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  #1  
Old 03-17-2002, 02:36 AM
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210 as solid as 124?

ive been hearing that the 124 is one of the last of the engineered to death benzes and everything after 95 has gone downhill. Im just curious is the 210 e class just as solid? Every car magazine always list builld quality as one of the 210s strengths.
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  #2  
Old 03-17-2002, 01:56 PM
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You may also inlcude the W140 as the epitome of MB engineering to a ridiculous degree, where it seems cost really was no object.

Well, I have a W124, and it feels as solid as a rock.

My mother has a 2000 E430, and it, too, feels just as solid.

Everyone seems to know that MB took a lot of cost out of their cars in the W210 model. Before, cost was of no concern to MB, but with the likes of Lexus and Acura nipping at their heels, I guess they started to worry about the cost difference between their cars and the Japanese, probably rightly so. It may be argued that a Lexus is simply a Camry in disguise, but consumers sure seem to have bought into the concept that Lexus is a luxury car on par with MB's.

I do feel that the dash materials in the W210 doesn't have the quality feel that my W124 has, but as far as the structure, I find it hard to notice a compromise in quality.

Just my .02 cents.
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  #3  
Old 03-17-2002, 05:01 PM
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I own both a 124 & a 210, and previously had a 123. I very strongly disagree that quality was taken out of the 210. It is very solid and well built. What is different is that the 210 was designed to be easier to build, hence lower cost. This does not imply lower quality, simply more intelligent design.

As for removing cost, this started on the 124, relative to the 123. Let me give a few examples. The 124 has a strut type front suspension, where the shock absorber also serves to locate the top of the steering knuckle. This is just like every cheap Japanese car on the road. The 123 used a more complex and more expensive upper/lower control arm setup.
The 123 brake system used dual piston calipers on all four wheels. The 124 - at least the pedestrain versions - use single piston sliding calipers on the front, just like every American car out there.

As for 210 vs. 124, there are cases where cost was added back into the car. For example, the 210 went back to an upper/lower control arm front suspension. The 210 uses cloth covered trim on the A,B, & C pillars inside the cabin, where the 124 had just plastic. So it goes both ways.
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  #4  
Old 03-17-2002, 06:07 PM
Lucky
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Can someone confirm this rumour? The W124 has 7 coats of paint while the W210 only has 5.
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  #5  
Old 03-17-2002, 06:16 PM
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Cannot confirm the rumor but I tend to believe it.

Remember the W210 has a TSB about premature corrosion on the trunk lid? It was due to a painting problem.

I have both W124 and W210. I like the solidness of the W124 and the quality interior materials. But the W210 is quieter and roomer in the cabin (W124 has a deeper trunk).
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  #6  
Old 03-17-2002, 08:59 PM
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In an ideal world and if we know nothing about the W124 and W210 5 and 10 years after they are new, I would say it is a toss up. I am still not quite used to the round eyes of the W210. I prefer the look of the W124. Slender like a big cat. The W210 is fat like a pig.


But the W124 has proven to be a long performer since 1986 and the W210 has not yet . So based on that, I would say W124. BTW, the dash on my W210 has several cracks on the stresss points. I do not know why MB puts the cheapo vinyl on it.
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  #7  
Old 03-18-2002, 08:23 AM
LarryBible
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I have owned both at one time or another. I prefer the 210.

I have heard this "they don't build this model as good as they built the last model" BS since the 123 came out. I heard a number of people say that the 123 was not near the car that the 114 was. They said that Benz was just cutting corners and going down the tube. I had two 114's and they don't hold a candle to a 123. I heard this again when the 124 came out, about how it was nothing compared to a 123, and so on, and so on..........

This is just old wives tale stuff. The cars benefit from newer technology with every design and they all have an achilles heel of some kind.

I certainly wouldn't condemn a particular model based on the console latch material.

If I were buying a new 124 or 210 at the same price, I'd take the 210 any day.

Have a great day,
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  #8  
Old 03-18-2002, 09:50 AM
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Corrosion on a 1997 E420 Sport...

I drove 2 hours to test drive a 1997 E420 Sport (Sportline suspension, 17" AMGs). The car hard corrosion around the "lighted sensor" next to the trunk keyhole, and the special contour seat had functions that didn't work, and the auto adjusting rear view mirror did nothing but vibrate and shake. A total dissapointment, and I was convinced that I wanted to buy that car. Fortunately there was a 1998 BMW 540i Sport parked right next to it. I pick it up this weekend. There was no comparison driving them back to back. I had such high hopes for the W210, I would pick a low miles W124 over it any day.
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  #9  
Old 03-18-2002, 10:51 AM
Lucky
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loubapache:

Do you have any further info on the TSB? I have the same problem you desribed but MB refused to repaint it under warranty. Now, the metal is rotting away.

