Parts Catalog Accessories Catalog How To Articles Tech Forums
Call Pelican Parts at 888-280-7799
Shopping Cart Cart | Project List | Order Status | Help



Go Back   PeachParts Mercedes-Benz Forum > Mercedes-Benz Tech Information and Support > Tech Help

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 02-02-2011, 11:45 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Boston, MA
Posts: 108
Ownership Experience 1994 E320 Wagon

I thought I would share for the benefit of others contemplating a similar purchase. I bought this car 6.5 years ago for $13.6k and put 82,000 miles on it. I lost $1938 per year in depreciation and spent $3289 per year in repairs, which adds up to $435 per month. Just about every common problem of this vehicle became my problem at some point - head gasket, wiring harness, transmission, throttle actuator, computer, timing chain cover seal, nitrogen accumulators, belt and belt tensioner (twice). The only one I missed was the evaporator on the A/C, perhaps because the condenser decided to leak instead.

It was a great car to drive but 26 trips to the repair shop (some planned for service or tires, most not) means it was not the most reliable vehicle on the planet. It is probably best as a hobby car, but since it was my wife's daily commuter I rarely had time or the risk tolerance to do any of my own work except simple stuff like brakes, radiator and oil changes. My next car will be a BMW - I have owned Mercedes and Audi and want to complete the trilogy before I end up in the poor house.

Thanks for the memories.
-ChipJ

__________________
Chip Johnson
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 02-03-2011, 10:19 AM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Baton Rouge La
Posts: 2,630
That's some bad luck.

It seems like the car still would have value--- where did it go?
__________________
1989 300ce 129k
( facelifted front,updated tail lights, lowered suspension,bilstein sports, lorinser front spoiler, MOMO steering wheel, remus exhaust,stainless steel brake lines). (Gone)

1997 s320 154k (what a ride). Sold with 179k miles. Replaced with Hyundai Equus

1994 e320 Cabriolet 108k



1972 280se 4.5 153k Owned for 12 yrs, sorry I sold it


[/SIGPIC]
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 02-03-2011, 10:50 AM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Durham, NC
Posts: 158
I did the same thing with my 1995 C280

I also kept meticulous records of repairs, maintenance & depreciation on my 1995 C280 which I purchased when it was 2 years old with just short of 10,000 miles on it. You didn't mention the interest cost of money that you had tied up in it, but you have to factor that cost in also. I owned my C280 for 11 years, 5 months and put about 120,000 miles on the vehicle. Total ownership cost came to $310.70/month. At the end, I was driving an old 14 year old car. Now I know what driving an old car costs, I just apply those dollars to a lease, and get new every 3 years and enjoy the experience without all the hassle of car repairs.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 02-03-2011, 10:51 AM
thayer's Avatar
Mercerator
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Mt. Airy, NC
Posts: 891
So I should sell my 95 wagon before anything else goes wrong?
__________________

77' 300D, "Cartman" SOLD @ 150K (didn't know what I had)
83' 300SD, "The Superdon" 325k+ @ 28mpg
95 E320 wagon, "Millennium Falcon" 231k+ @ 24 Mpg
95 E300D, "Sherley" 308k @ 33.69 Mpg, currently anticipating a head
99 Suzuki Intruder "Trudy" @ 45 mpg
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 02-03-2011, 05:05 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Plano, TX
Posts: 2,527
Wow. Those are disappointing numbers for a 124. I'm guessing you traded it in, given the depreciation numbers.

I have a 1993 300E sedan that I purchased in March 2003 for $12,000. So I'm at about $1375/year in depreciation; perhaps a bit less if I were to sell it myself.

My repair experience has been a whole lot better as well. It has been in the shop 3 times for repairs, totaling about $4600. Two sets of tires as well, totaling about $1000 (I buy good tires). Other repairs I've done myself - front brakes, tune ups & oil change, rear shocks, new battery, replacing the dead Becker radio, etc. I don't have a full list handy, but very much doubt the total parts cost would double the $4500 figure. So I'm looking at <$9K over 10 years, about $1125/year.

So I'm looking at about $2500/year in depreciation/maintenance/repair over 8 years. Doesn't seem too bad for a fairly nice car. Wife still drives it daily and doesn't want to give it up anytime soon.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 02-03-2011, 05:35 PM
babymog's Avatar
Loose Cannon - No Balls
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Northeast Indiana
Posts: 10,767
Those are sad numbers, and I would like to have been the guy that paid you $1000 for it, certainly worth more than that unless it was totalled.

Buying a 10year old Mercedes is never going to be a cheap undertaking, ... it's still worth enough and has depreciation left, but it is already 10years old, you're probably the 3rd owner, average would be around 150,000 miles on the car, it's just hitting the first expensive round of maintenance.

I sold my '91 4matic when it was starting to become "the problematic" at 119,000 miles, and for $21,000 I felt sorry for the buyer because I knew that it was going to cost him more over the next few years in maintenance.

I did a few spreadsheets when I bought my first new car, looking at what the cost of ownership, residuals, etc. of buying a 3year/old car vs a new car were, the new car came out much cheaper based on 3years of ownership (back when German cars all had high resale values).

