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  #1  
Old 01-04-2015, 07:45 PM
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Which would you sell - w202 or w124?

I need to sell one of my MBs, both well loved and maintained, and am trying to be rational on which to keep and which to sell. Both have been in the family since new, and both are garaged, detailed, and proactively maintained.

The 87 300E Sportline has 143000 miles on the clock, is quick, nimble, and comfortable. Never wrecked and solid the way MBs used to be. Great mechanicals, but the single airbag is well past expiration date.

The 98 C230 has 220,000+ miles, is smaller (and heavier!) but still comfortable, practical with a fold down rear seat, gets much better gas mileage than the 124, and has multiple airbags. It also has a charcoal cabin air filter to help cut LA smog and truck fumes.

Both have MB tex interiors, handle and brake well, and look very nice (pics in signature).

At 70, I should de-emphasize sporty handling and performance, and cut down on night time driving - minimizing the need for the 124 Sportline suspension and 500E headlights. But I also should cut back on lifting bulky things that would require a fold down seat like the C230, and emphasize safety features like airbags that would protect brittle bones.

Are there any other considerations I should evaluate - any increased maintenance, etc variables that make one car better than the other?

Which would you find a new home for, and why?

Thanks for feedback!

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2003 Firemist Red/grey leather SL 500
2015 Palladium Silver/black mbtex GLK 350
1987 Smoke Silver/burgundy mbtex 300E Sportline (SOLD)

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  #2  
Old 01-04-2015, 08:05 PM
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Good to see you on JCE. Personally, I'd drop the C class just for the additional room the E class offers over the C class.
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  #3  
Old 01-04-2015, 08:12 PM
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Sell the W202.
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  #4  
Old 01-04-2015, 08:35 PM
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Keep the 300E, I think its a better car based on build quality. The 300E should last a long time if maintained well. The 300E is simple and reliable, has a great body style.
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  #5  
Old 01-04-2015, 08:38 PM
Ron59b
 
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Ditto.......
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  #6  
Old 01-04-2015, 08:39 PM
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Good Lord John. You're back!

How long has it been since you've last posted?

Does your son still have my old '93 300E (3.2) "E320" ?

Does the 300E have any sentimental value since it was your father's car?
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2001 E430, Bourdeaux Red, Oyster interior.
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1973 280SE 4.5, 170,000 miles. 568 Signal Red, Black MB Tex. "The Red Baron".
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  #7  
Old 01-04-2015, 09:28 PM
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Hi Jim, Paul

Yeah, been a couple years off the forum - a long run of medical issues, hospitalizations, and rehab took up most of my time and energy. My new reality is no wrenching or detailing, etc.

Paul, your E class got a bad case of wiring harness rat munching, despite all the bait traps etc. The park across the street apparently was home to a large population of the critters, and by the time damage was discovered, it exceeded the blue book value of the car. The Ins company said they had totaled dozens of cars from rat damage that spring.

My overwhelming preference is to keep the E. My medical needs, however, include good cabin filtration, multiple air bag protection, and a more limited and sedate driving (sucks). My wife acquired a very nice low mileage 2003 500sl from our mechanic, so the sporting driving is there for her when she wants it.

I don't want to let go of either one, especially the E, but suspect that eventually both will have to go and be replaced by a new car - Really don't see anything appealing, though.
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2003 Firemist Red/grey leather SL 500
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1987 Smoke Silver/burgundy mbtex 300E Sportline (SOLD)

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  #8  
Old 01-04-2015, 09:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JCE View Post
Hi Jim, Paul

Yeah, been a couple years off the forum - a long run of medical issues, hospitalizations, and rehab took up most of my time and energy. My new reality is no wrenching or detailing, etc.

Paul, your E class got a bad case of wiring harness rat munching, despite all the bait traps etc. The park across the street apparently was home to a large population of the critters, and by the time damage was discovered, it exceeded the blue book value of the car. The Ins company said they had totaled dozens of cars from rat damage that spring.

My overwhelming preference is to keep the E. My medical needs, however, include good cabin filtration, multiple air bag protection, and a more limited and sedate driving (sucks). My wife acquired a very nice low mileage 2003 500sl from our mechanic, so the sporting driving is there for her when she wants it.

I don't want to let go of either one, especially the E, but suspect that eventually both will have to go and be replaced by a new car - Really don't see anything appealing, though.
Considering your situation, you should sell both and get a Subaru or Volvo wagon. Neither of your cars fit your needs well.

Your 300E is old enough to be married and have kids, and your C230 is old enough to be in college.
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2001 E430, Bourdeaux Red, Oyster interior.
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  #9  
Old 01-04-2015, 09:59 PM
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I have a 97 C280 and 97 SL320 so don't have much direct info on the E. ( other than the R 129 SL was based on the W124 E floor pan )

From a parts standpoint the C will be easier to get parts for.

While the E has only one air bag, so does the C for all practical purposes. ( the C has a passenger bag, no side bags. ) I "think" the C will have belt pretensioners. The E might have the high power bags designed to catch a unbelted person, these could be a problem for some people.

