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  #1  
Old 02-13-2003, 01:55 PM
pierre
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Post 450 SEL - Inquiries and comments

Hello Everybody,
I have posted this threat earlier in the Tech Help Forum but just found this Vintage Mercedes Forum....So here we go.
This is a copy of my original message with some comments, since I try to keep you update on the story.

Original Message:
I intent to buy a 450 SEL - 1976...just felt in love.
Well, before I make a final decision and decide to empty my wallet (what should be a fare price?), I try to get as much information as possible.
Somebody met by internet, a current 450 SEL daily user, did recommend me to ask for technical assistance thru this site. In fact I would like to have an independant Mercedes Benz technical expert to review that car prior to buying.
I live in Montreal ; any help, recommendation, advise and comments on that type of car would be greatly appreciated !
Many thanks in advance !

PS : I attached 2 pictures of the car.

NEWS:
I will finally drive the car to a MB dealership in MTL since I did not find an independant expert.
I got quite a lot of messages from you guys and spent hours reviewing threats about 450 SEL (especially the one where somebody was wondering why 450 SEL were not discussed very much on this site). Lots of info and technical advices...Thanks to all from everywhere...I feel better ready to purchase since I now know better the extend and amount of trouble that I may face. Overall, let's call this a Smart Purchase !
Comments on the vehicle :
RightHand Drive, manufactured with Japan Specs (sole information that I could have from MB USA). Don't ask me "why MB USA?" : this vehicle was not even registered in the US, but when I called the Old Timers Department in Stuttgart with my VIN in hand, I was asked to contact them. Anyway,..."No history on this vehicle but we can tell from the VIN that it was manufactured with Japan Specs". That's all I got !
Somebody suggested that I should try CARFAX,...which I did.
US$19.95 to discover that CARFAX is not able to provide info for vehicle older than 1981. Never mind, got the refund but still...
DOES ANYBODY KNOW HOW TO GET HISTORY OF MY VEHICLE?
Where was it sold first, in which country? When was it imported in Canada,....etc,etc.
The current owner bought it from a guy living in Vancouver. That's all I know. For such a special vehicle, you can imagine how desperate I can be !
DOES ANYBODY KNOW SOMETHING ABOUT JAPAN SPECS ?

One more thing, a guy from Netherllands told me that I should use LEADED Super for this car. As a French fellow, I know you can still find Leaded Super at gaz station in Europe (more expensive!). Here in north America, it's not available anymore...Unleaded 91 and higher is the right choice?

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450 SEL - Inquiries and comments-450-sel-hiver.jpg  
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  #2  
Old 02-13-2003, 01:56 PM
pierre
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Re: 450 SEL - Inquiries and comments

Don't know why but second picture didn't print....
Attached Thumbnails
450 SEL - Inquiries and comments-450-sel-summer.jpg  
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  #3  
Old 02-13-2003, 03:06 PM
wbain5280's Avatar
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Why would you want to buy a right hand drive car? Aren't there any 450SEL's in Montreal, Quebec or Toronto, even Ottawa? And no VIN info as well. I smell a rat.
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Warren

Currently 1965 220Sb, 2002 FORD Crown Vic Police Interceptor

Had 1965 220SEb, 1967 230S, 280SE 4.5, 300SE (W126), 420SEL

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  #4  
Old 02-13-2003, 03:19 PM
pierre
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The car is in pretty good shape and can have the closer face-to-face relation with the seller here in Montreal. Even I don't believe I will find a 450 in Ottawa or Toronto, I will go and check. There are no 450 available in Quebec city and the ones I have seen on Ebay are not comparable to this one.
The rat ! That's exactly what I am trying to find out...
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  #5  
Old 02-13-2003, 09:43 PM
1967250s's Avatar
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Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Ottawa
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Salut Pierre,

Bienvenue au forum des maniac de Benz.
Tres belle "machine" ta 450sel, tu vien de me donner le gout pour une (volant gauche bien sure).

Dan
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  #6  
Old 02-14-2003, 08:51 PM
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Location: Okanogan County, WA
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Some Insight

I would suggest that the main difference between Japan Spec and UK Spec would be that the instruments read in metric increments instead of english or US ie; mph vs kph. Also, be aware that if the headlights weren't changed that they will annoy truckers as there is a 15 degree uplight designed into the light to aid in sign reading. There is a simple solution to this which is to tape off a small portion of the lens. I could explain further if you do indeed purchase this car.

