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  #1  
Old 06-13-2001, 12:03 AM
A. Rosich's Avatar
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Can anyone please tell me if it is possible to reprogram a 1995 W124 station wagon (S124- E320T) automatic transmission to start always in first gear, instead of the annoying regular second gear start (without recurring to kick-down at every stoplight to get a decent go)?

What needs to be to done? My car auto transmission is the regular M.B. 4-speed (not the electronically controlled five-speed auto).

I will appreciate any input on this matter. Thank you.

A. Rosich
S 320, 1998
E 320 T, 1995
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  #2  
Old 06-13-2001, 03:18 AM
David C Klasse's Avatar
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Hmmm, your 1995 4 speed auto, 722.4 transmission should not have 2nd gear start. I have the 722.4 and it's not 2nd gear start. I think they stopped doing this in 1992 or so.

Have you tested it from a stop, paying close attention to it shifting 3 times through all four gears?

So to answer your question, it already should start in 1st gear.
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  #3  
Old 06-13-2001, 11:02 AM
rdurbeck
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2nd gear start

My 1987 190E 2.6 does this. I feel like I'm driving a 3 speed. Is this normal?

Also, I'm really amazed at how hard the engine has to work in top gear. At 70 mph, I'm doing almost 2500rpm; in my Ford minivan with the same rpm I'm going 85mph
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  #4  
Old 06-13-2001, 12:40 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: LI, NY
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A. Rosich,

Does your car have a summer/winter switch?

If it does switch it to summer for first gear starts and winter for second gear starts. I don't know if your model has this switch.

Anyhow, Your car should have first gear start already.

rdurbeck,

Your car is fine. Your year has second gear start unless you floor it off the line or bring the gear selector all the way back before take off.

You engine is not working harder than the Ford it is just geared differently.
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  #5  
Old 06-13-2001, 03:21 PM
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No, his car does not have the Summer/Winter Switch.

A. Roische, please double check because your car should start in first gear. If it's starting in second gear, then something is wrong.

Rbrduck, your transmission is totally normal. It starts in second gear unless put in kickdown, this was done to conserve fuel at the time, thought I'm not sure if it really helped. And your RPMs at speed are normal too.
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2006 E350 w/ 155k miles (Daily Driver)

Previous:
1993 300E 3.2L Sedan w/ close to about 300k miles
2003 E500 Brilliant Silver (Had 217k miles when totalled!)
1989 300E with 289,000 miles (had for <1 yr while in HI)
03 CLK 500 cabrio (Mom's)
2006 C230k (Dad's)
1999 S420 (Mom's/Dad's)
2000 C230k Sport sedans
2001 CLK320 Cabrio (Mom's)
1995 C280 My First Mercedes-Benz... (155k miles. EXCEPTIONAL AUTOMOBILE. Was Very hard to let go of!)
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  #6  
Old 06-14-2001, 01:06 PM
A. Rosich's Avatar
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Thank you so much to everyone for the input.

I guess I should clarify that my E320T is an Euro Spec car and it does not have the Winter/Standard switch. However it does have the Economy/Standard switch, which has no effect on the second gear start.

The car definitely starts in second gear always (the manual even refers to this fact, for saving fuel). If you launch the car slowly and then suddenly press the gas pedal hard, it will call the first gear suddenly.

My S320 starts always in first, giving it an excellent go from stand still. The E320T has a pathetic go from stand still unless calling the kick down to make it go in first. This is what I want to fix, if it is possible.

A. Rosich
E320T, 1995
S320, 1998

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  #7  
Old 06-14-2001, 02:14 PM
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Ohhh, Euro Spec... then I suppose that could differ than a US Model... I guess leave it to the pros! Hopefully Steve (MBenz) will come on and help you out on this one.
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2006 E350 w/ 155k miles (Daily Driver)

Previous:
1993 300E 3.2L Sedan w/ close to about 300k miles
2003 E500 Brilliant Silver (Had 217k miles when totalled!)
1989 300E with 289,000 miles (had for <1 yr while in HI)
03 CLK 500 cabrio (Mom's)
2006 C230k (Dad's)
1999 S420 (Mom's/Dad's)
2000 C230k Sport sedans
2001 CLK320 Cabrio (Mom's)
1995 C280 My First Mercedes-Benz... (155k miles. EXCEPTIONAL AUTOMOBILE. Was Very hard to let go of!)
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  #8  
Old 06-14-2001, 05:47 PM
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Simple.

