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  #1  
Old 09-01-2008, 10:17 PM
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New here, need advice on purchase.

Well, I'm trying to live a lot more frugally and I need a beater to get me the 12 mile round trip to work 4 days a week. Well, I found a 1982 380e for $900 (I may be able to talk him down a little too). According to the current owner, it runs solid, no oil burning/leakage, 305k miles. A/C doesn't work, but heat does. Looks good for the years/mileage actually.

Would this be a good beater purchase? Too many miles? I figure if it's lasted this long what's another 10, 20, or 30 thousand. I'd like to find what's up with the A/C, but can somebody give me a worst case scenario for that in cost? I see collectors/technicians here with models of this year or of the same chassis according to Wikipedia, so I would appreciate anything you'd have to share on this vehicle.

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  #2  
Old 09-01-2008, 11:31 PM
Jim B.'s Avatar
Who's flying this thing ?
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: N. California./ N. Nevada
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Let's begin at the beginning.

There is no such thing as a 380e.


Is it a 280e or a 380SE (the larger S-klasse car?)


Good, safe, comfortable, incredibly well engineered and built cars either of them, but air conditioning and rust problems can plague both of them

$900 is a good price for a decent running one, if you want a safe durable car, and one that will keep running for a long time even if you totally beat it into the ground and don't do anything to it which is what it sounds like you want to do;

Though to me personally that would be horrible to do to one of them
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1991 560 SEC AMG, 199k <---- 300 hp 10:1 ECE euro HV ...

1995 E 420, 170k "The Red Plum" (sold)

2015 BMW 535i xdrive awd Stage 1 DINAN, 6k, <----364 hp

1967 Mercury Cougar, 49k

2013 Jaguar XF, 20k <----340 hp Supercharged, All Wheel Drive (sold)
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  #3  
Old 09-01-2008, 11:51 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2008
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Thanks Jim,

Through some research, I think he meant E-type, as in fuel injection. Anyway I'm 99% sure it is a 380SEL sedan in a hunter green, here's a pic. This is in the SE US, so I think rust would be minimal. I'm not going to intentionally beat the tar out of it, but it's nice to know it could take said beating. At this price, I'm willing to put some $$$ into it to make sure everything's ok. But sounds like fixing the A/C from what I found out could cost around $2k. I may have to live without that, but depends if I feel like it's worth it after a while.





Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim B. View Post
There is no such thing as a 380e.


Is it a 280e or a 380SE (the larger S-klasse car?)


Good, safe, comfortable, incredibly well engineered and built cars either of them, but air conditioning and rust problems can plague both of them

$900 is a good price for a decent running one, if you want a safe durable car, and one that will keep running for a long time even if you totally beat it into the ground and don't do anything to it which is what it sounds like you want to do;

Though to me personally that would be horrible to do to one of them
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  #4  
Old 09-02-2008, 12:09 AM
Jim B.'s Avatar
Who's flying this thing ?
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: N. California./ N. Nevada
Posts: 3,611
Smile Step 2.

Ok here you go:

Here's a buyer's guide for you. It was written for the 560SEC by me and the site owner helped, about 10 years ago, but it addresses your car well if you think smaller motor and 2 more doors.


It is a fairly well regarded write up, and has a checklist too for buyers.


http://www.mbcoupes.com/buyersguide/buyersguide.htm


To get in depth for this specific exact model, come on over to the W126 section, and register there and ask. I am a Moderator of that forum and will give you a welcome if you want one.

http://www.benzworld.org/forums/w126-s-se-sec-sel-sd/




You may find you wind up liking the car a lot more than you think. They are incredibly roomy, well built and reliable; There is one coupe with over 925,000 miles on it that was profiled in Autoweek, that has the same engine as yours.

It was last seen a few years ago at a car show in Cleveland. It had belonged to a shoe salesman in Nebraska or somewhere that could not take his sample shoes on the airplane so he bought it new.


Dark Green is an EXTREMELY rare color on these. Probably the interior is Palomino, or maybe black.


They are designed to be VERY easy for mechanics to work on, and independent shops love to work on them. You would be amazed at how quickly and easily you can do a brake job.


Also, parts are very easy to obtain for these, anything you need. Junkyards yield a mother lode of good parts for these cars, which were often sold to multimillionaires when new.


What is the VIN#? If you get it, then go and......

Run it on the free Russian Mercedes Benz VIN check site, and see what comes up in the way of equipment, options, and where it was delivered new
__________________
1991 560 SEC AMG, 199k <---- 300 hp 10:1 ECE euro HV ...

1995 E 420, 170k "The Red Plum" (sold)

2015 BMW 535i xdrive awd Stage 1 DINAN, 6k, <----364 hp

1967 Mercury Cougar, 49k

2013 Jaguar XF, 20k <----340 hp Supercharged, All Wheel Drive (sold)
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  #5  
Old 09-02-2008, 12:49 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 5
Thanks for the advice, I'm going to try to get her before someone else does! Hopefully I'm successful. The interior is "palomino" or light biege, as you describe it. The seats have one rip in each (front seats), but I've seen some repair articles around on this. Or, maybe I can find some replacements in a junkyard? It looks fairly clean for its use though, I'll have to get a closer look at it - look for rust, etc. But, for $900, can I really go wrong? Even dumping $2-3k into it is cheaper then my new car that's going back to the bank. All cars are money holes, this one would be a lot more fun to bring up to spec though.
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  #6  
Old 09-03-2008, 03:04 PM
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I got the VIN number, looks like the guy would've took less for it on ebay:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=290240833266

Looking at the VIN lookup, I found this interesting:

Paint 904 midnight (dark) blue (T) (с 01.01.1968) 34 Unknown code


Hmmm, interesting. So, what you y'all think? Repainted or faded? Look at the ebay pics. I guess I can't be picky for the price, but I can at least negotiate down since he was willing to take less on ebay.
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  #7  
Old 09-04-2008, 01:58 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Posts: 439
Best advice- Buy one- Spend your max and get one that is complete...Unless you like to gamble...the car is almost valueless....it is only worth something to its owner...I have had the 380 SE and 380 SEL loved it- but...you do not want to mess with any AC repairs...and then you have the transmission...just those 2 items will set you back- and I mean back...try to find a good 300 E they are relatively more reasonable if you look around and you could find a nice one for 1500 maybe..or a 190 preferably a 2.6 That big 380 will wear outs its welcome in the mileage and issues to you real fast....

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