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  #1  
Old 11-27-2002, 12:05 AM
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Exclamation Euro light differences, 500E vs 300E.

I had factory MB/Hella 300E Euro lights on my 87, MB star logo on all the parts as well as the Hella markings. After they were vandalized, I chose to replace them with new Hella 500E lights. Aside from the obvious difference of the chrome surround and the driving light instead of a fog light, I noticed some interesting differences.

1. All the numbers on the 500 light access plates and light body matched the numbers on the MB300E lights, but wherever there was a MB star on the 300E lights, there was a melted circular blob on the 500E lights. Obviously the MB was cast in, then removed when Hella sold them commercially.

2. Internal parts (such as the vacuum adjuster black 'tuna can') which had Hella and MB marks on the 300E, were a different supplier and had no MB markings.

3. The Headlight reflector in each had identical Hella numbers.

4. The fog light reflectors had different numbers and seemed to be a different shape than the driving light reflector on the 500E lights. These were the only Hella numbers on the lights that were not a perfect match to each other! So maybe the lens AND the reflector may be different between the two??? (

5. The lenses on the 500E lights were positioned about 1/8" - 1/4" lower on the light than the 300E light lenses. It looks as if there is considerable wiggle room when the glass is glued to the removable frame - I don't know if the lenses being slightly lower is intentional or just manufacturing variance.

6. The ___/ ___/ cutoff pattern on the 1987 300E factory lights is much more defined and sharp than on the new 500E lights, regardless of which H4 bulbs were installed (standard H4, Phillips +30, or Phillips Vision +50).

7. The near edge of the high beam pattern is much more scalloped and ragged on the 500E lights than on the old MB lights.

8. The driving lights are amazing: I have not re-arranged the pins from the old lights, so the city light is still inactive, and the driving light is controlled by the fog light switch, giving me 3 lighting levels from which to choose.

9. The Phillips Vision Plus 50s are really great. Installing a standard H4 that came with the 500E lights (marked 'Germany H4) in one light, and the +50 in the other, the entire headlight pattern was much brighter and more white for the +50. Also, the center and bottom of the beam pattern on the +50 was especially brighter than the standard H4 lights.

All told, the lights look very nice on the car, and still have a phenomenal improvement in lighting over US DOT lights. However, in comparison to the old factory Hella/MB units from the late 80s, it seems that there is a slight decrease in quality of beam pattern over the 15year old design.

I will post pics after I finish everything.
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  #2  
Old 11-27-2002, 12:47 AM
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Cool!
Thanks for the part by part comparison, John. It sounds like the only difference is the lens...and of course the driving/fog light reflectors. Good to know!

Btw, where can I find/buy those Phillips +50 bulbs? I need some new bulbs for the 190E, what's the wattage? I don't really want to rewire or add relays if possible...

Thanks!
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Old 11-27-2002, 01:15 AM
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I got the Phillips Vision Plus +50 bulbs from www.powerbulbs.com in the UK. They are 55/60w H4 bulbs, with the +50 coming from a slightly repositioned filament and a trace of Xenon quenching/cooling agent added. Really about the best bang for the buck if you aren't doing the relay/10 qauge wire route. But it isn't really clear if the +50 means 50 more lumens, 50% more light, or 'required for those +50'! :p
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  #4  
Old 11-27-2002, 07:57 AM
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John,

an interesting one to one comparison.

As far as I know, the differences between 300E lights and 500E lights are :
1. the lenses and
2. the fog / highbeam reflector.
All other parts are identical.

In Germany Hella does NOT sale any 500E lenses or complete light units to the public, you have to order them at the dealer. Hella produces these lights only for Mercedes!

If you got lenses from Hella with the meltet blob, that might be grey market units or second choice. If your lenses look curious and the light pattern is not as sharp as it shoud be, give them back!

There should be no drop in quality if you buy Mercedes lights / lenses.

