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Old 01-25-2002, 11:46 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Seattle Area
Posts: 373
VIN help cont.

Some of you may remember that I had a question on what appeared to be a strange VIN on a '95 E420 I'm considering purchasing.

A call to MBUSA confirmed that is indeed a European Car. Strange, as I thought I heard the V8 W124's were built only for the American Market.

Searching the archives, most questions about grey market cars are about getting the car here and passing DOT and EPA regs, but with this car already here, what can I expect? I've never heard experiences on such a late model euro-car. Will its performance, handling be any different that a US model? It is new enough to have modern emissions controls right? (The car has been liscenced in FL for two years and was serviced at Coral Gables MB very thoroughly - new wiring harness and all! )

Any insight from others would be greatly appreciated. I'm planning on keeping this car for a long length of time, so the consideration of potentially lower re-sale doesn't bother me.

- Ryan
'95 E420 - 'Shadowfax' 138kmi.
'92 Volvo 740Turbo Bard 193kmi
'74 240D - 'Ol' Green' 4spd Manual 104kmi. (sold )
'77 300D - 'Red' 223kmi (sold)
'75 240D - 'Bianca the Blue Bomber' (sold)
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Old 01-25-2002, 02:08 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Canada
Posts: 298
The VIN of my 92 400E also shows it was made in Germany, but it doesn't necessarily mean it's a European standard car, mine is qualified for Canadian Standard.

I've seen quite a few 400Es and 500Es in Germany, even in China, in fact German need V8 powered cars more than us, I don't think V8 W124s were only made for North American Market.
99 BMW 540i 6-speed 110K Km
03 SAAB 9-5 wagon 80K Km
92 400E (Sold) 245K km
Still missing the days with the Benz, it kept me busy.
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Old 01-25-2002, 05:13 PM
sixto's Avatar
smoke gets in your eyes
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 20,123
Check the VIN with your DMV and insurance company. If it's one they recognize and can work with, no problem. If they don't know how to handle it, you could be in for a difficult time.

If the car will be subject to inspection in your area, see if the inspection system checks the VIN. It's a real headache in CA if the smog check machine doesn't accept the VIN.

91 300SE
81 300SD
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