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Old 03-22-2002, 03:43 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 234
Buying a Mercedes on E-Bay?

Has anyone had any experience or advice on buying a car through e-bay motors (on-line)...I'm seen a few cars that sound great...but I don't know...a 1983 mercedes for $4000 ..etc...I'm new at this and really want a 300D or SD...any thoughts...Thank you much....Linda
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Old 03-22-2002, 04:28 AM
Ashman's Avatar
Service Advisor
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Sherman Oaks, CA
Posts: 4,748
check the classifieds here of course...

Also doa search on ebay on this site for some experiences others have had...

'92 300CE - Sold
2004 C240 - C7 Wheels
2015 ML350 - P1, Pano, Ash poplar wood, Sport Dinamica interior, Running Boards Keyless go.
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Old 03-22-2002, 09:50 AM
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Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: CT, USA
Posts: 2,699
DEFINITELY have a pre-purchase inspection done by a reputable dealer. I almost purchased an E320 cabrio on ebay, but once Benzmac got his hands on the car he spotted many intentionally misrepresented or unmentioned flaws. The guy who ended up winning the auction had also had a pre-purchase inspection done, and it had checked out fine!!

So, the quality of the inspection is critical. Good luck
"If everything seems under control, you're simply not going fast enough" --Mario Andretti

1995 E500 street car
1986 Porsche 944 Turbo S track car
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Old 03-22-2002, 11:12 AM
Dan Rotigel
Posts: n/a
mercedes on ebay

Hi linda,

Although I've never purchased a car on ebay, I do shop for them there. For example, I watched a 2.3-16v auction, and saw that it did not meet the reserve. Since the car was not sold, I contacted the seller and arranged a place and time to inspect it. That way, no cash was exchanged untill I saw the car and was 100% sure I wanted it. If seeing the car is not an option, have a MB garage in the area check it out for you! I would also say that checking the classifieds here would be a good bet.

Dan Rotigel
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Old 03-22-2002, 03:24 PM
Posts: n/a
I did...

I bought a 88 400 SEL last year. But I never got to see it. It was in Cali, about a state away, and before I flew out to get it, I sold it to a friend who was looking for the exact car. It was a beauty, looked band new. Interior was in stellar condition. He drove it out of the parking lot (luckly before paying for it) and the timming chain broke. They fixed it. Two months latter he had to put in a new fuel injector (and decided to change all 8!). So it's hit or miss. I bought a BMW on e-bay once. Loved it. Still do.
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Old 03-22-2002, 03:56 PM
Posts: n/a
If you do buy one on e-Bay or any MB for that matter -- miles aren't that important. It's proper maintenance, maintenance and maintenance.

It's a must to have stamped books and records and in some cases you can call your local MB dealer, give them the VIN and find out what maintenance/repairs have been performed (but only MB dealers). Get a CARFAX report, but that isn't bullet proof, people can get around it.
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Old 03-22-2002, 04:23 PM
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smoke gets in your eyes
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 18,745
Ask the forum(s) if there's anyone who can check the car and the seller out for you. Look at the cars offered by Kruse. If I understand the fine print, you have some time after you win the bid to rescind without penalty.

91 300SE
81 300SD
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Old 03-22-2002, 06:40 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: MONTANA
Posts: 92
I have never purchased one through E-Bay, but did purchase my Benz via the internet ( Basically was a private party sort of deal, and with any private party some faith is required. I did my homework, faxed/mailed notarized documents, and used an online escrow company. I may have just been lucky but they dealings could not have been smoother. Inspections are key, and a notarized buy-sell agreement is good to have as well. The escrow company ( also provided a bit of a safety net as well. I had my car delivered to me over 1100 miles sight unseen but still felt safe. Good Luck...
1980 FERRARI 308 GTSi
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Old 03-22-2002, 08:15 PM
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All-seeing, all-knowing.
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 5,514
I browse eBay for cars and parts all the time. I have had great luck buying and selling parts on eBay, but I would be VERY hesitant to buy a car on eBay before seeing it, or at least having it checked out by a dealer or trusted 3rd party.

