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Old 03-25-2001, 10:51 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 46
Ok, realizing that the light output on my car is abysmal, I wish to upgrade them. Of course at first I just figured I'd get some Euro lights from Bekkers or such, I've seen them on other cars and think they look great and the light is much improved. Here's the problem though. I live in the great Commonwealth of Virginia where we have and annual safety inspection that of course includes headlamps and their aim. I spoke with 4 different mechanics at 4 different state approved facilities, and they all said that "you come in here with Euro lights, I will fail you on the inspection. Lights must be DOT..blah blah blah". So, am I stuck with the crappy light output on the car, or are there other options. Mabye a headlamp swap with a later model would be better, I don't know. I hope you guys can come up with some ideas for me.

Evan Lewis
'86 300E 140K miles
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Old 03-25-2001, 01:00 PM
MikeTangas's Avatar
Senior Member
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: So. Cal
Posts: 4,430
If your inspectors are being that harsh, what if you upgraded the front end, hood, grille and head lights to the 94/95 E. Give the Euro look, with somewhat improved lighting. A bit expensive, but should do the trick.

Other option, move out of Viginia and install genuine Euro lights.
Mike Tangas
'73 280SEL 4.5 (9/72)- RIP
Only 8,173 units built from 5/71 thru 11/72

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Old 03-25-2001, 03:15 PM
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Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Florida / N.H.
Posts: 8,768
Swap at inspection.

Breaking the law for the sake of safety.
Plead "Guilty, Your Honor" !!!
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Old 03-25-2001, 08:02 PM
Johnson Chan
Posts: n/a
I like the idea of swaping them at inspection, they are not that hard to do, just swap them before and after the inspection.
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Old 03-26-2001, 02:12 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 46
Ok, has anyone any experience with the Hella "Vison Plus" headlamps. I have been told that they are better than the stock models, not quite as good as the E-code lamps, but that they are completely DOT legal?? anybody have any feedback??

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Old 03-27-2001, 03:22 AM
Johnson Chan
Posts: n/a
To be quite honest with you, the cheapest and fastest solution is simple. When you need additional lighting, turn on your fog lights.

Because of the poor design, sometimes when on windy roads late at night, driving 6 hours straight, I will have to turn them on. It does look kind of weird to have them on when its not raining or no fog outside, but hey, they help a lot.
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