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  #1  
Old 11-02-2014, 03:04 PM
85 DSEL's Avatar
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Questions before buying - 1988 260E

Hey guys, I've been watching for a decent car for my son to use as he is just starting to drive and will soon have his drivers license. As a Mercedes fan I was looking for perhaps a C240-80 but just haven't found one that suits my pocketbook and desire to have an unmolested and clean one!

I did, however, locate a 260E on eBay and lo and behold was in my neck of the woods - about 20 miles south. The guy had a $2800 starting bid with no bids as of the time I headed over to see it. More on that in a moment...

Ironically, this guy bought the car thru a very good friend of his that lives in Houston (south) who runs/owns a Bosch service center there. He asked his friend if he would look for a good older MB suitable for his 16 year old as well! So, the guy finds one that was owned by a customer of his Bosch place but the twist is that the previous owner had recently died and the widow "...wanted it gone..." and he was able to pick it up for $2500 and did. He gets it back to OH and his son does not want/like it! Dad puts it back on the market and that's where I come in...

The car is definitely nice/clean, drives like a car of that age but the front end suspension *feels* loose as if there's a need for ball joints/bushings/something yet it drives ok. I didn't notice it wandering on the road when I drove it but I am thinking it just needs some bushing TLC...maybe? Tranny seems fine it shifted good, no flaring I noticed. The engine bay was very very clean - I mean like someone had just cleaned the snot out of it! Given how clean the rest of the car is, I don't seem to worry too much about that. But more of a concern is the valve guide issue I read about in a search thread I came across. Anybody here familiar with this motor and what I need to be aware of? The owner has some records that he showed me but I didn't take the time to sit down and look thru them other than looking at some of the bottom line costs that had been spent. There was one I saw for $39xx another for $23xx and another for mid teens, so there has been maintenance that has been performed on this car I'm just not sure of the items done.

Wifey and I got back from our drive and he came out and during our conversation he mentions that he just looked at his auction on eBay and saw that he had an initial bid for the $2800. He said he didn't care, he'd rather it was purchased by someone 'local' and that he'd take $2800 for it. We gave him a check for $100 and planned to pick it up Tuesday or Wednesday. Constructive criticism wanted but please, no flame throwers (I'm attaching a few pics) Thanks.

EDIT: Sorry for the side-turned pics :-/
Attached Thumbnails
Questions before buying - 1988 260E-20141101_152304.jpg   Questions before buying - 1988 260E-20141101_152257_hdr.jpg   Questions before buying - 1988 260E-20141101_152232.jpg   Questions before buying - 1988 260E-20141101_155044.jpg   Questions before buying - 1988 260E-20141101_152906.jpg  

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1995 W124 Wagon

Dale

1995 E320 Wagon 173K
1988 260e Sedan 120K
2006 BMW 330Ci 110K
-----------------------------
[LEFT]2007 F-150 XLT 175K

Last edited by 85 DSEL; 11-02-2014 at 10:06 PM.
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  #2  
Old 11-02-2014, 03:42 PM
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That does look like a very clean W124. $2800 looks like a fair price for the car as well as long as it is rust free and has a working a/c. The 260E will always be less desirable than a 300E since it is a lower trim and a less powerful engine but as long as its in good condition it looks like a good buy to me.
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  #3  
Old 11-02-2014, 06:22 PM
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all the service history? i'd take any 124 over a 202 car any day, especially for a kid. good luck, chuck.
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  #4  
Old 11-02-2014, 10:11 PM
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Thanks guys. It has some service records that come with it not sure how far back but I know at least 2009 and from the way he talks there's more.
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1995 W124 Wagon

Dale

1995 E320 Wagon 173K
1988 260e Sedan 120K
2006 BMW 330Ci 110K
-----------------------------
[LEFT]2007 F-150 XLT 175K
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  #5  
Old 11-04-2014, 10:21 PM
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As They Say....

....the devil in the details.... Up the road from ya Dale in Columbus and I own an '89. 260e. Everything your fellow forum members have said is right on. As was mentioned, I'd grab those service records in a New York minute and start pouring over them, better yet take some pictures of the invoices and post them on here for comment. Whomever spent $3900, $2300, and $1000++ on this car did some big time repairs and you want to know what those repairs were.

In regards to the car, the inline 6 is a nice peppy engine. Your son won't be winning any races, but it's not like driving an 80's MB diesel either. The 260e has best been described....not by me, by someone else....as a de-contented 300e. Pretty plain interior, just right for a teen. My kids drove my Benzes and I always felt they had an extra measure of safety as a result. I kept those cars and am now restoring them from the various wear, tear, and mishaps. You can do the same thing when your son goes off to college by dropping a 300e engine in that puppy and have a nice vintage Benz for yourself.
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  #6  
Old 11-05-2014, 07:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PARSHOOT1 View Post
....the devil in the details.... Up the road from ya Dale in Columbus and I own an '89. 260e. Everything your fellow forum members have said is right on. As was mentioned, I'd grab those service records in a New York minute and start pouring over them, better yet take some pictures of the invoices and post them on here for comment. Whomever spent $3900, $2300, and $1000++ on this car did some big time repairs and you want to know what those repairs were.

In regards to the car, the inline 6 is a nice peppy engine. Your son won't be winning any races, but it's not like driving an 80's MB diesel either. The 260e has best been described....not by me, by someone else....as a de-contented 300e. Pretty plain interior, just right for a teen. My kids drove my Benzes and I always felt they had an extra measure of safety as a result. I kept those cars and am now restoring them from the various wear, tear, and mishaps. You can do the same thing when your son goes off to college by dropping a 300e engine in that puppy and have a nice vintage Benz for yourself.
I will do that, good idea! I'll try to get some pics uploaded sometime later today...