1979 300 SD
350,000 miles
1982 300D-gone---sold to a buddy
1985 300TD
270,000 miles
1994 E320
not my favorite, but the wife wanted it
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Old 03-22-2002, 09:25 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Knotts Island, NC
Posts: 382
you can do better


I agree with all that has been said and am almost certain that you can find a good vehicle, in your area, that you can inspect and drive.
It may take a while but the travel, an independent inspection, and transportation charges will equal out. You NEED to see what you are bidding on or planning to buy with ANY used vehicle.

Good Luck and best wishes in finding that 'happy drive',
the Bern
1982 240D 313,000 (4 speed)
1984 300CD 172,483
1985 German Shepherd Dog -Lacey- R.I.P.11/04/05

Hood Stars, Wrist Crowns and Obsession Dobs

Last edited by thebern; 03-22-2002 at 09:35 PM.
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Old 03-22-2002, 09:45 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Fredericksburg VA
Posts: 22
No Way eBay!!

1. I had very bad experience with an eBay purchase. In talking with mechanics and shop owners this has become very common. They all have a dozen recent horror stories for eBay purchases. This does not mean that can't get a decent car on eBay; some people here have reported an ok purchase, But I would Not Buy on eBay. I still like to look at the cars though. I certainly would not buy a car unless i could see it, touch it and have it inspected by a very good mechanic. I think there is a reason many of these cars are on eBay. Why couldn't they be sold locally??
2. Take a deep breath-- You seem to be in big rush !! The longer you have to look the more you will know and will have a much better chance of getting a fine car. Are you sure that you want a diesel?? Which model do you want??
3. Is this car going to be an everyday driver? Or a special roadtrip car or weekender?
4. Do you live in the rust and salt zone? This effects the car you buy and how you use it and how often you fix and replace it.
5. If You live in a major urban area and are going to use the MB daily then maybe a late model 190e 2.3 or 2.6 would be a real good choice. I had one, it was a good car just right for city driving it had low miles and was easy to get repaired.
6. Go to all the dealers drive everything. Take some time--a bad car can be very expensive!!
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Old 03-22-2002, 11:29 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: oregon
Posts: 194
buying a CAR

buying a car on ebay is exactly the same as buying a car out of your local paper!
you must go and inspect the car YOURSELF!
if you like the car,and it drives nice,
have a professional do a "pre purchase inspection"
if,after he/she tells you what needs to be fixed,IF the price is acceptable
BUY IT! or BID on it.
IT is that simple!
ebay is nothing more than another marketplace
act the same way you would if you were buying the car from your local classifieds.
never buy a car sight unseen unless you fully trust the seller!
and if it is a car with a lot of expensive parts,
It is well worth the $150-$300 !!!
'60 190b
'77 300D
'78 240D
'82 300TD
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Old 03-22-2002, 11:38 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Fredericksburg VA
Posts: 22
Hey Barndoor -how many of these eBay cars are near you??
How many of them are close to the purchaser/bidder??
You are going to hear more and more bad stories about Ebay.
Call your local MB Restorer - Tell him you are going to purchase an Ebay car! See what his customers have learned.
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Old 03-23-2002, 12:23 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: oregon
Posts: 194
if the car is not in your area,fly there and take care of business!
otherwise go buy a new saturn!
what else can I say?
you want an older specialty car?
do research ( this site is PERFECT for this research)
buying a car off ebay blindly is the SAME as buying off the local car lot or private partly blindly
service records are critical with used Mercedes Benz Autos.
anyone buying a used Mercedes Benz needs to do their research or hope to get LUCKY!
'60 190b
'77 300D
'78 240D
'82 300TD
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Old 03-23-2002, 12:53 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Fredericksburg VA
Posts: 22
Hi Ya Barndoor Which one of the MB you list did you buy on eBay? I would agree with your assessment of online sales until very recently. The sheer number of different bad eBay stories from restorers,shop owners, parts people and techs is truely surprising. Check for yourself!! Time Will Tell - I'm begining to think that a very large percentage of the MB on eBay are parts cars. I've been looking at sl's lately 230-280 there are 8 right now on eBay Which one ISN'T the parts car?? Actually there are 2 that look nice, which one won't cost $20,000 in the next 2 years to bring it up to a quality driver??

Last edited by bobs2002; 03-23-2002 at 01:03 AM.
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