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Old 10-27-2000, 03:09 PM
CD_NY's Avatar
Extreme Mercedes Fan
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: NY, NY USA
Posts: 104

Lately Iíve been wondering if itís time to part with my 1985 190e. I bought the car 2 Ĺ years ago because I wanted a Mercedes and the price of entry was quite reasonable. However, as I look at the things that Iíve repaired over the years, I wonder if Iíd do better by selling it and buying a newer car. Here is a shot list of repairs that Iíve made.

Aux fan switch
Aux water pump
Shocks (4)
Steering shock
Front strut to frame mount
Master break cylinder
Break pads (4)
Head gasket
Distributor Cap & Rotor Replacement
Condenser (soon- maybe)

Currently, the car is in good condition and has never needed a major repair or overhaul. All of the items Iíve replaced have been ones that normally wear out over time. And, since my car is a 5spd, which I love, itís going to be hard to find another like it. What do you guys think? Are the items Iíve replaced consistent with that of a 15 year old Benz?


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Old 10-27-2000, 03:41 PM
Posts: n/a
I would not consider any of these repairs excessive.
If you had a 15 yr old GM or other American car, you would have a repair list twice as long. The car would also be ready for retirement.
Your MB should be good for another 15 yrs at least!

The main thing is to look at the repairs you've made.... they make the car better. If you buy another, unless it is in perfect condition, chances are you will have to make about half these repairs on the new one, and more later. This will make you wish you still had the 190.

Enjoy your ride!
Buy another if you want another, but I wouldn't part with the 190 if I had put that much into it and it ran well....
Just my 2 cents....

76 240D (W115) - 555K miles
78 300D (W123) - 200K+ miles -- SOLD
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Old 10-27-2000, 03:59 PM
Posts: n/a
How many miles do you have?
Most of the stuff you listed is normal my 1985 Euro 500sel Had to have some of the stuff done now it is getting a tranny and engine rebuild with 230k. The stuff wont last forever but it gets close. This is all stuff you would have to do to a newer car down the road why not drive the one u have now till it cant be driven any more. They repairs are expensive but they are not as bad as a Gm or Ford with 150k.

Dan Younes
1985 euro 500sel 223k
1986 420sel 86k soon 2 be
1981 300sd 285k sold
1979 240d 298k sold
1983 300sd 272k sold
1989 chrysler 2.2l Turbo
Leabaron 140k
1989 Dodge Carvan Se 295k
20001 Mitsubishi Mirage
1994 S500
(hopefully someday)
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Old 10-27-2000, 08:26 PM
Mr. BILL's Avatar
Ghoulardi Rules!
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 576
I agree with Mr. Harlow,you repair these cars to keep them in service, not to get to the next repair. They are alot like an old aircraft. Periferials need to be replaced and updated but, the chassis and primary components with proper maintainance are not designed to wear out.

You might consider taking what you paid for the car,add the cost of expenses and compare that to what you would put down on a new car, taxes and 30 payments. I bet what you have spent vs. what you would have spent. Plus, you OWN a vehicle worth something!

As far as trading for another car. You know pretty much what you have. Another car could and will require similar expenses.

However, if you want a bigger Benz a 126 is a GREAT car and to me,would be a reason to trade.


90 300SE
85 300D
84 300SD (sold)

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Old 10-27-2000, 11:00 PM
CD_NY's Avatar
Extreme Mercedes Fan
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: NY, NY USA
Posts: 104
Thanks for all the good info. I actually don't need a bigger car as I'm a single guy with a sometimes-girlfriend :-)

I do love me 190e and would really like to keep it for the next few years. It would be nice to finally own a car for more than 3 years as this is something I've not done before. Hmmm, maybe I'll have the silver paint redone....
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Old 10-28-2000, 10:44 AM
Robert W. Roe's Avatar
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Join Date: May 1999
Location: Lehigh Valley PA
Posts: 1,322
I have often pondered the question as to how long I will keep my 1984 300SD. I've owned it about 15 months, during which time I've put maybe $1500 into work on the car (mostly labor), including four new tires, front shocks, caster joints, left rear window regulator, filters, oil changes, etc. I've reglued the wood trim on the ashtray and dash. I figure on about $1000 a year in maintenace, which is less than $100 a month.