Via the great LG G3 mobile device
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1995 W124 Wagon

Dale

1995 E320 Wagon 173K
1988 260e Sedan 120K
2006 BMW 330Ci 110K
-----------------------------
[LEFT]2007 F-150 XLT 175K
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  #7  
Old 11-05-2014, 10:34 AM
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OK here goes... And I'll keep adding them...
Attached Files
File Type: pdf 13729.pdf (467.0 KB, 50 views)
File Type: pdf 0965.pdf (648.0 KB, 44 views)
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1995 W124 Wagon

Dale

1995 E320 Wagon 173K
1988 260e Sedan 120K
2006 BMW 330Ci 110K
-----------------------------
[LEFT]2007 F-150 XLT 175K
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  #8  
Old 11-05-2014, 10:43 AM
85 DSEL's Avatar
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More...

PS: having trouble dl'g a few two-page docs, I'll need to separate then resend... Later
Attached Files
File Type: pdf 08722.pdf (588.0 KB, 49 views)
File Type: pdf 08710.pdf (351.7 KB, 46 views)
File Type: pdf 08623.pdf (622.5 KB, 45 views)
File Type: pdf 071128.pdf (547.7 KB, 42 views)
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1995 W124 Wagon

Dale

1995 E320 Wagon 173K
1988 260e Sedan 120K
2006 BMW 330Ci 110K
-----------------------------
[LEFT]2007 F-150 XLT 175K
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  #9  
Old 11-05-2014, 01:05 PM
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I have a 1988 300CE. With 139,000 on the odo, the valve stem guides are original. Due to excess oil consumption, back at around 80k on the odo (6-7 years ago) I had the valve stem seals replaced. Easy Job. Problem solved. I now burn about a qt. every 3-3,300 miles or so.

I notice the car had the water pump and a/c compressor replaced at 88,900. My water pump went at about 110,000. I don't use AC much where I live. The compressor is original.

The radiator seam opened up on mine about 5-7 years ago. Might want to keep your eye on that. Also, the plastic neck on the M103 radiator had a habit of cracking with age. MY alternator went about 4 years ago.

The 3.0 had head gasket leaking issues. The 2.6 probably did too. Mine was replaced when I bought it, but now again weeps a little oil at the right rear. No problem.

Pretty strong engine. Lower end damn near bullet proof. Parts aplenty out there. The 2.6 and the 3.0 share many/most parts. In fact, my fuel distributor was switched out from a dealer's yard 190E 2.6.....12 years ago.

I had a 91 190E 2.6 before the CE. It performed very well....till my youngest daughter totaled it.

Good luck Dad.
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  #10  
Old 11-05-2014, 02:07 PM
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The 2.6 and 3.0 fuel and ignition are identical. the only difference is that SOME of the valvetrain components are not interchangeable along with the head.
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  #11  
Old 11-05-2014, 05:41 PM
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(Got issues with a .pdf file being too large [1.23MB] to upchuck I mean upload...hehehe!)

Trying to figger out how to most easiestly to do this...hmmmmmmm. Any suggestions?

Oh well, gotta go so may try later this evening.

BTW - thank you ps2cho and dynalow for your comments! dynalow, you and yours have been together a looong time and that's the way it should be. I try to buy 'really good' cars and keep them a long time!
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1995 W124 Wagon

Dale

1995 E320 Wagon 173K
1988 260e Sedan 120K
2006 BMW 330Ci 110K
-----------------------------
[LEFT]2007 F-150 XLT 175K
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  #12  
Old 11-05-2014, 07:16 PM
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Looks Routine

Dale looked at all the invoices and would appear pretty routine stuff.....a/c went out & was repaired, alternator was bad & replaced. Hope your son enjoys his ride.
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  #13  
Old 11-05-2014, 09:08 PM
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Thanks PARSHOOT1 for taking the time to look over the invoices I've put on here. I believe the car has been well maintained from I know about it at this point. As somebody already pointed out, the a/c compressor has been changed I believe 10-15K miles ago. There are a couple invoices for a/c system repairs. I will still try to get the other couple two-page invoices uploaded so there's a better idea of what has been done on the car.

It needs some suspension TLC I believe. This evening my wife and I were out in it and as we were trolling thru a stripmall parking lot, I noticed the car seemed to "bottom-out" when slowly easing over the speed bumps - especially on the rear. It felt like there was zero dampening action of the strut as it rebounded. Can't wait to get it up in the air and inspect the under side of her!
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1995 W124 Wagon

Dale

1995 E320 Wagon 173K
1988 260e Sedan 120K
2006 BMW 330Ci 110K
-----------------------------
[LEFT]2007 F-150 XLT 175K
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  #14  
Old 11-05-2014, 09:39 PM
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Here are the two-page invoices in .jpg format. I hope they are legible!...
Attached Thumbnails
Questions before buying - 1988 260E-1.jpg   Questions before buying - 1988 260E-2.jpg   Questions before buying - 1988 260E-3.jpg   Questions before buying - 1988 260E-4.jpg  
__________________
1995 W124 Wagon

Dale

1995 E320 Wagon 173K
1988 260e Sedan 120K
2006 BMW 330Ci 110K
-----------------------------
[LEFT]2007 F-150 XLT 175K
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