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Old 01-07-2004, 04:16 AM
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Should I buy a 1995 C36 or E420?

Has anyone had experience with both cars? I am having a hard time deciding between those two so if anyone can inform me of the pros and cons of owning these it would be great help!

I already own a '94 E220 station wagon and a '99 A-160 which I am going to sell.

Thanks in advance.

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Old 01-07-2004, 10:46 AM
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Location: Boston, MA
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I was faced with a similar question before!

I have a mint E420 but I was thinking of trading it in for a similarly mint C36 AMG. This one actually

I was thinking of a C36 because it's a rarer car and since i can't find a decent and correctly priced E500, I thought the C36 wouldn't be so bad.

The C36 immediately felt like the newer car inside. The climate control worked better too.

The I-6 engine pulled really hard and made a mini M3 sound. It's a fast car.


it's a smaller car and the back seats shouldnt even be there..
it felt cheaper inside

the brakes of the one I drove sucked so much. I think it was just the particular example after sitting around for a long time though.

harsh ride

I miss the V8 engine in the E420 The sound and smoothness.

They are different cars. So I guess it depends what you want. The E420 is an old car (W124), while the W202 is definitely newer. I didn't test the C36's handling or anything. But I'm sure it could run circles around the W124 :p
2008 BMW 335i Coupe
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Old 01-07-2004, 03:50 PM
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Do you plan on modding it?
Will it be used as a daily driver?
How long do you plan on keeping it?
What do you like/dislike about your current ride?
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Old 01-08-2004, 03:40 AM
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I dont plan to mod it. It will be used as a daily driver and I plan to keep the car as long as I like it.

I am very happy about my current E220T as a family transport wagon but would like to have some fun while I am driving. Therefore I am planning to sell the A-series I currently own which is not a proper MB.
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Old 01-08-2004, 09:44 AM
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The C36 feels like the car that is more fun to drive in my opinion. It accelerates more aggressively and sounds more aggressive.

However, I have not driven another car (yes that includes some 2000+ BMW 3s and MB Cs) that is more enjoyable to drive than the W124 E420.

The effortless acceleration, smoothness, ride comfort, solid feel, and that classis taxicab look just bring a smile wherever I go.

btw, since you already have a W124, you might want to look at the C36 AMG because the E420 is basically just that.. a V8 powered 124 with really good brakes.
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Old 01-15-2004, 09:03 AM
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While I don't have a C36, I do have the engine from a C36 in a W124 wagon (

Also, I don't have a E420, but I do have a 500E.
Hence, my comparison will be on the engine/powertrain.

The C36 is FUN, but you have to rev it high to extract the fun.

The M119 V8 has so much low-end torque, and it's so smooth. Hence, it is very relaxed to get FUN/performance out of it.

The C36 will out handle the E420, even if you do a Euro SportLine suspension upgrade.

For an everyday driver I would get the E420, put in a 2.82 or 3.06 differential (more fun!) and Euro Sportline suspension.

However, if you need something smaller (city parking), want to have some fun in the "twisties" or mountain roads, and don't mind revving it, get the C36. The C36 will feel also lighter than a W124, which perceptively, is less safe.

If you can, get a 1997 with the 5-speed.

Better yet, find a C43. V8 in a C-class: smooth & relaxed powertrain, with the C36 suspension . . .

:-) neil
1988 360TE AMG
1993 500E
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Old 01-16-2004, 03:25 AM
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I own a C43 and owned a C36 i have driven a E420 and my freind has a E430 and i have driven that too.

I would say go with C36 you wont be dissapointed. Great sound and power. Its very tuned and turnes BMW guys heads! total sleeper and a tru hot rod
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Old 01-30-2004, 04:53 PM
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Location: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
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I've spent extensive amounts of time in both cars....

If all things are equal or close to it....go C36

The C36 will outhandle by a HUGE margin the E420. It should also outbrake it. (not sure what happened with the example above) The C36 is much quicker off the line, about the same on kickdown/highway. The interior is also a bit more sporty (seats, dash, etc) You lose a bit of space but IMO its a good trade....plenty of room for kids back there. Putting a 6 footer behind a 6 footer gets tight but on a short trip would be passable.

The 420 has a bit more space, rides a little softer, and may be a bit cheaper to service in some areas.

Overall the C36 will not be bad to service unless something that is AMG only breaks. Then expect to pay a premium. Insurance varies a good bit....when the C36 was built AMG was not owned by MB so it appeared to the insurance folks as only an appearance option package type thing. I don't know if the companies have caught on yet but the two cars are probably close to each other in cost to insure as not to make a significant difference. Gas mileage is about the same, the E420 might do a tick better on the highway and a tick worse in town. (super tall gearing and a V8)

If you are on a road course, a C36 will DESTROY an E420 (stock vs stock of course) but for the street it isn't a huge difference. I'd go C36 but that's just me.....

Hope this helps,
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Old 02-06-2004, 05:17 PM
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Location: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
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Oh, as an FYI in big red letters.....

Avoid the 97's of either E420's or C36's. Old brain engine vs new brain tranny....down the line not the happiest mairrage. Yes, the 5 speed is more responsive and doesn't get the odd shifting ideas that occasionally go along with the 4 speed. That said....the 4 speed is a good bit more durable from what I've seen. If we are talking C43 vs 500E that is a whole other debate...

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Old 02-14-2004, 01:27 PM
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c36 vs a 210 body

Couldn't agree with Lee more, if you are tossing the car, C36 will eat the curves alive and ask for seconds. Nothing wrong with a nice E class and a V8 but expect a bit more roll if tossing a 210. I've driven and owned both, the C class AMGs are sized perfectly for that kind of "exercise."

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