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  #1  
Old 05-24-2007, 09:59 PM
350SL4spd's Avatar
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Old School Side Impact Beams?!?!

I found another surprise in my 'new' euro 350SL today.

I had the door panel off to fix my stuck driver's window and I saw this:



Hmmm... Let's investigate further shall we:



What the....



It appears that someone has welded a cross-beam into the door on my SL. Why the bloody hell anyone would find the need to...what on earth...*sigh*

Maybe she was a rally car in her last life . Lol. I love the idea of a topless rally car...

But seriously: If anyone has any idea why anyone would do such a thing, please explain it to me...

-M-

PS: You can't see it in the pic, but they had to make it a telescoping bar to fit it even with the chunk they took out of the door. Making the weakest link in their "safety feature" the one 13mm bolt in middle holding it together...
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  #2  
Old 05-24-2007, 10:48 PM
Jim B.'s Avatar
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Side impact beams were a DOT requirement to get the car certified and released as a legal gray market import in those days.

The registered importer had it done. Along with some of the other DOT requirements, like getting rid of the euro bumpers, euro headlights, first aid kit, safety warning triangle and fulfilling all the legal requirements that the DOT, in its infinite wisdom, laid down.

Don't you like lawyers building your car? And government lawyers, at that?
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  #3  
Old 05-24-2007, 11:12 PM
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I've had several grey market MB's and none have had this level of insanity...

The odd thing is that the lame-ass seatbelt buzzer they added was wired into the euro (KMH) inst. cluster

How many of the muscle cars from '73 had side impact means?
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  #4  
Old 05-24-2007, 11:47 PM
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Those beams are standard on US spec cars. You may have had your doors replaced at one time. Doors can rust and it's cheaper to replace them them then to reskin them.
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Al

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  #5  
Old 05-24-2007, 11:53 PM
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I found the same orange telescopic bars in my coupe's doors. i would say they were nicly installed without any damage to the doors. the first aid kit and halogen euro lights (stacked, but not sealed beam) are still on the car. but both bumpers were "improved". obviously original brackets were taken off and some square tubular bar was welded inside the bumpers. very ugly if you look up close. also painted in orange.
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  #6  
Old 05-24-2007, 11:59 PM
Jim B.'s Avatar
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 350SL4spd View Post
I've had several grey market MB's and none have had this level of insanity...

The odd thing is that the lame-ass seatbelt buzzer they added was wired into the euro (KMH) inst. cluster

How many of the muscle cars from '73 had side impact means?
Back in the mid 1980's, there were gray market converters all over the place and plenty of them were real shady, and fly by night operations, out for a fast profit.

I remember seeing them up and down 3rd Street in San Francisco, they were here today-gone tomorrow places. Not confidence inspiring.

As a result, a lot of gray market cars were botched, or poorly, or incorrectly, modified, and still managed to pass the DOT/EPA standards and get legalized.

I believe that all American cars beginning in 1969 were required to have the side impact beams in their doors.
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1991 560 SEC AMG, 199k <---- 300 hp 10:1 ECE euro HV ...

1995 E 420, 170k "The Red Plum" (sold)

2015 BMW 535i xdrive awd Stage 1 DINAN, 6k, <----364 hp

1967 Mercury Cougar, 49k

2013 Jaguar XF, 20k <----340 hp Supercharged, All Wheel Drive (sold)
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  #7  
Old 05-25-2007, 09:59 AM
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A friend had a factory door-beams in his '73 450SL that looked exactly like the one in the photo, minus the telescopic feature. In fact the one in his passenger door had broken free of the forward weld, causing a loud annoying rattle. Fortunately, the factory had, for some reason, drilled a pair of holes in a steel plate near the broken weld. I used the holes to attach a 1" diameter, 5/16" muffler-type clamp and secure the loose end of the door-beam to the plate.

On another note - Does anyone know why DOT didn't allow US-market Mercedes to have the first-aid kits or emergency triangles? Did DOT believe Americans were too stupid to be able to properly use emergency equipment?

Happy Motoring, Mark
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  #8  
Old 05-25-2007, 11:40 AM
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All US Spec cars since 1975 in the USA have side guard beams to prevent vehicle intrusion. They don't really help with SUV and their higher bumpers.
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  #9  
Old 05-25-2007, 11:55 AM
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Stupid or what

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark DiSilvestro View Post

On another note - Does anyone know why DOT didn't allow US-market Mercedes to have the first-aid kits or emergency triangles? Did DOT believe Americans were too stupid to be able to properly use emergency equipment?

Mark
Well, a lot of Americans still won't even buckle their seat belts!!!

The legislative intent behind outlawing the first aid kits and emergency safety triangles would make for interesting reading, that's for sure.
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1991 560 SEC AMG, 199k <---- 300 hp 10:1 ECE euro HV ...

1995 E 420, 170k "The Red Plum" (sold)

2015 BMW 535i xdrive awd Stage 1 DINAN, 6k, <----364 hp

1967 Mercury Cougar, 49k

2013 Jaguar XF, 20k <----340 hp Supercharged, All Wheel Drive (sold)
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