamation It's Theirs, Now...

Insurance companies usually will try to pay the least amount of money for a car in a total write-off. The two methods that are characteristically used are; "average market value" or what it would cost to replace the car if you bought a similar vehicle locally, and "Blue Book" value based upon NADA or the Kelley Blue Book.

Check Kelley:

Get the Private party Sale value and the full Retail value. Add them together and divide by 2. That's what the average car is worth and the least they should pay you.

Check NADA:

Do the same as above.

Check ebaY to see what a similar car recently sold for at auction (check completed items).

Check AutoTrader to see what they are selling for around the country and specifically where you live.

And finally check your local newspaper to see if someone is selling one in your area, or with a local MB dealer to see what they have sold them for recently.

That should give you something to go on.

Also check to see if the shop, their insurance company, or your insurance company will provide you with a rental or loaner until you get a new car.

Good luck...
"We drive into the future using only our rearview mirror."
- Marshall McLuhan -

Scott Longston
Northern California Wine Country...
"Turbos whistle, grapes wine..."
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Old 02-14-2002, 07:39 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Toronto, CANADA
Posts: 1,193
Personally I would say if the insurance doesn't cover what the car is worth to you get it from the shop. They are ultimately responsible, the insurance is just there to cover all or some of their liability.
Jason Priest
1999 E430
1995 E420 - retired
1986 420SEL - retired
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Old 02-14-2002, 09:30 PM
Kuan's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: At the Birkebeiner
Posts: 3,811
Don't forget salvage rights. This way you can keep the car, sell it, or have the shop fix it.

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Old 02-14-2002, 10:31 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Mar 2001
Posts: 326
Beware of the "high mileage" claim that insurance companies use to lessen the value of your car.
Scott Diener
89 300E
93 300E
92 Volvo 740 Wagon aka "Mutt mover"
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Old 02-14-2002, 10:50 PM
Posts: n/a
I went to look

I went to gather my belongings out of the car and saw what it looked like.

The front-end from the center of the wheel forward was bent over about 4-feet towards the passenger side.

There she sat, new radiator, freshly clayed, polished and waxed, new timing chain, and a new (35k mile Mercedes warrantee) transmission.

Apparently, after the shop (well known within the m100 group) finished installing the transmission the owner called me to let me know I could pick the car up after work. All that was left was for a tech to test drive it.

The tech ran a stop sign and hit a car in the intersection. Big bummer (for me and the shop!)

Now I'm looking for suggestions on a new one. Any ideas?

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Old 02-15-2002, 09:36 AM
jcd jcd is offline
village idiot
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Northern New Jersey
Posts: 1,102
The shop has a problem.............

I had a similar thing happen to a Toyota van, my wife's. While not totalled, it was clobbered up pretty well. The shop paid to have the car repaired and provided a free loaner for the, believe it or not, one month that the car was in the body shop. I did not have to pay a penny.

They need to come thru with a solution. You need not be the only victim and the default position should not be that you &/or your insurance company foot the bill.

Here's another thought.....find another similar car and have them do "restoration" work for nothing. Between insurance, theirs/yours and their "free labor" & parts, you might end up with something better than you started with.

In any event, there needs to be some skin taken from this shop' hide, you shouldn't be the only loser.

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Old 02-15-2002, 02:09 PM
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Southern California, U.S.A.
Posts: 8,538
My next door neighbor recently got in a minor fender bender on the freeway, and to his surprise the insurance company totaled his truck.

Even though the truck was easily repairable, the estimate to fix the damage and repaint was more that 75% of the value.

He ended up buying the truck back for around $800.00, and he used the check from the insurance company to fix the car himself. the only negative is that you have a salvage title which kills the value of the car. He then had to re-register at the DMV, got a new pink slip which says "salvage title", and got a new license plate number. He had to get it smogged at California inspection station (not your local garage) and paid an arm and a leg. He also had to get the headlights inspected at a state certified inspection place.
It was a lot of trouble, but he got his truck back, got it fixed, and had money left-over.

But his car had minor damage. If your car really is "totaled", then I'd take the money and run.

If you like W126's, why not get an 86-90 model?
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 02-15-2002, 02:18 PM
Posts: n/a
I would say it's totaled..

The radiator was pushed into the engine, lots of ugly broken "stuff" in the engine compartment and the doors all creak and stick now. Looks like all stearing and front suspension components have been damaged.

I do like the W126 cars but this one was costing a bunch in little repairs. I was thinking about a diesel, I also like the W124 cars.

Looks like I get to go Mercedes shopping again.

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Old 02-16-2002, 11:19 PM
ymsin's Avatar
Driver, Mercedes-Benz
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Malaysia
Posts: 1,645
I know a friend who had a similar thing happen to his Lexus while being serviced. He was given a replacement with extras, compliments of the dealer.

Perhaps you ought to get your garage to follow the same rule and reinstate your vehicle to the condition it was when serviced.
... Kerry

126 tailed by a 203, 129 leading the pack.
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Old 02-17-2002, 12:58 AM
unkl300d's Avatar
Registered User
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: San Francisco, Ca
Posts: 2,315
press on sweet chariot..........

My personal opinion is that a Mercedes dealer ought to
act in a courteous , high standard manner which reflects the
'status' of the marque it markets.
In other words ,these nice folks should spin their wheels and find you a like car with a starmark-like warranty.

It's not like you lent it to your bro' and it got wrecked.......D'oh.

good luck
1979 300D 199 K miles
1995 C280 95 K miles
1992 Cadillac Eldorado Touring Coupe 57K miles
1979 240D 140Kmiles (bought for parents) *SOLD.
1989 300SE 148 K miles *SOLD
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Old 02-17-2002, 08:46 AM
Registered Diesel Burner
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 2,911
I believe you have had "severe emotional trauma" from the news that your beautiful car has been wrecked. Anything whatsoever that is not covered by insurance to replace your car should be paid for by the car dealership. And that's on their luckiest day. And it should include a loaner or rental car while you find another car.

When visiting the car at the dealership, start crying a lot, and mention you might get a lawyer. Tell them you're having trouble eating and sleeping. They need to feel your pain.

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Old 02-17-2002, 09:44 AM
Posts: n/a
Sorry to hear about your car.
When my mom wrecked the 500 the fender came up to the wheel well, the euro light was broken and the hood peeled over.The insurance company payed 2,546.83 According to the invoice to have the raditor replaced, light, hood, fender, paint, new viper alarm, and abs computer cover. We had to pay the 500 dollar deductable and it was fixed. All this for a car that comes up as about 3k in the kbb.
There is always hope
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Old 02-17-2002, 10:35 AM
ymsin's Avatar
Driver, Mercedes-Benz
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Malaysia
Posts: 1,645
Well, someone's insurance would have to pay for it, and I'm sure it would be the dealers' account. And then get the dealer to give it the all new tranny, new radiator, new this and that till you're completely satisfied.

That should be the nice ending, wouldn't it?
... Kerry

126 tailed by a 203, 129 leading the pack.
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Old 02-17-2002, 10:38 AM
Posts: n/a
Couldn't you force the dealer to repair it?

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