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Old 07-30-2001, 10:09 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Jun 2001
Posts: 19
A sad day for me...

Hey guys, I just posted a few weeks back about my cd player for my 1992 400E. We've had the car for almost 9 years and today I got into an accident. It's the fourth one in ten years. Of course the first one I've had in the car...then again I've only been driving for 2 years since I'm only 18 I was in the right land, merged into the left lane but a pickup truck came into my lane right after I merged, he slammed his brakes because the car in front of him had done the same. There was no way I could have stopped, hit him at around 55mph. The hood totally crumpled, the raditator was oozing liquids, the car was smoking. The grille was gone, the entire front end up until the engine was totallly destroyed! This is all in the engine bay, the bumper is all intact. Sadly the Mercedes dealer was closed so I have to have it towed there tomorrow morning. The other accidents weren't nearly as bad as this. I just hope they can fix it all for under 7200 bucks because anything more then that, it'll cost more then the car. The right door is jammed shut because it seems the the frame moved in to cut off the hinges. The door can barely be opened, maybe 1 inch and then the hinges won't give anymore. I'm getting this sickening feeling that the door, radiator, and other things will cost more then 7200 dollars... Hopefully I will find out soon. I loved that car, it was our family treasure and out first Mercedes-Benz. I had 150000 miles on it, just a few measly thousand miles short of the 155000 mileage club! Do you think Mercedes will give it to me out of pure pity? For all of you who've lost a Benz, I'm starting to realize what you've been through
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Old 07-30-2001, 11:16 PM
Ashman's Avatar
Service Advisor
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Sherman Oaks, CA
Posts: 4,748
I feel for your loss.

It sounds like you might have frame damage there if the door wont open, but only a shop will be able to tell.

Its hard to say if you can get it fixed for the price you mentioned.

I would not only check with the mb dealer for repairs, I would try other body shops that your insurance allows. I would also check for parts here on the site, or you can try for used parts.

Is the accident considered your fault?

I wish you the best of luck with getting your car back to the way it was for a good price.

'92 300CE - Sold
2004 C240 - C7 Wheels
2015 ML350 - P1, Pano, Ash poplar wood, Sport Dinamica interior, Running Boards Keyless go.
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Old 07-31-2001, 01:49 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Feb 2000
Posts: 171

Vijay008 ,

I am sorry to hear about your accident. Unfortunately, they happen to good people, and there's nothing you can do about it. From reading your post, it sounds like there's a lot of damage to the car, and frame damage is costly to repair.

I too, was in an accident 2 years ago, with a Honda Accord, and it had front frame damage. The body shop wanted $6k to fix it, and sadly, I had to part with it.

I don't want to sound harsh, but it sounds to me as if your car is in bad shape, and the cost of repairing it can easily surpass the value of the car when frame damage has occurred. One thing to do is to perhaps start looking for another car, just as a back-up plan and hope and pray that you'll get your car back repaired.

One thing to think about is that with that much damage, it's quite impossible to have your 400E drive the same as before, even if you had it fixed. ( I know, it's a sweet car.........)

I really hope to hear that things work out. I'm sad to find out a fellow Benz driver is in despair.

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Old 07-31-2001, 07:19 AM
Johnson Chan
Posts: n/a
I am sorry to hear about your accident. But I am glad to hear you are not seriously hurt.

With your car. Who is your insurance company? Last year I got into an accident and the whole passanger side had to be reconstructed, the bill was about 10 grand, this is for a 92 300D 2.5 with 275,000 miles ?? or so at the time. Anyway, they fixed the car and did not total it. So since your car is a 400 and has less miles, maybe they will fix it and not total it if its over 7 grand? This varies with insurance companies so I cannot answer that question.