Now that those '90s cars are so inexpensive, it's mostly just maintenance, and any car nearing 20years and 240,000miles to 300,000 miles (the average for 10 years) will be a DIY car or too expensive to consider as a daily driver.
__________________

Gone to the dark side

- Jeff
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 02-03-2011, 06:03 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Baton Rouge La
Posts: 2,630
well maybe our experiences have been different...the best example i can give you is a 1989 300e that we bought for 3200 with 147k on it..

sold it six years later with 217 on it for 1200..and pulled off our good rubber and nice updated wheels.

so that's 2,000 in depreciation over 6 years..... i would have to pull records, but excluding tires, i bet we averaged 300 dollars a year in parts. The biggest ticket item was a water pump.

i have a couple of other examples that aren't far off that mark...but that was the best.

oh... and we replaced the 300e with a 1992 190e with 71k one owner miles.... cost: 2,000. put an o2 sensor, plugs and motor mounts in it.... 200 dollars... so my base now is 2200 on that car.

the entire key is to do the work yourself.... of course we didn't have tranny or a/c issues.
__________________
1989 300ce 129k
( facelifted front,updated tail lights, lowered suspension,bilstein sports, lorinser front spoiler, MOMO steering wheel, remus exhaust,stainless steel brake lines). (Gone)

1997 s320 154k (what a ride). Sold with 179k miles. Replaced with Hyundai Equus

1994 e320 Cabriolet 108k



1972 280se 4.5 153k Owned for 12 yrs, sorry I sold it


[/SIGPIC]
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 02-03-2011, 07:00 PM
Aquaticedge's Avatar
Bump on a log
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: See Biography
Posts: 3,148
i've had my 94/5 Wagon for a couple weeks, and did the head gasket. I need to chase down a idle Gremlin but everything seems great at 181000 miles
__________________
hum.....
1987 300TD 311,000M Stolen. Presumed destroyed
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 02-03-2011, 11:34 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: LaPorte, IN
Posts: 400
Quote:
Originally Posted by thayer View Post
So I should sell my 95 wagon before anything else goes wrong?
Just thinking out loud...You might be money ahead if you paid me to come and pick it up.

Willing to take one for the team....
__________________
Earl McLain
'02 C230 Kompressor
'89 560 SEL "Frau BlueCar" (retired April 2004)
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 02-04-2011, 09:13 AM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Southeastern PA
Posts: 3,018
Chip, owning a 10-year old MB automobile makes sense for DIY'ers. Otherwise, it gets prohibitively expensive paying an indie or a MB dealer to perform the required maintenance. It's best to have a PPI (pre-purchase inspection) done by a MB-trained tech before buying any pre-owned MB automobile so you're aware of any pending expensive repairs.

Four years ago I purchased a 1995 E320 with 130,000 miles for $4,000 after having a PPI done. Now this fine car has 177,000 miles and has been virtually trouble-free. I have replaced the front struts, one coil pack and a leaky rubber fuel hose aside from routine maintenance items such as rotors, brake pads, filters and tires.

Good luck with the BMW purchase. My son owns a 2005 745i and has had numerous problems with it. Fortunately he bought an extended warranty, but he is seriously considering selling the car before the warranty expires. The car only has 85,000 miles on it ... so much for the quality and durability of BMW automobiles.
__________________
Fred Hoelzle
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 02-04-2011, 01:34 PM
Hatterasguy's Avatar
Zero
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Milford, CT
Posts: 19,306
That's my experience with owning old MB's you just have to love them.

$435 a month would have leased you a C class or 3 series and you could have driven a new car with a full warranty and maintenance included, plus gotten a new one every 24-36 months.
__________________
2017 Chevy Silverado 1500 LTZ
2007 Tiara 3200

"No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms. The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government."
-Thomas Jefferson
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 02-04-2011, 01:39 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Baton Rouge La
Posts: 2,630
What does it cost to carry collision and comprehensive on a new MB?

I have always just carried liability on ours.... I think that plays into the equation as well.... and in some states.... you pay an annual tax based on the cars value....in South Carolina that could run upwards of 1k on a new car.... my old MB. 29 dollars
__________________
1989 300ce 129k
( facelifted front,updated tail lights, lowered suspension,bilstein sports, lorinser front spoiler, MOMO steering wheel, remus exhaust,stainless steel brake lines). (Gone)

1997 s320 154k (what a ride). Sold with 179k miles. Replaced with Hyundai Equus

1994 e320 Cabriolet 108k



1972 280se 4.5 153k Owned for 12 yrs, sorry I sold it


[/SIGPIC]
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 02-04-2011, 05:20 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Plano, TX
Posts: 2,527
Quote:
Originally Posted by lee polowczuk View Post
What does it cost to carry collision and comprehensive on a new MB?
There's no one answer to that question; rates vary so much by state, city, personal history, etc. That said, in my experience MBs are very reasonable to insure. MB drivers are typically responsible and don't crack up their cars. And theft losses are low; it's difficult to steal them and besides - who wants to.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 02-04-2011, 05:23 PM
TheDon's Avatar
Open Discussion Moderator
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 13,212
I'm doing good with my cabriolet so far. I've put maybe $700 in it since it fell into my hands in'09. Next major service will be the top hydraulics (looking at $400 to have all 8 rebuilt, and maybe $50 for hydraulic fluid). I will need new tires probably this time next year and rear brake discs for the fun of it.

If I had extra money I'd go over the front end, new shocks and lowering springs all around too.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 02-04-2011, 05:29 PM
Fulcrum525's Avatar
Sing Blue Silver
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: CT
Posts: 2,091
How many miles were on the car when you bought it?



Thus far i've been pretty lucky and only put about $1,000-$1,200 into my car a year.

__________________
1982 300GD Carmine Red (DB3535) Cabriolet FOR SALE
1990 300SEL Smoke Silver (Parting out)
1991 350SDL Blackberry Metallic (481)

"The thing is Bob, its not that I'm lazy...its that I just don't care."
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On




All times are GMT -4. The time now is 12:36 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
Copyright 2018 Pelican Parts, LLC - Posts may be archived for display on the Peach Parts or Pelican Parts Website -    DMCA Registered Agent Contact Page