There may also be emissions issues which are different, although Japan and US had similar standards.

Does this car have individual right and left temperature control dials or an electronic system with the button arrayed vertically? the manal individual controls are preferred.

there are companies which make an additive for leaded engines to run on unleaded fuel. I believe one additive is called "real lead" and is made by the company which manufactures 104 PLUS octane boost.

Check out this mailing list for further question and possible answers.

http://116.list.mbz.org/

good luck with your pre-purchase inspection.

Happy Motoring

RBM

Last edited by rbmercedes; 02-14-2003 at 09:02 PM.
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  #7  
Old 02-16-2003, 12:17 PM
Eberhard Weilke's Avatar
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No Mercedes car ever needs leaded fuel. There is an official service information about this matter which actually forbids any fuel additives.

Which specifications does the car have? US? Japan? Australia?

Maybe you can put down the VIN-number that someone can look up the details for your engine.

Kind regards
Eberhard
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  #8  
Old 02-16-2003, 12:32 PM
Eberhard Weilke's Avatar
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Sorry, first read, than write

You already posted that it is a Jap-Spec.

According to my information the car has the M117.985 NV engine (NV stands for low compression) which is pretty similar to the US engine. Can you check if there is a catalytic converters hangs under the car?

According to the Tabellenbuch the MJ 76 should have a japanese sign on the first crossmember.

The compression will be 8.0 : 1 which means, that you can run it with 86 ROZ.

I can give you the numbers for setting the ignition, if you need them.

Kind regards
Eberhard
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  #9  
Old 02-18-2003, 12:28 PM
pierre
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Clarifications

Eberhard,
Thanks for this message and your contribution.

I think definitely important to find out more about the Japs Specs, especially for the compression and the type of gaz: this vehicle doesn't have a catalyc converter, so I still need to understand if the engine had been designed for unleaded gaz....

I am sorry but I don't understand (my poor english !!) when you say "No Mercedes car ever needs leaded fuel".

The VIN is 11602922035319.

Best Regards,
Pierre
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  #10  
Old 02-18-2003, 12:40 PM
pierre
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Clarifications (2)

Eberhard,
I can tell the results of compression test :
1: 140
2: 140
3: 150
4: 140
5: 150
6: 145
7: 145
8: 150
Not sure how I can read that with your 8.0 :1...?

It is also not clear to me where this "Japanese sign" should be founded...First crossmember..? Please, help !

Don't think I'm stupid...just try to understand! Thanks,

Pierre
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  #11  
Old 02-18-2003, 12:41 PM
Eberhard Weilke's Avatar
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Well, lets see how I can phrase it:

"no lead in Mercedes engines"

"lead is not necessary for a Mercedes engine"

"it is a myth that old Mercedes engines need lead"

The service bulletin actually forbids any later added additives.

I must see if I get the Workshop-manual CD started with more information.

Which date was the car build? You have a VIN number?

Kind regards
Eberhard
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  #12  
Old 02-18-2003, 12:44 PM
pierre
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Date and VIN

OK ! Very Clear !
The VIN is in my previous message. Here is it again :
11602922035319
Date : I don't know exactly wich month but Year 1976... Should it be more precise??
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  #13  
Old 02-18-2003, 01:02 PM
Eberhard Weilke's Avatar
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Nice test, the engine looks pretty healthy with the even numbers.

Can someone explain compression in english? I struggle.

Anyway: With the VIN 116.029 the car is, according to my Tabellenbuch, a 350 SEL with the long wheelbase.

I posted the number in the german W 116-Forum so that someone can run it through the EPC. Lets see what they find.

The engine is M 116. 983 or M 116.993NV

Kind regards
Eberhard Weilke
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  #14  
Old 02-18-2003, 01:11 PM
pierre
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This is rock'n'roll !!

Well....
Let's see what comes up with the W116 Forum, and thank you very much for this help.

Any new phrasing for the Japanese sign on the crossmember?
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  #15  
Old 02-18-2003, 01:17 PM
Eberhard Weilke's Avatar
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Well. According to the book the M 116 until MJ 76 for Japan has a yellow sticker on one of the valve covers.

The M 117 from MJ 76 has the sticker in japanese at the top traverse close to the radiator.

We will get that straighten out

Kind regards
Eberhard

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