As far as the car is concerned. Do you really want it? Cars are not the same after an accident, at least from my experience and others. I had mine fixed at the dealer and now there is still wind noise that can be heard in the cabin since the accident. If you have frame damage or worse, it might not be the same anymore. Please dont let me discourage you or anything but I am just giving you a warning.
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Old 07-31-2001, 06:14 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Jun 2001
Posts: 19

I got the car to the body shop today, hopefully the estimate will be coming soon, but it's not looking good because I'm seeing it easily surpass 5 grand right now. I have All State and I got some bad news today, the other driver is now complaining of injuries. I don't know what yet but the guy seemed pretty shady If they can fix the car, I'm going to get it done just because we only put on 9K or 10K a year on it anyway. I guess I'll have to start looking for a new car because I'm assuming the worst. An SLK 32 looks awfully good right now I'll keep you guys updated once I find out what's going on...
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Old 08-01-2001, 10:43 AM
yal's Avatar
yal yal is offline
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: New York, Long Island
Posts: 2,704
This really starting to sound like a classic fraud "staged" accident in which you are the victim. Why did the car in front of the guy you hit brake? I smell something.....
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Old 08-01-2001, 11:49 AM
G-Benz's Avatar
Razorback Soccer Dad
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Dallas/Fort-Worth
Posts: 5,711
The "fraud" cases generally involve vehicles of later years than the one involved, so I doubt it.

Vijay008: sorry about the accident, but I am glad no injuries resulted. Still, that is probably not much consolation for you.

The bad news is, your car is totaled. My mom got into an accident back in 1979 with the 1971 280SE, in which she was clipped at the front by a kid who ran a stop sign. Total damage: $11,500!! Considering the cost of repair back then, you are probably in that range, if not higher.

The good news is, W124s are plentiful. Take the cash that the insurance company gives you, and shop for another one. You might even find a creampuff that was cared for even better than the one you lost!

Good luck!
2009 ML350 (84K) - Family vehicle
2001 CLK430 Cabriolet (71K) - Wife's car
2005 BMW 645CI (124K) - My daily driver
2012 Mustang V6 (60K) - Daughter's car
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Old 08-01-2001, 05:24 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Jun 2001
Posts: 19
Well, the guy I hit was driving a 92 Dodge Dakota. His story is different from mine, he still claims that we both merged into the lane at the same time. I would love to buy a used 400E or maybe even a 500E but my family in general is biased against used cars. I think they would rather buy a *shrudder* American car instead of a used car. I'm still hoping for the best though. I'm an optomist at heart! And the guy I hit, I seriously do think he's lying. I know whiplash can set in a few days later, but this guy was shady. I'm probably being biased but that's my opinion. Hopefully I can get this overturned in court because it truely wasn't my fault!
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Old 08-01-2001, 11:22 PM
Ashman's Avatar
Service Advisor
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Sherman Oaks, CA
Posts: 4,748
If you have witnesses who saw it and can claim you were not at fault you might just be ok. Just be careful.

I had an accident that took 5 years to settle. I ended up with 17k in my pocket after 5 years, and that was after all the attorneys fees and medical and car repairs.

If I did not have a witness who saw the accident and saw it wasn't my fault, I would have lost the case.

When my MGB got totalled, I had witnesses, but the other driver admitted fault right away anyway, so no witnesses were needed.

I agree that this sounds shady to me. My brother was the victim of a staged accident (he is 18 driving a range rover). I guess some people just think that they can get away with staging an accident. Luckily for my brother, a witness saw the guy blatantly cause the accident, so my brother won the case.

I have had several people try to make me hit them since I got my benz. I have had people slam on their brakes in front of me for no reason at all. Luckily I have abs and do not speed too often.

Staged accidents are the worst.

But I hope this little story will make you feel better.

10 years ago my dad was sideswiped by a 1968 ford pickup truck which had a trailer. My father was driving his rolls at the time. The rolls had over $35k in damages to the car, not to mention my fathers medical.

Not only did he get paid out to repair the car, but he got paid for the medical, his atty fees, and he got the ins co to pay out for rental of a rolls for 6 months, which was like an extra $30k in fees for a rental. His reason for the rolls rental? Why should he have to drive anything that is of less prestige than his car? well they bought it and he made tons of cash on the deal. he eneded up getting the car fixed for around $12k and bought a used bmw to drive for 6 months then sold it for more than he paid for it.

He still has the rolls today, and it still looks and drives great. BTW he has been in several accidents with that rolls, and he keeps fixing it and driving it. It still looks like a million bucks.

I think you should definately make sure you speak with an attorney immediately. And if selling your parents on a used car is tough, make sure they know that a used benz is pretty much as good as a new one if it has been well cared for.