Last year I replaced my 12 years old 300TE lenses with used but nearly new 500E lenses - and the result is amazing. While the old ones where sand blasted over the years, the nearly new ones are great. I replaced the main reflectors as well and put new H4 55W/60W +30% bulbs into it.
Also the additional high beam is unbelievable :-)

BTW: The Hella lenses will fit on a Bosch body without problems, that's how I did it.

bis denn,
Christian

1989 300TE
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  #5  
Old 11-27-2002, 08:35 AM
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Thanks John. I visited their website, they show a picture of a package with two bulbs for about $30 USD...is that right? Or is it per bulb?
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  #6  
Old 11-27-2002, 10:58 AM
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glen

on the philips vision plus, the price is per pair. they are standard 55/60 watt. a very nice bulb.

john

can't you give us a detailed description?! lol.
i will check mine for the "melted blobs".
hook up your city lights, it's a neat look.

post a few pix.

peter
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  #7  
Old 11-27-2002, 11:36 AM
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Thanks Peter!
I'll be ordering some very soon
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  #8  
Old 11-28-2002, 12:33 PM
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John,

Would you mind posting the part numbers for the left and right driving lamp reflectors?

Thanks!
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  #9  
Old 11-28-2002, 10:56 PM
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Sorry for the delay in getting the part numbers posted - I already had the lights installed, which meant the labels were remote and upside down! The 500E pencil beam driving light reflectors have the same numbers for both the passenger and drivers side side:

Hella 138 361-00 H3
04HR 04HR
17.5E 17.5E
34531 28 30
34532 29 31

The old 300E fog reflectors were different for each side:

Drivers side (US)

129 975 00
12 34 531 R19

Passenger side

129 976 00
02 34 531 R19
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  #10  
Old 11-28-2002, 11:31 PM
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Many thanks!

Now, off to hunting them down...
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  #11  
Old 01-23-2003, 01:53 AM
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500E headlights

I have not participated on this forum previously, however your thread regarding 500E headlights has got me interested. For some time now I have considered the possibility of fitting 500E lenses to my 300TE and rewiring the fogs to work as additional driving lights (high/main beams).

My hesitation in doing so was firstly the availability of right hand drive versions of the 500E lenses (to suit Australia) although there are 500Es on the road in the UK suggesting they are available. Checking with my local MB parts man confirmed they are available in RHD. My next question was that the 500E lenses are Hella whereas my 300TE has Bosch lamps raising the question of compatibility. The final issue is that of the reflector in the 300E fog and 500E driving light section of the lamps.

Can anybody tell me if right hand drive 500E Hella lenses will fit Bosch lamp housings and do they work without replacing the fog light reflector?

I would like to do this modification but do not want to go to the expense if they are not compatible.

Thanks
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  #12  
Old 01-23-2003, 02:15 AM
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When I looked at my Hella 300E and 500E lights, it seemed that the 300E fog reflector was slightly different in shape than the 500E driving light reflector. The Hella part numbers were different on each of the 2 reflectors as well. I don't know if Hella 500E driving reflectors would fit in a Bosch light, or if the lenses attach in the same manner. My replacement 500E reflector from Mercedes was a Hella unit, so the question arises as to whether Bosch made 500E lights, or accept any of the Hella parts.
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  #13  
Old 01-23-2003, 02:25 AM
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Thanks for the fast reply. Chris Martens mentions in his reply that the Hella lenses do fit the Bosch housings. I guess the only question remaining regards the fog/driving reflector differences.
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  #14  
Old 01-23-2003, 06:13 AM
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The lenses will fit but you would have to replace the reflectors. Otherwise, when you wire it for an E500/500E application, you'll have a really bright fog light pattern on.

Ask me how I know....
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  #15  
Old 01-23-2003, 10:38 AM
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Anyone have the wiring ID for the 500e/e500 euro (6-pin?) plug?

ie
White= ground
White w/ green stripe=?
Brown= ?

In particular, which wire/pin is for 500e foggies and which is for 500e driving lights?

thanks in advance
-fad
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