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  #1  
Old 05-29-2013, 10:43 AM
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Looking at a 95 w124 wagon

Hi everyone,

I am going to look at a 95 w124 wagon tomorrow. Couple of concerns, any info would be greatly appreciated. I currently own one of these and know them well but there are a few questions. First some background: 3rd owner, sounds like a kid. Owned it for 1 and a half years and has done nothing other then cut the springs and lower it, (Arghh!!!) and put wheels on that are too big so they rub. Runs rough, especially in rain. Busted front bumper cover and banged up fender. Winter model with traction assist. 160,000 miles on it. Wants $1200 but is flexible on price.

-If the engine is dry and I don't see oil in the coolant would it be safe to assume the head gasket has been done? He says there are no leaks and coolant is clean. I am assuming it has already been done.

-Is there a certain place that I can check to see if the wiring harness is falling apart, or if it's been replaced?

-I will test reverse up a hill backwards to check tranny. Any other recommendations?

-Because he cut the springs, is this car screwed? How do I know if SLS still works? Is replacing springs expensive?

-I can shut off traction assist correct? I own a hot weather package so I have no idea what the cold weather one is like.

-I assume rough running is due to bad coils/plugs/wires.

Any other input would be greatly appreciated!!!!

Thanks Scott

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Old 05-29-2013, 11:01 AM
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1. I would either assume that it has been done or that it was one of the few that were "okay" to not have it done. I'm unaware if mine has had it done or not and I have 156k on it.

2. Check the wiring harness behind the battery. Should have a silver label with two dates on it if it has been replaced. The more recent one is the year that the harness was manufactured. If no label then it's original.

3. Not sure.

4. I would get new springs (obviously) and new rear accumulators. SLS should be fine otherwise.

5. It will have heated seats and ASR. ASR can only be shut off for a little while at a time. Mine has it too and I never really bother with it, though there is some way to shut it off completely with a little work.

6. NO. I would assume that running rough might be throttle body related. It's wiring harness will corrode too and the unit will need to be replaced. Used ones are around $300 with good harnesses. You would have to cut open the insulation to see in, but this would be my first guess to rough running on an ASR car.

Check ball joints and lower control arms too. Remember these cars have the "solid" ball joint, and the LCA's are around $170 a piece.

What's that saying about a cheap Mercedes?
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  #3  
Old 05-29-2013, 11:27 AM
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Scott, will this be a Rust Belt car?
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  #4  
Old 05-29-2013, 06:30 PM
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The cut springs are of no problem. If its too low for you, then get new springs, but the fact that they were cut isn't a problem. I cut mine, although I did it to get it a little lower, but not to "slam" it.

They are not progressive springs like later models, so there is no issue with safety or ride quality (unless they are heavily rusted).
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  #5  
Old 05-29-2013, 09:09 PM
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Originally Posted by uberwgn View Post
Scott, will this be a Rust Belt car?
Why yes it is, except my experience is these don't rust. I have had mine for ten years and the only rust on it is on the fender that was replaced 7 years ago when I had an accident.
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  #6  
Old 05-29-2013, 09:16 PM
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Originally Posted by colincoon View Post
1. I would either assume that it has been done or that it was one of the few that were "okay" to not have it done. I'm unaware if mine has had it done or not and I have 156k on it.

2. Check the wiring harness behind the battery. Should have a silver label with two dates on it if it has been replaced. The more recent one is the year that the harness was manufactured. If no label then it's original.

3. Not sure.

4. I would get new springs (obviously) and new rear accumulators. SLS should be fine otherwise.

5. It will have heated seats and ASR. ASR can only be shut off for a little while at a time. Mine has it too and I never really bother with it, though there is some way to shut it off completely with a little work.

6. NO. I would assume that running rough might be throttle body related. It's wiring harness will corrode too and the unit will need to be replaced. Used ones are around $300 with good harnesses. You would have to cut open the insulation to see in, but this would be my first guess to rough running on an ASR car.

Check ball joints and lower control arms too. Remember these cars have the "solid" ball joint, and the LCA's are around $170 a piece.

What's that saying about a cheap Mercedes?
Excellent info colinccon, thank you! I did not realize the throttle body could be an issue. It wasn't ever with mine. I assume you are saying there is something different about the ASR model? For mine it was just a matter of replacing the coils and it ran like new.

Are you unhappy with the performance of your car with the ASR? He also mentioned something about a switch that is for if you put tire chains on. Apparently it doesn't allow your wheels to spin as easily.

