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Old 03-21-2003, 12:17 AM
Posts: n/a
Question What version is my Benz?

I have a 1977 280SE that I have owned for about 2 years. I have the service CD but I cannot find the version for my car. My reason for wanting to know is:

1. there is no plate or reference to emission controls on the tag.

2. trouble shooting tune up problems refer to EGR service and air pump testing. I have neither.

3. Calif emission testing is due and what standard do they test this to?

The VIN is 11602412068925
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Old 03-21-2003, 09:09 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Victoria BC
Posts: 87
Sounds like you have a Euro, I don't believe the 280SE was imported officially. Any paperwork from the P.O.?. You will not find tags or an air pump on non U.S. cars. If you can't get some kind of exemption, you could always transfer the required emission control equipment from a w123 with the M110 motor but may get tricky when it comes to gas vapour recovery etc. You may need to sell you car to a state that exempts older vehicles. Sorry!.
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Old 03-21-2003, 02:17 PM
sixto's Avatar
smoke gets in your eyes
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 20,114
The 280SE was offered in the US in 1977.

There should be a tag in the driver's door pillar that says the vehicle complies with US DOT requirements as well as a tag in the engine bay that says the engine complies with Federal EPA requirements and hopefully Calif EPA requirements.

Telltales of a Euro car include slim chrome bumpers, flush headlights, fabric upholstery, manual/rotary AC controls, hubcaps, metric gauges, no red segment on the portion of the taillight that wraps to the side, manual windows, '!' triangle in the trunk, large hole fuel filler, etc. Probably the most obvious is the lack of a VIN tag on the driver windshield pillar.

Lack of EGR and AIR pump are not promising. Does it at least have a CAT?

Who smogged it when you bought it?

If it's a Euro in Calif, you'd better have a red Bureau of Automotive Repair (BAR) tag in the driver door jamb or your smog check will be less than a fun ride. Best case is that they smog it, worst case is they send you to a referee. Ugh.

Start another post asking if someone with access to the EPC can run your VIN. That will tell you specifically where your car was initially delivered or at least show whether or not US and/or CA emissions equipment were installed.

91 300SE
87 300SDL
83 300SD
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Old 03-21-2003, 03:11 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Orlando, FL
Posts: 788
Unless the VIN sequence is different from 126s to 116s, it is a euro. US VINs have letters after the WDB, such as WDBCA. Euro VINs though, have the chassis number directly after the WDB, like my VIN for instance starts with WDB126034. So since this VIN starts with WDB116024, makes me believe this is a euro. And just like sixto said, the bumpers are a telltale sign. On a 116, the US bumpers stick out like 4 could use them as is really obvious. You won't necessarily be able to tell from the headlights or the taillights, because those are usually always switched out with US parts like mine was. But the emergency triangle, cloth seats and manual windows will obviously remain.

The only thing mine has is an EGR, but no air pump and the cat is coming off...I guess I'm glad I don't live in CA!!!
'86 420SE Euro
904 Midnight Blue, Gray Velour
Dad bought it new, now I own it.

"A Mercedes-Benz is like a fine wine, it only gets better with age."
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Old 03-21-2003, 04:48 PM
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smoke gets in your eyes
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 20,114
The CB20 for 126.120 (300SD) VIN format didn't start in the US until 1981/W126.

I don't know if a 1977 model should have the WDB prefix or not. I'm pretty sure my 77 450SEL didn't have the WDB prefix.

91 300SE
87 300SDL
83 300SD
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