The W210 has more room inside and more room in the trunk than the W124. It's very quiet and the controls are light. The W124 is far more solid and yes, I will take the W124 over W210 any time. My name is Lucky and I am a previous W124 owner.
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  #10  
Old 03-18-2002, 10:56 AM
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To Lucky

<<
Do you have any further info on the TSB? I have the same problem you desribed but MB refused to repaint it under warranty. Now, the metal is rotting away.
>>
DDAF88 50 U 200AUG 99 Corrosion at trunk lid in area of lock cylinder
DDAF98 10 U 200AUG 99 Paint damage to trunk lid in area of grip
DDAF88 50 U 201JAN 99 Corrosion in rear hinge recesses

What really gets me is that MBUSA and its dealers pretend that they know NOTHING about the problems even though the TSBs are there. What a service! Shame!

<<
The W210 has more room inside and more room in the trunk than the W124.
>>
Measure the depth of the trunk (in the direction along the length of the car) for the W124 and then W210. You will be surprised how much deeper the W124 truck is.
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  #11  
Old 03-18-2002, 11:08 AM
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I'd take the 210 any day. I find the size of the 124 to be just a bit tight, while the 210 is exactly right. The 210 has better seats, creaking seat frames notwithstanding. (The seats in the 124 are a bit small - too short on the bottom cushion, too short a backrest - and I'm only 6'0") The 210 has an air conditioner which stands up to Texas heat, the 124 does not. My 210 diesel is much faster, quieter, and delivers better fuel milage than my 124 diesel. In a crash, I'd rather be in a 210 any day.

Are there advantages of the 124 over the 210? Sure. The paint on early 124s is better - they have that nasty solvent based stuff as compared to the water based paint used as of 94/95. The earlier paint is more durable - but this problem affected the late 124 models as well. The 124 has an oil pressure guage. The early 124s were simpler than the 210, which is an advantage if you plan to drive it forever - but I don't plan to keep my cars that long. Frankly, I'm having trouble coming up with other areas in which the 124 is a better car than the 210.
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  #12  
Old 03-18-2002, 02:31 PM
DTF
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My W124 is a stationwagon and my W210 is a E300 Turbodiesel so I can't make any claims about which one I like better. They are very different cars - one thing is for sure MB are the king of station wagons. Nothing comes close.
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  #13  
Old 03-18-2002, 04:20 PM
Lucky
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loubapache:

Thanks for the info.

You are correct about the length of the W124 trunk but I can assure you the width of W210 trunk is greater than the W124. Now, I can fit two 29" Samsonites, side by side, into the W210 which I couldn't do with the W124.
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  #14  
Old 03-18-2002, 05:10 PM
steve hutson
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I now have an 87300tdt and a 99E300 turbodiesel , and I agree with DTF that they are such completely different cars that it is hard to make valid comparisons. Without a doubt, the 124 drives ,sounds, feels,looks like a more solid car. On the other hand, the 210 is much easier to drive in town due to the much lighter feel to everything. The accelleration in the 99 car is incredible--the engine has no shortcomings whatsoever. I don't like the bulbous body styling of the 210. To me, it makes the car wider for no reason, as if someone overfilled a baloon.
As to the choice of which car to buy if available new, no doubt---
the 87 wagon wins hands down. It is just a masterpiece of engineering and manufacturing.
The truth is I probably won't miss the 210 when it is gone .It just seems that too many marketing considerations were made in building the car. I agree with the comments regarding cheap plasticky interior components, creaky seat frames, lesser paint quality. As far as roominess of the trunk goes, the smaller decklid
in the newer car makes the trunk less usefull.
Steve
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  #15  
Old 03-18-2002, 05:19 PM
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Steve:

You nailed it!

I also have a 87 300TDT and a 97 E320. I got the 300TDT after I got the E320. Now the E320 is in storage and the 300TDT is being enjoyed. It shows so much character, quality, and rigidity.

I summarizes the handing of the W124 and W210 as follows:

(It is not an equal statement but more of a trend statement and I have driven both other vehicals mentioned).

The W124 is more BMW-like. Good handling.

The W210 is more Cadillac like. Good comfort.

Some people buy their new W210s and then replace all the brand new shocks.
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