Stupid question, but how do I check the ball joints? I have never had an issue with mine so I am unfamiliar with them. Grab the wheel and shake?

Thanks again.
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  #7  
Old 05-29-2013, 09:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ps2cho View Post
The cut springs are of no problem. If its too low for you, then get new springs, but the fact that they were cut isn't a problem. I cut mine, although I did it to get it a little lower, but not to "slam" it.

They are not progressive springs like later models, so there is no issue with safety or ride quality (unless they are heavily rusted).
Thanks! He put something like 15" or 16" wheels on it so they rub. Thats the problem. Maybe I can go back to stock wheels and leave it.

By the way, your wagon looks sharp.
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  #8  
Old 05-29-2013, 09:29 PM
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Originally Posted by skinnison View Post
Excellent info colinccon, thank you! I did not realize the throttle body could be an issue. It wasn't ever with mine. I assume you are saying there is something different about the ASR model? For mine it was just a matter of replacing the coils and it ran like new.

Are you unhappy with the performance of your car with the ASR? He also mentioned something about a switch that is for if you put tire chains on. Apparently it doesn't allow your wheels to spin as easily.

Stupid question, but how do I check the ball joints? I have never had an issue with mine so I am unfamiliar with them. Grab the wheel and shake?

Thanks again.
It was with mine, that's for sure. I believe all E320's have an electronic throttle actuator (ETA), not just ASR. Though the ASR and non-ASR ETA's are different.

I don't really notice a difference honestly. It did help me a lot in the snow when I was in Pennsylvania for the winter, but now that I'm in Florida it never kicks on. There is a tire chain switch that lets you turn it off for a short while like I mentioned above. Enabling the switch allows your wheels to spin.

You should be able to see them by turning the wheel full-lock in each direction. Check that the boots are in good shape. Listen for pops while turning/going over bumps/etc.
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  #9  
Old 05-29-2013, 09:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skinnison View Post
Thanks! He put something like 15" or 16" wheels on it so they rub. Thats the problem. Maybe I can go back to stock wheels and leave it.

By the way, your wagon looks sharp.
I have 16"...they are probably the wrong offset or too big tires since 16's should fit no problem. I am 16x8 ET34 225/50/16 and there is no rubbing.
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  #10  
Old 05-30-2013, 07:20 AM
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Originally Posted by skinnison View Post
Why yes it is, except my experience is these don't rust. I have had mine for ten years and the only rust on it is on the fender that was replaced 7 years ago when I had an accident.
OK, that's good to hear. I've seen many a rusted predecessor in this corner of the country


I couldn't help notice this clean '95 wagon in the south:

1995 Mercedes Benz E320 Wagon - MBWorld.org Forums

Don't know if it's still for sale, but it sounds like it would require 1/10 of the work the local car is going to.

Good luck with it!
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  #11  
Old 05-30-2013, 07:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uberwgn View Post
OK, that's good to hear. I've seen many a rusted predecessor in this corner of the country


I couldn't help notice this clean '95 wagon in the south:

1995 Mercedes Benz E320 Wagon - MBWorld.org Forums

Don't know if it's still for sale, but it sounds like it would require 1/10 of the work the local car is going to.

Good luck with it!
Not bad looking....
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  #12  
Old 05-30-2013, 08:40 AM
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Yeah, nothing more than a cheap plane ticket away
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  #13  
Old 05-30-2013, 11:20 AM
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Transmission fluid. Check it warm and wipe with a cloth that allows you to check color. The farther away you are from red the older it is. And smell it. It should smell 'sweet', not burnt.

Also tran-related, if you have a chance to start it cold, see how it goes into reverse. Looking and listening for a nice smooth transition into gear, not a clunk, and not more than a few seconds searching. And then from R to D.

Auxiliary fans are a bugger too. With the A/C on both of them should be working.

Go for it. With than kind of mileage it's hardly broken in.
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  #14  
Old 06-02-2013, 02:51 PM
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I checked out the wagon. Ugh...... to say I was disappointed is an understatement. There wasn't a panel without dents and/or rust. This kid had been driving it lowered for a year and a half. All of the paint had rubbed off the fenders and they were completely rusted. Oil pouring out the side of the block near the waterpump. Missing interior trim. The thing is parts car. Sad.
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  #15  
Old 06-02-2013, 02:52 PM
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On a side note, here is beauty:

Mercedes-Benz : E-Class E320 | eBay

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