Put the car into the 2 position, then back to drive it should then start in first gear.

My car came factory with first gear starts, so I don't have that kind of issue.

I would think you could get a modified valve body on the trans from a place like renntech or brabus or somewhere, but it might be costly.

Alon
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  #9  
Old 06-15-2001, 12:15 AM
dlswnfrd
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Stick Shift

Brother of the Benz
Play as a Hot Rodder.
My 1987 W124030 is a second gear starter.
To take advantage of the four gears, I Stick Shift it.
Put the gear selector in low postion, this will put the tranny in first gear.
Accelerate away and move the gear selector to the next high gear position and immediately return it to low. You will now be locked in second gear and will remain in second gear until you decide to up shift manually to third and on to "D".
After a few tries you will become a M/B stick shifter.
Happy Trails Beep Beep from Thre Spiderman in Houston!!!
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  #10  
Old 06-16-2001, 01:00 AM
Mattman
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You guys with second gear start trans should have a look over at http://www.mbcoupes.com. One of the members of the mailing list over there is producing an electronic 1st gear start switch kit that he will sell to list members.
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  #11  
Old 06-16-2001, 04:18 PM
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I wrote one to these pages over a year ago. I have been doing it since the 500SELs started coming with 2nd gear starts years ago.

It really isn't that big of a secret as MB did the same thing on 78-80 116 chassis 300SDs.

The system will require two relays, and oil pressure switch and some wiring.The concept is to use one relay to electrically energize the kickdown solenoid when the brake pedal is released: brake pedal - no kickdown, no brake pedal - kickdown. The oil pressure switch is placed in the governor pressure test port. The switch will open with 5psi. The governor starts pressure at 10kph so the switch will stay engaged till then. The circuit is a little hard to explain in words other than to say that one relay controls the other. One relay will have to be an either or relay (one that always conducts either to 87 or 87a).

Operation is like this. At a stop with foot on brake, car is in 2nd gear. As foot is removed from brake transmission is kickdown to first (imperceptable), foot presses the throttle and car accelerates in firstgear. If full acceleration is required smooth pedal to the kickdown before 6.2mph will keep the car in kickdown and all further shifting is determined by the cars controls as the system we have provided shut-off at 6.2mph. If casual acceleration is applied the car shifts from first at 6.2mph and assumes all the normal characteristics.

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  #12  
Old 06-16-2001, 06:32 PM
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Location: West Bloomfield, Michigan
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1st gear start (electronic kit)

The oil pressure method is old and archaic. The better method is mine...

The module reads the speeds pulses from the electronic speedometer. When speeds decrease to under 6.68 mph, the coil energizes the kickdown solenoid which opens the valley in the valve body for 1st gear start. Of course, adding an in-line factory dash switch in series defeats the circuit and you have 2nd gear start (back to normal).

Anyone else interested, please give me a ring or send me an e-mail.

Regards,

Satish Tummala
(248) 737-4229
http://www.mbcoupes.com
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  #13  
Old 06-16-2001, 09:29 PM
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Location: Vernon, CT
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Satish, Your method would only work on cars with electronic speedometers. For people like myself that have "older" cars with speedometer cables, Steve's idea would work. I don't know when MB started with electronic speedometers, but there are still quite a few of the older models, like mine, still on the road. This forum is for people who have questions and the people who offer their knowledge on these cars. To say your idea is better and that someone elses is "old and archaic", is rather strong language and just not polite. Steve has helped many people here with his knowledge and experience, and I would hate to see him stop contributing due to people shooting down his ideas, when he his only trying to help.
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  #14  
Old 06-16-2001, 09:41 PM
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Whoa, sorry if I came off that way. In rereading my post, I can see how it may have been interpreted in that context.

My apologies but...he was referring to a 500SEL which DID have an electronic speedometer (since 1980).

SAtish
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  #15  
Old 06-17-2001, 12:45 AM
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It is rather hard to express tone without using smile faces and !!!!. It can be a bit tricky.
Well now I know when MB started using electronic speedometers. Now I am assuming you mean they started using the elctronic ones in the W126 chassis, model year '81. My car is an '80 and it definetly has a cable. Now that I think about it, my father owns an '85 W123, and it has a cable. Maybe they first came out with it in the W126 then when they replaced the W123 with the W124, they switched for that class/size car also.
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