If you are belted in and are far enough from the steering wheel, a bag won't do much.

Does the E have CIS injection? I'd expect the fuel distributor needing a rebuild soon. ( the diaphragm splits / gets stiff causing cold start issues.

The C could easily be replaced with another one if you wanted to go back, the sportline E might be more difficult.

Some forget that the C was built to a price and is entry level. It is still a good driving car and I like it around town more than the SL. ( Actually the C is Moms summer car so I don't get to drive it much until it comes to my house for winter storage. )
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  #10  
Old 01-04-2015, 11:14 PM
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Sl320 -good points. The old fuel injection system in the E has always worked, but not very smoothly. The C was problematic for the first 50k miles, mostly the trans and front suspension. Since then it has needed the mas and o2 sensors, not much else. The E is pretty good as well, needing upgraded valve guides and injectors about 75 k miles, and not much since aside from regular maintenance items. I imagine that seals and gaskets could be getting stiff, like the injection diapraghm you mentioned.

Paul, you are probably right on selling them both - but I am not a Volvo person and the Subi dealer is too far away and has unhappy customers according to my 2 friends who own them, even though they are supposedly nice cars.

If I do sell both, I would possibly lease something instead of buying. I dont see anything new I would want to own beyond a warranty period!

On the E, there is some sentimental value because it was my parents car, but more because of all the sweat equity I put into upgrades and detailing, as well as the good times learning here on the forum. I learned to love (most) of the engineering and quality on the 124, and to tolerate the more unusual quirks.
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2003 Firemist Red/grey leather SL 500
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1987 Smoke Silver/burgundy mbtex 300E Sportline (SOLD)

Click to see 87 300E
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  #11  
Old 01-05-2015, 01:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JCE View Post
At 70, I should de-emphasize sporty handling and performance, and cut down on night time driving - minimizing the need for the 124 Sportline suspension and 500E headlights. But I also should cut back on lifting bulky things that would require a fold down seat like the C230, and emphasize safety features like airbags that would protect brittle bones.
Sounds like it might be time for a Lincoln or Cadillac, or maybe a Toyota Avalon.
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83 300D Turbo with manual conversion, early W126 vented front rotors and H4 headlights 362,xxx miles
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  #12  
Old 01-05-2015, 04:38 AM
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If your W202 hasn't started to rust then that must be the first one I've ever heard of that isn't doing it - here in damp Holland they rust from the top down - well weird - and generally thought to be because of the use of water based paint.

If I were you I'd ditch the W202 for the potential rust nightmare. (Generally speaking) Here a W124 commands a higher price than a W202 and often a W210 even though it is older and has often travelled further.
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  #13  
Old 01-05-2015, 02:24 PM
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Lets start with this. Take BOTH (probably different times unless you can drive both at the same time) to a dealership. Tell them you are considering buying something new or leasing or whatever story you choose to make. like a newer E class or a new C class. Obviously the new acquisition has to be something modest. Tell them you don't know which would be better to trade in. See what they say and go from there.

I don't always trust KBB to give me a good value so confirm it with a dealership. Once you know trade in value, you can go from there.

Unless both are a push, I'd keep the 202. I took a T bone in it and got a fractured pelvis and a mild concussion. The other girl who hit me head on had more injury than I.
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  #14  
Old 01-05-2015, 07:45 PM
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Originally Posted by aklim View Post
Lets start with this. Take BOTH (probably different times unless you can drive both at the same time) to a dealership. Tell them you are considering buying something new or leasing or whatever story you choose to make. like a newer E class or a new C class. Obviously the new acquisition has to be something modest. Tell them you don't know which would be better to trade in. See what they say and go from there.

I don't always trust KBB to give me a good value so confirm it with a dealership. Once you know trade in value, you can go from there.

Unless both are a push, I'd keep the 202. I took a T bone in it and got a fractured pelvis and a mild concussion. The other girl who hit me head on had more injury than I.

A Mercedes dealer is unlikely to offer much for the cars, the C is just a used car with too many miles for a MB dealer and the E pretty specialized but, while in apparently serviceable condition, not a 20,000 mile example. In other words, how many people go to a MB dealer looking for these cars?

A non MB dealer is unlikely to offer anything beyond inflating the new purchase to cover an inflated trade value. RE: They don't know this type of car and are going to be afraid of them.

This leaves running the gauntlet of Craigslist replies, a better solution is to hit MB clubs and pass the cars around as these buyers are more likely to know what they are looking at.

Leasing is a very expensive way to own a car unless you require a new one every few years. . .and don't drive much.
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  #15  
Old 01-05-2015, 08:45 PM
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Originally Posted by 97 SL320 View Post
A Mercedes dealer is unlikely to offer much for the cars, the C is just a used car with too many miles for a MB dealer and the E pretty specialized but, while in apparently serviceable condition, not a 20,000 mile example. In other words, how many people go to a MB dealer looking for these cars?
Well it is a starting point. EBay is another. I like to cross reference just in case the dealership has a lead on someone looking for old cars. I had that happened more than once.

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