Constrast this with the payments on a new car. I feel safer in my MB than in most other cars, even those with multiple airbags.

Including purchase price, but not counting insurance and fuel, I have significantly less than $8000 in the car.

Some friends of mine have a 90-something Nissan Sentra, into which they had to put a new engine (!) to the tune of about $3500.

My wife's car is a '95 Subaru Legacy wagon, nice, but we bump elbows if we ride side by side, and it has cost about the same amount of money in shop work as my sixteen year old MB. It's cost me about $600 to get the "Check engine" light to go out, and it will cost the better part of $500 to replace two fuel level sensors (the gas guage doesn't work.) Newer cars seem to have more parts, more electronics, and more failures as all the PC boards age. I know, they are modular, but the electronics are not cheap for any car.

My 300SD only refused to start once, after a faulty trunk lamp stayed on all the time and drained the battery after several days. In mostly urban driving I've averaged 19.8 mpg. On trips I get over 25 mpg.

It's one of those cars that I will probably get bored with long before it stops running. I really want a 500E, but my wife thinks that we should get a new house before I get a new car. [Sigh.]

Robert W. Roe
1984 300SD 173K mi
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Old 10-28-2000, 11:47 AM
dacia's Avatar
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Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Here.
Posts: 315

I also bougth my MB (although it is the undestructable 124, 300E) about two years ago with 275 km (170K miles) on it. The car had 5 owners before me so proper maintenance was in question. Some of the repairs were obviously done by hacks (ie. driver side doorpanel was literally torn off, all the clips broken, morons!!!). The list of the parts that were changed prior to my ownership is: water pump, rad., diff. bushings, brake rotors, fan switch. These are the ones I know about.
Since then I have put on about 100k miles and changed the following: coolant temp sensor, belt tensioner shock, viscous fan clutch, speedo cable (my fault, over streched it), transmission mount, rightside drive shaft (car was in an accident before I got it, mechanic put in a used one), ignition coil (put in used one), power antenna. Car had been towed only once (ignition coil), for free by CAA (same as AAA in the US). I put on 150 to 200 miles per day 5 days a week. All these repairs cost me less than $1000 CAD ($700US) mind you I am somewhat of a DIY-er. Do the math less than $50 CAD per month. Pretty darn good for my experience. And I am sitting in one of the safest automobile (the other day I almost flipped my girlfriend's Camry on the highway, what a s...tbox) out there with the styling that looks good forever, performance, reliabilty and longevity. And when my friends ride in it (some of whom are rabid BMW fans and drivers) they don't beleive it. 14 years old with that kind of milage, runs and looks (charcoal grey with tinted windows, clear blinkers, lowered susp.) this good!
Enjoy your car for many years to come.


[This message has been edited by dacia (edited 10-28-2000).]
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Old 11-20-2000, 02:19 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Feb 2000
Posts: 171


Looking at your list of repairs, I think that it's plus and subtract a few from my list. I also do have an '85 190E 2.3, 5-speed. These cars are good cars, and they're hard to find, especially if it's a 5-speed. After replacing those items, you shouldn't have to replace anything much anymore, since most of it is covered. Any 15-year old car will have it's list, but your list is shorter and your car will run much better than others.

I, too, thought the same way as you did. I wanted to sell it and get a Honda Accord. ( What a big mistake.....) I currently have 243k miles on it. PRobably the only thing that I need to do is change the shocks ( never been changed yet) and repaint the car. I'm hoping that it'll run till the odometer hits 500k miles.

Happy driving,

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