'92 300CE - Sold
2004 C240 - C7 Wheels
2015 ML350 - P1, Pano, Ash poplar wood, Sport Dinamica interior, Running Boards Keyless go.
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Old 08-02-2001, 12:10 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Jun 2001
Posts: 19
Thanks for the words of encourgement. I wish I had witnesses but the accident was on the highway. As soon as I stopped the car, I jumped out to inspect it and started calling people on my cellphone, so I don't think anyone thought we needed help. But this entire injury claim is bogus IMHO. An ambulance stopped to see if we needed help and the guy said he was fine. He told the cops the same thing. It's just when you are hit by a kid in a Mercedes, his family shows up in another start getting ideas. I have talked to my lawyer and I'm going to appeal. I'm not going to just let it go, if I have to go down, I'm going down fighting! I still don't see why he needed to slam his brakes, he never hit the car in front of him. And to say that a Dodge pickup (It was a mess) has better brakes then a Mercedes is a joke! Hopefully my 400E will be fixed, the body shop said it can easily be fixed but I haven't got an estimate yet. Well, back to my 89 Camry. The good thing about driving the Camry is that I appreciate the 400E so much more now
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Old 08-07-2001, 02:15 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2001
Posts: 19
Well no more news about the guy I hit, but I got a call from the Body Shop and the total damage only came out to 1754! I know I made the accident seem pretty bad and it certainly seemed that way! I don't understand how it came out to be that cheap! The body shop is faxing me a list of all the parts they have ordered. They said it'll take 10 days to get parts and another 5 or 6 days to get everything repaired! I'll be back in the Benz soon!
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Old 08-07-2001, 02:22 PM
David C Klasse's Avatar
CheFrac is Back!
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Mission Hills in the City of San Diego
Posts: 2,352
WOW! You are so lucky!
I truly felt your pain when I read this post. Now I'm so happy for you! It MUST be a BENZ thing!
2006 E350 w/ 155k miles (Daily Driver)

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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Old 08-07-2001, 02:46 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Feb 2000
Posts: 171

Boy are you lucky!!! Any preventive maintainence on a higher model benz would probably cost you that much! Anyhow, I'd glad to hear that you'll be enjoying your Benz for many countless miles in the future. Welcome back!

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Old 08-07-2001, 04:17 PM
Posts: n/a
I was wondering if anyone has ever got diminished
value settlement when their wrecked car was fixed.

A lot of people will not buy a vehicle that has
been wrecked and when you disclose this it
lowers the resale value.

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Old 08-07-2001, 05:31 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Oct 1999
Posts: 1,562
Vijay- hopefully you will be able to chalk this one up to experience and learn from it. The insurance companies love this type of collision statistic: "fault or no-fault, younger drivers are twenty-five times more likely to be involved in a collision....blah, blah, blah..." (you've heard it before).

A couple of thoughts to pass on that is definitely NOT cutting edge for those more experienced drivers here:

In regards to driving, its widely accepted that it is a driver's basic responsibility to exercise the best strategy and vehicle maneuvering skill to avoid contact with the vehicle(s) in front of them (and around them) whether they have the "right of way" or "own" a lane or well all over the world.

As such, the most conservative approach to minimize the risk of this type of accident is to anticipate panic stop & collision situations- most especially when lanes merge by allowing an adequate amount of space in front of you, decreasing speed, placing/ applying the brake pedal in advance, mapping an alternate escape route to employ...and you may think of a host of other things situationally that will hone your proactive anticipation, collision avoidance drivers instinct, risk awareness, defensive driving skills, etc.

In regards to accidents and dealing with other parties involved in a collision, insurance company adjusters & agents, doctors and hospital bills, injuries, body and paint shops, restoration mechanics, attorneys, litigation, judgements, bills, rising insurance rates etc. etc. these type of associated matters will always be energy sucking negative activities no matter what driving experience level one posses or financial position one has attained....hence I sincerely hope you add this experience to your CPU and become a superior "driver"- - then you can help the "not so attuned" drivers out there.

My hats off to those real world "drivers" that clearly exercise superior driving skill, common-sense decision making, and wisdom to avoid causing, avoid being party to, and proactively make life easier for the road going masses.

Best of luck and glad to hear that the body restoration is reasonably priced.

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